American entrepreneur, television personality, media proprietor, and investor, Mark Cuban, has time and time again emphasized on the importance of sales for any company, even quoting “No Sales, No Company” to business insider.
It takes simple business skills to understand that no business can survive without sales and will lose its value if the right decisions aren’t taken at the right time. As a business person, it is also crucial to keep up with the latest advancements in the business industry whether they are related to technology, finance, accounting or any other. In this article, we are going to talk about one of the latest trends that have taken the tech industry by storm – Yes, we are talking about Gamification.
You must be scratching your head right now and asking yourself, “What does Gamification and sales have in common?”
What is Gamification?
According to Wikipedia, gamification can be defined as “The application of game-design elements and game principles in non-game contexts.” This means that gamification takes elements from game-design and the general principles and theories which drive gameplay and applies them to other non-gaming contexts like Learning Management System, Corporate Training, eCommerce Stores Sales, Online Community, Social Media Growth, Human Resource Management, Sales Department Performance, Recycling Process, Food Business Penetration, and many other scenarios. The main objective and goal of gamification is to increase motivation, user engagement, productivity and loyalty.
Relationship Between Gamification and Sales
Gamification is an effective technique to grow your business especially when you’re running an ecommerce store. It uses points, badges, ranks, and rewards mechanisms, which encourage customers for more engaging behavior and hence leads to more revenue and sales for any business.
Gamification and sales have plenty of common attributes in between them like both of the terms involve certain goals and targets that can be accomplished by following a level-based path. Let’s take examples from popular games like Super Mario Bros, Pacman, Angry Birds, Counter-Strike, Halo, Call of Duty, The Legends of Zelda, Street Fighter, PUBG purposefully reward the player on their achievements.
These rewards are achieved after players complete targets based on goals or levels. Sales is another activity that follows a similar pattern. You can drive better sales by engaging more customers through games like rewards, points, badges, ranks, leaderboards, and levels in a real-life business as well.
Myths About Gamification – True or False?
Business owners often perceive Gamification or gamification implementation as a strategy that is strictly for entertainment purposes only. However, gamification not only helps in creating a fun and interactive environment for its users but also motivates them to achieve more.
People are competitive by nature and this attribute can be converted into better sales numbers by using gamification techniques. Contests are a staple tool for motivating people and encouraging customers to buy a product or service.
For example, A cinema can start a contest “The biggest cinephile in the city” and place a leaderboard strategy on its website.
Now for gaining points, you have to purchase tickets to move a higher spot in leaderboard. This is not an only example for using gamification to increase sales but there are multiple scenarios where you can apply gamification based strategies for a better sales result like rewarding a customer with points on every WooCommerce store purchase, gamifying learning management system to sell interesting courses, badges and ranks allocation to consumers on different shopping activities and subscription.
Like: you can reward points and badges on buying Keto diet food to create a competition among health-conscious groups, points, badges, and ranks on purchasing holidays plans for traveling freaks, and gamification based rewards for purchasing home appliances through competition of “The smartest Home” for the people who take pride in their home decoration and facilities.
Now let’s discuss the top 10 gamification techniques that can help you to generate more sales.
#1 POINTS-BASED REWARDS
A points-based loyalty program is one of the most useful and popular loyalty programs in the business world for sales purposes.It shows how customers can earn points by doing some activity, sharing, or achieving rank to get the points. Once the user’s profile is improving, they’ll get multiple rewards, gift vouchers or discount coupons from the website owner.
You can set different criteria for gaining points to your loyal customers by involving them into different gamification based activities. The easiest way is to define the spending amount and number of points a customer can gain against it. You can show them their shopping progress in terms of gained points and encourage them to shop more for unlocking new rewards. As a token of appreciation give them coupons and partial payment options so that they can spend more to utilize their points. You can also set the limit of points for particular customers and product categories. Top gamification plugins you can use to handle points management systems are myCred, Captain Up, and many more.
#2 GAMIFIED SOCIAL PROOF
Social proof is an effective plugin compatible for WordPress websites shows the action or behaviour of the people, what they’re doing or saying about the topic, that must be correct. The implementation of social proof helps the credibility of your website by letting the visitors know about your registered customers.
These notifications alert the website visitors of different activities such as most-watched products or services, most hot categories of sold products, and products or services people are liking and commenting on. Nothing works better than a customer endorsing your product to an audience much similar to what you’re targeting.
You can gamify the social proof strategy to increase your sales by giving the visitor rewards for liking your products, leave reviews, and make suggestions to others. These rewards can be given in the form of points, badges and ranks. Placing active participants on the leaderboard to make social proof behaviour more competitive is also a smart move. No doubt, social proof helps in increasing your sales tenfold through influencing others to purchase. The top plugins you can use to gamify social proof strategy are NotificationX, WPfomify, Yotpo, WooCommerce Notification, and WP Social Proof.
#3 GAMIFIED SOCIAL SHARING
Social Sharing is the new word of mouth that can create a huge impact on your online business sales. The purpose of this amazing plugin, whenever a user shares your posts or content on social media, they will get points every time they share.
By applying gamified social sharing strategies you can increase your sales graph significantly as active social media presence for your business on different platforms creates better exposure chances. Ask your customers to share your branding posts on social media platforms and get a perfect reward for it.
You can reward redeemable points to your customers for sharing your business posts on social media, higher ranks on the leaderboard, and badges for advanced levels.
Social Sharing helps you in conveying your brand messages to the biggest virtual audience group (*Active social media users have passed the 3.8 billion mark), improve your brand perception, and ultimately generates more sales. The top plugins you can use for your social sharing strategy are social Snap, Easy Social Share Buttons, Social Pug, Sassy Social Share, and many more.
#4 LEADERBOARDS & LEVELS
The main purpose of a leaderboard is to boost engagement by creating a competitive environment and offering better levels and spots. It is right people are competitive by nature and leaderboards incentivize users to continue performing desired actions to rank up their profiles and levels among their competitors.
You can implement a simple and straightforward leaderboard strategy to increase your sales by making the criteria like the more a customer does shopping (more sales for your business), the greater its position on the leaderboard will be placed. By showing individual positions and levels of certain group members on the leaderboard, you can create healthy competition for more shopping on your E-store.
Making a level based gamification strategy is suitable for most of the businesses as it carries classical gaming principles to implement in any scenario. People feel great when their esteem is appreciated and they are placed in a superior position.
#5 REFERRAL CONTESTS
For any business, referral contests are an excellent way to gain new customers. You can reward your customers with subscription or store credit for referring your products and services to their friends. It does not cost you much, as the reward credit can only be used to buy your products and ultimately give you more revenue.
It will give you double benefit, your current customer will feel rewarded for referral and will spend your offered store credit to shop more and secondly you will earn new customers and hence more sales in the future. You can also take affiliate marketers on board to promote your business through affiliate marketing programs and get sales your way. Gamify the whole process of referral contests and announce different rewards for bringing new customers. Give referral contests participant points, badges, and ranks. Also, show them their progress through progress bars and shower the best possible rewards like gifts, vouchers, discount coupons, free shipping, and much more.
#6 SPIN TO WIN STRATEGY
There are several e-store owners who are adapting the technique to apply spin win formulas to give discounts or reward customers.
Spinning a fortune wheel strategy invites online visitors to enter their email addresses to receive a coupon code for a discount, which will then be applied to their cart. Spinning a wheel on online stores helps immensely in reducing abandonment cases and encourages a customer to try its luck for coupons and other rewards.
You can take visitors’ email addresses and send them further promotional emails to increase the chances of conversion. The top plugins you can use for spinning a wheel strategy are OptinMonster, WP Optin Wheel, OptinSpin, and Wheely Sales.
#7 SCAVENGER HUNTS
Scavenger hunts, a great gamification technique to get engagement to engage in your WooCommerce store. So, in this case, users can easily see multiple products or pages on your e-stores.
You can initiate it by asking online customers to find hidden symbols and specified items, and successful participants will be rewarded with gamified points, badges, ranks and other perks such as discounts and free shipping.
Scavenger Hunts are already proven ways to increase your sales as customers go through different sections of your online store and get awareness about available products and services. You can also integrate it with the Social Proof gamification strategy and ask scavenger hunt participants to give reviews on products they are interested in while searching for hidden symbols and items.
#8 PROGRESS INDICATION
It is another form of gamification technique to increase conversion rate especially and reduce chances of cart abandonment. Whenever your customers are checking out, they see a progress map. It’s a great way to show the overall progress of your customer path if they made it or they left and went.
You can also Indicate other progress of customers as well like how long they are attached with your business, how much they shop in a week or month from your online site and rewards they are unlocking by spending more.
#9 SEASONAL SALES ACTIVITIES
Seasonal sales play a vital role to attract customers with coupons, flat discounts, and free shipping like nothing else, which may only be available once a year, and these sales have the ability to produce immense traffic on e-commerce platforms.
By gamifying seasonal sales activities, you can engage your customers and encourage them to purchase more items from your WooCommerce store. Like you can initiate poll activities, quizzes related to your products/services, rolling rewards (Lottery), selfie competition, random rewards (Mystery Box), spinning a wheel to win, treasure hunt, and much more.
The winners of all these contests can win points, badges, ranks, and discounted coupons. Allowing them to redeem their points to shop more from your online store also gives them partial payment options too for better sales results.
#10 SALES TEAM MOTIVATION
‘Sales’ is a field where your employees can easily become unmotivated and burnt out. Might be it is due to a lack of focus, unclear goals, or the wrong rewards given. By gamifying your sales team objectives, you can drive better outcomes from them.
Sales gamification involves, out of comfort zone challenges, and creating a healthy competition atmosphere for sales representatives to compete against one another for the top spot on the leaderboard. These challenges can be as achievable or creative as you desire.
You can reward points, badges, ranks, and monetary benefits to your sales team performance in sectors like revenue generated, outbound calls target achieved, and sales pitch delivered.
We have discussed the top ten gamification techniques that help for better sales results. Different types of businesses need different types of gamification strategies to grow their sales number. It all depends on what they are selling, how they are doing it, their major target audience, and its typical behavior.
Keep the key gamification elements in mind, like motivation, user engagement, competitive atmosphere, and appropriate rewards against the efforts, it all makes a perfect gamification strategy for any business and hence leads to an upward sales graph.