Generating the right amount of traffic to your site is great. It doesn’t matter whether it’s qualified traffic via organic search or referral traffic from social media, you have traffic! That should be enough though right? You’re getting the people you want to visit your site, whether it’s through organic search via your SEO campaigns or direct. But what is this traffic doing once they visit your site? Are they staying to learn about what you offer or are they leaving immediately?
Increasing your conversion rate is critical because having a good conversion rate means higher sales volumes.
We can track website traffic in a number of ways, here are just a few:
- The percentage of website visitors who either fill out a form, call or make a purchase
- Percentage of callers who were issued proposals
- Percentage of proposals you win
Why the emphasis on conversion rates?
The simple answer is that improving your conversion rates will dramatically improve profits. Here’s an example. If you spend $1,000 on advertising, you could potentially bring 1,000 new users to your website. Let’s say online sales conversion rate is 5%. That means you will gain 50 brand new customers. But we’re not content with that right? We want to continue to get better and the next step is improving your conversion rate to 6%. Well, that means you would gain 60 brand new customers. You would gain an additional 10 customers for NO ADDITIONAL ADVERTISING COST and as a result, boosting your profits.
So now what?
Doing more advertising, or creating more content certainly could work in bringing more traffic to your website. It is however, much cheaper and fast to focus on improving that conversion rate, but how?
Similar to the real estate saying “location, location, location”, conversion optimization is all about testing, testing testing. Ideally, you want to have several tests running at any given time. There is no “perfect answer” when it comes to marketing sites so the only way to really know is to ABT (Always Be Testing).
Decide what to test
Use the data that is in front of you to identify the most important projects to focus on, rather than testing things that may have little or no impact. To guide you along, consider the potential revenue each test may bring and then rank those tests. Just be sure to test one hypothesis at a time, that way you can be sure exactly what worked and what didn’t.
What to Test
- The Headline. It should be strong and convincing and it should sell the main offer.
- The offer. Whatever the customer is getting, it should be clearly explained.
- Navigation. Your site must be easy to navigate and use.
- The size and order of your buttons.
- Media. Do you use a video to describe your offering.
Clear & Compelling Value Proposition
The value proposition is arguably the most important factor when it comes to conversion rates. Instead of trying to improve results by changing font colors, button shapes, etc… focus on your value propositions. Creating a homepage or even product page with a simple “Welcome!” is only hurting you in the end.
There’s two main things that make a good value proposition. One, is that it must be unique and different from your competitors offers. Second, you need to excel in at least one element of value, even if you match your competitors in others.
Developing your value proposition gives you and your team the opportunity to really dive into the question “why are we the best”. Having the most powerful value proposition however is simply not enough. Communication is key. Be sure to refine your proposition until you are able to boil it down to a single sentence. And lastly, test!
Implement a Sales Funnel
Many times, we see businesses asking for the sale to quickly. This can be a major turn off for a lot of people, especially those who might just be browsing and not ready to buy just yet. The more expensive and/or complicated a product is, the more time people need before they are ready to commit. The process of buying a car vs. buying a new pair of shoes is the perfect example of this.
Especially for software products, offering a free trial instead of asking for a signup or purchase can really impact your conversions in a positive way. However, more often than not, you will need to build a sales funnel to build trust, develop that relationship, and prove that you are the right fit.
Many say that it takes 7 contacts, at minimum, with a prospective buyer before they’re ready to buy from you. So, be in it for the long haul. By offering value and results in advance before the sale, you will be able to develop that deeper relationship with the potential customer.
Conversion rates are essential to your sales and profits and these aren’t the only things you can do. Even implementing a contest designed to convert customers works! Figure out the most important conversion rates in your company (ex: online visitors to sales, proposals won/lost) and start tracking them!