When social proof comes from wisdom of the crowd
Merchandising our legal services in a crowded space presents many challenges. We believe by generating and sharing social proof throughout our products, we can add influence to our brand and packages which will result in more transactions.
The goal of our project was to identify effective and compelling ways to speak to the popularity of our products. To quote my co-worker, Joni, "Make the site feel alive, like people come here."
More specifically, the focus of our social proof experience was to use the "Wisdom of the Crowd". By highlighting the popularity or large number of users implies "X number of people can't be wrong."
The most famous use of "Wisdom of the Crowd" is probably McDonalds, where billions of people can't be wrong.
Other arenas where this type of social proof can be evident is when the server seats restaurant goers near the window to show passerby's that "Yes! People come here to eat, and so should you!".
When applying social proof to web, commonly referred example is how Expedia uses "Wisdom of the Crowd".
If 11 people booked this hotel and someone booked it less than a half-hour ago, I should book it!
Once we started looking at how we can apply this type of social proof to Legal Services, one different became apparent immediately. We don't have scarcity like Expedia and Amazon. We won't run out of professional services, at least anytime soon.
In the end, in order to get something out to market quickly and learn, what we did have quickly was the ability to leverage reviews and recommendations of the lawyer and their services. By adding this information, we did see a lift in visitor click thru and heard through usability about the emotional impact users had by seeing that others have recommended the services.