Monday, July 15, 2013

Three Reasons Why Internet Businesses Remind Me of Used Car Lots

Reason #1
This morning I received an email from a internet business I've used many times and it had a product that interested me. Thinking to buy it, I clicked through to check out the price, landed on a product information page, and scrolled down for the information I wanted where I was asked to click further. So, it seemed, there was not only a financial cost for this product, there was a time cost. I clicked out of the site and didn't buy.

Okay, you might say, it was a random occurrence and I was being maybe a tad petty. Possibly, but well, no. This happens with internet businesses more and more often these days. I guess the rationale is that first they want you to really want the product, then they tell you how much it costs. Which makes me think the product isn't all that good to begin with or is extravagantly overpriced.

I wish these were techniques practiced only by small start-up web companies, but they aren't. Similar techniques are used by two of our most influential internet platform providers.

I came smack up against this hard truth when I started looking into paid advertising for my novels. I began with front pages ads on some book blogs and websites. I have a background in advertising art and by proxy some knowledge of advertising principles so I know that random ads here and there are not particularly effective but I thought the influence of the sites would help. It didn't and the ads didn't generate sales. There had to be another way. Maybe Google.