Having a website that showcases products is useless if customers don’t buy the products. In fact, we have no business calling them customers if they don’t buy. Because the rule of business is: we sell, they buy.
What good is a website if it just sits there in the cyberspace, taking up space and waiting for the domain and hosting to expire? Unless this is the original intention, which I’m sure it is not, then a website is not really a website in every sense of the word. To use the analogy of a once great leader, “Your website is less useful than crap.”
Conversion rate is the percentage of site visitors who actually buy the products and services being offered. The higher the ratio of customers, the higher the revenue. That is how this game is played. Revenue is the name of the game, and conversion is the rule of the play. Websites must convert users, plain and simple. Site visits must have ROI for without it, businesses are doomed.
Conversion Rate Optimization or CRO comes into play. CRO is the process of maximising the efforts of making site visitors take action. It takes time and lots of research and resources. In short, CRO is a costly venture. Big firms spend lots of money hiring other firms that specialise in CRO. For indeed, there are firms and agencies dedicated solely to CRO.
But what about the small and medium businesses that have no budget for CRO? Good news then that the Internet is a level-playing field. And it being a platform where SMEs have an equal footing with the big boys, the power of CRO can be harnessed DIY style.
Here are some tips you might want to consider to raise your site’s conversion rate.
1. Conduct Split Tests
This reliable method has been practiced ever since the beginning of the business era, when ancient galleon trade merchants studied markets and sold products based on their conclusions. Split testing, sometimes called A/B testing, is the process of creating two different versions of a landing page and testing it to two sets of users. Whichever converts better, we go for it. Below are particular sections that we need to focus on.
2. Call To Action
Call to Action, or CTA is the button or link that we want users to click. It is simply where the action is going to take place. Every click on the particular button is potential revenue.
That being said, make sure that you place the CTA where users can see it immediately. Meaning, above the fold or on the upper section of the page, before the users even begin to scroll down. Placing the CTA above the fold is strategic simply because users see it right away before they change their minds.
But this does not mean that we skip the CTA at the end of the page. Some users would want to read first before they take action. So if they don’t click on the upper fold, they continue to read the content sandwiched in the middle, then they can still take action at the end of the page. A website or a landing page can have many CTAs as long as they are strategically placed and lead to only one action.
3. Make it Clear
The purpose of CTA is to lure potential customers. You don’t want potential customers to get lost in all the content and finally leave the website. Or worse, get carried away with the aesthetics and art, and forget that we are actually selling something. Your CTA, as the name suggests, must drive the user towards your goal. In design-speak, that means proper layout and fonts. Avoid using artsy fonts and elements that make the headline hard to read. Keeping it simple often works better.
Studies show that users have little patience with step-by-step actions. Modern users who are most likely using a smartphone or tablet instead of a laptop or PC, have little patience in filling-up forms. With this in mind, make the forms shorter and concise. There’s no point in making it complicated for the user. Think: we are about to convert! The user is already filling-up our form! Instead of adding additional steps for him, by all means, let’s carry him on our shoulders all the way to the check-out counter if this would convert him to become a buyer.
Take note: studies based on years of experience state that a lot of potential customers walk away just because of the failure of captcha images to load. What a shame!
People tend to believe in products and services especially if they see other people buy them. That means “people”, not “celebrities”. You don’t need celebrities endorsing your products. First of all, you don’t have the budget to do it. In fact, using famous people is not a testimonial but a commercial. Testimonials are the exact antithesis of commercials.
Consumers have outgrown product endorsements from celebrities. People tend to believe people who are on their same level. Small and medium businesses would want to see other small and medium businesses saying your products worked for them. People don’t want to see stock photos but actual pictures of people proclaiming your product rocks. Testimonials breed trust.
There you go, folks. CRO presented DIY style. Your goal is to convert without spending too much money in hiring experts to raise your conversion rate. These simple tips would help you get started.
Now convert! And forever make your website useful.