Conversion Rate Optimisation Tips

Without a well thought out conversion rate optimisation ( CRO ) plan, all your effort, hard work and time spent getting to this point could be for nothing.

Having SEO without CRO is a pointless exercise. Converting browsers into paying customers is the name of the game and as a business, you really need to get a clear understanding of this.

What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?

I hear people talk about all these great traffic figures to their website. They say they are getting 1000’s page views per day, but then they tell me that their sales and web inquiries are down. Basically, what has happened is that they have put too much focus on SEO and not CRO. They are getting visitors to the site, but these people/users are not buying. They are coming to the site and not engaging with it or buying from it.

Overall you have to keep in mind that lots of traffic DOES NOT EQUAL high sales without a CRO strategy in place. There are many reasons why your website might be getting lots of hits but no sales according to Crazy Egg. They have some excellent information on this worth reading.

CRO supports SEO by helping and guiding customers through the site, it helps click through rates and other site goals. Conversion rate optimisation is the engine that drives the sales process. It is the emotive force behind the buying decision.

As a part of our Internet marketing and search engine optimization service, Hopping Mad Designs offers clients looking for a high conversion rate a CRO service to ensure that users/customers are funnelled from the home page of the site to their end goal; the checkout or the inquiry form.

We perform this CRO through continuous research, constant website development, testing using analytics and reporting.

Our Sydney based CRO experts understand that conversion rate optimization ( CRO ) and SEO are two vital elements of any business marketing strategy.

Simply put, why bother having a great looking website that’s ranking really well on Google without anyone buying – a sure way to go out of business very quickly!

Remember this fact. If they are not buying from you then they are going to your competition. CRO implemented properly reduces the likelihood of this happening.

What are the steps necessary for successful conversion rate optimisation?


Step 1: Lot’s of Research

CRO is the art of researching the buying + browsing habits of your audience and designing a web page that caters to the needs of this audience. Once designed you can then best determine ways that will convert the user landing on this page into a paying customer. It might take a few attempts, but over time you will work out what pages work best for consumer conversions.

All websites are different and each has its very own conversion goals. Your web design agency should be able to work out exactly what a conversion means to you:

  • a phone call
  • an inquiry
  • purchase of a product
  • subscribe to a newsletter
  • join a club
  • make a donation
  • anything that is important to your business and what keeps it ticking over

Armed with this information, the first thing one needs to do to implement a coherent and successful CRO campaign is research.

  1. Start by researching all the data you can get your hands on; analytics from Google ( to work out site traffic – where people are coming from and which pages they are going to and how long they spend on each page), bounce rates and metrics.
  2. Especially take note of the websites top navigation and main landing pages within the website. The more you know about how these pages are going to convert users into customers, the better the CRO professionals at Hopping Mad Designs can channel traffic into conversions.
  3. Who are your competitors, what do their sites look like and what elements do they have on their website, that are helping with conversion – if they are market leaders, has their website facilitated this and what elements can we take from this and work it into your new website – this is a great CRO method  – make sure you ask us about this! If your competition is leading the way – WE CAN DO IT BETTER!
  4. Look at your pricing, product and service offerings and how your competition is talking to your customers online. CRO research will ensure that your new site will be up there with the best in your field of work.
  5. Working out the best and most efficient sales funnel is what we do best at Hopping Mad Designs for our customers looking at a CRO strategy. This starts by merging Google analytics and results learnt from studying your competition and implementing landing page optimization – this is commonly referred to as (LPO). A good web design agency will know all about LPO and what makes a web page sell. Simply put you need to look at your most important landing pages (site-wide), and only then, can you start to create a web funnel for conversion  – following this you can test accordingly for best results.


Step 2: Visuals and Creative Design

If you are looking to get a website that sells, you need to understand how the CRO process works. The browser goes from researcher to actual shopper and then to a paying buyer. It is a simple 3 step process. The shopper will ONLY become a buyer once they have limited their research to 1 website.

It is this decision to buy from one particular website that makes CRO invaluable for your business. Hence LPO and CRO are going to make or break your sales.

Your CRO specialist cannot overlook any detail – everything matters. Even the smallest detail can have an impact and needs to be subject to testing.

You need to be looking at the website: colours, phone numbers, placement of inquiry forms, all calls to action, site speed, type and format, process flows, question you may ask in an inquiry/join up form, banners and images. These should all come together on your landing pages for maximum impact.

The ultimate aim is conversion, CRO will reduce bounce rates and abandoned shopping carts on eCommerce websites. Using a CRO Professional company like Hopping Mad Designs will result in optimal CRO performance – we will research, test and fine-tune your landing pages to funnel those customers into online sales.


Step 3: Website Testing

Any changes that you make to a page might have a negative impact on conversion rates. If you find that your inquiry rate has dropped due to any changes you have made, then you need to learn from these errors. It is OK to try something out, if you fail, then it’s a quick fix – after all this is what CRO is all about. Tinkering with pages, testing the results and fine-tuning these till your pages are achieving what you want. Your CMS will allow you to quick changes so any poor results are mitigated early and rectified.

One really good method in which our CRO experts perform testing and changing is

A/B Split Testing

  • Design says three landing pages in need of Conversion Rate Optimisation.
  • All website traffic is split randomly and equally and necessary actions are implemented. It’s a great way to work out what is working better on one page over another. If you can see that one design is getting a higher conversion rate, you work on that page and develop it even further.


Step 4: Reporting

Rigorous testing of added design and conversion elements to a landing page will significantly help with your pages conversion rate optimisation.

SEO is for the Long Term – You Can’t Cheat Google

Following are problems regarding getting quick SEO gains, and solutions to this issue:

Problem # 1:  The only real way for very short term gains on highly competitive keywords is to back link. If you want to get to page 1 quickly then you will have to do more back links than your competition. If this is performed in an in-organic fashion, and all of a sudden you have thousands of in-bound links, then Google will pick this up and your site will be sandboxed or penalised.

Solution: Obtain backlinks organically by:

  • writing articles and having them published with links back to your website – please note that these are NOT articles that have been bought. They are from credible magazines, papers or blogs that publish only relevant content. Getting these articles published are not easy which makes it’s SEO value great.
  • Backlinks should be acquired slowly and gradually. Space this evenly, as a sudden jump in your link popularity will be seen as spammy and very inorganic.
  • Having a few links on well know directories are great for Local SEO – directories such as Yellow Pages and True Local are fine as long as these listings are free.
  • Have a blog on your website and link between blog articles, just so long as they relate to each other. Linking between pages on your website is a great SEO tool. Careful to have only 1 or 2 links max on each page.

Problem # 2: You have used a SEO company in the past and they have not performed well. They have said that they have been implementing a SEO campaign but you cannot see any positive results.

Solution: Get rid of these guys before they do any further damage to your website.  They are obviously getting backlinks from low ranking, meaningless websites and this is damaging any chance of future rankings. Google knows when this kind of activity is happening and will again result in your site being penalised. 

Problem # 3: You were ranking quite nicely but all of a sudden your website listing has slipped to page 5.

Solution: You have over optimised your keywords. Stop all SEO immediately, Commence and remove all backlinks and references to your website from all other external websites. You will then have to reapply through your webmaster tools account in Google once all links are removed to ask/beg to get out of this penalty. This can take 3 months but there is light at the end of the tunnel and a solution for this.

Reasons Why Google Will Rank Your Web Page

  • If your page has unique content then it will rank. Fresh interesting content is a great SEO technique.
  • You have quality in bound links from sites that have a high page rank.
  • Your page has been optimised for SEO. That is; site speed, titles and meta tags are all Google compliant.
  • You have not keyword stuffed, in the hope that this will push up your rankings.  
  • If you have not duplicated this page or copied it from another source.

SEO for Serious Businesses

If you are really serious about your website ranking on Google and actaully staying there, then you have to be in this for the long haul. By this I mean it never ends. SEO is a continual process and cannot be turned on and off. It must be done on a continuous basis, day in day out. Stopping your SEO will only allow your competition to over take your position. If you adopt a long term SEO policy and accept that this is now going to be part of your marketing mix, then your website will rank online well. Let a professional SEO company do this for you, give it 6 months and you will see a HUGE difference.

If you are wanting some SEO advice and are looking to get your website ranked on Google, then please call Hopping Mad Designs on 02 9360 8514.

First Sentences Crucial for Search Engine Optimisation

This makes perfect sense as it is this introductory copy that tells us what the rest of the page will be about.  The trick here is to have relevant words peppered throughout this text combined with attention grabbing copy. This will create a great balance and will get your page ranked high up on Google.

If you are a blogger and rely on content marketing to drive traffic to your website, then this is a very important rule and something that should be adhered to with each and every blog or page of your website.

If you can get your head around what Google indexes and ranks, then this will be great for your online marketing and a massive boost for your search engine optimisation. 

A Few Examples:

  • A Electrician Working in Sydney, would want to include the words, electrician and Sydney in the opening couple of sentences. Obviously, other words should be on time, friendly and services they offer. All this will get read by Google and should rank this web page very high.
  • A Lawyer wanting to discuss his divorce services, should have the words divorce and lawyer in the opening sentence. Add in about 500 words and presto, the page gets ranked.

From the above points, you should get the idea on how important those first couple of words and sentences are from an SEO perspective.

If you want to know more about content marketing, SEO and how to rank your website page please contact us


Benefits of Instagram for your Business

Instagram has the Personal Touch

Instagram is the perfect platform to show your other side – unlike LinkedIn, Instagram gives your clients the opportunity to see more of who you are and not just the business side of things. Uploading interesting images will get you more followers and larger exposure. It is not hard to take a picture with your phone and upload it. You will be surprised how positively people respond to this new form of marketing.

So How Would This Work?

Heres some great examples – go behind the scenes of your business and:

  • take pictures of factory staff
  • show employees working
  • new products being tested, developed or sold
  • product launches
  • a picture of a group meeting of sales/staff meeting
  • take photos of staff preparing food
  • anything that tweaks the users interest.

Some of these might seem odd, but it is exactly this oddness that people like.

Exposure to a New Demographic

The idea behind Instagram is simple. Take a picture and connect with other people who like that photo. Businesses  can connect with people all over Australia and the world. This opens your business up to a whole new demographic. Its fast, quick and a powerful marketing platform –  perfect for businesses of every size. You will be amazed at how quick you can get followers and start marketing and talking to them. See how quickly you can grow you customer base in a week!

How Does This Work?

  • If you are connecting with a young audience take cool, hip images that they will understand and relate to – check the Hollister or Rip Curl Instagram profile as a great example
  • Hotels can take images of guest facilities or the area around the hotel tourist might find interesting
  • Airlines can take images of staff or pictures of destinations they go to – Air Asia have a great Instagram profile So do a lot of surfing and travel companies.
  • Wine Companies, can take images of the grapes being picked and the fermenting process.

The list goes on and on and they images you can take are endless.

Network Effectively

There is much more to Instagram than pretty pictures. Instagram like any other social platform, needs working on if it is to be used to it’s full potential.

All online social media networks are designed to bring people closer, so once you have started to get followers, you should begin to interact and network with them. It’s a great new way to reach out to a new customer base.

So How Do I Start Networking?

Like, comment and connect with followers and watch in turn your followers start to rise – simple as that – not much effort involved at this stage.

But to network effectively, see who is following you and see their comments. You can then begin to target these people with specific images they like. Remember, networking in this fashion requires you to be constantly involved with Instagram. I’m not saying that you have to spend hours and hours on this, but at least be active enough so that your followers are growing. You must keep active for this to happen.

It’s Free

Instagram is totally free and the only expense is your time. Give it a go and see the kind of results you get – you really have nothing to loose, except gain a few new client’s.

Want to learn more about all Instagram’s benefits?


Build a New Website Design in Sydney that is Search Engine Optimisation Friendly.

Choosing the right web design company can be the difference between success & failure – nowadays you need a full-service digital agency

1. Make sure you ask the person who will build your new website many questions

You need to find out lots about a company before trusting them to build your new website. Never be shy when it comes to asking your web builder questions. I have seen hundreds of business owners who have been ripped off in the past with their web builders who have not asked questions. They have gone into the project fully believing the builder and trusting them 110%. This is total madness and as a business owner, you should be asking questions like:

  • Can I see some of your past web work  – this can be easily found on their website. If you like what you see then go for it.
  • What CMS platform will my website be built on – many web builders will use in house content systems – STAY WELL CLEAR OF THESE  – make certain you ask this question as this is where many people get ripped off! Go with companies that will build your site using a WordPress or FREE Open Source CMS. Never ever go with in house CMS unless you want to pay hefty monthly fees.
  • Ask for testimonials
  • Ask if there are any monthly fees associated with the web build – any hidden fees etc. Some companies have a tendency to tack on added fees once the site has been launched.
  • Will the website be mobile/responsive friendly?

2. Is the location relevant?

Absolutely NO!

We have designed, developed and built new websites for businesses in Sydney as well as every capital city of Australia. I always recommend that you use a local web builder, but sometimes the fit might not be right. In any case in this modern-day and age of the phone, Skype and email, the working interstate is not an issue. If you look at the Hopping Mad portfolio, you will see our variety on the great style of work, so making the decision to let us build your new website should be a no brainer! Plus I am happy to answer any questions you might have ( even from point 1 above) to put your mind at ease about our ability.

3. Does the cost and price matter?

Websites builds can differ in price dramatically. Some companies will charge a few hundred dollars whilst others will be in the thousands. Cheaper websites often come with conditions and short cuts that will affect future web performance such as search engine optimisation and the user experience. Cheaper web build will NOT have much design time spent on the look and as a business owner this is not a good path to go down – spend that bit extra a get a web design that is tailor-made for your business. Conversely, you really don’t have to spend a small fortune on your build. Be aware of web companies that try to sell add-ons that you won’t need. I hear companies charging for stakeholder meetings that are totally uncalled for – look for the medium and go with a web company that offers value for money as well as great design – like us here at Hopping Mad Designs.

4. Is search engine optimisation important?

You want to get business and traffic through to your website, then search engine optimisation is very very important. YOU MUST engage a web design firm that has a thorough understanding of SEO and takes search engine optimisation variables (and there are many)  into consideration when building your new website. Be very careful when it comes to SEO as it’s a tricky business and people often get on board with SEO companies that have no idea about what they are doing.

Hopping Mad Designs recommends highly that if you are going ahead with a new web build you should think about an SEO campaign from the outset. SEO is not cheap but a realistic marketing budget should be put aside for this. Taking the plunge and trying SEO is going to be great for your business once you see how many phone calls and online inquiries you are receiving.

I am very biased here as I believe Hopping Mad Designs does an awesome job in building websites for all businesses.

We have the design experience, web technologies and a huge portfolio of great websites we have completed PLUS testimonials ( make sure you ask me about this), to prove we can design and produce your new website. There are much cheaper solutions out there – but I seriously don’t think you should build your new website without first CALLING 02 9360 8514.

Tips For Writing Better Mobile Content


Following are ways you can look at to improve the users experience on your website.

1. You must have a responsive web layout
Responsive design will automatically resize the content on the screen so it is viewable on all phones and tablets. Most of our websites are built using a WordPress CMS, which is great for responsive plug-ins. You can see the difference immediately and just wait till all those mobile customers start ringing!

2. Be precise
If you are going to write content for your mobile, avoid text heavy long pages. Simplicity is the key here. Points need to be easily read and on subject.

3. Use a lot of spacing
Real estate on the iphone and smart phones are very limited – if you have to use links, ensure there is enough space to tap and go. Clunky use of space will result in a poorer user experience and overall reduction in inquiries.

4. Remember SEO
If you want more business your website must be found online – this includes getting found when people are looking to make a purchase on their mobiles. Don’t forget about writing SEO friendly copy. Include important keywords and page titles and if you are targeting a specific suburb, make sure you add these in the content.

5. Don’t go colour crazy

Colours should be kept to a minimum – 2 to 3 colours are recommended, but if you are thinking about a rainbow style interface then this will affect the end experience.

6. Skimming is essential
The user must be able to skim over the content and make a decision – if there is a necessity for secondary boxes of content, try to avoid these. The better option is to guide them through to a second page. You only have few seconds to capture users attention. I know when I am on my iphone, if I run into any hurdles or issues with the site I will simply look elsewhere. There are far too many options and choices to be stuck on one website that’s not performing well.

By sticking to these above points you’ll make your mobile content easier to read, making for much much happier customers!

Can SEO Companies in Sydney Be Trusted, who tells the truth about SEO?

Lies that SEO Companies in Sydney Will Tell You to Get Your Dollars!

  1. This one is the most common and one that gets front and centre of this article. That is, their guarantee that they will get you to page 1 of the search engines within a short time period. This is a complete lie as no company can guarantee what a third external party will do. Outrageously short time periods and ridiculously low fees are touted to get your business all with the promise of gloriously high web rankings. If you find that your prospective SEO company in Sydney is saying these kind of things then you know they are telling you lies.
  2. Another great lie is that they have been doing search engine optimisation for years. Most SEO companies, especially the ones in Sydney are start-ups and in some cases have just set up their website – there is no real way to check this out but ask to see a list of their clients and their working relationship history. This will flush the lie out very quickly.
  3. Bragging rights for high Google rankings are enormous. Some SEO companies have been able to spam the system and rank their website very quickly – they then tell you they have been at position number 1 for many years. Watch out for this as the guys who rise up the rankings quickly, also fall very quickly. SEO spammers are ALWAYS caught out by Google but before they cop a penalty ( and loose their ranking) they will secure a few naïve customers. The lie that they are on page 1 must always be taken with some scepticism as their methods of getting to this position are not always ethical.
  4. Here’s another beauty. They will say that if they don’t get your main keywords ranked within 6 months, they will do the SEO for free till they do. What they have done here is lied about their ability to perform SEO and their continued work post the 6 month period. Basically, if they can’t do the job within 6 months then they will not be able to do it even if they have another 12 months. A massive fraud, and the only winner is the SEO company – they have your money! If you search for “beware of SEO guarantees” there are more than 3 million results. Most companies who make these false guarantees are not going to deliver them and will have fine print in their service agreements that render these guarantees useless.


So Which SEO Companies in Sydney Tell the Truth?

This is a tough one. Like any industry there are the ‘cowboys’ and those that spoil the reputation for the few good SEO businesses in Sydney. But if you follow these points you will be able to spot those truthful SEO providers, who will perform their job well.

  1. Are they based in Sydney, or off shore? Ideally, you want to work with a locally based company. Offshore to me spells; dodgy, corner cutting, non contactable, unreliable and worst of all unethical. Go local and work with a SEO team that you can actually meet with.
  2. If they don’t mention content marketing in their meetings with you, then they will be relying 100% on back linking. This used to work for SEO but is now out lawed and frowned upon by Google as spammy. Make sure you use a company that offers a copy writer that knows how to draft web content that is search engine friendly.
  3. Get them to show you how they intend to rank internal web pages of your site. A good SEO company will know how to rank site wide pages and not just the home page. If they talk about blogging for SEO them they do know their stuff – a very good sign indeed!
  4. If they are not overly pushy and happy for you to shop around, without trying to lock you into a contract then they are more than likely to be a ethical SEO crew – pushy over zealous sales people on heavy sales targets are going to over promise an d under deliver on search engine performance rankings – this is 110% guaranteed.
  5. If they talk about performing a full website audit then you are on the right path. SEO is both an  ‘on and off page’ science, so doing one without the other is absolutely pointless. Everything must match, line up and work cohesively together if your SEO has any chance of success.


Are there Many SEO Companies to Choose from In Sydney?

There are literally thousands to choose from. All you have to do is go online and search for ‘SEO’ or ‘web design companies’. In fact, there are just far too many to choose from. Pick a handful and go from there.  If you can’t find what you are looking for on Google, go to your competitors website and see who does their SEO – perhaps you can use these guys.


What about Hopping Mad Designs for your SEO?

Why not and the reasons are simple:

  • We strive to achieve one goal – giving your business a positive return on your investment dollar.
  • We have been in this business since 1998 – yes, we were one of the first web and SEO companies in Sydney.
  • We do not work with everyone and we only work with people we think we can help – plus we will only work on 1 business within a specific industry – we are very loyal that way.
  • All SEO we work on has your best interest at heart – we want to help you succeed online!

SEO Mistakes For a New Site

Are you going to get a new website built for your business then the following are some fundamental SEO mistakes you should avoid at all costs.

1. You Need Time For An SEO review and Audit.

Depending on the size of the website, you need around 1 to 2 days to go over the whole website and prepare it for launch if there is an SEO perspective. You can’t expect to make a site live and have it SEO ready that day. It’s like having a painter, paint your shop on the day it opens – it’s just not going to happen. Time and necessary preparation is needed if the website is going to be Google compliant and adhere to all the strict SEO requirements. Rushing through your SEO checklist is a sure way to miss out on things, which will affect your rankings once your new website has been indexed.

Ideally, you should be working with your web developer from the outset to make sure that they are following SEO best practices. Work carried out in hindsight is a lot harder to do than at the start of your project.

2. Check The Web Developers CMS

I find that many web development companies like to put websites on their own CMS or content management systems platform – they do this so they can basically charge a monthly fee for this service – which is a total rip off and something that is not needed when there are so many open source free CMS platforms on the market like WordPress.

The SEO issue here is that many CMS platforms may work well on the surface, but underneath in the back end, they are an SEO nightmare. I have seen this so many times before, where people come to me wanting to rank their website and we have to ditch their CMS and start from the beginning.

These custom-built CMS platforms don’t allow for basic SEO essentials like H1 headers, titles, descriptions, meta tags etc – the list goes on and on. Yes, they may work well for basic brochure style websites, whose owners are not concerned about SEO, but if you want a page 1 or even page 2 ranking, you can forget about it. Also with the explosion of DIY websites, you have to be careful of their SEO impacts as many of these sites like WIX and Squarespace have lots of SEO limitations.

3. Thinking About the Price Too Much

People call me all the time and say how much for SEO and getting their website ranked. As soon as I hear this I turn off and steer them to a cheaper SEO supplier. In this game, there is only 1 way to do things and that is through a well-strategised SEO campaign by a company that knows its stuff. Too many businesses will go with the cheapest option on the market and therein lies a massive problem; they won’t get their website ranked – cheap n nasty companies offer their search engine services because they cut corners and in most cases will take your money and do no work for you.

Also read: Mistakes Most Businesses Make When Choosing an SEO agency

Basically, if you want to get the business via Google, then you have to pay for this service. Depending on the keywords you are after this can cost a lot, but after all it’s your business and you want to do the right thing for it. Shopping around and tyre kicking for the lowest price will result in three things:

  1. you won’t get your new website ranked
  2. you may end up getting your website penalised through dodgy SEO practices.
  3. you might end up in a lengthy 12-month contract that you can’t escape


For a new website to rank on Google you do have to take into account many of Google’s algorithmic factors. The above are just some minor points to look out for when launching a new site. Getting to page 1 of Google for competitive keywords is highly challenging and one that needs mapping and planning from the outset, which is why you need the expertise of a web design agency like us at Hopping Mad Designs. Get your SEO right from the beginning will yield huge dividends once the site gets indexed by Google where you’ll start to see decent ranking for long-tail keywords in a couple of months.