The website is the foundation of your online presence, but there is much more that goes into getting your website to bring in sales, leads, and purchases. To use your website effectively and grow your business, you need to develop a marketing strategy to drive traffic and optimize your website for conversions.
What is conversion optimization?
Conversion optimization is all about increasing the percentage of website visitors who take the desired action (i.e. convert). Subscribing to a newsletter, submitting a form, or completing a purchase are all examples of conversion.
You can calculate your website’s conversion rate by identifying how many people converted divided by how many people visited that page, then multiple that by 100 to get your conversion rate (20/700)*100= 2.85%). Let’s say you have 20 email subscribers, and 700 hundred people visited that page, so you have a 2.85% conversion rate.
Conversion optimization is a great way of getting more out of what you are already doing. It is all about effectiveness and maximizing your return on investment. To do this, you need to understand how visitors move through your website, what actions they take, and what is preventing them from converting.
How to Optimize Your Website for Conversions
The following 10 tips will enable you to better optimize your website for conversions.
#1 Integrate Primary & Secondary Call-to-Actions
Define what you want the user to do and then you can define your call-to-action. A call-to-action asks the visitor to take a specific action – contact, buy, or subscribe are a few examples. Your primary call-to-action is your ultimate goal. For most, this means you want the website visitor to buy a product or sign up for a service. Even though you may want a customer to buy a product or request a consultation, not all visitors will be ready to purchase. These prospects may need a little more nurturing along their customer journey. This is where your secondary call-to-action comes in. To help nudge these visitors closer to purchase, you can define secondary call-to-action such as subscribe to your newsletter or follow us on social media. Both are a great way to engage the website visitor and prevent them from leaving your website without any action.
You may also consider pairing each call-to-action with an incentive or benefit to the customer. Make it personal and relevant to them. Reflect on your why and think about why your customers choose you over the competition. If you want someone to subscribe to your newsletter, describe how they will benefit and what free resources will be delivered to their inbox.
#2 Build Trust
During the consideration phase of the customer journey, the customer is evaluating what separates you from other providers. Testimonials, reviews, and success stories can help build trust and provide that extra nudge that sets you apart from the competition.
Furthermore, customers are more likely to trust an expert in their field and that has authority. Demonstrate your expertise, incorporate case studies, work samples, portfolios, blogs, ebooks, & other helpful resources. To demonstrate authority, show the authoritativeness of the creator behind your content by displaying credentials, awards, certifications, accreditations, or client lists.
#3 Craft Your Content to Speak to Your Ideal Customer
Don’t worry about everyone or capturing as much traffic as possible, rather focus on your ideal customer. Choose specific keywords that align with their searches and optimize your copy/content accordingly. Have you ever visited a website and thought “Wow it is as if they are speaking directly to me?” That’s the effect you are going for! Define your customers pain points and describe how you help.
#4 Differentiate Your Business
Make your business stand apart from the competition by clearly describing your value proposition. Your value proposition is that extra value you bring to your customers compared to the competition. Make sure it’s clear what problem you are solving (i.e. how you solve your customers pain points) and how it benefits your customers. You can take this a step further by sharing your story, your purpose, and your values. What is your why?
#5 Simplify & Make It Easy
Integrate forms to your website and only include the necessary fields to make it as easy as possible for the visitor to take that next step by subscribing to your newsletter, sending a message via your contact form, or requesting a quote/consultation.
Not only do you want to make it simple to take action, but also to understand what your business does. Use simple language, short sentences, bullets instead of paragraphs, etc. to make it easy to read your copy. Also, incorporate visuals to break up the text and make it easier to understand without tons of reading/details.
Don’t overcomplicate things! Address the majority on your website and encourage customers to reach out with special circumstances. For example, in an eCommerce store, include the standard pricing and encourage customers to request a quote for a bulk discount or special shipping arrangements.
#6 Alleviate Common Concerns
Incorporate a free trial or a 30-day money back guarantee to help nudge the customer toward purchase. These methods help reduce anxiety and alleviate common concerns. If you receive the same question frequently, add FAQs to your website so that customers can easily find the answers to their customers.
#7 Keep Visitors Focused on the Goal & Avoid Distractions
Keep your visitors focused on the goal. Remove as many distractions as possible – a sidebar, a frozen header, etc. All of these visual elements can be distracting. Use clear, concise language. Make your website easy to navigate.
#8 Improve Your Website’s Performance
Speed up your website. If your website takes too long to load, then visitors will simply click the back button and move on to the next option (often your competition). Run your websites through Google’s PageSpeed Insights to see how you can improve.
Make sure your website performs well on mobile. You need to give your visitors a positive user experience regardless of the device you are using. Speed up your website both on desktop and mobile. Make sure your website has a responsive design, uses appropriately sized images, etc.
#9 Analyze Behavior Flow
In Google Analytics, there is a tab labeled “behavior flow.” You can use this diagram to better understand how visitors enter your website, navigate, and leave your website. How can you facilitate the customer’s navigation through the site to the point of conversion? On “exit pages,” how can you improve this page to keep visitors on the website?
Furthermore, you can use the audience tab to understand how visitors interact with your website – how many pages they view, how long they stay on a page, if they return to your website, etc.
#10 Experiment & Improve
To improve the user experience of your website, you can use A/B testing to test various factors such as headlines, colors, call-to-actions, buttons, layout, etc. Through A/B testing, you spilt your traffic into two groups so that group A sees one version and group B sees another version. After running the experiment, you will have data illustrating which version converts better.
To improve the conversion optimization of your website, implement the following:
- Integrate primary and secondary call to action.
- Build trust with testimonials, reviews, and success stories.
- Craft your content to speak to your ideal customer.
- Differentiate your business by clearly describing your value proposition & why.
- Simplify your website/interactions and make it easy to accomplish the goal.
- Alleviate common concerns with a free trial, money back guarantee, FAQs, etc.
- Keep your visitors focused on the goal and avoid distractions.
- Improve your website’s performance in terms of speed & mobile-friendliness.
- Analyze behavior flow and improve your website experience.
- Experiment with A/B tests and improve accordingly.