Is Your Website Designed to Convert?
Well-designed online marketing strategies draw in visitors to your website. However, without correct website conversion strategies in place, you will miss out on opportunities to transform these visitors into paying customers.
To stay ahead of the curve, as a marketer you must possess a clear and comprehensive understanding of 1) how to acquire traffic and 2) the aspects of the page that influenced their purchasing decisions or drew them to convert.
First, acquire the traffic
You work hard to develop a website environment complete with a digital ecosystem and optimized with relevant content and keywords, catchy titles, and well-thought meta descriptions. This helps a website rank near the top of the search results page and enjoy a steady flow of traffic. However, since the search engines change their algorithms often, staying ahead of the curve on digital marketing strategies that attract search engine popularity is not only important to obtaining optimal website traffic, it depends on it.
Following SEO best practices are crucial to acquiring website traffic. Perhaps that is why SEO widgets and other online CMS plugins like SUMO have been so successful. With over 500,000 sites now using the service, SUMO “arms you with a suite of proven tools to increase your traffic, build a following and track your success every step of the way.” SEO is no longer a foreign or far-fetched concept to marketers. Instead, marketing pros from companies big and small have been incorporating more of their marketing efforts toward search marketing initiatives. No matter if your business is corporately traded or merely a locally-owned business not yet nationally recognized, the power search engines have on the procurement of visitor page views is astounding.
If you think on-site optimization tools are the only way to improve SEO, think again. Clutch recently found that in addition to on-site optimization, the top tactics used in SEO and paid online advertising include local search, content creation and guest blogging, proving that a diverse set of marketing tactics is the way of the future.
Numbers from Content Marketing Institute’s 2016 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends report show that 88% of B2B marketers use content marketing, and the average B2B company spends 28% of its annual marketing budget on this form of marketing. The study also mentioned that more than 50% of B2B companies planned to increase their content marketing budget in 2016 and beyond.
Which begs the question, why are marketers moving more of their budget in this direction? The answer is two-fold. For optimization, search engines put a high value on well written, textual content. It is essential that you distinguish if your website is optimized in a way that highlights these crucial SEO elements. On a more human level, customers value content that is engaging and promotes immersive experiences that are customized to their specific needs.
Acquiring traffic is one of the primary goals for any business online or in store. But what happens when you have the traffic coming to your website but are not seeing the conversion results that mirror the increase in visitors?
Second, convert the traffic to reach your goals
For every $92 spent acquiring customers, only $1 is spent converting them. Guiding customers to your website is important, but if you don’t have the right layout, design and message, you will miss out on revenue opportunities by not converting web traffic into paying customers.
Econsultancy states that 83% of marketers test and optimize conversion rate for call to action buttons, 77% test page layout and 61% of companies run up to five landing page tests per month. Maybe that is why more Google searches for ‘conversion rate optimization’ are being made than ever before.
Whether you are working with certified reporting analysts who provide expert insights, guidance and recommendations, or you are taking a deep dive at your website analytics internally, detailed tracking and reporting are reliable practices to strengthen your business.
Enhance your website efforts to grow revenue with these three steps.
Set your conversion goals
According to Adobe and Venture Beat, the top converting companies spend more than 5% of their budgets on optimization and see an average ROI on CRO tools of 223%. A conversion doesn’t alway have to be an online purchase. Contact forms, demo requests and download forms from the content you create are all examples of conversions. Is your goal simply revenue-focused or are you trying to improve in other areas such as newsletter signups, referrals or social media engagement? No matter the goal, be sure to set it in advance so that you will be able to examine website performance accurately.
Create a Hypothesis
When is the last time you audited your website? Is your current website design and message positioned to engage your customers and guide them in the direction to convert? Create thorough buyer personas of your target audience and then engineer an action plan that hypothesizes a variation of your website that would better match your customer's interests and draw them to take action.
After extensive goal preparation and hypothesis development, it is time to test. There are several A/B tests you can run to optimize your website for conversions. New button colors, calls-to-action and layout are just a few test to try out. Outgrow’s very own Khyati Sehgal reports that some of highest performing interactive content techniques include quizzes, calculators, surveys, assessments, videos, infographics and web pages. Why? Sehgal tells us that interactive content offers personalized experiences that make your audience feel special, and most importantly, you’ll see an increase in lead generation and conversion rates. So don’t be afraid to change up the way you collect your data by using more interactive content instead of static form pages.
Bonus tip: Continue to test!
Goal reporting should be collected before and after the test so that you can evaluate the old website version alongside the variant, but remember never to stop testing. Test and then test again. After all, there is always room for improvement, and the more you test, the more your website will be equipped to convert visitors into customers.
About the Author
Alex Navarro has a background in developing and executing national brand awareness campaigns. His passion is creating personalized marketing strategies and watching them come to life. He also loves meeting new people – connect on LinkedIn or Twitter.