Increasing your conversion rate is a great way of making the most of the visitors that you have to your website. In fact, there are two main ways to boost the amount of money that you make through your site – you can increase your conversion rate or you can spend more money on advertising. The problem with the second option is that as soon as you turn the ads off, your conversions will drop through the floor.
A big chunk of increasing your conversion rate comes down to carrying out split tests, which are also known as A/B tests and multivariate tests. These are essentially scientific tests in which you change one variable at a time and monitor its impact.
For example, you might want to see whether using a different image makes a difference, or whether it’s better to go with yellow buttons or orange buttons. The key is to randomly serve up one version or the other to your visitors, to monitor their behaviors and to see what leads to the highest conversion rates. That can then become your new normal and you can carry out further tests from there.
Because of that, some of the tips that we’re going to share today will focus around different elements that you can test, but that’s not all there is to it. And we’re getting ahead of ourselves, so let’s first take a step back and cover what a conversion rate is and how you can tell whether it’s a good one.
What is a good conversion rate?
When we talk about conversion rates, we’re talking about the percentage of visitors to your website that take a certain predefined action. This could range from making a purchase to signing up to an email list or even visiting a specific web page or spending a certain amount of time on site. If you have 1,000 visitors and ten of them take this action, that leaves you with a conversion rate of 1%.
Unfortunately, as with so many things when it comes to digital marketing, it’s hard to give an exact answer on what makes a good one. It’s one of those “how long is a piece of string” questions.
There are estimates out there for industry averages, but they’re just that – estimates. Realistically, you can expect to see anything from 1-5%. The best thing to do is to take a benchmark of your conversion rate before you get started and then to take up the position that any improvement upon that is a good thing.
Instead of worrying about what makes for a good conversion rate, spend your time thinking about how to increase the rate that you’re currently seeing. And that brings us nicely on to the tips that we have to share.
How to increase conversion rate?
1. Test colors
Did you know that Google once tested 50 different shades of blue to see which variation gave them the best performance in their advertising links? The employee behind the project was ridiculed at first, until it became apparent that using the right shade made a big difference. You can follow in their footsteps by trying different colors for everything you can think of, from text to buttons and background images.
2. Test calls-to-action
The other thing that you’ll want to test is the language that you use in your calls-to-action. For example, see whether “buy now” outperforms “purchase” or “add to basket”. Other things to test include the size of the button and its location, and you can also build upon our last tip and test the colors. Just remember to only test one thing at a time so that you know what’s causing the results.
3. Improve the quality of your traffic
The other main alternative to improving the quality of your website through A/B testing is to improve the quality of your traffic to make sure that you’re bringing in people who are more likely to convert in the first place. There’s no easy way for you to do this, but a good place to start is to take a look at where your existing traffic is coming from and the conversion rates that you receive from different channels. Find out what works and do more of it.
4. Use urgency and exclusivity
The idea behind urgency is to use messaging like “act now” or “only available while stocks last” to encourage people to convert sooner rather than later. By creating pages where people need to make a rapid decision, you harness the awesome power of our natural FOMO (fear of missing out) and can make even the most mundane purchases feel like the deal of a lifetime. Just make sure that you backup your messaging and that you don’t just have a “limited time” offer that’s actually available year-round.
5. Eliminate bottlenecks
Bottlenecks are sections of your website or user journey where an unexpectedly large number of people drop off and navigate away. It’s natural to lose people on every page, and so the thing to look out for is a page where the drop-off rate is much higher than the others. Then you just need to fix it, which is admittedly much more difficult than it sounds.
6. Deploy popups
Popups have an undeserved bad reputation, and they can actually be pretty powerful when deployed correctly. The key is to wait until people have already spent some time on your site and then to deploy a targeted popup with a relevant message. One of the most powerful ways of improving your conversion rate is to create popups that activate when someone is about to leave your site and which offer them a 10% discount if they stick around and check out their purchase.
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Now that you know a few of the best ways to effectively increase your conversion rate, it’s over to you so that you can put what we’ve talked about into practice. If you find yourself struggling, don’t be afraid to seek help from an agency or a consultant who can help you to develop your strategy.
You should also remember that improving your conversion rate is a sound investment that will continue to deliver dividends over time. Even just a 0.1% improvement in conversion rate will mean an extra sale for every thousand, and as your business continues to grow, that extra 0.1% will make more and more of a difference.
We’d also love to keep the conversation going, so be sure to leave us a comment to let us know how you get on and which techniques work the best for you. We’ll see you soon!