While generating lots of traffic for your website is an excellent accomplishment, it doesn’t do much good if those visitors aren’t converting. Brands need to establish an effective strategy to influence visitors into making a conversion and it all begins with content. Impactful content marketing is the key to creating conversion opportunities visitors will respond to.
Moz describes conversion rate optimization as, “The systematic process of increasing the percentage of website visitors who take a desired action.” Similarly, Neil Patel says, “In its simplest form, conversion rate optimization is the process by which a business increases the percentage of website visitors who convert on available offers.” Patel also points out that strategies found to be successful for one business may not create the same results for another.
Beyond the obvious result of generating more revenue, conversion rate optimization has other benefits. First and foremost, improving the effectiveness of your site takes advantage of traffic already going to your website without adding any expense. Conversion rate optimization can help you better understand your customers’ needs and reduce acquisition costs. It can also improve public perception of your brand and build a higher level of trust with your visitors.
Here are some best practices and guidelines to consider.
Calls to Action
There should be a clearly designated “next step” on every page of your website. Use a bold, consistent color that is used only for the call to action buttons. A color that vividly contrasts with white space or other background colors is best. And bigger, the buttons should be bigger!
Each page should have only one, specific call to action – a singular focus. Whirlpool improved one of their campaign’s click-through-rate by 42% when they went from four different calls to action down to one. If you ensure your landing pages are geared towards particular parts of the buyer’s journey, the available call to action should be the right nudge at the right time. That being said, don’t be shy as to how many times you offer the button on a page. It helps if one is always in sight.
The content on call-to-action buttons should lead visitors to a conversion of some sort whether it be filling out a form, signing up for a newsletter or making a purchase. Use action-oriented verbs to definitively state what someone should do and the benefit he will receive from doing it. Instead of “Wireframing” use something like “Website Blueprints” or “Site Framework”. Include catchy, clever content that goes beyond “submit” or “download”. Use microcopy to communicate extra information such as “no credit card needed”.
Large blocks of text can limit the engagement levels of your landing pages. Utilize a variety of visual elements to break content up into smaller chunks and provide a more engaging experience. White space and sensible line spacing help create a less dense feeling to a text block. Bullet points can also help. Consider presenting text information in a chart or infographic to make it easier to digest.
Vivid photos and videos are an excellent way to maintain a reader’s attention. Consider the psychology behind the visuals and the feelings they might evoke from various site visitors. Just make sure the images are relevant, serve a purpose on the page, and compliment the message there.
Clear out any clutter so the primary focus is on the call to action and that focus is supported by clean, concise text and, perhaps, an engaging image or video. Consider why the visitor is there and what is his need. Build each page around the answers to those two questions.
Remove any elements that impact the load time of your site pages. Multiple studies have found that improved site speed can increase conversions. Over half of site visitors will abandon a page that takes three seconds or longer to load. Minimize Flash elements or eliminate them all together. Optimize image, video and audio files to not only ensure they load quickly but also so they are accessible across all devices. You should also use browser caching and a content delivery network (CDN) to reduce page load times.
A study by Evergage found that an increased conversion rate is the biggest benefit of website personalization and Accenture found that 65% of consumers are more likely to buy from retailers that acknowledge their purchase history and provide relevant promotions and recommendations. Segment website visitors based on browsing behavior, location, and other demographics. You can then deliver more personalized landing pages with offers and promotions based on that data.
Shorter forms minimize friction and provide a quick and hassle-free process. Forms should request on the information truly needed to move forward. If your forms are lengthy, reduce the number of fields. Start by removing any optional fields and see where that gets you. A general rule of thumb is three to five fields.
Add a popup that appears when someone is going to leave your site. This strategy provides one more opportunity to capture information from a visitor. Offer something of value in return like a 30-day free trial, a percentage off the regular price, free shipping, etc.
Thank You Page
Thank you pages should also provide a next step. Include an offer that aligns with this place in the buyer’s journey. You’ve earned someone’s trust to the point that they responded to your first call-to-action. Use that trust to develop the relationship and encourage them to interact further with your brand.
Help users quickly and easily find the information they need by supplying an advanced search option. Offering advanced search allows users to filter for the item they are seeking and has been found to decrease bounce rates.
Relevance, clarity, and minimal distractions are key to increasing your conversion rates. As with everything, the conversion rate optimization field is constantly evolving so it is important to stay up-to-date on new and innovative tactics. Not recommended tactics are guesses, gut feelings, or because someone else is doing it. The best way to optimize conversion rates is through testing on your specific website’s performance. For assistance with conversion rate optimization and all of your website and digital marketing needs, contact the experts at Strategy Driven Marketing.