There's an endless array of tactics for measuring online sales and marketing performance.
Arguably, few are more important than conversion rate optimization (CRO).
In recent years, CRO has emerged as a valuable tool of maximizing how effective websites and apps are in turning interested visitors into engaged customers.
This is because there are so many things enterprises can do to boost their conversion rate, and because many of them are relatively cheap and easy to implement.
In this article, we’ll explain the basics behind CRO. Why it matters, and give you seven hot tips that can help you send your conversion rates skyrocketing.
What is CRO and why does it matter?
Conversion rate optimization means performing certain actions to improve the rate at which site visitors achieve your desired goal. For the purposes of this blog, we’ll be assuming that goal is a sale.
On that basis, the conversion rate is a simple percentage of visitors that buy something.
So, for example, if your website has 1000 visitors within a certain timeframe, and 30 of them go on to buy something, then your conversion rate would be 3%.
Of course, what represents a good conversion rate for your business is like asking how long a piece of string is. There are so many variables to take into account.
The nature of the desired goal, the type of industry you’re in and the demographics of the prospective customers can all have an effect.
Even the value of the product or service can have a big impact.
Think of a real estate company selling houses, for example. They will naturally have fewer purchasers than a fashion retailer selling T-shirts. This means the metrics of defining good CRO will differ between the two.
So why does conversion rate optimization matter?
Well, quite simply, it matters because the rest of your marketing is a waste of time without it. You can drive as many people to your website as you want. However, if your conversion rate is awful, you aren’t going to make much in sales.
Not only can CRO generate an increase in sales, and the amount of money each visitor spends with you. Through CRO, you can also enjoy better value for money from your marketing spend.
Why? Because the cost per conversion will come down.
So how can I go about conversion rate optimization?
Er… how long have you got? There are so many different things you can try – far too many to list here – so we’ve picked out seven of the best practices.
Of course, there’s no guaranteed golden ticket and not every tactic will work for everyone. But these general themes are worth investigating to see if you can apply them to your specific use cases:
1) Lights, camera, action
Video is already known as a powerful tool within marketing. But it’s immensely useful in a CRO context too, because it’s easier for people to watch than it is for them to read written content.
Videos can encourage people to spend longer on your page, making them more likely to engage with your content. You can also use videos to spur further actions from the user, such as calls-to-action that put the user firmly on the path towards conversion.
Be warned, though: if you get your video wrong, it can do more harm than good, so check out these ten mistakes to avoid.
2) Exploit your analytics
CRO is an ideal opportunity to use the full potential of analytics tools.
Use them to take the most in-depth look possible at the behaviour of visitors to your web presence. Look at where customers are coming from, how they engage with your site, when and what they buy, when and what they don’t.
Then use that information to make changes that will encourage more conversions.
3) Feel the heat of heatmapping
You can understand why someone visits your website.
What's important is understanding exactly what they do when they get there.
Heatmapping software measures which parts of your web pages attract the most attention, and which bits leave users cold. These findings can help you determine the areas that need changing to resonate best with prospective customers.
4) Optimize for mobile
Purchases made by smartphone are growing at a rapid rate – by 18% a year in the United States, for example.
So the importance of an excellent mobile experience is huge. It’s now getting to the point that mobile needs to be the starting point of the web design process, with everything else following afterwards.
Of course, doing this may require an impractical overhaul of your website. In that case, the next best thing would be to adopt a mobile-first approach to all the design changes you make from now on.
5) Get personal
A key part of any good sales and marketing operation, personalization is particularly useful for CRO. This is because it can make it easier and quicker for people to buy the things they want.
Personalization can filter out the unimportant bits of the customer journey so that the customer only gets relevant information. This keeps them focused on a short, user-friendly path to purchase.
6) Tweak and test
Even small modifications on web pages can significantly improve CRO.
This can be something as trivial as the size and colour of your call-to-action button. By making changes and applying A/B testing to them, you can quickly and accurately quantify the impact of individual tweaks on your CRO.
Heatmapping (see above) can be extremely handy for this.
7) Hello, chatbot
They aren't new, but even the simplest chatbots are effective in engaging people. This is for two reasons.
The first is that if they’re talking to a chatbot, then they’re actively thinking about your business.
The second is that the chatbot can steer them towards the product they’re looking for. This can make them feel more informed and empowered, and therefore more likely to convert and buy. Chatbots have even cut our cost per lead from $5-$6 down to $1.98!
Still feel you need help? By working with Creation Agency, you can take advantage of experts that know all the tricks of the trade in CRO. To find out more on how you can turn soft interest into hard sales, click here.