The correct dosage counts: How the quantity of choice affects your clients

by , published March 2, 2022
too much of someting like glasses of jam
Customers not only need a certain amount of possibilities to choose from, they need the right information to make a buying decision.

Did you know that the quantity of choice affects your clients whether they buy from you – or from someone else?

Your courses, coaching packages, or consulting offers may please clients.

Or they are seriously considering calling you if they have found anything on your website.

But the sheer number of possibilities leads to hesitation. The number of information is too much. The result?

You are losing a client.

And you know how annoying this can be …

How the quantity of choice affects your clients: Negative and positive.

Sometimes the impression of quantity is essential, for example, on the market. If you stand at a booth early in the morning and look at eight solitary apples, this is not very tempting.

The more lettuce heads lie in front of you or the lusher the herbs build up in front of you, the better. Our eyes want to bathe in the vibrant colors of lemons, oranges, or red bell peppers.

So for many businesses volume alone is an important strategy. But for others, it must be the exact right amount of volume …

There it is all about the correct dosage because a lot of choice does not automatically mean that you convince clients more efficiently.

This article shows you how to find the right measure for your clients.

And you get two application examples.

Why less choice makes more purchases possible.

Our brain does not like an oversupply. A study shows this effect:

When customers offered samples of 6 different jams, 30% of them bought a glass of jam. But when customers had been offered 24 different varieties of the jam, only 3% of the clients purchased some.

The result shows that clients perceive too much choice as a hindrance. There are other studies for chocolate, baby food, or speed-dating.

All led to a similar result. 

Why does too much choice lead to problems with the purchase decision?

The memory of our brain is limited. Even though we can store almost unlimited information in long-term memory, we can only concentrate on a small amount simultaneously.

That is why we need to write down a new phone number. We cannot juggle a dozen pieces of information simultaneously as an artist juggling his balls.

In his book: Guidance on Dissatisfaction – Why Less Makes You Happier, Psychologist Barry Schwartz explains why the agony of choice can drive us sheer mad.

It does so because any decision for a particular thing is against a variety of other possibilities.

This leads to uncertainty as to whether we have made the best choice. We fear that there is still a better variant.

Too much choice increases the duration and cost of the search and the dissatisfaction with our own will.

Does little choice automatically mean more sales?

Unfortunately, it is not that simple.

Standing in front of half-empty shelves in a store makes you feel like closure is imminent. A website where you can find only one item will probably leave you quickly, and so on.

A particular selection is necessary when buying. But what matters is what information clients receive while they select.

Benjamin Scheibehenne, a scientist at the University of Basel, researched this.

His result:

Providers must separate the problem of selection flooding from the problem of information flooding. In other words:

Clients require the correct information to make the right choice.

Remember you are looking for a provider to provide you with Internet and telephone services. It is confusing to find individual points such as cost, duration, contract binding.

Clients are not interested in the cheapest offer that you can use to increase your prices.

But if the providers’ information is unclear, they choose the only criterion they find—the price.

How can you apply these findings?

Example # 1: When sending emails and documents.

Most of the emails we see from our coaching clients can be optimized quickly. So much so that clients are happy to make an appointment when reviewing.

But most emails to clients are deleted. And most of the paperwork ends up in the trash.

They give too much – and not the right choice.

Lots of links, lots of text, lots of information.

But the principle “a lot helps” does not help when you send clients information. It must be the right one.

Example # 2: On your website.

Imagine running a yoga studio. They are bright and do not offer “YOGA FOR ALL.” Potential clients can register on your website to find out how to relieve their back pain.

It is unlikely that these people will want to know how the yogi movement originated, how you came to yoga, what distinguishes you as a yoga teacher, and where you completed your training.

That matters when someone books private lessons with you. However, a section of information is enough, precise, and clear for the moment.

This applies to every point of contact you have with clients. The better you know your niche and understand your client’s situation, the more accurately you can assess what information they need.


You may underestimate how the quantity of choice affects your clients. But too much of something can lead to indecision.

Consider the right amount of information for your clients at a given time.

That was the principle: How the quantity of choice affects your clients.


P.S. Whenever you're ready … here are three ways we can help you grow your business.

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Andrea Lekies

Andrea Lekies

Andrea Lekies writes here and on her other website (which is German and exists like ... forever). Why now an English website about entrepreneurs who have ADHD? What else could one do in her free time ;)

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