The internet is now a major medium of exchange – where marketers are adept at offering things with perceived value in exchange for as much money as you will give them. The most common offer starts out as “free” – and yet can result in a lot of money changing ownership.
Most internet markers follow a well-established sequence of upsell and downsell offers. Knowing this structure is a way for them to get more money out of you. It can also be a way for you to get more out of them while hanging onto more of your money.
Here are a few of the things to expect the next time you are offered a “free” sample/trial.
First, you will be required to opt-in. The name and e-mail you provide will be added to an autoresponder e-mail campaign list. Depending on what you are opting into, you may or may not really need to provide your real name or primary e-mail address. I often use a coded name – and sometimes a junkmail address.
If you bookmark the URL of each page you visit, you can come back to it and see what happens with a different response. The only time this can get you in trouble is when you are asked for credit card info – which you usually are (even for a free offer). There are two reasons. The first is that you will probably be billed after a certain amount of time if you don’t cancel first. The other is that there are more offers waiting which will cost you money up front. Most of these offers will be presented as “one time only”. Few really are.
Often by waiting, you can get a better deal later – even if the price goes up. It’s just a matter of how much you want something now – and how much you are willing or not willing to pay.
Most internet sales conversions are in the single digits, meaning that most people do not buy. That’s okay. Enough people do buy to make many marketers millions! The same is true for free plus shipping and handling. The small amount you are asked to pay for your free item not only covers their costs but actually generates quite a bit of profit.
Typically, you will be presented with three (more) offers after the first one. If you say yes to the upsell, you will be offered another uspell. If you say no, you will be offered a downsell. Knowing this can save you a lot of money – while you are “customizing” your order.
Marketers assume that the primary reason people say “no” is cost, so a downsell offer is usually significantly less than whatever you turned down. If the offer is for a physical product to be shipped, you may be able to get the same material as an instant download for half the cost by declining the original offer – even if you want it and think it’s worth what’s being asked. They want to give you every opportunity to say yes and buy something.
Don’t let claims of scarcity influence you to buy something you don’t want just because it’s a “one time offer”. You can almost always get the same thing later – especially if you ask. If you buy something you don’t want or don’t like or get charged more than you expected, you can usually get a refund within 30-days . You can also opt-out and remove yourself from mailing lists at any time.
Regardless of what you choose, the next offer will usuallybe more expensive and comprehensive than the last one. IF you decline, a smaller cheaper version or alternative will usually be suggested.
The main thing to be aware of is time limits. A LOT of offers include some kind of free membership access – for a limited time (before you will be billed on an ongoing monthly basis). If you like and use what they offer, this (like anything they sell) could be worth it. Just know that you may be offered a better deal (to keep you) when you cancel.
Only you know what you perceive as of value. Hopefully some of what I’ve shared with be of value to you and will help you have a little more money. Feel free to share with me. True wealth begins with health and relationships. Let’s help each other (prosper).
Communication is vital for healthy (prosperous) relationships. Please leave me a comment.
© 2009 – 2010, Oren Pardes. All rights reserved.