Digital Psychology and Persuasion Training Program – CXL Institute

Become great at digital psychology

Get advanced level skills in digital psychology and persuasion.

This program is for people serious about building skills, and are ready to put in the effort it takes to complete a Minidegree.

  • Increase online sales by using behavioral psychology, persuasion and neuromarketing
  • Stay ahead of the curve with expert-curated lessons backed by research
  • Learn from the best: taught by hand-picked industry practitioners and academic scholars

See plans and pricing   or   Request demo (for teams 5+)

Some of the companies that train their teams at CXL Institute:

Program introduction

Learn proven psychological frameworks that will help you understand user behavior, and influence purchase patterns.

  • Boost the persuasiveness of your copy and design
  • Learn to understand your customer’s mindset and needs
  • Build habits, increase loyalty, and elicit emotional responses
  • Direct attention and catalyze action with cues and triggers
  • Integrate psychological tactics with your conversion optimization efforts

In this extensive certification program by CXL Institute, you will learn the methodologies and processes required to better understand your users and be able to influence their actions.

Understand how your user’s brain works

You will learn to direct attention with visual cues, understand the cognitive biases that guide our decision-making behavior, and increase non-conscious motivation to encourage desired behavior. You will learn persuasive processes that can be replicated across any web property.

Having latest human behavior research distilled into actionable takeaways and guidance relevant to today is a game changer when you’re struggling to get users to take action.

CXL Digital Psychology and Persuasion Certification Training Program is for marketers and optimizers

This is a comprehensive training program that will give you the theoretical knowledge and empirical know-how to optimize your website and marketing strategy for persuasiveness and appeal.

Watch video lessons, read research studies, view conference lectures, and complete exercises to unlock the certification test. Pass the test and become a CXL Certified Digital Psychology Specialist.

Industry experts reviewed this course


The best way to understand how to change customer behavior is to understand why they behave the way they do.

Simply put, this program is a better way to get better results.

Nir Eyal: Consultant, Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author of Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products”


If you’re serious about engaging customers successfully, you have to understand their psychological context and what drives their behaviours.

This course brings together some fantastic voices that will help you understand what makes people tick.

Nathalie Nahai: The Web Psychologist, Best-selling author of Webs of Influence

What our graduates have to say

It feels like a university course such is the depth of knowledge presented, and it goes far beyond just a “tactical” course. I am able to use the detailed course notes to present the concepts/theories to the key stakeholders in our company, to increase support for the projects I am now planning for marketing.

Matthew Peet, CIO @ Fichte & Co Legal

Anyone would benefit from CXL Institute, and that goes from interns up to CEOs. That’s really been the case in our company. After their training sessions you’re fully equipped… you can go off and implement your learnings straight away.

Matt R.

3 cumulative tracks, total of 44h 49min of videos & study material – designed to make you more persuasive.

Minidegrees are essentially collections of individual courses, grouped together around a theme. It’s designed to give you advanced level skills in digital psychology.

1 Psychology Foundations

How can we capture and hold attention? How capable are we of making truly rational decisions? To what extent do first impressions, visuals, and emotions affect our ability to learn information?

Throughout Track One, we explore the psychological principles that drive human behavior and attempt to answer these questions.

People & psychology

People & psychology

Understanding how people work, so you could convert them.

Total Time: 2 hours 30 min

People are irrational. People are cute. People are bad. People are good. People are all kinds of things – and science hasn’t figured us out yet.

You can spend years in universities studying human behavior. This course is not aiming to compete with those programs, but will teach you some of the more important concepts that you need to be aware of.

Attention Basics

Attention Basics

Learn how to get attention and maintain it.

Does it really matter how clearly you articulate your message if nobody registers it?

Total time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Decision Making and Emotions

Decision Making and Emotions

Identify and understand the decisions users make on your site

Total time: 2 hours 40 minutes

Learning and Memory

Learning and Memory

Explore three different methods of learning, as well as the key mechanisms involved in memory.

Total time: 40 minutes

Learning and memory are adjacent processes. So definition-wise, what’s the difference? Learning is the acquisition of a skill or knowledge, while memory is the record of past experiences and learning processes (source).

2 Neuromarketing & persuasion models

Throughout track 2, neuromarketing, behavioral science and conversion experts will share the tools and frameworks necessary to evolve your marketing strategy. Roger Dooley will explain how the fast-growing discipline of Neuromarketing emphasizes how to appeal to the largely untapped, nonconscious brain. André Morys will show you how the human brain really works, and how you can leverage that knowledge to increase sales and conversions. Brian Cugelman and Michael Aagaard will teach you core lessons in digital psychology and show you how to apply them to your conversion funnel.

By marketing to your user’s behavioral patterns in harmony with their conscious minds, you’ll become dramatically more persuasive, motivational, and habit-forming.

Intro to Neuromarketing

Intro to Neuromarketing

Introducing the discipline, and contextualizing it in the modern landscape of internet marketing.

The marketing industry desperately needs a shift in thinking.

If you’ve never heard of neuromarketing before, this course will introduce the discipline and contextualize it in the modern landscape of internet marketing.

Total Time: 2 hours

Applied neuromarketing

Applied neuromarketing

Understanding how your customers’ brains work, make more money.

Leverage knowledge of the human brain and buyer behavior to increase sales.

user behavior | emotional resonance | attention and perception

Nonconscious Motivation

Nonconscious Motivation

Learn about cognitive models and how they apply to page design.

Total time: 2 hours

Earning a visitor’s prized attention is a great accomplishment- but don’t make the mistake of stopping there. To avoid losing it, you need to incite motivation.

It’s up to you to escalate the opportunity by designing pages that resonate with how your users interpret information and make decisions.

This course covers:

  • Present-day cognitive models contrasted against prior theories
  • A deeper dive into Cialdini’s persuasion principles
  • How to chemically incite motivation and how this applies to page design
Cognitive Biases

Cognitive Biases

Explore various biases that influence purchase behaviors all the time, that are relevant to digital marketing.

Total time: 1 hour, 45 min

In today’s society, we’re continually challenged by information and choice overload. As a way to sift through this chaos more easily, our brains create and store systematic mental patterns through which observable behaviors are performed and to some degree, can be predicted. This system of decision-making can be irrational at times, however (probably due to the sheer number of choices we face on a regular basis).

Building Trust

Building Trust

Learn what to do and what to avoid to build and maintain trust with your customers.

Total Time: 1 hour

This course explores the phenomenon of trust, from its biological origins to why you need it on your site. You’ll learn what to do (and what to avoid) in order to build and maintain trust between you and your customers.

Building Habits and Loyalty

Building Habits and Loyalty

Learn persuasion principles, that can be used to maximize user retention.

Total Time: 1 hour 30 min

As online marketers, we have no shortage of ways to cast a wide net and persuade as many visitors as possible to sign up for our product. But what good is all this growth if we can’t get them to stay?

Customer loyalty is an often overlooked, yet indispensable part of the growth equation. This course will suggest some persuasion principles that can be incorporated to maximize user retention by providing the best value possible to your users.

Influence and interactive design

Influence and interactive design

Concrete tactical design strategies to keep customers repeatedly engaging with your product or service

Total time: 35 minutes

In this course, Dr. Brian Cugelman presents an original framework synthesizing research on behavioral patterns from a neurochemical and evolutionary psychology background.

This model merges about 10 major practitioner and scientific frameworks and curates concrete tactical design strategies to keep customers repeatedly engaging with your product or service. You’ll learn to identify desired outcomes and achieve each one with a unique design strategy.

Learn (via design) to:

  • Direct Attention
  • Educate your Customers
  • Evoke Emotion
  • Remove Friction in Decision Making
  • Build Trust & Credibility
Digital psychology & behavioral design training

Digital psychology & behavioral design training

Understand what motivates your customers to convert.

Learn the essence of behavioral design, while developing a broad perspective on the psychology of online behavior.

emotional design | cognitive psychology | design audits

3 Applied behavioral psychology

Now that we have an understanding of these theories, let’s put them into action.

Psychology of Products

Psychology of Products

Learn a four-step framework to building habits and high customer satisfaction around your product.

In this course, you’ll learn a four-step framework to building habits and high customer satisfaction around your product.

Total Time: 40 minutes

Psychology of Websites

Psychology of Websites

Total time: 2 hour 30 min

In this course, you’ll learn about dual process theory, value propositions, and leveraging emotions to intuitively connect with potential customers.

Psychology of Communication

Psychology of Communication

Learn a three-step method for expertly executed messaging.

Total time: 40 min

In this course, Erik shares a three-step method for expertly executed messaging: timing, attention, and inciting to action.

Psychology of Pricing

Psychology of Pricing

Learn how to determine and present your prices.

Total time: 40 min

When it comes to making purchases, we as humans are irrational beings. In this course, Erik helps us make sense of how we can rationally determine and present a price to prospective customers.

Social Proof

Social Proof

How to identify, gather, and display the optimal social proof your customers subconsciously hope to see on your website.

Total Time: 20 minutes

Experienced copywriter and content strategist Joel Klettke instructs how to identify, gather, and display the optimal social proof your customers subconsciously search for on your website.

In this course, you will learn to:

  • Craft compelling case studies
  • Conduct meaningful customer interviews
  • Strategically place social proof on your site
  • Better discern between Action-based & Preference-based
  • Keep your social proof inventive, new, & fresh
Principles of Persuasive Design

Principles of Persuasive Design

Learn the 5 principles of persuasive design.

Total Time: 33 minutes

Peep Laja’s presentation on persuasive design for SearchLove London.

Developing & Testing an Emotional Content Strategy

Developing & Testing an Emotional Content Strategy

Emotional triggers and behavioral principles which shape your customer’s decision making process.

Total time: 25 min

In this course, Talia Wolf will outline her original framework that explores the emotional triggers and behavioral principles which shape your customer’s decision making process.

You will learn to test this strategy to secure actionable insights and ultimately get to understand your customers better. She will walk you through the 4 step framework in the context of online dating platforms with a special emphasis on mobile.

Heuristic Analysis frameworks for conversion optimization audits

Heuristic Analysis frameworks for conversion optimization audits

Find massive conversion opportunities faster than ever.

Apply strategic, structured frameworks to improve your optimization program.

heuristic evaluation | user behavior analysis | prioritization

Psychological backfiring

Psychological backfiring

Learn how to minimize risks when adding psychological triggers to your site.

Total time: 15 minutes

Psychological tips and tricks are scattered all over the internet: color psychology, system one and two, emotional persuasion, and so on. You can read about them on KISSmetrics, Forbes, Entrepreneur, Inc., Help Scout, HubSpot… you name it. We cover plenty of these topics ourselves.

Product messaging

Product messaging

Stop letting amateur copy wipe out your conversions

Improve your messaging strategy through customer research and analysis.

voice-of-customer research | value propositions | copy design

4 Online psychology final exam

Study guide: download PDF

Minidegree final exam - Online Psychology & Persuasion Certification Program

Minidegree final exam – Online Psychology & Persuasion Certification Program

Complete every course (Tracks 1-3) to unlock the test. You can re-take the test once in a 24-hour period.

How long will it take me to complete this Minidegree?

This is entirely up to you – it’s how many hours per week you can put in. If you have 2-4 hrs / week available for learning, it might take you around 4 months. If you can do 10-15 hrs / week, you can knock it out in a month.

Get updates about the Digital Psychology and Persuasion Minidegree program

In addition to updates, you will receive the detailed course syllabus PDF.

Complete all the courses, pass the final test and become certified

Certification will help you accelerate your marketing career and/or land better clients.

CXL Institute is an authorized LinkedIn education provider

You can add your education, certificates, badges – everything you learned and earned at CXL Institute into the Education section of your profile.

How to find CXL Institute on LinkedIn

Sign up for CXL Institute and get access to

  • 50+ courses (full list here) on all aspects of data-driven marketing (new courses added every month)
  • 5 Minidegrees that give you advanced level skills
  • Talk recordings by world class practitioners at CXL Live and Elite Camp

The CXL Institute guarantee:

  • Guaranteed return on time spent or your money back.
  • You can immediately apply learnings and improve your results.

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See plans and pricing   or   Request demo (for teams 5+)