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What is Hide Price: The Psychology Behind The Success of Hidden Prices on Ecommerce Stores

On all major eCommerce stores including, there are certain products hiding product prices from the visitors. So, what is hide price? What’s the psychology behind the success of hidden prices on E-commerce stores? It has already been proved that hiding product prices creates friction in shoppers mind. If that is so well know, why many eCommerce stores hide product prices? Answer is simple, showing product prices for specific products may not be feasible at all. What if the products they are selling depends upon some raw material whose price varies day to day? What if due to competition and market the seller is not willing to show product prices upfront?

Many such scenarios have forced certain niche stores to hide the products prices from non-members (visitors or not logged in consumers). These visitors have to click the order button, or do something to see the product price (in most cases login & register with store). That’s the only way visitors are identified, authenticated and shown the actual price of the product.

Now, let’s talk about the friction it creates in the mind of a shopper. Suppose, you were searching for a specific product and you landed on a decent looking site. All looks good but what’s the cost of the product you want to buy? Since, store owners are not showing the price purposely, customers often feel frustrated. Some assume the product price might be very high, that’s why it’s not listed on product page. Some feel that the store might be willing to negotiate a price with me that’s why they aren’t showing the price.

Hiding Product Prices Is Bad?

Why you should hide price from your potential customer? Since they are looking for your product’s price, isn’t that a good indication they truly are interested in buying this product? So, hiding product prices is bad?

Answer is “NO“. There are a very good psychological reasons behind hiding product prices from guests. For an example Mike visited a store and he is there for a REASON. Possibly, he clicked a banner advertisement that promotes the product, he may have clicked a link on his friend’s wall (Facebook or other social platform) or someone might have sent him a link to browse. Whichever way he was referred to a store, he came with a mindset and Expectation that was the primary driving force behind clicking the link.

If the product fulfills the promise and expectation he had in his mind, the next big question which runs through his mind is “Product Affordability” aka “Can i afford this product?“. This is when they start skimming to find the price, and this is also the beginning of the problem (for some specific products). Since, affordability is not just how much he has in his wallet. Sometimes “Cost doesn’t allow the customers to see the value they will get“.

The Most Difficult task for an online store is to inspire it’s users to put something in their cart.

If they know product price for this particular store, the next thing they will do is to browse through all the other known stores and see how much they are offering. Most probably some store will benefit from it.

Next theory behind hiding product prices is what if stores are selling something which is economically volatile. Showing product prices for such products is not possible. In such cases stores are left with no other options but to hide the product prices from their visitors. In such situations potential customers have to perform additional tasks like clicking a link, submitting a form or calling the store to know the exact price.

So, if you are selling such goods where showing product price is NOT at all feasible, hiding them won’t hurt you bad. Hiding product prices from casual visitors but showing prices to your logged in customers is also good idea (when you know what you are doing).

If you are using Magento as an eCommerce platform, extensions like Magento Hide Price helps you perfectly setup rules to accomplish the following things

  1. Hiding product prices for not-logged in visitors
  2. Hiding product prices for entire category
  3. Displaying call for price with configuration options like showing a form or text message.
  4. Showing inquiry form for your customers to fill.

These options can make your life easy, hiding product prices in Magento was never easier than this. We would love to hear your thoughts on this, please leave us a comment and share your ideas with us.