Why is conversion rate optimization important? Learn this step-by-step guide to conversion rate optimization strategies you can use today.
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is one of the trending topics in the marketing world, without which companies, large and small, would be out of business.
Every business needs to see results from their marketing efforts and investments. So as a digital marketer, your work is to ensure marketing ROI is up to the bar.
So, how will you arrive at this? Well, conversion. You need to convert the audience into leads before moving them through the sales funnel. And before we jump right into the topic, let’s first define a few industry terms.
What is a conversion rate?
Conversion rate is the ratio at which you turn site visitors into paying customers in a given period, say per month, week, or year.
Website conversion can be measured in different ways depending on the specific actions you want your audience to do.
For example, an eCommerce site will want site visitors to buy some of the products sold on the site. For a blogger, the goal would be to get the site visitors to subscribe to the newsletter for updates.
How to calculate conversion rate?
In the two examples above, the conversion rate would be the total number of people that took the specified action divided by the total number of people who visited the page for a specified period, multiplied by 100 – i.e., to express it in percentage.
According to Wikipedia, this is how you can calculate the conversion rate for your website, landing page, or eCommerce site:
How Websites Benefit from Conversion Rate Optimization, CRO?
Over the years, bloggers and business owners have been looking for ways to get more site visitors to take action. This is where conversion rate optimization comes into play.
So you may ask, what is conversion optimization? Consider the example below.
Suppose you run an online sneaker store where customers can see the various sneakers on sale then proceed to checkout. But because your site runs on an old website design, the site isn’t mobile-friendly.
This means your customers need to access the site via a desktop or laptop to see the images clearly. Now that you’ve realized this could be killing your conversion rate, you want to switch to a mobile-friendly website design.
This is an example of conversion optimization or optimizing your site for conversion.
That said, below are the benefits of deploying conversion rate optimization on your website.
1. Better user experience
Conversion rate optimization best practices, such as making the website mobile-friendly, boosts user experience. A fully-scalable grid and faster loading times make website navigation easier, while high-quality, responsive images are great at engaging site visitors.
User experience leads to customer experience over time, which determines the long-term success of a brand or business.
You can refer to our guide on how to create a winning customer experience strategy for more tips.
2. Higher ROI
Conversion rate optimization has a high ROI that makes it attractive to site and business owners. According to the Venture Beat report, the average ROI from a conversion rate optimization tool is around 223%.
From a business perspective, these numbers give more reasons to try conversion rate optimization to increase revenue instead of other options such as buying more ads, hiring more marketing personnel, or selling more products/services.
3. Better scalability
Conversion rate optimization allows you to turn more site visitors into paying customers, which is more scalable since you are just optimizing what you already have.
Put it simply: conversion rate optimization, unlike targeted SEO or buying ads, allows you to make more profit from existing traffic and customers.
4. Boost trust
Conversion rate optimization strategies involve making your site as professional and trustworthy as possible. A highly-optimized website can easily win over new customers.
Also, nearly all the conversion rate optimization aspects build your brand and business reputation, which eventually earns trust from your customers and prospects.
Conversion rate optimization strategies: 9 Tips for You
Conversion rate optimization is the easiest tactic you can use to increase profits for your business, and that’s why it’s important to prioritize it.
However, everything needs the right strategy and execution to deliver the expected results.
We’ve rounded up the 9 conversion rate optimization techniques you can implement to take your business to the next level.
1. Define your potential customer
If you can’t target the right person from the very beginning, the truth is, your conversion marketing efforts will yield no fruits.
Using the sneaker business as an example: your potential customers are probably youths and teens in high school and college.
Now, what if you were to target an adult in his midlife crisis or an elderly lady waiting for retirement? Chances are, they are never going to take action unless otherwise, they are buying for their loved ones.
For conversion rate optimization to work, you should start by ensuring you are engaging the right market demographic.
Check out our guide on how to create the right persona. The guide will show a step-by-step process to create your ideal potential customer. Thus, improving your conversion rate.
Another rule of thumb is to have a unique selling proposition for your business. This will give you a competitive edge in the market.
2. Optimize high-performing blog posts
Conversion rate optimization is never complete without optimizing your content for readability using great visuals and proper structuring.
Here are some tips to help you identify and optimize your posts.
#1. Use BiQ’s Rank Intelligence to find performing blog post
Within your BiQ’s Rank Intelligence profile, click on Create New View, then set the search ranking parameters as 4 to 10.
This allows you to filter performing content that is ranking for a given set of keywords.
You might notice some are performing quite well, but have not reached their visibility potential yet. In other words, their ranks can still be improved. So proceed with the next step below.
#2. Use BiQ’s Content Intelligence to optimize blog
Now that you know which content to optimize. Head to BiQ’s Content Intelligence and use the targeted keyword and page URL to analyze your existing content.
Here you can explore three aspects: sentiment, readability, and relevancy.
You can also see an overview of the content, such as word count and keyword density.
Here, there’s an option to switch to the analysis tab, where you’ll check on the WordVector and Fundamental SEO optimization. Use the “Edit Needed” suggestion to guide you on what needs to be updated.
#3. Use BiQ’s Rank Tracking to track progress
To ascertain that your conversion rate optimization tactics are working, you need to track your content optimization efforts. Head to our BiQ’s Rank Tracking and create a rank tracking profile for your site.
You can also sort the keyword ranking by pages to see how the overall page ranking has changed over time.
Once you are done going through the first page, it is also worthwhile to check out the keywords ranking on the second page. With some optimization, you might see them moving to the first page, thus significantly improving their visibility and conversion.
3. Use CTA strategically
Restructuring your call to action (CTA) to make it more precise and value-centric is among the best practices of conversion rate optimization.
Instead of using CTAs that communicates a huge commitment, such as “buy now” or “sign up now,” consider using more friendly options. For example, “Connect with me,” “start my free trial,” etc.
The idea is to use words that speak value to the users via your CTA instead of outwardly selling them your products or services. Below is an example.
You can also use this conversion rate optimization technique on your ads to increase the click-through rate and get more people on your landing page or website.
4. Create a sense of urgency
One of the most effective conversion rate optimization strategies is to flip the urgency switch and get your customers to take action.
The idea isn’t to create an artificial shortage, rather give your customers a clearer image of what other customers are doing and get them to take action now, not later.
The best way to implement this conversion rate optimization tactic is to use numbers instead of general quantifiers. For example:
- “Make your order in the next 3 hours for free delivery today” – here, the customer has 3 hours to order and enjoy, not only free but also same-day delivery.
- “Only 5 in stock” works better than “The product is in limited stock.”
Here is another example that we used in our year-end sale:
4. Optimize above the fold content
“Above the fold” refers to an area of your page the visitors see first upon landing on your site. Optimizing these areas with great content that attracts and engages is key to boosting your conversion rates.
To effectively deploy this conversion rate optimization strategy, consider the following tips:
- Create eye-catching headings
- Optimize the headings with targeted keywords
- Ensure there’s just enough content in these areas
- Create a killer call to action
When optimizing these content areas, you also want to keep in mind the varying screen sizes, i.e., users browsing with smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc.
5. Optimize for mobile
If you are really into conversion rate optimization, making sure your website is responsive should be your top priority.
Recent statistics show that mobile (excluding tablets) generated 50.8% of the global website traffic in the third quarter of 2020.
Optimizing your site for mobile means making sure the user experience is as good, if not better, for mobile users as it is for desktop users. Slow loading speed, poorly sized images, and inconsistent texts are common issues with old sites not optimized for mobile.
If you need help optimizing your website for mobile, check our comprehensive mobile optimization guide for optimization techniques, mobile SEO tips, and more.
6. Improve page speed
Optimizing your site for mobile isn’t all if you want to boost conversion rates. According to Google audience polls, 46% of participants said waiting for slow pages to load is what they dislike most about mobile browsing.
Another survey showed that 73% of mobile internet users had encountered slow loading websites.
So how can you improve the page loading speed? Below are some tips that will help you implement this conversion rate optimization technique:
- Optimize images – use the right formats, JPEGs, and PNGs
- Reduce redirects
For more page speed optimization techniques, refer to our guide on Google Page Speed Insights.
7. Use heatmaps
By definition, a heatmap is a visual summary of data presented in a graphical format, often represented by colors.
Conversion rate optimization experts use heatmaps to track how users interact with site pages. And using this data, they can make the necessary changes to better the conversion rates.
Depending on what you want to track on your site, there are different types of heatmaps available. These include:
#1. The mouse movement heatmap
Here, mouse tracking tools are used to check the mouse movements on a given page. The data is then presented visually over the page. This reveals the navigation patterns and how users engage with ads, call to action buttons, and even site images.
#2. Scroll Maps
This heatmap shows how site visitors interact with your page from the point they start reading or watching your content to the moment they leave the page.
With scroll maps, you can see where the users start losing interest in your content. This way, you can move up your CTA button and allow more users to take action before losing interest.
#3. Click maps
This heatmap tells you where in particular, your users click on your page. The visual data you get allows you to get rid of distractive design elements and even re-position your CTA where users can easily spot them.
If you are keen to use this conversion rate optimization, consider user session software such as Crazy Egg and HotJar.
These products are worth it. For example, HotJar comes with a 14-day free trial and supports multiple platforms such as Shopify and Unbounce.
8. Run AB test
AB test is a split testing methodology used to evaluate the user experience of a website. AB test is a widely-used conversion rate optimization technique proven to be very effective when executed properly.
This conversion rate optimization strategy allows you to test different factors, one at a time. For example, colors, headlines, buttons, call to action, website design, font size, etc.
And since you cannot maximize conversion right off the bat, your need this type of exhaustive testing to optimize your conversion rate marketing efforts.
Remember, for the AB test to work, you only need to change one variant per test. For example, if you test two website pages with varying colors, headlines, buttons, and font size, you won’t tell which of the variants improved your conversion rate.
AB testing is one of the conversion rate optimization techniques mostly tied to users with cookies. This ensures users don’t see a different version of a page every time they visit the site.
If you are new to AB testing, check our AB testing guide for more tips.
It’s worth noting that the end goal of conversion rate optimization isn’t necessarily to sell more products, rather improve the user experience.
This way, your customers will better understand your products/services. It also helps build customer trust, making it easy to convince them to take specific actions. The results are improved customer experience and increased sales and revenue.
Which conversion rate optimization strategies are you going to try first? Or do you have any questions? Either way, feel free to let me know in the comments.