“I have lots of traffic but very few people are signing up, clicking or making any purchases”
This is a complaint you will hear from most website owners at one point or another.
Traffic is vanity; sales are profit.
So what can you do to convert that potential into profit?
The great news is that there are lots of things you can to ramp up the conversions on your site. And, unlike most other aspects of optimisation, you can start seeing results immediately after deploying these conversion optimisation techniques!
1. Embrace A/B Testing
So, you designed your site a decade ago and you haven’t changed anything since then. It may be time to change things up. Maybe you have just not see the conversions from your PPC campaigns, or from significant organic traffic. Reduce the number of words in your headlines, change up the language used, change sign up form colours etc. The whole idea is to give your users a new experience that encourages them towards a conversion action. When you are tweaking you can try different variants of microcopy, graphics and so forth. Here is more on A/B testing.
Make sure you are realistic with your expectations. 100 visitors is rarely a good sample for judging conversions. 1000 may not even be enough.
2. Improve your site speed
Web users are more impatient than ever before. In fact, the average web user expects your site to load fully in less than 3 seconds. Users will exit your page (bounce) very quickly if you page load speed is poor. Of course, this may explain why your traffic numbers don’t reflect in your conversions.
Brendan from Umbrellar.nz gave us a bit more insight. He suggested that you “take a really good look at your google analytics data. An important metric is how long people are spending on your page. If they are bouncing instantly then it may be because your users are getting impatient. If they are staying longer and bouncing then it is more likely that your visitors just aren’t ‘feeling’ your webpage. Gzip, minify and image optimisation can make a different. It may also be worth looking at upgrading your web hosting.”
3. Make your call to actions really prominent
It is easy to setup your page expecting your website visitors to know what to do when they arrive. This is the wrong approach. You need to use Call to Actions (CTAs) appropriately to tell them what to do. Want them to call you? What them to drop you their contact details? Be very clear about it.
When designing your CTAs, you need to work out how to address the viewer’s mindset as you lead them to a sale. Understand the profile of your visitors so that your copy appeal to them at the point of their needs.
Buy Now – Get More Information – Get a Free Quote; all CTAs that appeal to different visitors.
4. Display positive feedback strategically
Scepticism can get the better of your clients just before they make that purchase or submit their information. One way to counter this is to have reviews from past customers or current users appear prominently at the point of sale. For many, it is the final nudge over the line they need.
5. Don’t overwhelm users with options
Ecommerce businesses are often guilty of bombarding users with “other things you may like” “popular items” etc.- before they check out. In many cases, this leads to a distracted and confused customer that loses the buying momentum they had. Avoid displaying similar products to items already in a cart. Cross-selling should involve directly complementary products, and should ideally be brought in after they have committed to the conversation!
6. Cut down on requirements from your users
We’ve touched on how users can quit a site because they are unable to wait for a page to load. Impatience bites again when your users have to enter something that feels like it is unnecessary. If there are too many fields to fill out, very few will start the process and of the few that start the process, many will not complete it.
Instead of asking for everything from email to pet’s name, limit the fields to a maximum of 5 or 6 and make those that aren’t essential optional! Don’t let pop-ups, surveys, lengthy account registration, etc. hinder you from making a sale or getting a lead.
7. Go over your PPC strategy
If a large number of people are leaving just after clicking through to your site, it could be that your site doesn’t offer what they are looking for. This is a sign of a poor PPC strategy, and means you are burning money. Make sure you are focused in PPC, unless you are just using it for brand building purposes. If you are looking for a great ROI then your keywords strategy needs to be targeted at the people that are looking for your product or service. The ad copy then needs to qualify the people that click.
For example- if the site sells luxury furniture then you may want to put “Luxury… from $/£1000” in the advert. This may dissuade people who are looking for cheaper furniture from clicking through, improving your ROI, and giving you a better idea of how many genuine potential buyers are converting. If someone is looking for a $200 couch then they will most likely bounce as soon as they hit your site.
8. Make your site more mobile friendly
Just in case you have been on Mars since 2007 and you haven’t noticed, smartphones are everywhere. This means a significant percentage of your target audience will be visiting on their mobiles. Google says 50% of searches are done from mobile devices. This means your conversion rates will suffer if your site doesn’t render in a user-friendly manner on mobile resolutions. Not being mobile friendly may also affect your rankings.
9. Make you page copy concise
You may have noticed a theme already; web users are impatient. If your page copy is direct and to the point, clear and easy to scan, your conversion rates will improve. Web users these days run from poorly formatted, fluff filled pages. Your copy should build trust and offer solutions to problems, or the answers to their desires.
10. Write for humans
If your content sounds like it has been produced for search engine robots, you will lose visitors as soon as they arrive on your page. Avoid being too formal and talk to the reader with your page copy. Use keywords and theme words naturally in your content.
11. Highlight important points with visuals
If there is an important point on your page, you need to be sure it blends with the rest of your copy. Changing your font size, using a different colour, using arrows and images are all effective ways to guide your readers towards what you want your visitors seeing. Think of your webpage as real estate, and your website as a local neighbourhood. You need to add sign posts to ensure people know where to go, and see the information that you want them to see.
12. Use video
More than ever, people are drawn to videos showing what your product is about. Fibre optic broadband and 4G connectivity mean there is no buffer time anymore.
The video content you use could be a good customer testimonial or an explainer video. The key is to understand the importance of video in your marketing. A great video can enhance your brand image, and it may even go viral if it is creative enough.
13. Consider using different background colours
Different colours evoke different emotions and moods in people. Review your background colours. When doing this, be mindful of your niche. A bright pink background on a corporate website may not be a good idea. You obviously also need to consider your brand colours and voice. If you are an established brand you may be more limited in this area, or it may be time for a rebrand.
14. Show off your social media following
When your visitors see thousands of people already following your business on social media, you have succeeded in building some degree of trust with them. Social proof shows that you are trustworthy to other people and builds credibility. There are few psychological factors in conversion as powerful as verifiable “group trust”.
15. Cut out the captchas
Captchas are a good way to avoid spam, but, most web users today don’t like them at all. Many businesses have improved their conversions by simply stripping out the captchas, and, doing so, will most likely work for you too.
16. Cut out all distractions
Your landing page should be built around getting your user to take a single action. If a page is for capturing leads, don’t sell anything on it. All video, text and images on the page should point to only one action. A good way to get the page focus is by starting with the call to action, and then producing design, elements and copy that are produced with this one call to action in mind. If any design or content element is not moving people towards the call to action then it is not right for the page.
So, there you have it… 16 ideas to help you convert more of your website visitors into paying customers. We’d love to hear more ideas that you think are important! Get sharing!