Do you want great conversion rate?
After establishing the basics of a website – the blog, the landing pages, the backend, the architecture and the forums – it’s time to look forward to the next steps.
When it comes to managing and handling the growth of any online platform, conversion rate optimization is a key factor to consider.
It’s vital for webmasters, administrators and planners alike.
Conversion rate optimization or CRO is the process of improving conversion rate—turning mere visits into active engagements on the site, such as registrations and purchases.
However, CRO applies to existing visitors—the idea is that engagement is increased without allocating more funds to something like marketing or soliciting for hits.
Cultivating a best-practice CRO is one of the best ways to foster a community that keeps returning to any given online platform. This article will go over the steps towards ideal CRO.
1. Preliminary research
No CRO strategy can begin without adequate research.
A final goal can only be ascertained after identifying the variables and elements involved in the usage of the site. The analytics of the site, provided by either the hosting service or Google itself, is a great initial resource.
The website traffic and bounce rate are the most important factors, along with the existing conversion data and the most popular landing pages. Understanding these elements is critical to developing a CRO strategy.
Competitor sites are a good place to look as well – seeing their practices and interactions with their audience will serve as a guide to handling your own.
2. Understand the visitors
Once the fundamental interactions of the website are nailed down and analyzed. The next step is to figure out who actually converts. Which visitors already registered in the site’s forums of their own volition?
Which visitors subscribed to the RSS feed, or opt in for email notifications? Which visitors followed the brand or its personnel on Twitter? The CRO plan should include the habits of these people.
However, the visitors that did not convert should also be considered. Determine their interests—see what pages they read before leaving.
Expanding the audience, making customers out of the unlikely, is a way to keep agile. For more personalized insight, request visitors to answer short, quick, unobtrusive surveys so that the experience may be improved.
3. Determine CRO variables
Once the data have been collected, the different factors that visitors take into account when deciding to convert must be identified.
These include elements as simple as the site color, the typeface and font size used. Other elements such as the layout of the content, the readability and legibility of the text and images, as well as the presence of advertisements are vital.
Other factors are more intangible, such as “flow” – how the pages interact with each other, which are tied into more concrete metrics like website architecture.
These can be further identified by conducting usability tests and asking for customer feedback. When taken as a whole, subtle changes in each element can drastically alter the CRO for the better or worse.
I’ve been able to increase the CRO on my Sharp-LC-42SV50U review blog where I write extensively on UN32EH4003 led TV and other models. I recommend that you determine your CRO variables first, before you move on with your marketing plans.
4. Design experimental websites
Taking the above variables into account, prototypical websites should be developed.
At its core, the website should be akin to a functional framework, or a skeleton, that delivers the basic functionality of the platform.
The CRO variables are modular elements that can be configured or swapped out at any time, to facilitate quick and easy testing.
Usability tests should be run on these websites, and tester feedback should be acknowledged and applied.
A philosophy to keep in mind throughout testing is that the redesigned website should maximize the strengths of the existing site, while minimizing and possibly eliminating weaknesses.
5. Launch concurrent A/B tests
Following these designs, the next step is using a program that will provide one of two pages to visitors: A) the original page, or B) the redesigned page.
This is conducted at random, and will help determine which page is more effective at garnering and facilitating conversions.
The “Content Experiments” tool, found on Google Analytics, is one of the easiest resources to use, and aids greatly in tracking data.
Upon launching the concurrent tests, a statistically significant sample must be gathered before selecting a “winner”.
The process does not stop there, however—the winner can then be compared with an alternate design, and testing can continue until needed.
6. Gather more feedback
After quantitative testing, securing a complement via qualitative analysis can often be invaluable.
Include an optional survey for subjects of the A/B tests to determine whether they noticed anything different in the website, as well as to gather demographic information.
This subjective input from actual visitors will guide future design decisions, which is integral to continued growth.
Furthermore, including options for feedback shows a human side to the operations – customers will appreciate being asked for their opinion, and understand that they are valued.
Seeing their suggestions actually taking effect will also increase retention and improve the brand in their eyes.
7. Reflect and repeat
Considering that the goal is expansion of the website and the brand, conversion rate optimization never ends.
It is a constant process of analysis, identification, experimentation, and application.
CRO should be repeated regularly, and designs that were overlooked or discarded can be given a second look. Perhaps, their in-feasibility in the past may work in the present.
Improvement is the goal, and dedication is the best way to attain that goal.
Following a sound CRO strategy has tangible benefits for the expansion of an online platform.
How has CRO helped your site grow? What are the other ways to employ a CRO strategy? Let us know in the comments below.