Everyone wants to model websites with the highest conversion rate for obvious reasons. So, what do they do that you don’t? For starters, 61% of companies do less than 5 tests per month. That’s about one test per week yet testing and experimenting with your site’s content is critical to conversion optimization. You’d think website owners would do this more often, right? Here’s what you need to do to be like the highest converting sites.
Your homepage or landing page is the perfect place to clearly show visitors what they will gain or benefit from your company. Whatever it is you’re selling, I’m sure there are about 100 others selling the same thing so it will be hard to differentiate yourself. Look at how Square lists percentages per swipe, tap and even per transaction. Square does an awesome job showing why their business would be of value to their customers right on their homepage.
There are numerous ways to make your value propositions clear from unique headlines, listing quality and expertise all the way to showing how many Facebook users “like” your company. Should customers buy from you because you offer free shipping and returns? Do you show testimonials that prove your product is life changing? Make whatever it is very clear. Check out how Helzberg Diamonds includes their Facebook fans.
An effective headline guides the user to the call to action (which we’ll get to later) ultimately leading to doubling your conversion rate. Users are typically leaving between 0-8 seconds after viewing your headline and/or landing page. The users that stay longer than 8 seconds bail shortly after deciding your headline isn’t compelling enough. If you haven’t gathered, your headline can make or break your sale based on the first impression you give your users. Figure out what resonates most with your visitors and stick with that. In order to find out what it is though, you need to go through a few trial and errors.
You can buy almost anything from QVC with amazing deals featured everyday. The headline “6 Easy Pays on ALL Beauty” is intriguing to all women. It even goes further to show when the deal ends.
The worst headlines don’t tell your users about the benefits you offer. Something like “Start your trial,” just plain sucks. Why should they start a trial? What’s in it for them? There are a bunch of different variations but start with something like “Save __% and try [product name] free for 30 days.” Beginning your headline with words such as “How to,” “Why,” “Because,” “If,” “Advice,” “Wanted,” etc automatically indicates you have something to offer or inform your users of. To focus on benefits, use a testimonial headline, tell a story or ask a question.
1. “Why This Little Mistake Cost a Restaurant Owner $15,000 a Year”
This is a scare tactic and while some may think it’s manipulative and mean, I think it’s genius.
2. “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”
Ok this is a movie, but this was Andie Anderson’s (Kate Hudson) headline for her article. You get the point. It’s intriguing.
3. “Google Hit With Record $22.5 Million Penalty for Improperly Tracking Safari Users”
This is an old headline from Bing that really lets the facts do the talking.
1. ”Make $1 Billion in One Day”
This is a promise I know you can’t keep and readers never trust a headline like this.
2. “The Money Saving Trick Everyone is Talking About”
If everyone is talking about it, then why does the topic deserve an article?
3. “We Left a Stick of Butter in the Sun - You’ll Never Guessed What Happened Next”
Gee, I wonder. If your headline states the obvious or is predictable, try again.
And, as always, do everything to avoid language that suggests spam (the first awful headline, for example). Check out ClearVoice for 5 quick and easy ways to test your headline.
If you made it past the 8 seconds because your headline rocks, then don’t let your call to action fail you now. Your call to action is the tipping point between a bounce or conversion. Check out Schwan’s call to action for instance. They have one of the top conversion rates of 41.7% and it’s easy to see why. They didn’t simply stop at “Sign up for emails” because that would be lame. Instead, they convince you WHY to sign up. Not only will signing up allow you access to special offers and promotions, but Schwan’s provides a special offer on your first order.
1. “Subscribe Today.”
What am I getting if I subscribe today?
2. “Buy now”
3. “Click here”
...for what? Click here to get a virus that will cause me to pout at the Apple store for the next 48 hours? I’m good.
1. Subscribe today and save 75% off the cover price!
This CTA shows the customers how much they save by subscribing now, adding urgency to their action.
2. “Grammarly makes sure everything you type is easy to read, effective, and mistake-free.”
Grammarly has an amazing CTA followed by a button stating “Add to Chrome, it’s free.” Done.
3. “Remember Everything - Inspiration strikes anywhere. Evernote lets you capture, nurture, and share your ideas across any device.”
Now that’s one action packed CTA geniusly designed by Evernote. Sign up is also free!
You already knew that about 96% of your viewers don’t come to your site ready to buy, right? Well, Chrome came prepared for these users. They’ve included a video right on a landing page that demonstrates how great the browser is and what it has to offer like the ability to search faster and type less. Did you know that having a video on your landing or home page can increase your conversion rate by 80%? This is a great way to help ease any concerns they had about purchasing a product from you.
Have you ever come across a website and been eager to sign up for something only to find 20 fields to fill in? I know I have and I almost always leave the site. It’s not that I have better things to do, but if it’s unnecessary then I lose patience and I’m out. It’s important to take into account your user’s time and lower your exit rate by making forms minimalistic.
Simplifying your form fields and making them clearer is a great step to not only cleaning up your page, but improving conversion rates. Sometimes longer fields are necessary, depending on what your form is for, but you just have to test and find out for yourself. Every site is different, so figure out what works for you! Optimizely Blog shares 3 tips for testing online forms.
Understanding your customer’s confusion or what they are really looking for can help you design a site that converts higher. Qualaroo helps you survey specific groups of website users to gain insight to their motives and get a clear picture of who your customers are.
Unsure of which chat or feedback method to use? Try them all and see which works. If you think you don’t need communication with your customers then think again. 96% of unhappy customers don’t complain and instead 91% will simply leave and never come back. Ouch.
By now you should’ve noticed a pattern but if not, it’s to test, retest and test again! What works for others may not work for you. There’s no better way to find out other than to test anything and everything on your site.