Scarcity Samurai Review
Update: 30 May 2016
Note that I now use a different scarcity plugin which I recommend over Scarcity Samurai. Read my Thrive Ultimatum review to find out more about it and to see how the two plugins compare. I have uninstalled Scarcity Samurai from this blog, so any scarcity banners or widgets you see now are made with Thrive Ultimatum.
I caved and bought the Scarcity Samurai plugin today 😛
If you don’t already know, I’m a bit of an addict when it comes to WordPress plugins and themes. I try to keep out of the WSO section of the Warrior Forum as much as possible, otherwise I end up spending way more than I should.
This is because the WSO section is full of limited-time discounts and dimesales, the bane of my existence! When a product I like doesn’t have one of these, I usually put it on my wishlist and maybe come back to buy it in a few months – or I just forget about it, which is always better for my wallet 😉
On the other hand, if the product is discounted for a limited time or if it’s on a dimesale, I usually end up buying it that same day. It gets me every time! ^^;
These sales tactics work by applying scarcity to a product to get us (the buyers) to take action immediately, instead of putting it off for another day (that may never come). The creators of Scarcity Samurai tested the difference in conversions between a page that used Scarcity Samurai and one that didn’t, and the one that did use it had an increase in conversions of 450% – 4.5 times more sales!
Is this only useful if you have your own products?
That’s what I thought at first, but then I realized that it can be used for affiliate promotions as well. For example, when products in the IM niche first launch they are often discounted for a short period, so you can write a review and then use Scarcity Samurai to display the amount of time left until the price increases.
Here is a list of some of the places you can add scarcity to boost your conversions:
- Affiliate offers
- Bonus offers
- Sales pages
- Squeeze pages
- OTO offers
- Big product launches
- eBook and software downloads
- Online product stores
- Newsletter signup pages
- and basically wherever else you have a call to action
How does Scarcity Samurai work?
Most sales pages insert an element of scarcity by saying that they don’t know how long they’ll be able to keep the product at the current price, or that the price will be going up soon – but if you come back in a year it’s still exactly the same. I hate that!
The difference with Scarcity Samurai is that the scarcity isn’t faked – it integrates with your email autoresponder and uses tokens and cookies so that the countdown is real for each customer, and it’s very difficult to circumvent.
There are 2 different types of campaigns you can make with this plugin – Evergreen Scarcity campaigns, and Fixed Date Scarcity campaigns. Both types of campaigns can span across multiple pages/posts or a single page/post.
For fixed Date campaigns, you set the expiry date and time according to whatever timezone you like, and Scarcity Samurai will adjust the countdown automatically for each visitor, so that the offer expires at the same time for everyone, no matter where they live.
This type of campaign is great for product launches or other offers with a fixed time period. It’s also perfect for seasonal offers – you can’t have a Christmas promotion running all year long!
With Evergreen campaigns, you set a time limit for your special offer, and each customer will have the same amount of time to take you up on it from when they first land on your page.
For example, if you set it to 6 hours, then the deal will be available to each customer for 6 hours after they land on your page, no matter if one lands on the page today and another lands on the page 2 months later.
This way you get the increased conversions all year long, but without faking the scarcity, because the offer really does expire when the countdown ends. You are basically just rewarding them for taking action immediately.
I mentioned autoresponder integration earlier. This is for the multi-page campaigns, which you can use for promotions containing a sequence of pages and emails that unfold over a number of days. These campaigns are set into motion when a person signs up to your list.
Scarcity Samurai tracks your subscriber’s email address, cookie, and timestamp of their registration, and in each email the links back to your pages contain a token so that the count-down is always showing the correct time left for each subscriber.
The autoresponders that Scarcity Samurai integrates with are:
- Office AutoPilot
I read that they will also be adding support for more autoresponders soon.
The banner setup is extremely easy and quick, and the end result is sleek and professional. There is a wizard for each type of campaign, so you just choose the one you need and fill in your info.
You can choose a header or footer banner – you can see a demo of the footer banner on this page, and it took me less than 5 minutes to set up! Inline banner functionality will be added soon.
You can also customize how your banners look using a drag-and-drop interface. You can change the colors, the font and text, and you can add images (for example a picture of the product, arrows, “Buy Now” buttons, etc).
The “hours”, “minutes” and “days” text will automatically change language if your WordPress installation is set to one of supported languages. The currently supported languages are: Danish, German, Spanish, Estonian, French, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, and Chinese.
I was disappointed that the plugin isn’t completely optimized for mobile phones yet – if text is too long it might be cut off. However, they said they will improve mobile optimization, and I believe them because I’ve been using Market Samurai for years (another product by the same company), and they have proved very reliable with updates.
I know a few people want IP-address tracking as well, and the Noble Samurai guys said they would add it if enough people asked. I don’t think it’s that important though – I don’t know if it’s different in the rest of the world, but where I live people rarely have fixed IPs, so it wouldn’t make much of a difference.
So, is it worth it? This is a great plugin, but I think the answer depends on how much you’re willing to spend, and on how much Scarcity Samurai could increase your earnings. The price is $97 for a single site license, and $197 for a multi-site license.
I have many websites so I never buy a single site license for anything, and $197 is a lot more than I feel comfortable spending on a plugin.
If you think about the fact that it could increase your earnings by 450% and that the multi-site license allows you to install it on client sites as well, then it seems a bit more reasonable. I think they should have a multi-site license without developer rights though, because not everyone needs them.
They also offer a 30 day money back guarantee, which I absolutely trust them to hold up. I’ve been using their software for years, so I know they release constant updates and they’re not some fly-by-night company that’s going to disappear tomorrow.
So my recommendation is to try it out and see if it works for you. If you earn $50-$100 per month and this plugin doubles or quadruples your income, it will already have paid for itself in the first month or two.