Every business owner wants more.
More traffic to your website, more calls more contact forms, and let’s be honest about it, more money.
In our post-COVID world, the old ways of doing things don’t always apply. What used to work for brick-and-mortar businesses don’t carry the same weight as they used to before the pandemic.
To get more, today’s business needs to be savvy about digital marketing. Success depends upon a two-pronged approach. You have to have marketing elements to get more traffic to the site (i.e Search Engine Optimization, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, etc.), but you also need a system in place to get more out of the website traffic that you are getting.
It’s not just about good web design (although that’s important!). There is an entire science behind taking browsers by the hand and leading them by the hand to do what you want them to do. It’s the science of turning looky-loos into potential customers, and it’s called conversion rate optimization (CRO).
What Is Conversion Rate Optimization?
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the process of improving your website’s ability to increase the percentage of customers on your site to take a specific action.
A desired action could be anything from downloading information about a product, clicking a button, adding something to their cart, purchasing a product, filling out a form, or even clicking on a link for more details.
Your conversion rate optimization helps you understand how well your sales funnel is converting into sales for your targeted customer. It’s literally taking your website to the lab and testing how well it performs.
There are different ways to do conversion rate optimization, but the simplified idea is to do split testing with your traffic. For example, to test how well the color of your call to action button works, you might want to send half of your traffic to a home page with one color button and the rest to a homepage with another color button. This experiment lets you test which color converts more browsers into callers.
These kinds of experiments allow you to make data driven design changes which can drive more business through your front doors.
How Conversion Rate Optimization Helps Your Business
People often reduce conversion rate optimization (CRO) to endless spreadsheets with percentages, averages, benchmarks, and well, a lot of math. While data can help relate to your sales funnel’s effectiveness, your customer can get lost in the mix.
Therefore, we recommend thinking of your CRO as a guide to understanding what drives, stops, and persuades your customers so you can give them the best user experience possible. Besides, engaged customers are more likely to convert into repeat customers. In short, CRO helps you grow your business.
The reason we think focusing on the customer is a better definition is that it focuses on conversion, the action we want targeted customers to take; however, there are several steps they take before a conversion happens.
Here are three actions to focus on:
● What DRIVES your customers to your site?
● What BARRIERS make them leave?
● What HOOKS persuade them to convert?
Sometimes it can be hard to get a quantifiable understanding of what makes a customer leave your site. It may be a straightforward issue like a bug on your site or form; however, it’s not always so clear cut.
In these instances, it’s essential to look at your user experience first. That’s what the staff at Make It Loud thinks real conversion rate optimization is all about.
If you put yourself in the mind of your potential customer, you can begin to see obstacles to conversion. For example, think of your target market finding your site, but the load time is beyond 3 seconds. Google says you lose 53% of your customers if your page load speed is 3 seconds or more. Boom! You’ve lost more than half of your customers right there.
COVID has changed the game, and even brick-and-mortar businesses need to consider conversion rate optimization to grow their sales and scale their business.
The Science (and Math) Behind Conversion Rate Optimization
There are some basic “best practices” to consider when thinking about converting your browsers to customers. These factors are important to consider but not get too locked into since good CRO depends on the data.
Here’s what you may commonly see:
● Using a contrasting color for strong call-to-action buttons (to help them be seen)
● Using urgency (limited amount of time or “only a few seats left”) to drive conversions
● Displaying testimonials
● Using fewer form fields for higher conversions (on your contact form, less is usually more)
The reality, while these tactics may work for some, there are no hard and fast rules that can be applied across all industries and target markets.
One thing that consumers all agree about is that they want to support businesses that are transparent and trustworthy.
There is one practice that consistently works time and again no matter what’s going on in the world, and that’s understanding your customer’s needs.
At Make It Loud, we’re fanatics about helping businesses understand their customers by obsessing over your customers and their needs.
To build long-term growth for your business, we help you use the winning approach of investing in understanding your customer on a deep level and using that insight to create a conversion optimization strategy that continually supports your customers and your business.
Conversion Rate Optimization Math
Here is how you can calculate your conversion rate optimization all by yourself. To calculate your business’s conversion rate optimization, you’ll need to divide the number of conversions (your desired actions were taken by customers) by the total number of visitors on your site and multiplying the result by 100.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say in the last month you have had 12 conversions and 300 website visits, your conversion rate would be 12 divided by 300 (0.04), multiplied by 100 = 4%.
Your conversion rate would be 4% for that month. The average conversion rates for conversion rate optimization are anywhere from 1% to 4% typically. However, these numbers are highly dependent upon your industry, your goal and the device used to browse your site.
Free (ish) Tools for Conversion Rate Optimization
A lot of people grasp the idea of doing conersion optimization but get overwhelmed by the process of actually running the tests on their site. There are some tools out there that make the process a bit simpler. (Notice, we didnt’ say “easy”.)
Here’s our list of tools we’ve found helpful over the years:
Hotjar– This is a good way to put a heat map on your site which gives you beginning data on where people are clicking (and where they’re not). They have a free version along with some paid versions that can really give you a good idea of where people are going on your site.
Google Optimize– If you’d like to start split testing specific pages on your site, Google has a set of tools you can use to begin experimenting.
Survey Monkey– If you are ever interested in getting feedback from your browsers, Survey Monkey allows you do this. This tool isn’t free, but the beginning plan starts at $25/user/month.
A Note About Conversion Optimization
To understand conversion, you have to first place yourself in the mind of your potential new customer. This can be harder to do than you think when it’s your website, so having an objective opinion here helps.
Business owners need to understand their customers, relate to their customer’s experience, and analyze their customer’s needs based on sound data to improve their conversion rate optimization.
Understanding your customers is one of the most straightforward ways to build your business in any economy.
Here’s how you can use these tools to help your business:
● Use reviews to understand your customer’s pains to make a better product
● Listen to what people say about your site
● Watch how people react and engage with your site
Optimizing your site starts with understanding your customers first. Every other tool merely helps you do that.
We Can Help
Make It Loud uses excellent web design, digital marketing, and tools to boost your conversion rate optimization. Call us and let’s talk about conversion rate optimization for your website. Let’s work together to get more customers for your business.