Taking responsibility for lost sales

(Originally appeared on Indie Hackers)

For a long time I didn’t appreciate how important copy (that is “Sales Copy“) is. I considered that secondary to the core tech that powers a product.

What made it click for me is realizing that sales can be lost purely due to copy and design.

The insight is that you have control over whether a random site visitor converts or not.

Obviously you don’t have total control. But you don’t have zero control either.

Most visitors will not immediately understand your product, or why they should use it. They will require some amount of persuasion to convert. Whether they do so is a simple matter of whether your copy and design delivers enough to meet that threshold.

If it doesn’t, they leave, and a sale falls through. And to a certain extent, that’s on you.

Of course, I’m not saying you should feel bad, or beat yourself up because your number of site visitors does not equal your sign ups :). I’m just proposing a shift in mindset from passive acceptance to proactive responsibility.

Just because your site visitors don’t have to click a huge “SALE LOST – YOU FAILED!” button when they close the tab doesn’t mean that there was no failure on your part, and it’s important to recognize that you share responsibility for that potential lost sale.

While I find this negative and uncomfortable, I also find this mindset shift empowering. No longer are your sales subject to the whims of your site visitors- you’re actually in the driver’s seat, and have the ability to take your success into your own hands.

Any thoughts?