How to boost your site’s sales, revenues and profits using a tried, tested and proven conversion rate optimisation process, guaranteed to work each time. Discover what really works in CRO.
Before diving into the conversion rate optimisation process we use to improve results for our customers repeatedly, I am first going to tell you what conversion optimisation is not, what it is and the correct process you should follow to get it right first time.
What conversion optimisation is not:
- A one-off activity which you carry out once and forget. Rather, it is well structured, on-going, continuous and iterative process your company should adopt.
According to a RedEye & Econsultancy study, a structured approach was one of the most important factors that determined the success of conversion optimisation project. The research also found that companies that had a structured approach to conversion optimisation were twice as likely to see a large increase in sales – a structured approach had the highest correlation with improved sales and the second highest correlation with improved conversion rates.
- Guesses and hunches. One of your pet hates as a conversion optimisation practitioner should be what we call conversion clairvoyants. These are so-called conversion experts who take one look at your website and immediately know what is wrong and how to fix.Run a mile in the other direction when you meet people like that. Every website is different, what works for one website will not necessarily work for your website.
- Conversion rookie practices, such as randomly testing stuff and hoping that something works. This is a typical mistake conversion optimisation rookies make, called the spaghetti method – throwing spaghetti against a wall and hoping that something sticks. One such example is split-testing button colours and hoping that works.
- Opinions – Highest paid person’s opinion (HIPPO) – what they like or don’t like.
Sergio Zyman former Coca-Cola marketer, once famously told his boss that he would run the ads his boss liked provided his boss went out and personally bought all the coke on the market.
- Following best-practice. Best practice has it’s place in informing decisions, but basing everything you do on such practices is, ultimately guesswork.
- Basing your conversion optimisation work on misleading metrics. More than 90% Google Analytics installations we look at are either broken or set up incorrectly.Any optimisation work based off such an installation is bound to fail.This is why we always start each conversion optimisation project with a thorough health check of your data. You can see why can’t you? With the wrong data, you can easily make some very costly mistakes.
What is conversion option optimisation?
Here are some definitions of conversion rate optimisation I have dug up for you.
“Conversion optimization, or conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the method of creating an experience for a website or landing page visitor with the goal of increasing the percentage of visitors that convert into customers.” — Wikipedia
“The method of using analytics and user feedback to improve the performance of your website.” — Qualaroo
“Conversion Optimization (or Conversion Rate Optimization) is the science and art of getting a higher percentage of your web visitors to take action and becoming a lead or customer”. — Widerfunnel
In plain English and to summarise, conversion optimization is about:
- Doing better marketing.
- Understanding your customers better, and providing them with a better experience, helping them complete their tasks faster, i.e. simplifying everything.
- Boosting profits by increasing sales and revenues without spending any more money on generating traffic.
Conversion Rate Optimisation in a nutshell:
Conversion optimisation is finding out why your website visitors are not converting and fixing it. That’s it in a nutshell.
In order to find out what your website visitors want, where your website is leaking money, there is a well-defined conversion rate optimisation process which needs to be followed each time, to make sure that you get the end results that you desire – like increasing your online sales and revenue.
The conversion rate optimisation process.
Disclaimer, there is no single way of doing conversion rate optimisation right, but this is a method I know works time and time again.
Instead, we follow a step-by-step process – led by data insights and informed by user feedback.
Here is a visual representation of the conversion rate optimisation process:
Instead of a haphazard approach to conversion optimisation, we follow a proven step-by-step process – led by data insights and informed by user feedback.
Conversion optimisation is a process, not a one-off fix, and we always treat it as such.
Here’s the proven process we follow to consistently boost conversions, sales and profits for our clients in 90 days or less:
- Determine business objectives: deciding together with you which metric(s) you want to increase – sales, revenue, users, etc.
- Data gathering & research. Setting up relevant data tracking and collection and then waiting for the results to come in.
- Insight phase. Analysing all the different sources of data to pinpoint leaks in your sales funnel, identifying patterns, and then drawing conclusions.
- Hypothesis. Developing proper hypotheses for tests. Ranking these hypotheses based on their potential for gains and ease of implementation as this determines which ones we test first.
- Design. Based on the hypotheses we then develop wireframes for web page treatments. Once completed, wireframes will be passed on to a designer who will turn them into design screens (alternative layouts / content for pages on your site).
- Testing. We do proper controlled a/b testing following the scientific method, run every test until statistical significance.
- Learning & improving customer theory and application. We analyse the test results (when done right, each test is a source for learning), gain new insights, develop new hypotheses. This learning is fundamental as with each test our customer theory should improve.Finally results are applied to other areas of your marketing.Then we take it back to step 2 and begin the process all over again. That is what we call a conversion cycle.
Benefits of having a well-structured Conversion Rate Optimisation Process
The biggest benefit of structuring your approach is that it gives a clear direction for increasing your website’s conversions.
With this direction you are then in the best place to understand the impact of various methods and tools, and as such ideally placed on your journey towards higher conversion rates.
You are more like to see better results from your conversion optimisation when you have a very clearly defined conversion optimisation process in place before you begin. Being methodical in your approach is key and applying the scientific method is fundamental if you are going to achieve the results you desire and accomplish your end goals.