This guide explores 5 powerful DIY ways you can improve your conversion rate without having to pay an expert to do it for you.
- 1. test EVERYTHING
- 2. Very prominent contact information EVERYWHERE
- 3. Call to action testing
- 4. Keep people on site as long as possible
- 5. Create an email remarketing list
Conversion rate optimisation is a vital part of web marketing. You can increase the money a website makes in two ways. Increasing traffic by advertising – which costs money – should translates into more sales. Alternatively you can work on your website’s conversion rate, usually this is absolutely free. It is much better to have ten visitors a day with a 50% conversion rate – whether they convert into social shares, sign up to an email list, or make a sale – then it is to have a thousand visitors of which none convert into anything useful.
We often wait until we purchase a paid advertising campaign before we even think about optimising for conversion to improve our return on investment. Waiting until you are invested means that you will miss out on many opportunities to improve user experience on your website, and generate more business. You may think that your website looks nice and is very usable and easy to engage with but without testing you will never truly know what works and what doesn’t.
1. Test EVERYTHING
This guide presumes that you have Google Analytics installed. If you don’t follow Google’s instructions. Give Analytics a few months to collect data then make some changes to your site. They can be simple changes like wording, images or a call to action.
Always ask people where they found out about your service when they contact you. Record how many people say they found you from your website. Measure this against data against Google Analytics. If you have noticeably more sales after changing your website without having a large increase in traffic it is likely that the changes you made were successful.
You can take these tests as far as you want. Change colours on your website, tweak your logo, try different kinds of adverts. If you are a blogger you could write two versions of the same blog and use the data from Analytics to see which engages the reader best – who goes on to view the most pages and stay on your website the longest. Analytics has loads of useful information. The more changes that you test the better your overall website will be for the end user.
2. Very prominent contact information EVERYWHERE
You need your contact information waved under people’s noses everywhere that you think a reader might stop and decide to call you. ALL websites should have a bold, colourful phone number at the top right had corner of a users screen. Top right is where people expect to find a phone number. If you don’t have a number here you WILL miss out on work from search engines. This is more important if you offer services than if you sell products. People who know exactly the job they want but want to discuss it first will often bounce from a page if they can’t see a phone number within the first 3 seconds.
You should also put phone numbers, emails and addresses in the footer of your website. If your user isn’t completely decided at the end of the page whether they will go with you or somebody else’s they are likely to look at another website. If that happens they are unlikely to come back to your site. Putting your phone number at the bottom of all your pages can persuade people in this situation to call you instead of leaving your site, when they call you have a good chance of closing the sale.
3. Call to action testing
Don’t delay call today – is the common cheesy example. The idea behind a call to action is that you put an idea in peoples heads. You are far more likely to do something if somebody asks, or tells you to. This is true even in text. If you want to test how important your call to actions are make a landing page with no call to action, and a landing page with a strong call to action. Test both and you will see that the one with the call to action will almost always have a significantly higher conversion rate – even something as unoriginal as “don’t delay call today”.
Test different call to actions. Many people are surprised when they first learn that not all call to actions were born equally. It can be a good idea to look for competitors on Google Adwords. Look at all your competitors and see if you find any call to actions you like. Tweak them a bit to make them your own and then test them on your own site.
The obvious place to use a call to action is a phone number. You should also focus on the less obvious places – get the right call to action for any forms on your page a user might sign up to. Get a call to action like “spread the message” on social sharing buttons. Give people a reason to watch your video “watch this great video guide which goes into more detail on[…]”. It is amazing how effective ordering people to do things is. Even anchor text for links can be a call to action as below:
4. Keep people on site as long as possible
A basic telesales technique is keeping your lead on the phone for as long as possible. Eventually after a long conversation most people will think that they owe you for your time and even if you haven’t been speaking about selling a product they will be more likely to buy what you are selling. The same is true with websites. You may not have convinced your visitor to buy your product on the first page they land on. If this is the case, unless there is a clear next page for them to visit you will have lost any chance of making a sale.
You need to think about the page that you are writing to decide what content you should link to. If you are a builder, on your sales page it is a good idea to give both a phone number at the bottom, as well as a link to a gallery so that your visitors can see how high quality your work is. This gives visitors a choice. If they are happy from your website that you can work together they will be likely to call you because your phone number is right in front of them, if they still need convincing they can see your work which will convince them on your reliability.
For blogs it is normal to link to other similarly themed blog articles. Alternatively you could link to other relevant videos or pages on your site. If you offer products as well as services you should have a similar products page. Visitors who like something you offer can get results based on what they are most likely to buy. If you offer multiple services make sure to clearly show everything you offer so people can make a choice.
5. Create an email remarketing list
You won’t always engage your visitors well enough to make a sale. Having a 100% conversion rate is practically unheard of. People will leave your site and often they won’t come back. You can increase visitor return rate by having an email list. First you need to create something people want. Often this is an eBook, or a set of lessons which expands on topics which you write about on your website. Make sure you are giving something away for free which is seen as being worth money. You need to create value, otherwise people will think you just want their email so you can spam them and force your products down their throats.
Once you decide on your freebie you want to design the best advert you can to maximise the conversion onto your email list. The other points from this list are important here. You want the email form as prominent as possible. This means that it should scroll down the page with the user so no matter where they are on the site they can always see the advert to sign up to your email list. It should be bright and stand out. As stated earlier you want to create value. If you are giving away an eBook saying it is worth £10-20 can’t hurt, if you are offering a lesson you can say it is worth far more. Most importantly try a lot of different designs and see which ones work best.
When you have settled on a email form you are happy with which has a good sign up rate you want to start marketing to this audience. The best email marketers only ever soft sell. Create content on your website and make people on your list aware that you have new content. They were interested enough in what you do to sign up, chances are they will appreciate these updates. Over time as they read more and more of your content they will learn how much of an expert you are in your field. The time will come when they need what you offer, and you will be the first person they contact. Email marketing is a very powerful tool for re marketing to people who have left your website.
These five factors aren’t remotely exhaustive. They are just very powerful while being very easy to action. If you follow the techniques outlined in this guide then with a few hours work you will improve your conversion rate. I am working on a more advanced guide. In the mean time if you have any questions or methods of your own, please share them in the comments.
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