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Conversion rate optimization is incredibly important to the discussion of buying and selling websites – especially if you are in the market to buy a website.
Think about it: if you want to make a great acquisition, you would ideally find a website that you can quickly, and easily grow without exposing your investment to a lot of risk. One of the most effective ways to grow any website is to optimize its conversion rates.
But it isn’t always easy to know whether you can actually improve a website’s conversion rate unless you know what to look for. So I approached 21 conversion rate experts to ask for their most insightful and useful conversion rate optimization tips.
What I received was an absolute goldmine of information for anyone looking to rapidly grow their website or to identify a great acquisition target. As you review the advice below, think about how you could use this in your search for an online business. If you find an opportunity that could use any of the tips below, you may have found a property that is ripe for rapid growth.
In addition to these expert’s feedback, I also included useful resources where applicable. If you have any suggestions for additional resources, feel free to share them in the comments below.
Finally, if you find this article useful, please take the time to share it on social media or to comment – it is your participation that fuels our content!
Get your mobile act together. Make sure you are using the correct input types for your forms, so they bring up the correct keyboard on mobile devices. Nobody wants to put in their credit card info if it brings up the QWERTY keyboard. Use <input type=“tel”> for any form fields that is strictly numeric like credit cards, or phone numbers. This is a quick simple fix that can have big rewards.
Bryant Garvin is the Chief Marketing Consultant at Relevant Or Die. He has been helped companies from Fortune 500 to the local chiropractor improve their ROI from marketing activities.
When it comes to testing, there is no such thing as ‘best practices’. What is a best practice for one audience may be the worst practice for another audience. Who can tell you what will resonate best with your customers? Your customers. Knowing them well will lead you to the tests that win.
Andrea Warner, President/Publisher of WhichTestWon.com
Add Video to Product Pages
Our biggest conversion increase in 2015 came from adding video to all of our product pages. This type of video only needs to be 30-90 seconds long. Product demonstration and explainer videos are excellent options for both B2C and B2B organizations. While we don’t personally use auto-playing videos, many businesses find that they generate the biggest conversion lift. Businesses should be sure to use a hosting service like Wistia that allows you to embed videos without any ads or other external links.
Silvia Torres is the founder of Mala
- How Adding Videos to Product Pages Boosts Conversion Rates
- 11 Product Video Solutions for Ecommerce Merchants
Make the conversion step as obvious as possible, so obvious only an idiot would miss it. Make the button big with a contrasting color so it cannot be missed. All too often people try to design something to be
elegant and understated, but classy often doesn’t convert as well and conversion is what matters.
Jim Wang (WalletHacks.com) is a self-taught CRO expert who has built a 7-figure personal finance blog through conversion rate optimization, generating six figures annually off a single blog post. @WalletHacks
- 6 Characteristics of High Converting CTA Buttons
- Which Color Converts the Best?
- 17 Best Practices for Crazy-Effective Call-to-Action Buttons
Add testimonials to your pricing page (You can see ours here). We have a big testimonial at the top, and then we have dozens of Twitter testimonials at the bottom. The Twitter ones are easy to embed once you
find them. This will definitely increase conversions!
Ask your customers, “What’s the one thing that nearly stopped you buying from us?” The responses will be pure gold.
Dr. Karl Banks is a co-founder of Conversion Rate Experts.
Successful user onboarding is mission critical for converting trials to paid customers. What are the key steps a user should take to get maximum value out of your product? Define what the onboarding funnel should look like and use tools like KISSmetrics to monitor the customer’s journey and identify pain points and roadblocks that cause abandonment. Then optimize your onboarding user experience so completing these steps is more user friendly and intuitive. Doing so will decrease support requests and increase conversions.
Adam Feber has over 7 years in in the SaaS world, and is currently the Director of Marketing at chargify.com where he helps businesses streamline their subscription management and recurring billing.
- A Quick Guide To Successful User Onboarding for SaaS Products
- How To Build And Optimize An Onboarding Funnel
Use a 2 step opt-in process. Instead of having an opt-in form directly on your landing page, replace it with a button (containing an appropriate call-to-action) that links to a pop-up opt-in box. According to LeadPages, this simple tactic increased their relative opt-in conversion rate by 30%.
David Smethie is a digital growth consultant and social lead generation expert. @DavidSmethie
- Grow Your Email Marketing List with Two-Step Opt-In Forms
- The Two-Step Opt-In Process (And How It Increased Our Newsletter Subscriptions By 60%)
The simplest, yet most effective way to improve conversion rates is to run split (A/B) tests. This allows you to two test different environments to determine what user experience is preferred by your website traffic. Easy & simple, yet powerful, it can be as simple as changing the color of a button, the change of a word or simply placing a banner on the left compared to the right. Whatever the winning test is, make this a permanent fixture on your website and continue running split tests on important parts of your website to improve your conversion rate.
Ashley Kalb manages digital marketing agency, Traffic Box, based in Melbourne, Australia which services over 200 digital marketing initiatives.
- The Complete Guide to A/B Testing
- Email Split Test Tricks So Good You’ll Kick Yourself You’ve Been Missing Out
About only 20% of your visitors will actually go below the fold to read to your content so If I could give one simple piece of advice to improve conversion rates dramatically it would be to: Have an above the fold Call to Action. Whatever form you choose this CTA to be, make sure it is prominently visible in the center of the screen.
Eyal Katz is Head of Marketing and User Experience at AdNgin, a testing platform for online publishers that optimizes ad revenue through continuous testing.
Here’s an easy way to hack an A/B test: Test your copy in cold emails to potential clients. Write out a couple different versions of your sales pitch and make a list of 20 potential clients. Write an email to each one – send one template to 50% and the other one to the remaining group. Take the pitch that gets the best response and put that on the website.
Alex Berman is the Chief Marketing Sumo for InspireBeats, a lead generation company for startups.
Though there’s not a magic button for optimizing your conversion rate, I would suggest, after analyzing the data, implementing a strategy to fine-tune your conversion funnels and mitigate any issues with the site that might be causing your customers to bail midway through. Often times, we see simple button placement, color, and general site flow changes are most effective improvements.
Garret Collins is the owner and operator of Nu’u SEO.
- The Google Analytics Conversion Funnel Survival Guide
- Conversion Funnel Analysis – Abandonment Rate by Time of Day
One of the most important aspects of increasing conversions is optimizing your site’s online forms. It doesn’t matter how great the rest of your website is, if your form confuses or annoys people, you’re going to lose major opportunities. Make sure your online forms are easy to understand, concise, and visible on your page.
Chad Reid is the director of communications for JotForm.
One of the most effective ways to increase online conversion rates it to make sure web pages start loading in two seconds. Studies continue to show that visitors expect pages to load quickly, and expect a consistent
experience from desktop to tablet to mobile. If you are relying on a Content Delivery Network (CDN) for acceleration, you owe it to your customers and your business to look at the newest SaaS acceleration
solutions on the market.
Ari Weil is the Vice President of Product Strategy for Yottaa.
- 11 Low-Hanging Fruits for Increasing Website Speed (and Conversions)
- DECEMBER 11, 2013 BY KATHRYN ARAGON 168 COMMENTS 10 Ways to Speed Up Your Website – and Improve Conversion by 7%
Make and prioritize optimization decisions based on user insights. Validate those insights and change your site only once you have had an “ah ha” moment. If you do this, you can forgo testing most of the time since you are very likely to see a “win” and don’t have the opportunity cost of planning, developing, running and reporting out on a test. In short: Implement powerful insights and test opinions.
Keith Hagen, Director of Conversion Services for ConversionIQ.com, oversees the strategic and continuous improvement programs of over 20 eCommerce companies.
- How to Use Your Content Plantforms to Gain Valuable Customer Insights
- 10 Easy Ways to Gain Insights into User Behavior
Add easy payment options for mobile visitors. Consider investing in services like Paypal & Google Checkout as a boost in mobile traffic revenue. No ones like to enter credit card and shipping info on their phone.
Kevin Pike is President of Rank Fuse Interactive. His professional experience includes joining the Inc.500 fastest growing companies list in 2012 and providing digital marketing services to hundreds of SMB’s and Fortune 500 clients.
- How Can Mobile Payments Improve Ecommerce Conversion Rates?
- Frictionless Mobile Commerce: 5 Examples Of Companies That Are Leading
Make everything easy for your customers. Cut the long checkout or sign up process. Don’t require your customers to sign up to purchase your product.
Create a fast and simple customer experience. Include instructions on every page and limit your order fields.
Jane Dizon is a digital marketing consultant for Roadholland.com.
- Don’t Force Users to Register Before They Can Buy
- How to attract registrations without creating a barrier to checkout
The easiest way to increase conversion on a web page is to give visitors a multichannel contact option.
Just like in a brick and mortar store, if you have questions, you will not stand around waiting for help for very long before walking out.
Remember, many visitors are either window-shopping but ready to convert with a little help, or making their final buying decision and will buy from whoever can answer their question soonest in a satisfactory way.
Studies show that website visitors from PCs strongly prefer a chat option, and visitors from mobile devices are evenly split between preferring chat and mobile-specific instant contact (callback/SMS contact.)
Baruch is the marketing director for Bontact, a startup making a multichannel contact widget for e-commerce sites.
My #1 tip for improving conversion rates is to really understand your target customer. I often see people spending a lot of energy on the tactics such as landing page design, finding the right tools etc. But if you really want to improve conversion rates, you have to first develop deep insights about your customers’ pains and desires. Once you nail that, everything else becomes a lot easier.
Omer Khan is the founder of ConversionAid and Prestopod. He interviews entrepreneurs and founders about growth, entrepreneurship, and what it takes to build successful startups. Prestopod is the easiest & fastest way to publish your podcast to Libsyn, WordPress, iTunes and more, with just one-click
- How to Identify Your Customer’s Pain Points
- 3 Ways To Align Your Marketing With What Customers Really Desire
Often when we launch a new site, page or offering, we are not sure which section or link will be most popular. Heat maps come into the picture here. They show what areas of a web page are interacted with most heavily.
This was the first time we’ve actually realized where users are clicking on any particular page! And hence we adjusted our CTA and affiliate links to the areas which were getting the maximum number of clicks.
*Result? Conversions increased by 72%, and this was just a simple relocation of CTAs.*
Nitish Kumar is a CRO expert at WiseCalvin.com
As many as 70% of websites do not have a call to action on their landing page. It’s like leaving money on the table or not stocking goods on store shelves. Always have a clear call to action backed by your value proposition. This is a fundamental part of optimizing your conversion rate.
- Hook, Line, and Sinker: 7 Tips for a Killer Call-to-Action
- 21 Call to Action Examples and 3 Rules for Effective CTAs
- 14 Tips for Writing the Best Call to Action (With Examples)
The message on your ad copy needs to match the message at the top of your landing page (i.e. your landing’s headline). Doing that encourages visitors to convert more because they know that the page they ended up on is the right place to get whatever they were looking for in the first place. To put things in perspective, you cannot have an ad copy saying “Free CRM Software” and a corresponding landing page saying “Get 20% Off CRM Software”; visitors that clicked on the ad are looking for free software not a 20% discount. It’s confusing to say the least, and will make them click on the “Back” button without taking a second look at the rest of the page’s content.
Yasmina works closely with the Cloudswave team to optimize and find
new marketing strategies and business development models.
Did Our Experts Miss Anything?
What is your favorite CRO tip? What online resource do you think is invaluable to improving conversion rates? Share them below.
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