Do you rely on “gut feeling” when making digital marketing decisions for your website? Is it a struggle to convert leads into sales? Are you applying conversion rate optimization strategies?
For small businesses, resources, time, and effort are burned bouncing from one strategy to the next. Web content is posted without an in-depth understanding of the target audience and therefore fails to resonate with visitors. If this sounds familiar, then it may be time to consider investing in one of the most important online marketing services for your business – Conversion Rate Optimization, aka CRO.
What is Conversion Optimization (CRO) exactly?
In order to have a successful website, it`s first necessary to learn as much as possible and identify who your ideal customer really is. Data analysis can provide some insights here through an analysis of visitor online behaviour, personal demographics, where visitors come from, and what kind of content resonates with them.
But this is just a single piece to the optimization puzzle. Strategies for Conversion Optimization (as defined by Wikipedia) actually begins well before a user lands on your website. That is, CRO is a full circle, from garnering your ideal client’s attention, enticing them with your marketing, delivering information that leads them to believe you can solve their problem, to converting them into a paying customer.
The data at the core of CRO, is accomplished with a variety of tools, such as Google Analytics, marketing platform metrics, recording software, and more. All of which are generally FREE and used to analyze website data in order to provide a complete picture of the user experience and journey. This data is then used to identify areas of what I like to call resistance. These areas help identify where to focus that will provide the greatest help in increasing the number of actions visitors take on your website. These actions can include sales, requesting a quote for service, signing up for a newsletter, or any other action that leads to a conversion.
How is Conversion Optimization implemented?
The key component of a successful CRO strategy is data analysis. Most professional online marketing services use a carefully crafted process along with a variety of specialized tools. But even a beginner can use just some of the free tools mentioned to get going. Let’s cover some basic steps;
- Targeting – how are you getting the attention of your audience?
– If the numbers here are too low, or too high, you may consider broadening or refining your targeting
- Messaging – are users reacting to your messaging favourably?
– If your messaging is resonating with a targeted ideal audience, your “response” rate should reflect this. If not, you may want to dive in here a little
- Landing Page – are you delivering what is expected?
– Having taken the time to target appropriately, and communicate an effective message, it only makes sense that where you send the user (landing page) should be in line with what they expected. Do your metrics reflect this?
- Nurture – ‘REN’ …Reduce risk, educate, and give them the next step.
– Monitor your traffic and determine if you are in fact making it easy to do business with you
- Convert – Is the timing right?
– Without proper courtship, marriage is kind of tough. Make sure you provide what is needed to grow business
This process provides powerful insights into performance. Used correctly, you will be able to identify your greatest resistance points, and through optimizing for improvement, dramatically improve your results.
Why is Conversion Optimization important?
CRO is Measurable
CRO is implemented as an ongoing and incremental process of business improvement and refinement. However, this process must be measured. CRO is all about the measurement of data. But there is a “gut” component. When you refine a strategy, it is often a matter of trying alternatives. Fortunately, there are implementations that are ideal for CRO.
For example, A/B testing is one way to optimize the success of a CRO strategy. When applied to website pages, A/B tests are used to determine which design, layout, or content produces more conversions (conversion rate optimization strategies should implement one change per test). For example, several different landing pages can be developed, each using a single different call to action button, or colours, or images, etc, but all promoting the same intended outcome.
The data from A/B testing will show which landing page had the best results. This information can then be applied to increase visitor engagement and potential conversions overall.
CRO Improves Visitor Engagement and User Experience
Website visitors need to stay interested and engaged in order to generate leads and sales. How is this achieved? A successfully implemented CRO strategy will combine data analysis, sophisticated reporting, user segmentation, and A/B testing.
Together, these processes will be used to develop impactful content fine-tuned to the preferences, demographics, and behaviours of potential customers. The more you solve visitor’s problems or questions, the more likely they are to stay and remain engaged with the website. Most importantly, this will lead to higher conversions and returns on investment.
CRO can be applied to isolated strategies like Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is an online marketing service that aims to increase a website’s visibility online organically by improving web ranking with search engines like Google. This is achieved through a variety of tactics, including targeting keywords, improving internal and external website links, content distribution, improving how well the website works on different devices, and more.
In other words, SEO is an intense strategy. So if you’re investing heavy, wouldn’t you like to know if you are getting the return you desire?
SEO has another nuance to the strategy. It takes time to achieve results! Therefore implementing SEO without CRO could find yourself 8-months or even 18-months down the road, having invested heavily in SEO, and having nothing to show for it as you wait and hope for the results. For this reason, SEO and CRO are two online marketing services that are best implemented together to improve website results. In fact this argument could be made for every marketing strategy.
CRO Leverages Existing Web Traffic and Can Reduce Advertising Spending
The best benefit was saved for last – CRO can result in more customers without having to spend more money on advertising.
Let me say that again..CRO can help Grow Your Business while spending no more or even less than you are currently spending to grow your business!!
How? By increasing the percentage of website visitors who take an action that leads to a conversion. It is that simple!
Think about this example – a business spends money to run ads that bring more traffic to its website. However, seeing that sales are not increasing, they naturally increase spending on more ads, and the cycle continues. CRO provides an effective – and often cheaper – approach by focusing on the customers who are already visiting the website. By converting current visitors, sales will be increased and the cost per lead will be decreased.
Conversion optimization strategies are a complex process and are best applied to all aspects of your digital marketing strategy. If you would like to talk about your CRO strategy, and how it can benefit your business, send us a message here.