The fear of missing out (FOMO) is a psychological and social phenomenon that refers to the feeling of anxiety felt when one believes that one is missing out on an experience or opportunity. This term has grown increasingly relevant with the rise of social media, with people being able to share what they're doing and where they are at any point in time.
In eCommerce, FOMO is leveraged to influence buyers’ decisions. eComm businesses use tactics such as launching limited-time offers and limited collections to trigger the fear of missing out on their customers which drives them to make a purchase.
Effective ‘FOMO’ Tactics
- Display low stock levels - Putting disclaimers on low stock items such as - ‘only 2 pieces left’ or ‘hurry stock is running out’ tells your customers that the item is scarce and that if they don't buy it now they might never have the chance to own it. This will create a sense of urgency to buy the product ASAP.
- Create best-seller lists - Bestseller lists show shoppers all the products that everyone else has already bought and are enjoying. This triggers FOMO as it will show the customer everything that others have but not them, and encourage them to buy so they aren't missing out.
- Limited time offers - Limited time offers also creates a feeling of urgency within shoppers. They are less hesitant to purchase because they know that they don't have all the time in the world to make a decision, and they will miss out on a good offer if they don’t buy now.
- Show sold-out products - show your customers what products aren't available because they've gone out of stock. You can also offer to send them a notification when it is back in stock. You can also inform customers of any sale or deals that they missed out on and offer to notify them when the next one comes around. This ensures that when the product comes back in stock or the next sale comes around the customer will be more eager to buy so they don't miss out again.