No matter how fun or casual a blog may look like, it will always have some method of generating revenue.
You at least have to cover your basic expenses in order to continue creating content.
But this is where most sites go wrong.
A lot of bloggers and business owners focus on traffic as the main way of determining potential profit.
Unfortunately, this numbers are skewered and do not give us a realistic image of how a website is fairing.
This is why knowledgeable people prefer checking their website conversion rate.
What is conversion rate?
Conversion rate refers to a percentage of people who will interact with a website after reaching it.
In most cases, marketers will focus on conversion in terms of sales but it can also refer to number of downloads and other actions performed.
Have in mind that although sales are crucial for site’s profitability, other actions may prove to be valuable as well.
Increasing website conversion rate isn’t easy.
It is a process full of trials and errors that is constantly performed for sites. This gave rise to CRO (conversion rate optimization).
One of the biggest mistakes casual owners make is not paying proper attention to their website conversion data.
They might try something new once in a while and after seeing bad initial results they would give up.
This is a bad approach as CRO is subject to a lot of fluctuations and simple switch of audience can produce different results.
But before I teach you some tricks and tips that will increase your website conversion rate, I wish to mention another important aspect and that is lead generation.
What is lead generation?
Leads can be described as quality website traffic. In other words, these are visitors that are more likely to make a purchase.
Lead generation and conversion rate optimization go hand in hand.
During the initial process you will try to attract the attention of as many possible customers while during the second part you will try to sell the actual product.
Keep in mind that regular traffic doesn’t have to be profitable.
You may have thousands and thousands of daily visitors without ever making a sale. But luckily for you, it is possible to turn this traffic into leads by peaking their interest.
Most common ways of generating leads is by:
- Performing search engine optimization with emphasis on so called “money keywords” (keywords that usually lead to sales)
- Promoting products and services through social media
- Generating leads through paid advertising such as cost per click, cost per thousand and cost per action
Why am I placing such an emphasis on lead generation?
You see, most website owners are struggling with their conversion rate optimization because their traffic doesn’t consist of potential buyers.
Their conversion may be really low but only because they did the initial step wrong and that is not attracting the people who will potentially buy.
Actionable tips that will increase your website conversion rate
It’s time to mention all the improvements you can make in order to increase your conversion rate stats.
DISCLAIMER: Have in mind that I will focus on conversion in terms of sales, not in terms of number of subscriptions and downloads (although these tricks should cover them as well).
Website design and usability
In order for a potential customer to place their trust in you, it is necessary to look good. This mainly pertains to website design.
It is necessary to mention that website design plays a different role in different industries.
While domains working within graphic design, architecture and internet marketing industries require amazing designs and usability, this is not the same when it comes to some other industries where proficiency of the expert is much more relevant.
Nevertheless, customers usually neglect atrocious designs as this shows your proficiency and level of work.
Although appearance is very important for conversion in service industries, it is a bit neglected when it comes to e-shops. Here, usability is what counts.
General rule of the thumb is that you need to reach any product page in 3 clicks. Your sitemap plays very important role as people tend to bounce from a page if it loads slowly or even worse, if they cannot reach what they’re looking for.
Image taken from LinkedIn.com
Here are some interesting stats:
- 95 % of people do not make a purchase during their first visit
- If a visitor doesn’t see anything compelling on the first few pages of your site, they will probably leave your e-shop never to return again
- People usually take up to 10 seconds to decide whether they will leave or stay on a website
- Actionable buttons such as “Add to basket” tend to increase your sales with up to 30 %
Obviously, you need to do everything in your power to make browsing go smoothly.
That being said, you also need to focus on things such as website speed and mobile friendliness.
Website speed and mobile friendliness
Let me tell you something interesting.
With every additional second waiting for page to load, you lose 7 % of your website conversion.
In fact, there is a direct connection between website speed and SEO so it is definitely something you wish to improve.
In order for your pages to load quicker they need to be minimalistic, with small number of graphic solutions.
Size of a file upload is what matters the most so bigger content will usually have trouble loading.
Image taken from Tribes.no
Another big factor for your website conversion is whether your website is mobile friendly.
Today, much more users access Google and other search engines through their mobile devices than they do through their desktop computers.
In fact, majority of purchases are done through mobile devices making it a clear priority when it comes to conversion (although it’s needed to be said that mobile devices have lower website conversion rate).
Image taken from Appticles.com
Although you may think based on this chart that it is much better to get desktop visitors (due to higher conversion rates) it still remains a fact that both options are necessary for a serious website.
Unfortunately, web portals are still mainly geared towards desktops.
Just one part of the whole Internet content opens properly on mobile devices.
Security of payment and different payment options
Although you may argue that Internet is somewhat regulated in developed countries, there are still many uncertainties when it comes to internet shopping.
First and foremost, you can manage a website from almost any country in the world without ever having to mention this or your visitor ever knowing it.
This means that you will be subjugated to laws of that country and it is really hard to be criminally pursued.
On the other hand there are many issues with payment options and security.
In fact, if you’re website is not secured or doesn’t have proper protection, there is a good chance you will lose a lot of potential customers.
This is why you need to be transparent, reliable and to offer various forms of payment options.
Here are some tips for increasing your website conversion rate:
- Make sure you have all the contact information and to be available all the time. If someone calls you or emails you it is necessary to respond ASAP
- You have to have a return policy as well. This will strengthen clients belief that he/she is doing business with a reliable company
- You need SSL certificate which will show people that all transactions are secure (migration to HTTPS is mandatory)
- Make sure that numerous forms of payment are available. This increases the number of people who can buy from you without any risk
Security of transactions is crucial as it builds a bridge of trust between you and your new customers.
Of course, this will have an enormously big effect on your conversion as you will be able to use your leads more efficiently.
As I previously mentioned in one of the chapters, most people do not purchase product or service first time they land on a page.
Instead, they tend to check competition and then return if you have the best offer.
So what is one of the most important aspects of a product or a service besides its price?
Given how vast web market is, there will always be something that is cheaper.
And for some products it may work.
However, there are numerous labels which you can use to separate yourself from others.
Here are some examples of offering unique value:
- Extended warranty
- Free installation
- Full refund with no questions asked
- Easy to use, etc.
Unique values are what sets you apart and there will always be clients who will give advantage to “Easy to use” over anything else.
This is positioning of a product or a service and it will affect how people see you, allowing you to dominate one aspect of a product.
Call to action (CTA)
At the first, Niksto.com didn’t have a service page as we wanted to build relationships and focus on our content.
This lead to funny situation where most visitors didn’t know that we are offering SEO services.
Why did this happen?
Because we decided to omit the call to action.
Call to action refers to two things:
- Having all the necessary buttons, banners, pop-ups that will lead a person to a page you want them to visit
- Packaging all these elements properly so that visitors are more likely to click on them
It’s not only important to have CTA but to have a proper text that goes with it.
It is one of the crucial elements affecting your website conversion.
Labeling something as “Free” makes it much more appealing and readers will more likely to click on it during their search.
Here are some good and bad examples of call-to-action buttons:
Image taken from Unbounce.com
You are the one that needs to get acquainted visitors with all the offers you have on your website while putting a nice ribbon on them.
Similar to everything else in the Internet marketing world, website conversion rate optimization mainly comes to serving end users.
However, this is not as simple as it seems. Otherwise everyone would be a CRO expert.
In most cases, users themselves do not know what they need or want. This is why you need to clearly point them in the right direction.
Sometimes they will know what they want but they won’t find it on yours site.
In these cases, you are the one that needs to make your offer transparent, to emphasize benefits, add testimonials, and add payment options and everything else that will make visitor more likely to become a client.
Do you perform website conversion rate optimization on a steady basis? What are your biggest problems? Let me know