Conversion rate optimisation tips
CRO is plagued with quick wins and conversion rate optimisation tips that won't work for you because websites are highly contextual. There are no hard and fast rules in CRO. But...
…we’ll share what we’ve learned from our many years’ experience in conversion optimisation.
We’re going to go about things a bit differently to all the other ‘conversion rate optimisation tips’ types of articles though. Instead of telling you to blindly follow tactics like changing your button colours to red, we’ll give you some over-arching advice that can apply to any business and if implemented correctly, can help to genuinely boost your CRO efforts and increase revenue.
Don’t fall into the trap of best practices
We’ve mentioned before what can happen if you fall into the trap of implementing best practices or from a big list of tips. Most ‘best practice’ articles will tell you to implement or A/B test a list of around 10 tips or best practices.
This can be dangerous and costly if they are subjective changes that your audience may not need, solving problems your audience aren’t facing.
Those changes might give you an uplift in revenue, they may also give you negative results, some of them will almost certainly have no impact whatsoever.
You may end up in the same position (or worse) as before but with a big development cost to pay and a lot of wasted time. Even where you may end up with a winning variation eventually, not all changes are right the first time. When we’re testing, it can take multiple iterations to find the right execution for a hypothesis, and if you’ve not got a solid hypothesis to prove, then you could well be wasting time and money.
Conversion rate optimisation tips
From working with various clients across various industries, we’ve compiled a list of tips to follow which will help to strengthen your CRO efforts and add more structure to them:
- Always do the research and analysis – The most valuable insights to convert more website visitors into customers come from qualitative and quantitative research. Where people usually go wrong with CRO is by not conducting enough research and instead allowing their own biases to creep in. They’re essentially running A/B tests and implementing changes based on hunches. This doesn’t work and ongoing research and analysis is critical for creating valid testable hypotheses. Even when you have a data-driven hypothesis, you’re still humbled by variations not having the desired result. You quickly realise, despite having may years experience, you still don’t have all the answers.
- Have a strategy – We wrote about conversion strategy recently. Rather than only using tactics, it’s best to have an objective or goal, a strategy to achieve this, then develop tactics which execute that particular strategy.
- Work on your traffic – Your conversion rate can be drastically impacted by the traffic you receive to your website. If you work on optimising your traffic by cutting out keywords from PPC that don’t convert or waste too much spend and putting that money towards converting keywords and new opportunities, then you can increase your conversion rate and sales volume.
- Optimise for speed – One of the most common problems we see across potential client’s websites is slow loading times. This can genuinely have an impact on conversions. Akamai found that if pages that were just one second faster, they experienced a 27% conversion rate increase. There are lots of tools that will help you to identify what your page speed is, what is causing them to load slow, and how to fix them. GTMetrix and Google Page Speed Insights are great places to start.
- Prioritise mobile – If you look into your analytics data, you’ll likely see that over the last 2 years the proportion of people visiting your website on mobile will have grown significantly, and the conversion rate may have increased too. Is over half your traffic on mobile now? It is for the majority of our clients. This is because as mobile screen sizes grow, more people are happy to shop on mobile. Research on mobile, and buy on desktop is a really dated concept.
- Have answers to peoples questions – One of the most common (and easy to fix) problems we find at the start of a CRO engagement is the website doesn’t answer people’s questions. Ask your customer service teams about the top questions they are asked, mine your live chat logs, and poll people on your website, and talk to customers. Once you have a bank of questions, find ways to answer these on your website. Display FAQs, answer questions in your product pages, be contactable (show your phone number, use live chat).
- Always collect & analyse customer feedback – By asking people how their experience was (both browsing your website and after purchasing/delivery) then you can understand where things are going wrong and improve, and where things are going right, too. You can look at your positive reviews and pull out some of the selling points that aren’t mentioned on your website, reviews are a fantastic source for copywriting inspiration. You can also analyse how your customers talk and describe your product or service, you can then reflect this on your website.
- Clarity above anything else – As an agency, we see far too many client’s websites that just aren’t clear and to the point. We see pages without clear CTAs, CTAs without clear wording, forms that don’t tell you what you’ll get from giving your details, and paragraphs of text where after reading them, you’re non-the-wiser. Take a step back, do some research, and assess whether your website communicates what people should do and what people get clearly.
- Think about your visual hierarchy – Visual hierarchy refers to the arrangement or presentation of elements in a way that implies importance. You need your audience to focus on the right elements at the right time when on your website. If you have too many competing elements then it’s going to be harder to focus, concentrate, and follow a flow.
- Think bigger, rather than smaller – When making changes via A/B testing, going bigger can achieve better results and is a way of taking larger strides towards your goal. Think of it this way: in your research you’ve found from multiple research sources that people are confused about your product. You could individually A/B test answering delivery questions, then answering size questions, and so on, but this might take you 6 months to run all these tests. By grouping together changes that fit a theme, then you can test as a group, see the results in 1 month, and move on to your next A/B test.
Hopefully our conversion rate optimisation tips will help you on your way to CRO success. If you’d like to talk to an expert about your CRO programme, then get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0161 236 1188.
We are a CRO agency based in Manchester and we help clients deliver an ongoing CRO programme or to take existing CRO programmes and improve effectiveness.