Bringing users to the next step, especially on digital applications, isn’t a unicorn. Ultimately, the only reason why visitors buy from you is because of the value your offering has. Before you invest in an optimization program, make sure you are providing value that has demand. If not, you probably need strategic advise.
Conversion Optimization is more than turning more users towards goals. It means to create a useful and integrated presentation. In simple terms, conversion rate optimization (CRO) or conversion optimization is the process of finding out why your website visitors are not taking the desired action(s) and fixing those reasons, or issues, to achieve a higher conversion rate. At a process level, conversion optimization is achieved by the following scientific process.
Tracking metrics and identifying what parts of conversion funnel needs fixing
Constructing educated hypothesis based on your research
Planning and prioritizing your hypothesis
Testing the hypotheses against the existing version of the website
Deploying the winning hypothesis and/or gather learning for subsequent tests
Before you start your optimization program, have an analytics engine in place. Analytics is what tells you why visitors aren’t converting. Even as far back as 2016, more than 60% of the world’s top businesses were using Google Analytics. The pitfalls of not having analytics in place are that your optimization efforts will be akin to throwing darts in the dark, hoping for some darts to stick. Having analytics integrated with your testing engine is important for post-test analysis and learning.
Every website that exists to make revenue has a user funnel that visitors need to travel through to become a paying customer. Understanding the way users browse your website tells you the relative importance of each page on your website and what improvements can be expected by optimizing any of these different stages in the funnel. Chances are that you’ve come across a variety of conversion funnels while exploring online content. It is necessary to understand that these funnels help map out a user’s journey to become a customer, but these are not the same. A funnel could be consumer-focused (a purchase funnel) or website-focused, showing how users flow through different pages of your website.
The very term “optimization” implies that CRO is associated with making something better. The first step to making revenue is to have people know about your product and drive relevant traffic to your website. Conversion optimization can kick in only when there is traffic that can be converted. And what’s worse than poor traffic is bad traffic. Conversion optimization can’t make visitors buy; it can only help them do it easier.
And: Metrics are the language in which visitors talk to you. Unless you understand this language, you’ll not be able to interpret the signals and see the symptoms that lurk in plain sight.
Most of us have heard of AIDA frameworks before. An AIDA model defines how customers are treated before making a purchase decision: the basic stages of a customer journey.
Not all your users are interested in the same information. As a result, you should always have landing pages setup targeting keywords in the short tail and long tail. And you should target such landing pages and ad campaigns for different sets of users, no matter where they are on the “ladder of interest”.
It’s a no-brainer that before you can measure and improve, you need to know what you want to improve. This one completely depends on your business and your goals. Are you looking for more free trial sign-ups, more average revenue per visitor, or top-of-the-funnel ebook downloads?
Here’s the interesting part. Not all visitors to your site are in the same buying decision stage. Some are looking to learn things, some are actively prospecting, and some others are ready to buy. The idea then is to track and optimize for conversions at different stages from each of these users, no matter if you are talking about micro or macro conversions.
Micro conversions are typically low-involvement commitments from the user like an ebook download or subscribing to a newsletter. Macro conversions, on the other hand, are actual sales conversions like a checkout for an eCommerce business. It may seem that macro conversions are all that matter. However, micro conversions are the baby steps that visitors start with, eventually leading them to become customers.