Do you sell a product or service online? If so, then conversion rate optimization, or CRO, should be high on your to-do list as an on-going task. Conversion rate optimization, in a nutshell, is the art of increasing the likelihood of converting visitors to leads and customers. The math is simple.
If you receive 10k visitors per month, sell a product for $50, and have a 2% conversion rate, you’re making $10,000 a month. If you were to increase your conversion rate just slightly to 4%, you’d double your income to $20,000 a month. That’s what makes conversion optimization such an important part of any website that sells.
The following are 25 conversion rate optimization tips that you can apply to various areas of your online marketing strategy to increase sales for your business.
Conversion Rate Optimization Tips for Your Landing Pages
If you don’t have landing pages for your top products or services, now is the time to create them. Landing pages are simply pages on your website devoted to one product or service. The goal of these pages is to provide your potential customers with the information they need to purchase your product or submit a lead form for your service. Here are some tips for optimizing your lead pages for conversions.
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- Remove any distractions from your landing page’s layout that could lead visitors off of the page. This includes menu bars, footers, sidebars, and even social sharing buttons.
- Remove any links from the landing page content. You do not want your potential customer to go elsewhere until they have converted.
- Look at other landing pages in your industry for inspiration. Chances are, your potential customer is going to research your competitors. Your page should have a feel that your potential customer is used to. For example, if everyone else is using long form sales copy plus a video, and you just have short form sales copy, people might wonder what is missing.
- Invest in quality graphics to really make your call to action stand out. For product pages, this could be a great “Add to Cart” button, and for sales pages, this could be a great form background image.
- Conduct A/B testing on your landing pages to see which performs best at conversions. This could be tests where you change the header text, try different testimonials, experiment with payment plans, etc. For WordPress users, this can be done simply with the CovnertThis plugin. Landing page platforms like Unbounce also have built-in A/B testing tools. [Editor's note: At MonetizePros, we like to use Optimizely for split testing.]
Conversion Rate Optimization Tips for Your Online Store
If you have an online store to sell your products, then there are lots of ways you can optimize your product pages and the shopping cart itself for conversions. Here are the top things to get started with.
(See also yesterday’s article: 11 Experiments to Improve Your E-commerce Conversion Rate.)
- Include all of the possible product details about your products. This includes great photos, tech specs, and additional details. The last thing you want is for potential customers to buy elsewhere because they couldn’t find the details on your product page that they could find on competitor’s websites.
- Include user reviews. Assuming you are selling great products, user reviews could boost your potential customer’s confidence in a product. Bad reviews aren’t a bad thing either – especially if you sell something that is a better and more expensive alternative.
- Help increase your customer’s confidence by including trust badges such as your online store’s security seals, customer satisfaction guarantees, and clear refund policies throughout your online store.
- Continue to reinforce your customer’s confidence by including a quick note about your website’s security, satisfaction guarantee, and refund policy in the checkout process, along with details about the product they are ordering.
- Set up Google Analytics goals to track the steps within your shopping cart as part of a funnel. This way, you can see where people abandon your shopping cart the most, and work on further optimizing that step for conversions.
Conversion Rate Optimization Tips for Your Blog
Even if you don’t sell directly in your blog content, you can help turn your blog readers into customers and leads. Here are some ways how.
- Include a call to action in key areas of your blog including the header, top of your sidebar, and end of posts. These can be banners that highlight your top product or service (leading to a landing page) or an opt-in form to subscribe to your list (one that has an autoresponder series that leads people to buy your products or sign up for your services).
- Create content that is geared toward your ideal customer. The topics should be non-salesy, but still be the kinds of topics that lead people to want to learn more about your product or service. Think landing page tools that write content about conversion optimization, SEO tools that write posts about link building strategies, and similar. The posts don’t say, “Buy our product,” but they do say, “Here are some things you should be doing. Oh, by the way, if you look around the site, you’ll see that we sell something that can help you do it.”
- Convert your large library of content into lead magnets. For example, create an e-book all about conversion optimization. When people opt in to receive it, add them to an email autoresponder series that takes them through your sales funnel.
- Promote your content to your target customers. This means sharing it on your social networks and with your mailing list. Also use advertising on networks like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to aim your content’s reach to your target customers.
- Experiment with lightbox forms that invite blog visitors to subscribe to your mailing list, sign up for a free trial of your product, or contact you about your services. While you will receive a few complaints here and there, most marketers see a huge return in conversions.
Conversion Rate Optimization Tips for Advertising Campaigns
Are you promoting your products and services through paid advertising using platforms such as Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Ads, or Twitter Ads? If so, you’ll want to ensure that these campaigns are conversion-focused so that you get the highest return on investment. Here are some ways to do it.
- Every ad you create should lead visitors to a landing page that matches the ad. If you are targeting CEOs in the health industry, your landing page should show how your product or service helps CEOs in the health industry.
- See how your competitors are using paid advertising to market their products and services. For Google AdWords ads, you can use tools like SEMrush to search for their website and see how they format their search ads, plus click through to see what landing pages they direct visitors to. To do competitive research on social ads, you’ll need to create a profile that matches your target customer and see what products are marketed toward that profile.
- Do lots of testing with different headlines, descriptive text, landing pages, and images. Sometimes, just changing a single word in the headline or the image that represents your product or service can have a huge impact in conversions.
- Set up Google Analytics goals to track conversions on your website. Then use UTM Parameters in your landing page URLs to see which ad campaigns lead to the most conversions.
- Find the sweet spot between ad spending and conversions so that you are getting the most bang for your advertising buck.
Conversion Rate Optimization Tips for Email Marketing
Email marketing is one of the highest converting online marketing strategies. Here are some ways to ensure that each of your emails convert your subscribers.
- Focus emails on one goal — to get people to click on a specific piece of conversion-focused content or sales page — and leave out links to anything else. The more links you include in your email, the less likely people are to click on the one that counts.
- Make sure images are optional. If your email is in an HTML newsletter format, ensure that people can still get the gist of your message and click on your links even if they do not turn on images or other features. Some graphics-based emails are completely useless to recipients who do not turn on images or make you as a safe sender.
- Make sure that your email and your landing page is mobile friendly. If people can’t read your email on their mobile devices, they may not remember to get back to it later on their desktop. And if they do click through to your landing page from your email on their mobile device, and the landing page isn’t mobile friendly, you’re likely to lose that conversion. (See also: How to Better Monetize Your Mobile Traffic.)
- Create a follow-up email specifically for those who opened your sales email, but didn’t convert as a customer or a lead. This can be something as simple as offering them a special (but small) discount or an added bonus. It can even be the opportunity to ask you a question about your product or service so you can get the chance to personally sell them.
- Don’t just limit your conversion opportunities to your mailing list messages. Use email signatures on the individual emails you send to introduce personal contacts to your business and professional contacts to your products and services.
As you can see, optimizing your online marketing strategy for conversions isn’t necessarily difficult. It just requires you to stop focusing on driving any sort of traffic to your website and start focusing on how to make the traffic coming to your website more profitable! Do you have any additional tips? Please share them below!