Katie Lamberg Sevenseven

Written by Katie Lamberg in Marketing

Conversion Rate Optimisation - Why your business needs it

Conversion Rate Optimisation Sevenseven 2

Your website might have a great amount of traffic coming to it through investing in search engine optimisation (SEO), pay per click (PPC), email marketing and an effective social strategy. So why isn't the phone ringing or inbox pinging with high-quality leads? Unfortunately, the visitors landing on your website either haven't found what they were looking for, aren't at the purchase stage of their journey yet, or your website has failed them in some way. All of which can be improved with Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).

What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?

Now a conversion will differ depending on your business, product or goal. It can be a user clicking a button, purchasing a product, subscribing to an email list, downloading an app or simply completing a form. Whatever your goal, testing and making the necessary changes based on your findings can improve the conversion rate (CR), this in simple terms is what Conversion Rate Optimisation is. A/B and multivariate testing, optimising your copy, analysing how users interact with your site, simplifying forms and looking at why a shopping cart was abandoned, are all ways in which you can optimise a user's journey and increase your Conversion Rate.

How to calculate your Conversion Rate

Working out your Conversion Rate is simple. Divide your number of conversions with the number of sessions. So for example, in September a women's online fashion store sold 347 items whilst having 1,469 website sessions. This equates to 347 divided by 1469 = 0.24% Conversion Rate. Now, this might not seem like a huge figure but bear in mind that the likes of Amazon achieved 9% on Prime Day in the UK in 2019. Different websites have different goals which can alter the Conversion Rate calculation. If your website visitor can only purchase once, such as a holiday, or you only sell one bespoke product, then the calculation is done by dividing the number of conversions with the number of unique visitors rather than website sessions. This gives a more accurate conversion rate when dealing with single purchase items, as once the user has purchased your product, the next time they visit your site they can't purchase again and are probably just discovering other information on your websites such as a blog or instructions.

Think small when implementing Conversion Rate Optimisation

You could go away and start testing and improving large parts of your website, yet the very best way to use Conversion Rate Optimisation is on a micro-level. Rather than changing large sections or elements of your site, break it down into sections and then look at the smaller parts that make up that section. For example, rather than think, our email subscription form isn't converting well, let's redesign it. Run some smaller micro tests on parts of the form, such as colours of buttons or fields, font types and sizes and even the terminology used within the form to make it easier to understand. Putting yourself in your customers' mindset will help with all of this, plus using testing software such as VWO or Inspeclet which our search team uses to determine best performing versions or any testing they undertake. Gradually with micro-level optimisation, you'll end up with a higher-performing website that generates successful conversions consistently over a longer period of time, saving you money on additional marketing whilst reducing the cost per lead or sale.

Conversion Rate Optimisation Sevenseven

Understanding the data

In order to optimise efficiently across your website you need to be able to understand the data you have available. Whether it's from Google Analytics, Google Optimize, HotJar or similar, you need to understand your customers journey through your website and how they interact with it. From where they landed on your website to where they left, you should understand where and how their journey is being disrupted and make their route to a transaction an intuitive one.

7 ways analytics can help your Conversion Rate Optimisation

If you're not familiar with Google Analytics it can be overwhelming initially, but the data it gives you with some investigation will be business changing. We've listed below some examples of what can be found and how it will help.

  • Simply looking at what browser your customers are using can flag up where some issues can be found. If you have a noticeable transaction drop on one of the browsers, say Firefox, then there may be a cross-browser compatibility issue. This is where your site isn't displaying properly and causing their journey to be frustrating causing them to leave.
  • The same goes for device type too. Check for any drop-offs on mobile or tablet, if there are any noticeable differences then again check that your site is working responsively and offering mobile/tablet users the same great experience as on desktop.
  • Site speed could also be a factor with 40% of people abandoning a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. Customers are more impatient than ever and with Google using site speed as a ranking factor too, it's important your website is lightning fast.
  • Look at what age, gender and interests your visitor has, which can allow you to tailor the content accordingly. With this key insight, you can give your customers a personal experience with the copy and imagery targeted just for them.
  • You can also see the acquisition of your visitors. Whether they've come from a referral site, direct, social or paid source, which again can allow you to optimise your marketing spend accordingly.
  • The behaviour flow is a key part of analytics, showing you the exact journey that your visitors take on your site. Where the drop-offs are and key areas where they take an interest. If these pages are informative you could add product links to drive a larger amount of visitors to the product pages. This can also be the reverse, where you add more informative content to a product page to give the customer knowledge and the confidence to purchase.
  • Looking at heat mapping software such as hotJar will give you another level of insight. It allows you to see exactly where your customers are on your site by visually representing their clicks, taps and scrolling behaviour. It also has visitor recordings where you can watch how users have used your site and how you can improve their route to purchase.
Conversion Rate Optimisation

Areas of CRO to focus on

There are many areas to look at when optimising your site for conversions, below we have listed a few of the key ones.

  • Landing page design - Now by this we mean the pages where your visitors are entering your website, not just landing pages built for campaigns. Customers should quickly be able to navigate to their end goal with clear call-to-actions, engaging photography and elements that instil trust and confidence.
  • Website copy - Keep headers and body copy clear, concise and to-the-point, whilst still communicating your brand.
  • Call-to-actions - Keep them simple and prominent.
  • Navigation and site structure - Users should be able to find the information they're looking for quickly. Categorise into simpler, manageable topics, but always try and think how your customer thinks. Don't call products by codes or terminology used in your industry/sector if they're not well known to your customers.
  • Forms - There are some key things to consider when designing and building website forms. They need to be as simple and quick to complete as possible, whilst giving the user help if needed.
  • Page speed - We've covered this one a little above. It's critical to have a fast website across all devices so that customers don't leave through frustration.

Is CRO right for my business?

For a small to medium-sized business, the level of detail and time to implement Conversion Rate Optimisation is just not feasible. Yet there's good news. CRO doesn't have to cost thousands to implement and can have a fantastic return on investment quite quickly, even small changes to your Conversion Rate can make a huge difference to your profits. Our team work closely with our developers, social team and search team to give our clients a truly connected strategy, allowing us to achieve results based on data decisions.

The straight-forward and quite blunt point is, if you have a website and spend time and money getting customers to it, then it needs to be optimised for conversions otherwise what's the point in your website?

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