Conversion Rate Optimization Strategies

Not a day goes by that I don’t get a question about how to increase website conversion rates.  At the end of the day, this may be the most important question ever asked.  The reason is that improving your conversations translates into revenue.

Now let’s map out a conversion rate optimization strategy that will convert your visitors into long-term customers. First, here’s an interesting statistic to think about…experts say that you have roughly 15 seconds to capture your audience’s attention.

If they don’t feel that you can solve their problem within 15 seconds they will bounce quickly off your site and potentially never return.  I urge you to test this theory yourself next time you visit a website.

I want to share with you 10 strategies you can implement this week to increase
sales conversions and get your audience to take action…

1.  Have a clearly understood and compelling value proposition

  • In my opinion, your value proposition is the singular most important factor in conversions.
  • It’s the core reason of why someone should buy from you versus your competition.
  • It’s how you communicate what differentiates your product.
  • Test a few different options with your potential customers first to make sure it really resonates with them.

2.  Have a strong call to action:

  • Your message can make or break a potential conversion.
  • It needs to quickly tell your visitor what they should do and why should they do it.
  • Another tip is to create a sense of urgency so they feel motivated to take action.
  • It’s a fine line between coming on too strong and risk alienating your audience versus a very soft approach.
  • Include some type of a call to action on every page of content that you have created.
  • It doesn’t necessarily have to be a sale, but rather just helping them move through the purchase process.
  • Remember that you need to build credibility first by providing value in your content.  It needs to be both relevant and useful.

3.  Include call to action buttons:

  • Buttons are easier to see and click thru versus just a link, especially if you are viewing on a smartphone.
  • Things to think about are button size, color, verbiage and location on your page.
  • As a rule, rounded buttons perform better than square buttons.
  • Red colored buttons traditional performs better than other colors.
  • I recommend using the free plugin called MaxButtons to create your own custom buttons.

4.  Include some type of incentive offer:

  • This could be something like a special promotion, or a free download of an ebook or guide you have created.
  • It could also be as simple as a money back guarantee.  This goes far for reducing risk.
  • I would test a few different types of offers to see what has the highest impact.
  • Do a competitive analysis of others who have been successful in your niche to see what they are doing differently.  It could spark some great idea for you.

5.  Have testimonials & product reviews on your website:

  • This is just another subtle way to help reduce any anxiety that the visitor is having about making a purchase.
  • They should be authentic and diverse.
  • You can increase your conversions by having these as videos versus text on your website.
  • The ultimate example of this technique is Amazon.
  • Speaking for myself, I admit that these techniques do affect my buying behavior.

6.  Include your picture on your website:

  • This a great way to personalize your site, rather than having it feel too sterile.
  • Another tip is to avoid the use of too many stock photos on your site…they look really staged.
  • I like to use Flickr Public Domain instead because they are real authentic slice of life images.
  • You want to reflect your customer visually, so your visitors can better relate.

7.  Focus on crafting a great headline

  • This will be the first thing your audience sees, so make it compelling and interesting.
  • I recommend that you try the tool CoSchedule Headline Analyzer.
  • It actually rates your headline on several dimensions and grades you…it’s made a big difference to me in attracting new visitors. Not to mention that it’s really interesting to play around with.

8.  Make sure to have a simple lead capture form:

  • This is key when it comes time to build your marketing lists for campaigns.
  • My advice is to keep the form very clean and simple.
  • Choose just the information you need so you can minimize the number of fields.
  • I like to do just first name and email address, simple as that.

9.  Create a lead nurturing program:

  • I have always heard that it takes about 7 touches to ultimately lead to a sale.
  • That’s why it’s important to provide value all along the way (awareness, education, trust, sale)
  • You want your visitors to keep coming back because they get value from you and they view you as a credible source of information.  Make your site a destination site!
  • Provide an incentive to the visitor so you can build your email lists.  This could include advice blogs, videos, and other content that positions you as a trusted adviser and expert in your niche.
  • Implement email campaigns to share news, really interesting content, special offers, ebooks, etc…

Finally…

10.  Test, test, test and then test again:

  • This the only way that you will definitively know what works and what doesn’t.
  • I recommend A/B testing, which is simply split testing of 2 versions of things.
  • There is lot’s of good, easy to use software to accomplish your testing goals.
  • Here are the top things you should test:  your headline, your offer, your call to action, types of call to action buttons, the effect of different types of media (i.e. adding video) and also page navigation.

It always amazes me how a really simple tweak can make a massive difference.  I mentioned before that improving my headline increased my traffic by 75%.  Conversions = Profits.  With that said, take a long hard look at your site and create some simple A/B testing to see what performs best for you.  Remember, this is an iterative process…keep testing…keep improving…make more profits…then repeat!

Cheers to your conversion rate optimization success!