Top Practices for Conversion Rate Optimization in 2018
There are various steps taken by digital marketers to convert the website visitors into customers. However, with the ever-changing web environment, the techniques for conversion rate optimization (CRO) also have to evolve and keep up with the new trends. Otherwise, the mundane digital initiatives can end up making the brand irrelevant.
Types of conversions
Before we discuss the options for CRO, let’s understand that the conversion is broadly categorized as 1) Micro-conversions and 2) Macro-conversions.
The micro conversions ensure the visitors perform the intended goal at the micro level. They are usually the preliminary step performed before the visitors are driven to the final objective, and could include goals such as- Adding a product to the cart, or Creation of an account. The Macro-conversions are the ones that have a more profound effect on the ROI. These usually include the ‘Online Sale of the product’ or ‘Request for a Quote’ from the visitors.
Calculation and Goal-setting
The conversion rate is calculated by dividing the number of times a user completes the intended goal by the total number of visitors in a given period. For instance, if ‘making a purchase’ is the goal, then a single user buy a product at each of three visits made to the website is calculated as a single conversion. This is achieved by dividing the number of conversions by the number of unique sessions. In case the goal is to get a subscription, then conversion rate can be calculated by simply dividing the number of subscribers by the number of visitors.
Tracking and Analysis
Quantitative data analysis can be utilized to track the conversion rate, which also takes into account the actions performed by the users on the site. A web analytics platform such as Google Analytics can be used to perform these analyses. The following are some of the questions that can be answered through quantitative analysis –
- What is the most preferred entry point to a site, which either could be the home page or any other landing page with a subscription form
- Which page of the website do the visitors spend most of their time, which could be the blog or any other resource section with valuable information; on an e-commerce portal, it could also be the page exhibiting the most popular product
- What is the most common source of the traffic, which could either be a referrer’s website or a social media channel that drives visitors to the website
- What are the most preferred devices and browsers used by the visitors to browse your website
- What is the most common huddle on the website that leads the visitors to abandon the conversion funnel, or which task on the site do you need to simplify to ensure the users make the intended actions
Best Practices for CRO
While CRO can be done in many ways, the result may not be the same. The following are some of the practices that could be followed to get the ideal results.
#1. Building Trust
It’s not easy to turn first-time visitors into subscribers or customers instantly. The website needs to contain many features that can build trust, because only if the new visitors trust the site would they be ready to perform the intended actions. One of the best ways to build trust is to utilize the user-generated content to promote your own brand. This can be done by getting the existing customers to describe their positive experience on the testimonial page.
To ensure its much more visible, the testimonial section can even be placed on the homepage. The primary reason behind this practice is that people usually believe other customers, and a statement of positive experience with the brand can play a critical role in building the required trust to increase the conversion rate.
#2. Providing Personalized Experience
As an online retailer, there’s a better chance of getting noticed if you are able to look different from the crowd. Having a website that is only as good as the competitors may not be able to improve the conversion rates. The ability to deliver a personalized experience is what lets the site achieve the differentiating factor. When the customers get to enjoy a sense of personalization, they feel coveted, which encourages them to buy your product or subscribe to your email list. It even helps in improving the visitor’s perception of the brand, and can also reduce the churn rate.
#3. Simplifying Navigation & Browsing
Most online shoppers are the ones who are looking to reduce their effort of traveling to a store, which can save them time. Hence, it’s important to build a website that adds to their convenience with hassle-free navigation and browsing experience. When the site is able to ensure they get what they want with much ease, it only increases the conversion chances.
Most of the time it all comes down to the checkout page, which is a critical aspect of the online sales funnel. The page has many factors that determine the final conversion; and even if the users navigate all the way through, any mistake during the checkout process can make them change their mind. Therefore, a website with simplified navigation, along with real-time communication channels such as ‘Help through Live Chat’, can achieve the desired CRO.
#4. Automating Site-Optimization
Website issues, ranging from the biggest to smallest, can be identified using the Machine learning algorithms. The tools can analyze thousands of website sessions at all times, which can also help in tracking the behavior and preferences of the visitors. The automation will not only reduce the time taken to identify the issues, but it also maximizes the accuracy, which can have a direct impact on the conversion rate.
These are some of the prominent techniques, which can be mixed and matched to get the desired results. Together, they help to improve the factors that can maximize the chances of converting the visitors into customers.