Creating a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) For a Website

How to write a proposition that engages your visitors in less than 10 seconds
After reading this article, you will have learned an important business skill—how to formulate and present your unique selling offer.
Even though it seems very easy to design a website, we recommend starting with a one-page website template to create your first offer.

This article shows you how to create a unique sales offer. We'll examine the offer, discuss with industry experts, and analyze why a website visitor needs to see your USP.

What Your Website Visitors Want to Know in the First 10 Seconds?

A unique sales offer showcases what you're offering and explains its values to your clients.
An offer answers your website visitor's main questions here and now. It convinces them to remain on the website, fill in and send a form or buy a product. You have only a few seconds to do all these.

A sales offer must be precise and as much clear as possible. Its value to the buyer must be apparent immediately. How can you achieve this?

Neil Patel, a consultant to NBC, General Motors, and Hewlett-Packard, writes about the 8 questions a website visitor wants to be answered in the first 10 seconds of being on your website.

Depending on how you answer them, the scenario can go either way: your website visitor will become interested and stay, or they'll close the tab, never to return.

This article will review Neil's questions and teach you how to create a landing page on Tilda. Also, it examines behavioral psychology, copywriting, and design. All these will enable you to create a great USP for your Tilda website.
1. What are you selling?
Write it down, draw it, sing about it—let the user know what your business is all about. Follow the main principles—clarity, value for the client, and precision.
Don't play around with people. Tell them what they need to know—keep it concise and get right to the point.
— Eva Katz, Managing Partner at the "5 o'click" digital sales agency
Say it out loud: create a great headline
On a website, a heading and a subheading are your offers, visitors will read them first. Moreover, the heading, more than any other element, will have the biggest impact on whether they will buy your products/services or turn into leads, or not.

The most common technique of writing a heading, the 4U's rule, was invented a long time before the world's first website went live. David Ogilvy came up with the formula in the 1950s. However, it's as current as ever.
David Ogilvy is the founder of Ogilvy & Mather advertising agency, Ogilvy PR, and a successful copywriter. He is considered by many to be the "father of advertising".

That's why a client needs you. Save, improve, secure, feed, delight—the heading starts with an imperative verb.

That's what makes you different from the competition. A better offer: "A country cottage costs half of a city apartment". Original product: "New security systems".

Value to the client measured in figures and percentage points. "Save up to 40 dollars, increase conversion by 70%".

A time-limited offer. "Buy with a 15 percent discount before April 15, use the program for free for 30 days."
If you can't fit all the 4 U's in a heading, you can do this in a subheading or a list. Just don't forget that the further down the page the text is, the less likely it'll be read.

There's a more recent formula option: 4U+K. It appeared as websites, and landing pages gained popularity.

"K" is a keyword integrated into a headline for free SEO optimization. To decide which word combination will convert your audience better and provide you with some excellent search traffic, check the words and words combinations in your website's title:
Element K examples
  • From 10 March until the end of spring. Free make-up consultation as seen on Fashion TV.

  • Promoting a construction company website. We increase website visits by 40-300% in three months, guaranteed.

  • Save 200 dollars. Music group to play at your wedding from 1 March until 1 June with a discount.

10 Heading Formulas

Try writing different headings and choose the best one. These formulas will help you get started.
{ Product attribute } [ SEO phrase ], designed to [ consumer value ]

Example: Easy-to-use newsletter builder designed to create marketing emails quickly and save time.
{ Adjective } + [ Product / Service ] for [ target audience characteristic ]

Example: Remote HTML course for children wishing to learn how to code.
[ Product name ] is [ product category ] that [ the job it does better than everyone else ]

Example: Oki is a food order app that locates the best deals within a one mile radius.
[ Solve pain point / problem ] [in an unexpected way ]

Example: Increase your income by buying from us. 
[Do something like [inspirational example] without [unwated consequences]

Example: Learn how to play tennis like a star without exhausting workouts.
[ Do what you want ] without [ unpleasant emotions ] / [ in a unexpected way ]

Example: Travel with no limits without abandoning your career.
{ Attribute a product } + { attribute of a product } [SEO phrase] that [ desired result ]

Example: Unusual handmade telephone covers that will protect your mobile from damage.
[ Action ] + [ SEO phrase ] in [ time ]

Example: Create professional presentations in 30 minutes.
[ Promise of a result ] in [ time ]. [ Additional value ]

Example: We'll deliver, assemble, and install a house in a day. We'll treat the timber with fire retardant solution for free.
We create + { product attribute } + [ product ] that
[ advantage for the consumer ]

Example: We create affordable videos for the website that increase sales for your business.
Don't forget to include the H1 title in the headline. It's the second-most-important element in SEO. The title tag remains number one, though, because it is displayed on the snippet. If the title tag is missing, Google uses the H1 text instead.
Here's how you do it on Tilda:
It's important not to get too playful with people in your title. For example, the header "Give yourself a holiday," on a website selling SPA treatments for women isn't going to work. When people open your page, they should be able to see straight away that you're selling SPA treatments that can be purchased as a package. Or that they can buy the package as a gift for their employees.
Many are trying too hard to be too playful while losing the essence of the offer. When you're creating a sales proposition, be as specific as possible.
An offer is a piece of text that needs support. After writing a heading and a subheading for your website, find a visual to support it. Depending on your product, this can be photographs, drawings or video.
Show, don't tell: add illlustrations
You can't fully rely on just text. A good image captures your website visitors' attention. Images and videos have unique effect: you don't have to think logically, images appeal directly to humans' emotions.
Images become augmented reality where the product is a participant:

Are you promoting a music band? Make a video of the musicians playing at an event, film people from your target audience dancing and having fun.

Are you selling an expensive frying pan? Place it inside a stylish kitchen showing a well-dressed housewife with a perfect manicure frying marbled steaks.

Are you promoting a snowboard instructor’s services? Add a photo or a video of a person in a bright snowsuit riding down a picturesque snow-covered mountain against a brilliant blue sky. Follow up with an offer: he or she will teach you how to snowboard from an absolute beginner to your first slope.
An illustration does several things to grab your attention:

  • It creates a mood.
  • It immerses you into the world of a client and your product where they co-exist side by side.
  • It showcases the product in a significant moment that helps establish trust and eliminate doubts.
2. Why should this interest me? How will this help me achieve my goals?
A heading, subheading, and an illustration all showcase why the product is valuable. So a product’s Usefulness is number one in this hierarchy.

A common underlying principle behind all successful sale transactions is speaking the client’s language and feeling their pains. Highlight what value you bring to your website visitors.

Amplify the effect—describe the situations that the client will recognize and where they’re achieving their aims with your product’s help. Add a script to your offer (see the example below).
If you're planning a house party, cook the steaks like a chef from the best restaurant in town. Offering different types of doneness means that you're paying attention to your guests. Surprise everyone by wheeling out your new electric grill.
Or pack client benefits into bullet points.

Behavioral Psychology in Making the Best Possible Offer

Some salespeople have been applying behavioral psychology for ages. We discussed this with Marina Dorokhina, the head of corporate sales at Skyeng. She doubles as the head of New Business Sales at Google and a business coach.

Marina Dorokhina
Head of corporate sales at Skyeng, Head of New Business Sales at Google, Business Coach
There are many behavioral models that your offer should take into account. One of them is:

AIDA—Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.

In 1898, St Elmo Lewis developed a model in the US that analyzes and measures a customer’s journey from ignorance to purchase. It’s over a century old (!). Surprisingly, it’s still effective and generates business owners millions of dollars today. Currently, we have many interpretations of the model. However, its main components have stayed the same. See some headline examples:
"Find out how to earn 1000 dollars per month online starting today!"
"Sell your apartment in 1.5 months and earn 10% more."
"How to create a landing page in1 hour."

One of the most popular expanded models is:

AIDAS—Attention, Interest, Desire, Action, Satisfaction.

Every promotional message must attract a potential buyer first. Next, arouse an interest, which will then translate into a desire to own a product or service. Finally, it spurs her to take action—such as making a purchase. Satisfaction means that the buyer, after all these steps, should be happy with the product. A satisfied customer often share their experience with their friends and family. They tend to become a regular client and buy other products.
These formulas are scripts that you can use to build a unique selling proposition and guide your page visitors from one selling point to the next.

The headings and offers don't always work. Advertising executives and business owners often abuse these structures and users tend to block the information presented to them in this way.
Sometimes less sensational headings work better. It’s best when they’re related to your client’s life. Relevance grabs the attention.

Eva Katz,
Managing Partner at the "5 o'click" digital sales agency
How do you identify your advantage and understand how you're going to hook and draw the user in? You will have to use testing and different hooks for different target groups.

In his book "Contagious," Jonah Berger gives the example of coffee grown in the mountains. All coffee grows in the mountains, but the company in question made that point their main USP (unique selling proposition), the backbone of their offer.

In order to answer the question about your advantages and express it correctly, you need to know your audience and the factors that influence it.

A young mother cares about her child's health and is really into sustainability. When viewing baby food ads, she's going to keep an eye out for those that highlight the origin of the product and identify themselves as safe and non-GMO. For another mom, the deciding factor may be the price. A third one may be drawn in by the popularity of the product among other children, making her believe that her child will be happy a well.

Each audience needs their own text, and the messages on each page need to be separated. Ideally, you'd have to carry out an A/B test or make a dynamic page that adapts to each target audience.
Let’s continue answering users' questions. Each of them can work on its own or be a part of these formulas.
3. How are you different from your competitors?
If you found an unoccupied market niche, then you must be Chan Kim or Renee Mauborgne, the authors of the book Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make Competition Irrelevant. They're offering specific instructions for taking the company out of the competitive stress and creating an entirely new business model.

Otherwise, your business usually has two to ten serious competitors. Your website visitors need to see why they should buy from you and not someone more experienced, more trusted, younger, or trendier.

Leave a complete answer for the "About us" section. In your offer, use your most compelling competitive advantage.
You're selling a wedding music band. All such bands play the same cover songs. Why is your band better than the others?

  • "Book one band for the entire event: from the pre-wedding reception to the late-night disco. Save $700 and a whole lot of nerves." The advantage here is that a client won't need to book more than one band. They can have you "wholesale", and for a special rate. A wedding planner is likely to choose you, too—the fewer contractors the fewer contracts, headaches, and costs.
  • "You'll be pleasantly surprised when you see a tiny ukulele and electronic cello." Be different by using unusual instruments. Don't forget that people don't just listen to a band, they look at the band members, too.
  • "We'll sing in English, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Swahili, without an accent." This is about how professional you are. If you're being booked for an international event, this is your ace card.
4. How much are your services?
You don't need to give the price on the homepage. It's important to create a quick and obvious way to find the price. Your website menu that must stay always visible, needs to have an item called "How much it costs", "Price", or "Price List".

To understand if your offer has to include the price or not, test the conversion rates for both options. We'll show you an example of such testing in the second part of this article.

Are you announcing the price straight away? Many novice salespeople are not sure whether to say 28 or 27,99 according to Nick Kolenda, an entrepreneur, and a blogger with expertise in the psychology of marketing.

Nick bases his research on science, so we have a reason to trust him.

There are four types of prices:
Round prices ($26)
Round prices with zeros ($45.00)
Exact prices ($36,47)
"Charm" prices ending in 9, 99, or 95 (19,99 or 46,95)
Never use the second option, extra zeros will only distract. The only place for these numbers is a table with whole numbers. The column will look neater in this case.

The Law of the speed of perception affects the first, third, and fourth price types. A round price is faster to process, while an exact price requires more time. Prices ending with 99 or 95 are somewhere in between.
If your product is “emotional,” then take a shortcut to a buying decision. Indicate a round figure in the cost. The visitor will have less time to find rational excuses.
The law works backward, too. If the purchase is "rational", then customers need more time to think. In this case, the price type increases the thinking time. Potential customers unconsciously compare the time spent thinking over a price with a total time thinking about a purchase and start to believe that they have done well by weighing up the step.

Nick Kolenda says that if the price is less than $10, it's better to use a "charming" price. This works for both emotional and rational purchases. The brain counts the difference between $6.99 and $7 as one dollar because we recognize numbers from left to right. $6.99 seems like "six with pennies" to us.
Kolenda writes that $ 49 isn’t a "charming" price, it’s a rounded price. The same laws apply here regardless. The difference between $ 49 and $ 51 is 2 dollars but the brain sees it as a ten-dollar difference.

$ 100 is the threshold, once crossed, it stops having an influence on emotional purchases (if the price is rounded).

Kolenda amazes because his tricks are so simple: the bigger the fonts, the more expensive the product seems to a buyer. Read his research to learn more.

The same laws apply to the length of a price. It’s best to use rounded numbers after $ 100: $ 1599, $ 129, or $ 999. A trick with the price ending in 9 will work just as well as it does for the "charming" prices.

This was about emotional buying. With rational purchases, use exact prices with numbers following a comma. Remember the chain: longer price = more time to process = I’m doing everything right, I’m choosing a product with a charming and well-calculated price.
5. I want to know more about the company and its product. Where can I read about it?
Your main menu should always be easily accessible. Even better if it were always visible.

Tilda allows you to fix your menu which means the user can go back to it anytime.

How to do it: In the Settings panel of the block, select "Fixed on scroll".
6. Who else is working with you?
Social approval goes a long way. We choose a dentist on our friend’s recommendation. We look for a reputable car garage by reading car forums. We find nail artists in our girlfriends' Instagram stories.

As a rule, companies validate their appeal by posting their customers' logos on their websites. It’s the easiest and quickest way to gain trust.
However, this isn't the most effective way of showing your customers' approval. Try something different where you use your clients' company name with some additional information useful to a potential client.
We’ve been supplying all ShusiMix restaurants with cod since 2015. This is about a ton of fish, and we know everything about fish.
Combine your portfolio with the clients' names. A selection of case studies with tangible results works great.

See how this works on Tilda:
You can also ask your clients to leave a review. Keep their punctuation for a lively flourish.
If you’re a social media manager and your company has pages in social networks, adding a Facebook widget, for example, is the most "human" way of adding social proof.

To amplify the effect of your contact form, add the reviews after the CTA (call to action) button.
The tools listed above may not be enough to influence very cautious users.
7. Can you be trusted?
Add a menu item that links to documentation and quality certificates. Do this if you're selling things like food, medical, beauty, extreme sports, or fitness services that require these documents.

Don't publish the screenshots of these documents on the homepage.

Publish your complete contact information so you can be easily found in business registers. Include the information about exchanges or returns.
8. Why would my company need this?

Attributes of a B2B unique selling offer

B2B, or business-to-business – sales to organizations and companies.

B2C, or business-to-consumer — sales to individuals for personal use.

Marina Dorokhina
Head of corporate sales at Skyeng, Head of New Business Sales at Google, Business Coach
The key difference between B2B and B2C sales is the target audiences we're addressing. However, in copyediting, it's not all so straightforward. Decisions inside organizations are also made by specific individuals acting on their personal motivation. Take into account that each purchase is a person with their needs, pains, and motivation.

If you compare sales to sports, then В2С is a sprint, and B2B is a marathon.

What influences the buying decision: 9 differences between the end-user and a business representative:

1. Personal reasons and tastes drive purchasing decisions.

1. A businessman or an employee doesn't abandon their personal reasons for making a purchase, however, they no longer have personal preferences. Their reasons are connected to the company aims and their job tasks.
2. A purchase decision can be both rational and emotional, depending on the personal needs of the buyer.
2. Meeting the needs of the organization is the main aim. Making a decision is more difficult because the risks are higher. An employee is responsible for making a business decision for the entire company, not meeting their personal need.
3. Being impulsive and emotional affects the purchase decision.
3. Rational motives, logic, facts, and figures are key.
4. Relatively low price is a positive step towards making a purchase.
4. A business purchase typically costs more—usually, it’s a package of services or wholesale purchase. The numbers on the invoice are so high they almost look frightening.
5. The user makes their own decision regarding the purchase, and they don’t need much time.
5. This is a group decision—it takes a lot of time.
6. End buyers don’t have expertise with a particular product or service.
6. Professional buyers and experts take part in business purchasing decisions.
7. Friends and relatives' recommendations and social approval of a product are important to an individual user.
7. Just like a user, the business also looks for reviews from other companies. A supplier’s industry experience will be most important.
8. Because an individual’s purchase is a quick decision, they need a fast answer from the buyer, i.e. "strike while the client is hot".
8. A company representative will take a long time choosing between suppliers. Efficiency is important results but substantiating their business decision is much more important.
9. An individual can be influenced by mass communications via social media posts in groups or direct advertising.
9. In business, an individual approach is important—direct sales, lobbying, face-to-face meetings, and consultations. Company employees appreciate personal feedback.
Give your target audience exactly what they need.

Here’s another tip: What seems amazing to a seller or a landing page designer may not seem too exciting to a buyer. Every option must be tested on your target audience.
There's no all-encompassing scenario or a perfect selling offer. A company that wants to increase its website's conversion rate must understand why people need its services.

A company that knows what its clients want can offer them different offer options. We're not talking about dynamic pages that appear depending on SEO requests but testing a target page from a usability point of view.

Summary: 12 Steps to a Great Unique Selling Proposition

There’re many theories, scenarios, formulas, and schemes for creating a perfect business proposition. Study all of them and find similarities and differences. Then think about why people need your business. Once you answer this question, you’re ready to create something extraordinary.
Let’s sum up everything we’ve learned in one final checklist:
Identify your competitive advantages.
Define your target audience.
Write a relevant headline.
Add a good image.
Talk about the values you bring to your client—constantly.
Apply the AIDA formula—Attention, Interest, Desire, Action—mindfully.
Work on pricing your product.
Create convenient navigation.
Showcase your existing clients and share what they think about working with you.
If you're selling business-to-business, re-write your offer to match the companies' business goals.
Try to improve every detail of your offer.
Don't be afraid to run a test and realize that you've failed this stage. Go over the text once again, re-write, keep testing.

Text: Anna Antropova
Illustrations and design: Julia Zass
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