The first impression of your website will be made in a matter of seconds. In this moment vistors will either decide to make a conversion with you or click away.
Conversion optimisation is helping your website reach its full potential and help it drive sales and profit. If you are paying for traffic to your website a high conversion rate will mean a better return on your investment, this is why it’s critical for your website to be optimised properly.
What is a conversion?
Conversion is when a visitor takes the action you intend them to take, whether that’s signing up to your newsletter or purchasing a product it can be a vital part of business survival.
There’s a few factors to a good website:
- Call to actions
- User Interest
Call to Action
A strong call to action is one of the most important keys to effective conversion optimisation. A call to action is something that grabs the attention of site visitors at first glance. This could be a bright coloured button, a large phone number or a contact form. Some of the most effective call to actions are a “Buy Now” or a “Sign Up”.
Research shows that when looking at a website the human eye will naturally read in an “F Pattern” so a call to action should be effectively placed towards the top of the F. Take a look at the heat maps below to get a real understanding of how this “F Pattern” takes place.
Does your site have the important elements placed in this same “F Pattern” layout?
Above the fold
In terms of web design, “the fold” is a term used to identify the bottom of your screen when you’re looking at the top of a web page; basically, the area that is immediately visible to a user without them having to scroll.
While users will scroll down if your site is compelling or they’re really looking for something specific, your call to action and important information should always be placed at the top to demonstrate exactly what each page is about what give them clear direction on what you want them to do, just be careful not to squeeze everything in unnaturally.
Keeping User Interest
Don’t forget to break your content up into smaller, more skimmable sections. Users typically want information fast and if your content is easy to skim through and allows the user to find what they’re looking for quickly, there’s a much better chance they will stay on your site and read on. A study has shown that only 28% of the text on your site is actually read so a great way to convey your message quickly is by adding your best selling points in bullet form, creating bold headings or breaking it up with images.
How Conversion Optimisation Works
A conversion funnel is the pathway of users who started/completed a conversion. A conversion funnel will show you which page you are losing customers on.
There’s a few ways to test this. One of the simplest ways is “becoming the customer” and putting yourself or a friend in their shoes, looking closely at the route taken to convert (Conversion Tunnel). Another great way to work out where your website can be improved is by taking a closer look at your analytics data – how is your bounce rate? Do some pages convert better than others? Take a good look and see if there are any clear patterns than can point you in the right direction.
If you are thinking of setting up a conversion funnel your site then take a look at this handy guide from the team at Six Revisions.
It’s important to find the reason why your visitors aren’t converting. By performing various tests on different combinations of page elements you can determine the best layout and see how various elements of your site perform in the real world. For instance, at Kymodo we recently implemented new banners on the website and saw a 400% increase in online enquires.
Analytics is your best friend!
It’s often quite interesting to see what pages people are visiting, the average time on certain pages and the site views. This will also help you make sense of your conversion rate.
A red flag for conversion rates is a high bounce rate. This means that your visitors aren’t finding what they are looking for on your site. More page views and no conversions can mean engagement, this could also suggest you need to clarify your conversion funnel.
With a healthy combination of analytics revision and split testing you can expect to at least some improvements to help your conversion rate.
So why should you optimise your website for conversions?
- Maximises your profits
- More money to spend on acquiring new visitors
- Successful sites are more valuable to affiliates and partners
- Lowers your customer acquisition cost
Conversion optimisation creates a start of something wonderful, a better performing website with high conversion rates means you can afford more traffic.
A couple of things to remember before you start conversion optimisation:
- Data Rules! (As the SEO Specialist Karen would say) Opinions shouldn’t get in the way of facts.
- Spending money on advertising when your website isn’t performing is pouring money down the drain.
- Test everything – effective website optimisation doesn’t happen overnight.