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How to Deal with the Confirmation Bias: The eCommerce Advantage

abstract image of confirmation bias in black and white

Every ecommerce store owner, designer, or marketer knows that their success depends on data. Being able to interpret and act on the data is the only way to make informed decisions that will drive business growth.

However, one of the biggest impediments to making accurate decisions based on data is bias – particularly “confirmation bias”. Confirmation bias occurs when people tend to believe information that supports their preconceived beliefs, even if there’s evidence proving otherwise.

This can lead to faulty decision-making which can be detrimental for your business. In this blog post we will discuss what confirmation bias is, how it affects ecommerce stores, and how you can deal with it in order to make more informed decisions about your business.

What is Confirmation Bias?

Confirmation bias is a cognitive bias which refers to a person's tendency to search for, interpret, favor and recall information in a way that confirms their pre-existing thoughts and beliefs.

It occurs when people look for evidence or information that confirms their existing beliefs or hypotheses while disregarding any contradictory evidence or information (1). This can often lead to incorrect conclusions or decisions being made as a result of incomplete or biased data analysis.

The Effects of Confirmation Bias in eCommerce

Confirmation bias has serious implications in the world of ecommerce because it prevents business owners from making well-informed decisions based on accurate data analysis.

If an ecommerce store owner relies solely on evidence which supports their own preconceived notions about customer behavior or marketing strategies without considering other potential factors, they can risk making major mistakes that could be detrimental for the business.

For example, if a store owner assumes that customers prefer a certain type of product but fails to consider other important variables such as customer demographics or seasonality trends, they may end up missing out on potential sales opportunities by only focusing on one aspect of the equation.

How To Deal With Confirmation Bias

Although confirmation bias can be difficult to overcome due to its deeply ingrained nature, there are steps you can take as an ecommerce store owner/designer/marketer in order to reduce its effects:

1. Use quantitative research

By using quantitative research methods such as surveys and polls you can collect unbiased data from customers which will help you draw more accurate conclusions about customer preferences and behaviors.

2. Do A/B testing

A/B testing helps minimize confirmation bias by comparing two versions of something (such as a website design) side by side so that you can see which performs better under similar circumstances (2). This allows you to make more informed decisions about changes that need to be made in order for your business move forward successfully.

3. Ask questions

Don't limit yourself when analyzing data! Asking questions such as “What else could have caused this?” will help you think critically about all the possible factors involved in any given situation before jumping straight into conclusions (3).

4. Try different approaches

Try out different tactics and approaches instead of sticking with one particular strategy all the time; this will help keep you open minded and prevent confirmation bias from creeping into your decision making process (4).

5. Get second opinions

Don’t be afraid to seek out second opinions from others who might have different insight into a particular situation; this could provide valuable perspective which could potentially challenge your initial assumptions (5).

Conclusion about the Confirmation bias for ecommerce

Confirmation bias is an insidious form of cognitive distortion which affects our ability to make well-informed decisions based on accurate data analysis.

For ecommerce stores especially it's especially important for owners/designers/marketers alike not be influenced by preconceived notions when interpreting customer behavior – since faulty assumptions here could mean missing out on potential sales opportunities down the line!

However with proper research methods such as surveys/polls and A/B testing combined with critical thinking skills like asking questions and seeking out multiple perspectives it’s possible for us all combat against this common cognitive distortion so we can make better decisions based on factual evidence rather than our own biases!