Before we delve into conversion rate optimization, we’ll quickly recap our last post on Google conversion tracking, wherein we discussed the basics of defining valuable visitor actions, mapping out a “funnel” for users to follow as they navigate their way toward completing a conversion, and how to implement this information into Google Analytics for tracking purposes.
Once your Google Analytics account is set up and verified, you can use the in-depth reporting features to analyze conversion rates. If you find you’re not converting as many visitors as you’d like, there are several ways you can tweak your website and funnel – conversion rate optimization 101.
Attract the Right Type of Traffic
For starters, you’ll want to take an honest look at the type of traffic that’s visiting your site. Large amounts of visitors won’t amount to much if the bounce rate is high.
To ensure that your traffic is just the sort of audience you intend to target, it helps to run pay per click advertisements (consider Google AdSense). This way, your visitors, by and large, will be pre-qualified (i.e. they’ve already chosen to click on the advertisement that leads to your website based on its subject matter and will be more likely to convert).
Headings instantly draw visitors’ attention and give them an inkling as to what they can expect on each page. If your website contains strong, clear and concise headings on every page, you’re more likely to hook your traffic, who will willingly and (if you’ve correctly applied conversion rate optimization) enthusiastically pass through your funnel into conversion land.
It’s also worth mentioning that headings are an excellent opportunity for SEO. Include a concise, page-relevant keyword within your h1 tag, and you’ll be doing yourself two separate favors for the price of one.
Offer a Free Gift or Service
Make it clear in your copy that you’re offering your visitors something unique, special and FREE, and you’ll likely see your conversion rate improve. Few people enjoy doing something for nothing. When trying to convert your traffic, you should ask yourself, “What’s in it for my visitors?” If you do have a service or item that you can give away for free as a reward for converting, then you’re in luck. If not, think long and hard about a worthwhile complimentary gift that you can offer and make it a key ingredient in your conversion funnel.
Add a Call to Action
Just as every page on your website should have an attention-grabbing heading, you’ll also want to add a call to action in each section of your funnel. This is your opportunity to tell your visitors exactly what you want them to do. A call to action should be a simple phrase – a sentence that starts with an actionable verb (e.g. “Fill out the form below and receive a FREE gift today!”)
Before you can expect your visitors to take a leap of faith and place your product in their virtual shopping cart, fill out your contact form, sign up for your newsletter, etc., you have to make the effort to convey to them that you are an entity to be trusted. Start by including an “About Us” page in your website’s main navigation. List experience, accolades, awards, licenses, etc. – anything that will make your visitors feel more secure in dealing with you or your company.
Implement the above suggestions into your funnel, and you should see your conversion rate significantly improve. With each new iteration of your funnel, wait a little while – a period of a few weeks – and if you’re not converting as much as you’d like, re-assess your funnel and make further tweaks and adjustments to these areas. The more refined your funnel, the stronger your conversion rate optimization results will be.