7 Rules of Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)

To be successful in marketing today, you have to be tencious. This is what makes it fun – you never know what might work and what might not – and when things do go well, it brings great satisfaction.  Testing is the key and conversion rate is a critical area to test so in this article we’re going to look at some rules of Conversion Rate Optimisation to help you convert regular visitors into profitable leads/sales.    

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What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?

CRO is how you enhance your website in order to maximise the number of conversions it generates.  The conversion rate is based on the proportion of people visiting your website that act on your desired call to action, whether that’s buying a product, watching a video, or booking an appointment.  

Split testing, workflow advancements, and content improvements all contribute to CRO. Optimisation will help you acquire qualified leads/sales/newsletter signups (whatever your conversion goal is), increase revenue, and decrease acquisition expenses – and why not achieve sustainable growth by making the most your current traffic rather than relying solely on new visitors? 

How to Calculate Conversion Rate

To get a better conversion rate, you first need to understand how it is calculated. Here’s the formula: 

Conversion rate = (number of conversions/total visitors) * 100   

Obviously, the higher the percentage, the better. While you can define what conversions mean as per your business requirements, you should not classify leads as conversions until they have made it to the end of the funnel. 

What is a Good Conversion Rate?

The definition of a good conversion rate depends upon your industry’s benchmark and your company’s location. As an example, the average conversion rate of e-commerce sites in the food and beverage industry is 5.5%, whereas in the hair care sector, it’s only 3.5%. Many other factors contribute, such as your audience demographic, traffic channels, goals, the competition, and so on. 

Your website will not have a consistent conversion rate across the board, so you will have to optimise each page individually. Most people focus on optimising their landing pages as the top priority.  

How to Optimise Conversion Rates

A simple technique you can apply to understand visitor behavior is classifying their experience into three broad levels – drivers, barriers, and hooks. Each level will help you understand what’s working and what isn’t.  

Drivers – Here, you identify what is bringing visitors to your website. Is it social media? Paid advertisements? Organic search? Look for what drives people to your website so that you can optimise that channel by investing more time and energy in it. As well as using analytics, you can collect additional information about how visitors reached your site by having a form pop up that asks them how they found you. Just remember to keep the form short and to the point.  

Barriers – These are the reasons your visitors click off your website. It can be extremely disappointing if you see that not many visitors are sticking around for long, but once when you get to the bottom of the issues and make changes, user behaviour will also change. As well as checking the bounce rate and user time session, a great way to track user behavior is through heatmaps – they show where users are clicking and scrolling, identifying which elements they’re interacting with the most.  

Hooks – Hooks help you identify what is working, which can be very exciting. Look at the pages with the highest conversion rates and re-use the elements that are proving effective. For example, if a specific call to action is working in your favor, replicate it on other pages.  

Now that we’ve covered basics of Conversion Rate Optimisation, it’s time to go through a few rules you can follow to improve your CR even more. 

1. The Power of Persuasion

You don’t have to be subtle with your marketing. If you want people to buy your product, remind them not once, but multiple times. Often, a person can forget why they’re on your website, so you have to lead them to the right actions – don’t leave it down to chance. Compare phrases like “Limited stock” and “20% off for the first 200 sign ups” to “Buy Now” or “Add to Cart” – the scarcity factor has a powerful psychological effect. So, be persuasive and make sure to remind them of the value your product or service has to offer.

2. Minimalist Design

Don’t set yourself up for failure by adding too many elements to your website – keep it direct and to the point. A fancy design might seem tempting but if your purpose is to increase conversions, any form of clutter can distract your audience from the important stuff. On your landing page, only use the most crucial elements like services, forms, add to cart, and CTAs. Nudge your audience in the right direction by simplifying the conversion funnel.

3. Testimonials Work

Trusting anyone these days can be difficult. There are so many scams out there, and Netflix’s obsession with launching crime documentaries like The Tinder Swindler, Bad Vegan, and Inventing Anna fire up people’s trust issues even more. Having credible testimonials on your website helps build trust in your audience, especially in the form of video. Some visitors will doubt the credibility of video testimonials, but 88% of consumers believe online endorsements and evaluations are as reliable as those from friends and family, so make sure you include them. Finally, remember to add Google’s review plugin. 

4. Keep it Simple

Complicated funnels make people click off websites – after all, who wants to go through a billion steps to buy a pair of socks? The journey from discovering a product to purchasing it should be a simple one, with no unnecessary hoops to jump through. Once the product is added to the cart, the next step should be the checkout. Don’t expect people to create an account on your website there and then, as we’re talking about pure conversions here, not leads. To have a high conversion rate, it’s important not to pester people into signing up. There are many case studies on huge conversion increases when the account signup is removed. Also, ensure you include clear help and error messaging throughout to avoid losing confused users. 

5. Speed it Up

People’s attention spans are shortening by the day. You don’t want visitors clicking off your website because it took too long to load. Google has also expressed its disdain for websites like this, so be proactive in enhancing your visitor experience. Here are a few things you can do to increase your site’s speed so you can retain viewers’ attention: 

a) Begin by cleaning up your website’s HTML code using Google Page Speed Insights. You don’t want unnecessary code confusing Google’s bots. Do this for all your web pages – not only your landing page. 

b) Run a speed test to check if the changes you made in the step above were effective or not. You can use this website to do so. to do so.

c) Size down your images to make sure they don’t increase the page load time. If you use websites like Unsplash, you can always download smaller versions of the files or compress your images using a free online tool.

6. Use Chatbots  

There are two types of people visiting your website – those who know what they want, and those who are still exploring. Assist the second category with the help of a chatbot. Chatbots are a great feature that will help you gather data on the type of audience visiting your page and will help nudge the explorers to the right action. 

7. Split Testing

Better known as A/B testing, split testing is an experimental tactic that helps marketers understand their audiences better. It provides objective insights into what your audience responds to. Take two alternative versions of one of your pages (page A and page B), and test different versions of a particular element against each other, such as the headline or CTA. The software that you will use for A/B testing will send 50% of incoming traffic to page A and 50% to page B. In the end, you check how many individuals responded to the CTA on both pages. This will reveal which version to use in the long run.  

Hopefully, these tips have inspired you to have a thorough look at how your website is performing in terms of conversion rates. To summarise, make sure you optimise the channels that are bringing the most visitors to your website. Determine the barriers to conversion and resolve them, and replicate elements that are working well. Keep your web design clean, keep the conversion funnel simple, be persuasive, use testimonials, ensure all pages load quickly, and use chatbots to convert those who are still exploring your site and aren’t sure what they want.  

Every element on every page matters, so take your time to build something persuasive that will convert your viewers into paying customers. Do all these rules seem exhausting? Click here to see how my team and I can help. 

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