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The Rule of Three

If you’ve completed my free TpT Seller brand messaging challenge, you’ve heard me talk about the lizard brain before.

Basically, human brains are lazy. Our brain wants to save us energy, so it tries to avoid difficult decisions.

So when you are long-winded or confusing or there are too many options, your customer’s brain shuts down. They don’t buy anything.

The more clear you are with your customer about what they have to choose from, the more likely they are to be able to make a decision – aka buy from you.

This is where the rule of three becomes extremely helpful.

The rule of three helps you remember to limit the number of options you offer a customer at any given time.

This can feel counter-intuitive. It’s easy to think that when we offer as many options as possible, customers will be more likely to see one that will work for them. However, studies show that when customers are presented with too many options, they are actually more likely to become overwhelmed, and less likely to consider any of those options at all.

By limiting our options, we can help customers feel more comfortable making a choice. For example:

  • When creating a “related products” list in a product description, listing only three products that are the best fit (or link to three categories instead of individual products)
  • When creating a store description, grouping your store into no more than three main categories of products
  • When sending an email, highlighting no more than three individual products.

Can you think of any other situations where using the rule of three could help make a customer decision easier?