Use default options to improve conversions

Business Benefits

Nudge users towards the specific outcome that will increase your conversions.


Accentuate a specific plan on your pricing page that you want people to choose.

For example, emphasize the plan with a darker/highlighted shade, and a Most Popular tag.

Default to a subscription purchase choice, such as a monthly refill or annual membership, as opposed to just a one-time purchase.

For example, when adding a product to your cart, Amazon will often default to the Subscribe & Save versus the One-time purchase choice.

Pre-select the default and out of the box features for customizable products you offer.

For example, when shopping for a MacBook, Apple pre-selects the basic features.

Engineer your SaaS product to give the best user experience right away and eliminate manual set up by defaulting to basic software features.

You can include options for users to customize the features after onboarding.

Default the renewal of paid services, or free trial to paid subscription.

For example, starting with a free, three-month subscription that requires a phone call to cancel will often result in a yeah, whatever heuristic… and a long-term customer.

Set the default for marketing communications to opt-in when a customer orders a product online.

For example, including the message, If you do not wish to receive such information in this way, please tick the box means a customer will have to opt out to stop receiving your messages.

Avoid dark patterns - lead with customer centricity and principles, and ensure the user has full clarity on the options available and doesn’t feel forced or coerced into a suboptimal action.

With the power of default, options comes the increased responsibility to ensure that you’re not tricking the user into an action they don’t actually want to make.