Conversion Rate Optimization is the most significant performance metric for any marketer and the most significant leverage point for any business. However, driving conversions is a seemingly difficult and daunting task.
The ever-increasing competition on the web has made it even more difficult for marketers to realize their conversion dreams. This is the reason why most marketers are often to be seen in a lookout for conversion rate optimization tips and tricks.
If you’re reading this, chances are that you already know what conversion rate optimization (CRO) is. But in case you don’t, here’s a quick, dirty definition of conversion rate optimization: It is the process of increasing the converting strangers to a site into paying customers, or in general, take a desired action on a particular webpage.
Given its important, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that conversion rate optimization or CRO is the jet-fuel that yields enough punch to drive the modern-day marketing machine to success.
In fact, a survey of 2,938 marketers by Venture Beat reveals that conversion rate optimization remains a must-do practice for any business aspiring success and growth. Here is a list of excerpts from the survey:
Given the findings of the Venture Beat survey, it’s not difficult to understand why every marketer is so obsessed with conversion rate optimization and why most companies are planning to spend a considerable fortune on conversion rate optimization in the year ahead. But conversion rate optimization is easier said than done.
Don’t believe us? Check out the following stats to understand why conversion optimization remains a difficult and a daunting task for many:
1. Most websites don’t have a massive traffic problem; however, almost every website in the world has a conversion problem.
2. For most businesses, the typical conversion rate ranges from just 1 to 3%.
3. Most companies spend around $92 to acquire customers, but spend only $1 to convert them into paying customers.
4. Only about 22% businesses worldwide are satisfied with their conversion rates.
5. 85% marketers plan to focus more on conversion rate optimization in 2016.
We’re sure now you understand, why effectively optimizing and improving conversion rate remains a big challenge for most marketers. But the big question here is how can you ensure that your strategies make you stand out from the crowd and help you convert more?
Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.
1. Mobile Optimization
With these stats in hand, it’s wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that the popularity of mobile devices is set to outdistance desktop usage from our lives in the years to come. And this realization is pushing a lot of businesses to focus on mobile versions of their websites.
Modern day discerning consumers prefer to make their purchases on the go and that’s why they look for and essentially demand better user experience for mobile and smart-phone devices.
Given the changing consumer preferences and tastes, it wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that mobile sites will soon become norm rather than exception.
Now if you’re really looking forward to drive better conversions for your business, you’ll need to optimize your sites for better mobile experience. You’ll need to surprise your website visitors, both occasional and regular, with the best possible mobile experience, no matter what device they are using.
Remember, visitors who are delighted by their experiences are the easiest to convert.
Based on their findings, they decided to go for a responsive/mobile-friendly site to ensure a high-quality experience across multiple devices. Resultantly, they were able to increase their conversions by 20%. In addition, their mobile orders went up by around 98%.
Here’s the non-responsive version of Walmart Canada’s site. The site was terribly designed and its loading time was also very high.
Here’s the responsive template of their site. The site was fully adaptable on mobile devices.
We’re sure now you understand how important is a fully-functional and navigational responsive/mobile friendly to boost the customer-site relation. Here are just 3 key points you must remember when optimizing your site to boost conversions in today’s highly-competitive mobile-driven market.
1. Improve Page Load Time
In most parts of the world, mobile data networks are much slower as compared to the wired network connections. And slow load time due to the network delays account for the increase in cart abandonment rates, according to a number of surveys and studies conducted across the globe.
Ecommerce giant, Amazon revealed that a page load slowdown of only 1 second would cost it $1.6 billion in sales revenue, every year. Similarly, Google revealed that by slowing its search results by just four tenths of a second, they could lose 8 million searches and a few million adverts per day.
According to a report by Usabilla.com, over 50% of consumers want businesses to ensure that their mobile sites load within 2 seconds or less and they usually abandon the site if it takes more than 3 seconds to load.Therefore, you must optimize for mobile to improve page load speed.
There are many ways to do that!
Download the Printable Version of this Infographic to Decrease Your Page Load Time NOW!
For one, you may pre-load the most significant and relevant information to keep your users engaged. For another, you may use interactive visuals and animated buttons to camouflage the slow load time.
Shopzilla is a great example of the same. The site decreased their load time by 5 seconds. Resultantly, their conversion rate increased by 7-12%.
This is another major reason that makes your visitors abandon your mobile site almost instantly.
Whenever someone lands up at your site, they look for relevant information and not being able to read or comprehend that information puts them off forcing them to leave your site.Invest in right graphics, visuals and fonts.
By right we mean the graphics, visuals and fonts that appear unscathed when viewed on different mobile devices, from smartphones to tablets.
Take the example of SimCity 5.
The product banner on the product banner on SimCity product page created a cultured space making it difficult for visitors to view relevant information. SimCity wasn’t able to attract downloads because of the same.
So, the company decided to remove the big promotional banner and move vital information up higher on the page. This helped it increase its conversions by 43%.
3. Auto Sliders
Most mobile sites have one thing in common – the rotating display of content on the front of the page. This rotating display of content or images is called autorotation slider or carousel. These are usually used to catch the eyes of users towards different set of promotion al banners.
Industry experts believe that though sliders add to the overall voice of the design, it often puts off website visitors in most cases.
But why is that?
Autorotation makes it difficult for users to click on the right banner. In addition, large files of images or content in the autorotation sliders may mean increased load time. These sliders may even become distraction for users.
Therefore, if you’re really looking forward to get and hold the attention of your visitors for a longer time, do well to ensure that your sliders load quickly, they are manually controlled by users, use fewer banners and make sure that slider navigation is easy to use.
Now you know how to properly optimize your mobile. But to help you do that effectively, here are just three bonus tips that you must follow for maximum advantage.
1. Pay heed to the proper SEO optimization of your mobile site. Choose the best keywords for mobile searches and optimize the content for your mobile site.
2. Use mobile-friendly images and remove any duplicate content from your site. In addition, make sure your mobile is no error pages.
3. Keep testing your mobile sites on various browsers. Don’t forget to test that your mobile test is absolutely mobile-friendly.
So, if your mobile site is not helping you convert, we’re sure that these tips will help you bring your mobile site back on track. But in order to properly optimize your mobile site, you must have that perfect resource or tool for that. Here are some of the most notable mobile optimization tools and resources:
2. A/B Testing for Conversion Rate Optimization
When it comes to analyzing what’s working and what’s not, a fair share of marketers and businesses now turn to A/B testing.
A/B testing became a fad amongst marketers and businesses looking to increase conversion rate on their sites.
Check out the following stats that reflect that A/B testing will remain vital in the coming years as well.
– For last 2 years, A/B testing is the most used method for increasing conversions.
– A/B testing helped President Obama raise $60 million.
– In 2011, Google ran more than 7,000 A/B tests.
– 44% businesses use A/B testing resources.
– Amongst businesses, use of testing has increased from 27 % to 38%.
These stats reveal that A/B testing is slowly gaining solid grounds. But A/B testing isn’t as easy as it sounds. If you don’t know the right process, don’t have the right tools and don’t have patience, it may take you years to master this art.
Let’s take the example of Nature Air. The Costa Rican airline boosted its conversion rate by 591%. With A/B test experiments, they found out that their CTA wasn’t properly placed. And basis the result of their A/B tests, they placed their CTA contextually. Resultantly, their conversion improved by 591%!
This is how their landing page looked before A/B tests. You can see that there’s CTA is placed in separate box on the right hand side of the landing page.
Here’s the test version of their page that shows their CTA placed contextually in their landing page.
Check out the image below to have a closer look on how contextual placement of CTA can increase conversion rate manifold.
Wondering how you can embrace A/B testing and boost conversions like Nature Air?
Here are 7 easy steps to A/B test in order to generate leads and increase conversions.
But before you go ahead conducting A/B test experiments, do well to refrain from:
For a detailed insight on A/B testing experiment, please read – How to run a successful A/B test (Infographic) or A Practical Step By Step Guide to A/B Testing
Boosting conversion through A/B testing isn’t a one day process!
It takes days, months and sometimes years to master the skills and get the desired result. But it pays to keep making genuine efforts without worrying about the outcome.
Analyze your consumer preferences, taste and requirements and begin with testing one element at a time. Do well to embrace responsive design and optimize your site, layout, design and content. This will help you drive more visitors to your site on a lookout for products and services that your website offers.
While there are dozens of ways to drive traffic to your site, it’s no mean feat to keep your visitors on your site, convert them to customers and ensure that they become returning consumers. This is where personalization comes to your rescue.
Remember, if used well, personalization can help you optimize your conversion rate successfully. Still apprehensive? Check out these stats to understand how personalization can help you boost conversions.
- Personalized web experiences lead to an average of 20% increase in sales.
- Personalization leads to 14% increase in email click-through rates and 10% increase in email conversion rates.
- According to 52% marketers, content personalization is vital for successful digital marketing strategies.
- Personalized call-to-action increase conversion rates by 42% as compared to generic call-to-action.
- Personalized recommendations persuade 56% buyers to shop on sites.
Remember, today’s modern-day discerning consumers look for and essentially demand more personalized experience from businesses. Industry experts believe that soon personalization will become of the necessary steps to boost conversion optimization.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that without personalization, you’ll be left in the dust.
Take the example of Evergage. The website reveals that it was able to increase conversion rate by setting-up personalization from AdWords. The website realized that their visitors weren’t too happy with their landing page.
So they added a simple welcome message at the bottom of the page.
After they added a personalized message, they were able to improve their conversion rate by as much as 11%. Here is how their landing pages looked like before they set-up personalization from AdWords.
Here’s how their landing page looks like after personalization. Look at the text above the arrow in the image below:
But we’re sure you must be wondering about what you should personalize. You should personalize everything right from your website to your emails to ensure that your brand resonates with your target audience in the best possible way.
Check out our list of few pointers that will help you get personalized experience across your customers.
1. Website Personalization
The content overload on the web has desensitized users towards brands. That’s why it has become important than ever for marketers to create personalized and memorable website experience. But how can you create more personalized website experience to boost conversions? Here we’re listing just three important points that will help you personalize your website.
Buyer Specific Content – Create new content or repurpose your existing content to address the specific needs, preferences and tastes for your buyer persona. Remember, one-size-fits-all content approach doesn’t work any longer. Do well to create a personalized and valuable content experience for your buyers.
Location Specific Content – Create location-specific content to offer personalized experience to your visitors. Use geo-location information to provide local deals and local news to summon the interest and attention of buyers. This will help you create the customer-website bond with the buyers on your site.
Dynamic Images – Dynamic images offer buyers an exhaustive experience of the product you’re selling at your site. Remember, today’s modern-day discerning consumers want businesses to provide real time product images from all angles to ensure that they are spending on right products. And dynamic images do just that. Therefore, it makes sense to ensure dynamic images of products on your site.
2. Email Personalization
A large number of marketers and businesses swear by emails. They believe email marketing is perhaps the best way to reach out to customers and promote your products and services in the ever-so-competitive market.
And as far as conversion is concerned, it is 3X times more effective as compared to social media and other channels. But if you’re seriously looking forward to take advantage of email marketing, you’ll need to ensure personalization. Here are some important points that will help you personalize your email marketing.
Content Segmentation – Break your content into smaller chunks to ensure optimal reading experience for your recipients. Make it easy for them to consume the email content that they actually want. In the process, don’t forget to address recipients by their real and right names in your emails.
Trigger Emails – Trigger emails can help you score 152% higher open rates. So, it makes sense to use trigger emails to your advantage. Do well to up-sell and cross-sell your products through automated trigger emails.
Mobile Optimization – More and more users now use their mobile devices to read emails. Therefore, it makes sense to ensure mobile-friendly emails. Make sure your email design goes unscathed, no matter what device it is being read on.
4. Video Marketing
Videos have become important than ever for businesses looking to create a buzz for their brand in the market. Everyone seems to be obsessed with video marketing, be it big players to those just starting out in the market.
This is because videos have the potential of travelling virally. In addition, videos are great conversation starters.
Well, with so many video marketing tools, tips and tricks easily available on the web, it has become easier than ever to turn your brand videos into streams of revenue. Here are some stats about video marketing:
- By 2017, online video will make up nearly 70% of internet traffic.
- An average user spends 88% more time on a website with video.
- After watching a product video, 64% buyers are likely to buy the product.
- Videos have better conversion power than other mediums; according to 70% marketers.
- Email CTR (click-through rate) increases by 200 to 300% when videos are included in the email.
We‘re sure now you understand the reason of popularity behind video marketing. But if you’re still not convinced, check out the example of Dollar Shave Club.
This personal grooming products service provider was able to add 12000 subscribers to its customer list in just 48 hours of its launch.
Here’s the video from the brand.
Now, when you understand the potential of videos when it comes to boosting conversions, it’s important to understand what you should do to make sure video marketing strategies stand out from the crowd. Here is a little list of some vital tips that will help you make the most of your brand’s video marketing efforts.
1. Targeted Videos– Gone are the days, when it used to be difficult to track your video marketing efforts. With technology evolving at a faster pace, it has become easier to analyze data and create targeted videos to ensure maximum conversions. You can use YouTube for effective, actionable and well-targeted video marketing.
2. Mobile Optimized Videos – We’ve constantly been talking about the importance of mobile optimization and yet again it’s important to ensure mobile optimized videos to make sure more and more viewers are able to watch your brand videos. Remember, 20% of video views happen on mobile devices.
3. Personalized Videos – Remember, today audiences look for personalized experiences in everything, be it content or videos. So, do well to ensure creating personalized videos to hit the right cord with your target audiences. Develop videos around common questions of your audiences and let them know how your business can help them.
5. Optimize Call to Action Button for Conversions
What’s the most important element of your landing page?
What’s final trigger to conversions? What guides your user towards the final steps of conversion process? It’s your call to action button.
Quite naturally, it remains one of the most vital factors of conversion rate optimization.
But most marketers and businesses tend to ignore call to action when it comes to conversion rate optimization. Check out the below mentioned stats that reveal how call to action is often ignored by marketers.
Remember, only a well-designed, well-placed and powerful call-to-action button can help you make your visitors make that desired action on your site. And without persuading your visitors to take that desired action on your site, you can’t turn strangers on your site into paying customers and boost conversions for your business.
Take the example of Consolidated Label. By simply tweaking their call to action button and making it contextual, the company was able to increase its conversion by 62%!
Here is the screenshot of the Control (original design)
Here is the screenshot of the variation (new design). See how they added the CTA in the design.
We’re sure now you understand how an effective call to action can help you turn strangers on your site into paying customers and boost conversions for your business. If you’re all set to make those tweaks to your call to action buttons, here we present to you some important pointers that you must keep in mind.
On an average, the conversion rate for sites is about 2%. This means nearly everyone who visits your site for the first time leaves without taking desired action.
This is where retargeting comes to your recue. It helps you get those visitors who’ve already visited your site back to your site.
Retargeting gives you second chance to communicate with visitors who previously abandoned your site for some reason.
A number of statistical studies reveal that retargeting can influence conversion rates. Here are just some of the many stats that reveal the importance of retargeting in conversion rate optimization.
- Retargeted users are 70% more likely to convert.
- Retargeted ads can increase branded search exposure by more than 1,000%.
- 49% brands set aside specific budgets just for retargeting.
With retargeting, you can continue the conversation with your potential buyers and help them remember your brand for future purchases. You can drive previous visitors back to your site with tailored messages and offers and convert them into paying customers.
Retargeting keeps your business constantly in front of your potential customers giving your business a competitive edge in the ever-so-competitive market.
Let’s take the example of Postano, social media aggregation and display platform. The company wanted to lure in prospects engaged in social media curation platform comparison.
They created a series of banner advertisements in different variations and sizes to retarget their prospects. Below is the banner ad created by Postano.
Resultantly, they were able to achieve 278% increase in conversion rate in just 60 days.
So, if you too are looking to retarget your prospects and turn them into paying customers, follow these simple points to get your retargeting campaign right:
Micro-commitments are yet another brilliant way to optimize conversion rate for your business. Here’s a quick, dirty definition of micro-commitment: it means persuading your visitors to do something in exchange of what you’re offering them.
An example of the same could be asking your blog subscribers for a tweet your blog if they wish to continue reading your blog. But why is micro-commitment important? The answer is simple! Micro-commitments lead to better conversion.
Let’s take the example of how President Obama used micro-commitment to increase donation conversions.
The Obama campaign breaking the donation process up into 4 smaller steps. The very first step asked users to select the amount they wanted to donate to the campaign.
The strategy worked for Obama campaign and the conversion increased by 5%. Resultantly, Obama campaign was able to raise an additional $60 million.
So, how can you successfully use the principle of micro-commitments on your landing page and boost your conversions substantially? Don’t worry, it’s no rocket science! Simply follow these easy steps to explore the magic of micro-conversions to your advantage:
Remember, converting a visitor coming to your site for the first time is no mean feat! So instead of wasting your time, efforts and resources converting the visitor into a paying customer, do well to use the principle of micro-commitment.
Invest your time, efforts and resources in getting your visitors into an action-taking mode. Even if you’re able to make your first-time visitors commit to something small, you’ll have more chances of converting them later.
Word of Advice
Before you go ahead and try out these tips, be advised that every business has different set of conversion rate challenges. While some of them are easy to take care of, others are too daunting and too difficult to tackle.
So, it pays to carefully analyse and see which conversion rate challenge your business is facing. This will help you make your conversion rate optimization process easier and convenient.
Wrapping it Up!
Go ahead and try out these effective and powerful CRO tips. We’re sure these tips will help you demystify the complex phenomenon of conversion rate optimization.
Remember, conversion rate optimization is strategic and recurrent process. Despite the fact that you’re equipped with these time-proven and reliable tips, you must always strive to find a room for improvement.
Don’t get complacent and start resting on your laurels when you start converting. Keep optimizing to stay ahead of the curve.
As always, please share your thoughts in the comments, if you enjoyed this post, please share it on twitter and spread some love!
Don’t hesitate to hit me up with any questions, critiques, or feedback.
Hi, Hammad, Nice post. To the point and very informative. All the points you mentioned above are very interesting and true. I perform all of them to get the conversion to my website. Out of all the point, the one which I like most is to optimize website into mobile responsive. It is very important because nowadays most of the internet is access through mobile devices. One more point I would like to add is implementing social sign-in, it will help to make the whole lengthy process of registration quick and simple. With the help of this user can login to the website by using his/her existing social media account.
Keep doing the good work and thank you fo sharing.