Conversion Optimization – 5 Steps Toward Higher Conversions

- November 12, 2014

Do you want to save money, improve ROI, and run successful ads? Of course you do! One of the best ways to do this is to optimize your landing pages for conversions. And the best way to do that is through testing.

Starting at the Beginning

By spending just a few minutes digging through your Google Analytics data, you can discover where traffic in your conversion funnel is dropping off. Key metrics to look at include:

  • Bounce Rate – A product page or other landing page with a high bounce rate is an indication that something on that page isn’t working.
  • Exit Rate – Top level product and services pages, with high exit rates are not doing their job to push users forward in the funnel.

Evaluate Your Pages

Once you know what pages to focus on, you can look at the messaging and design elements on those individual pages in order to see where users could be getting tripped up.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • Is my value proposition or call-to-action clear?
  • Is my content benefit-focused?
  • Does my content communicate exactly what a user will get?
  • Are my pages laid out hierarchically with the most important information first?
  • Is the checkout process as easy as possible?

Evaluate Your Ads

Your ads should not be above scrutiny.

If there is a keyword or ad that’s driving significant traffic to your landing pages, it’s important to make sure the language on your landing page matches that of your ad. (Of course, you can’t always do this, so focus on the ads that drive significant traffic, and tighten up your messaging so that you conform to user expectation.)

Formulate a Hypothesis

Before you make any onsite changes, formulate a hypothesis as to what could be wrong with your landing page. This will help you to decide what to test.

Here a few examples of possible hypotheses:

  • The headline does not match the ad. If we changed the headline to match the ad, conversion rates would increase.
  • The content is not benefit-focused. If we change the content, conversion rates will increase.
  • It is not clear what users will get. If we clarified the value proposition, conversions will increase.
  • The pages are not laid out hierarchically. If we redesigned the page, conversion rates will increase.

Now It’s Time to Start Testing

Create other versions of your page that include changes that address the hypothesis you’ve created.

Then, begin A/B testing in order to see if your hypothesis holds water.

Repeat this process over and over again, each time acting upon a hypothesis, evaluating your results, and making changes accordingly. With each change, you should be tightening the sales funnel and incrementally improving conversions.

Beyond Analytics

Of course, there are many opportunities to discover what your users want, and need, from your website / landing pages. The more you know, the better you can optimize your pages for conversion.

  • Talk to your customer service reps and see if customers tend to have similar questions or issues. This could be an opportunity for further optimizing.
  • Use surveys to ask customers about their experience using your site. Having this kind of qualitative data might give you insight into, not only where to test, but what to test.

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