Getting your customers to your site is only half the battle …
As anyone who runs an online store knows, it takes real work to build up a customer base. And if you really want to increase conversion rate, you have to spend some time on it. Are you willing to put in the time and effort it takes?
An average conversion rate hovers around 2.35 percent. But you can significantly impact that with a few strategies that will make your customers want to take action. With the proper areas of focus you can increase conversion rate to five or even ten percent, depending on what you sell.
1) Use A/B Testing
This is one of the most fundamental areas you can use to optimize conversion rate. A shocking number of companies either don’t bother with A/B testing or only do minimal work on it. If you want to stand out from the pack, you need to embrace it in a way your competitors might not.
Good A/B testing is the foundation of successful landing pages. If you’re running a campaign that’s meant to drive your customers to take action on a landing page, you need to test multiple variants. Often you can fall into the trap of following a case study slavishly without making sure the strategy will actually increase conversion rate in your business or field.
There are a few things to keep in mind when you’re doing A/B testing. First, make sure you’re not changing multiple things at the same time. If you change too much at once it can be hard to figure out what made the page better or worse—you can’t isolate the factors that go into a customer’s action as easily.
When you start testing, focus on the pages people visit the most. Pages like the home page, the about page and landing pages are the best to prioritize. You also need to make sure your sample size is big enough and statistically significant. There are tools available to help you with that, but if someone on your marketing team has a statistics background they should be able to work this out.
Finally, make sure that you’re not just testing with no goal in mind. Have a hypothesis first, then test against that hypothesis. A/B testing will help you determine what elements are most important for your business and your site, as every one is different. Don’t just go in blind.
2) Personalize the Experience
According to one Accenture study, 91 percent of customers are more likely to shop with a brand that saves and remembers their preferences as well as sending them personalized offers.
It’s no accident that Amazon is the world’s largest retailer with its emphasis on personalized customer experience, including cart abandonment emails, relevant recommendations and saved preferences. And just about every successful e-commerce firm has followed suit. If you really want to increase conversion rate, make your site feel personal.
A good programmer can create a recommendation engine that can help you with this process or you can take advantage of tools that already exist. Either way, your conversion rates will climb when you show your customers exactly what they’re looking for. It builds a bond of trust that you really do know what they want and can provide it for them.
3) Optimize Your Checkout
Abandoned carts are a huge issue for just about every online retailer. Cart abandonment rates on average hover around 70 percent, and getting those down to a more reasonable level can help you increase conversion rate a lot.
Sourcify has put together a few guides on checkout optimization that you can reference, but there are a few basic tips that can help you fix your checkout.
First, keep it simple.
Don’t use any more fields than you have to, and wherever you can autofill information, do it. Then make sure you’re not throwing up extra entry barriers by making your customers create an account. Send cart abandonment emails if your customers leave something behind—these are huge sales drivers.
Your checkout needs to be simple, streamlined and easy to use. It should function effectively and lead the buyer directly to the purchase. And if people bail, it should remind them to come back. Those three things will increase your conversion rate and lower your cost per conversion.
4) Use Less Fields On Your Landing Pages
You want as much information as you can get when you’re sending prospective customers to a landing page, right?
When Hubspot researched landing page conversions, they found that lowering the number of fields to fill out from four to three improved conversion rates by almost half. That’s a general trend across the industry—the less fields you have, the better your conversion rate.
It makes sense, though. Especially on landing pages that are further up the sales funnel, how likely is it that people won’t want to fill out much information? The average Internet user is inundated in logins to the point where a password manager is a near necessity.
Filling out one more form is enough to give them pause unless they really want what you’re offering. Save some of that extra information-gathering for further down the sales funnel. Stick to the basics, like name and email, and see how much you can increase your conversion rate.
5) Lower Your Page Load Time
Did you realize that there’s an almost linear relationship between page load time and bounce rate? Every second your page takes to load is another second for your customer to reconsider why they even clicked on your page in the first place.
That goes double for mobile, which drives a bigger proportion of e-commerce traffic every year. To increase conversion rate you have to lower your page load time.
There are technical aspects of this that matter too—getting a good web developer and using the right tools helps—but there’s a theme that runs through just about every CRO tactic here: keep it simple. The less clutter on the page, the less things have to load and the more likely it is your potential customer sticks around to actually read your fancy copy and look at your gorgeous design.
If you’ve been struggling to keep people coming back, it’s time to dig into conversion rate optimization a little more. Apply these simple tips to point your customers in the right direction and bump up your sales. Your online store depends on it.