First Impressions Online Affect Chicago Small Business Marketing

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( — October 3, 2013) Chicago, ILLINOIS — We live in an Internet driven world.  Information on products and services is literally right in people’s hands. A customer can walk into a business, and unlike ever before, Google a product or a service on their phone.


They can compare your business, product or services to other businesses, products or services, check reviews on the business, watch videos and see ads right on the spot.  Information is abundant and immediate. They get a sense and feeling about your business online. This can be a benefit or a setback (bad reviews).   


Choices are often made and people act/buy when their perceived value exceeds their perceived costs.


Perceived value and perceived costs include many factors, most unconscious, including:


  –   The price in dollars 

  –   The time involved

  –   The effort involved

  –   The person’s personal values

  –   The need at the moment

  –   Family friends or peer pressure

  –   Esteem issues

  –   Increased pleasure

  –   Decreased pain

  –   Moral and belief issues

  –   Cultural values

  –   Learned values

  –   Emotional state

  –   Psychological factors

  –   Much more


There are many, many, many things that our brain is processing and weighing all the time. 


Most is unconscious. This is changing constantly. An extreme example would be standing at the curb to cross a busy street. There is a lot of traffic and stepping out into traffic would mean certain injury or death. The danger, in this case the perceived cost, is very high and so you wait on the curb. Now, you are at the curb with a small child, maybe your child, all of sudden the child runs into the street. Instantly there is a huge shift.  The perceived value of saving your child exceeds the perceived cost of your injury or even death. You rush into traffic and save your child.


Most choices are not that dramatic.  Most are unconscious and subtle. 


When a customer comes into your business they may or may not buy something. They have crossed a very high bar in just being there so what will help them be a buying customer? You could raise the perceived value or lower the perceived cost but you probably don’t know what that is and they probably don’t know either. Something you do know is that if they are doing a Google search there is interest there. 


If the customer is searching for a product or service you provide and don’t find you or don’t find current, relevant information your perceived value may go down or at best remain unchanged.  Your opportunity to raise their perceived value has been lost. Every chance to raise their perceived value and lower their perceived cost increases your chances of the customer taking action, buying from you.


First impressions matter and your online presence may be their first impression.


The old saying “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression” is just as true if not more so in our internet age. People search the internet at amazing speed. In most cases there are tens or hundreds of thousands or even millions of search results. The first impression is to be found and have what they find be a great first impression. (See video on upper right on first impressions)


Feelings are a big part if not the part that determines our choices. 


Michael S. Gazzinga is director of the SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and the Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience at Dartmouth College. He is one of the world’s authorities on split brain or right brain and left brain. In his work he has found the right brain feels and needs no reason for the feelings.  The left brain must give reasons. You can see if you are right or left brain dominant with this test?


When we hear the phrase everything happens for a reason. That is the left brain doing its job.


How do people feel about your business, products and services? How can you convey what you can do for them? How can you that online? An effective online campaign that is supported by your brick and mortar business is business in the 21st century. Modern neuroscience is learning more and more about how our choices are made.


Large corporations have been using science for many years to influence buying behavior. Creating Pictures, videos and instant information have only very recently become available to anyone and any size business. Consciously creating a great online first, second and third impression online is now for every business.  


What impression would you like to make online? (Learn more about how Google Changes affect small businesses online)


John K Arnold has over 30 years of marketing experience and has done business on the internet for over 15 years. Learn more about the author and more about the company below. Please inquire on how your business can benefit and let’s get started today.


JKA Marketing, Inc

910 W Van Buren # 340
Chicago, ILLINOIS 60607