21 Secrets of Top Converting Websites
Bryan Eisenberg, @TheGrok, says don’t worry about taking notes because MarketMotive will be making the presentation available: http://tr.im/mmsc3. Okay, I’m done.
There are always reasons why our sites are going to suck. If you think about it, the average conversion rate is around 2-3 percent. When you’re sending out direct mail, pushing out “junk” then 203 percent is great. But things are different on the Web. People are going to you. We need to get over this idea that 2-3 percent is good enough. You should have a goal to get your conversion rate to 10 percent. Take a few of the following tips (they won’t all apply) and leverage them.
- They communicate UVPs and UCPs. Why? They need to remember why they want to do business with you.
- They make persuasive and relevant offers. Free shipping is the number one motivator for people to buy.
- They reinforce the offer site-wide. The second you erode your customer’s confidence, there’s a 90 percent chance they’re going to bounce.
- They maintain scent. For instance, banner ads and landing pages should look interrelated. Colors and offers should carry through. But landing page optimization is not enough. It needs to connect throughout all customers’ journeys and processes.
- They make a strong first impression. A good story can help.
- They appeal to multiple personas/segments. There are different types of decision making processes and you can’t reach them all the same way. Personas build predictive models. Simple personas include decision making styles, buying stages and some basic segmentation. Robust personas include Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator psychological profiles.
- They don’t do slice and dice optimization. If you slice and dice lots of variations of a page, it takes time and resources and there’s an opportunity cost. A better way is to use the Persuasion Architecture ® process. Test for impact, not for variations.
- They leverage social commerce and use voice of customer. Amazon was the first to leverage customer content to sell. You’ll find reviews that are poems, romance stories, and jokes. This content sells products because users trust other people like them.
- They use it for navigation. Anything you can help people do to sort out products, it’s a good idea. A sort by rating option can drive conversions.
- They use it for promotions. Adding user-generated content enhances e-mail conversions.
- They use it for credibility. A shoe shopping site put a return-o-meter on each product based on the return rate of the shoe. It gives shoppers a good idea of whether the shoe is true to size or not and that builds credibility.
- They use social commerce for feedback and research. Your $100 solution – UserTesting.com. There are a lot of other low cost solutions as well. Usability is great, but it’s not enough. It’s the experience that matters, not just knowing how things work.
- They user persuasion principles like scarcity, reciprocation, authority, consistency, consensus, and linking. They focus on making things more persuasive.
- They even make forms engaging. Why must a user create an account before you sign up? Try putting it on the thank you page because once they’ve given you money, they’re likely to give you more.
- They provide point of action assurances. Make people comfortable so they’re more likely to stick around.
- They keep you in the process. Expected shipping time, an explanation of what you’ll do after they fill out the form, etc.
- They consider e-mail preview.
- They budget for experience. If you’re not budgeting for making your site better, you can’t win in the conversion game. If faced with the choice of build a better experience or advertise more, pick the better experience. Invest in continuous improvement. Align customers and business objectives.
- They utilize a system for prioritization. There are probably hundreds of things on your site you may want to fix, so prioritize. This will help the organization buy into it.
- They make data driven decisions. To do Web analytics/optimization correctly you have to make a to-do list regularly. What marketing efforts or parts of your site have challenges? What you think needs to be improved and what things you want to test? And what efforts you should do less of or more of?
- They know how to execute rapidly. Within two hours of Michael Jackson’s death, Amazon had reconfigured their MP3 landing page. You have to get good making changes everyday, every hour, what it takes to be successful.
5 steps to great conversion rates next week:
- Identify the problems – review analytics – check for high exit, high bounce on key landing pages and key pages (checkout, lead forms, etc.) or poor Quality Scores in AdWords.
- Create a to-do list of what you’d like to improve.
- Document your hypotheses for thinking why this will be an improvement.
- Prioritize your to do list by resources, impact.
- Start testing, do the same next time.