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How to Improve Website Conversion Rates

January 2 2015

If I could pinpoint one area that businesses should be focusing on in 2015 is their website conversion rates. This is often an over looked area and businesses are paying a heavy price for websites that are not focusing their efforts on improving these conversion rates. Following are some great tips to help businesses improve their website conversion rates.

So What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?

Conversion rate optimisation is also known as (CRO) and is the process of looking at the way visitors interact with your website. Rather than simply focusing on driving visitors to your website in the hope that they will eventually buy from you, CRO looks at site visitors habits and addresses flaws in your web page design that might inhibit these potential customers from making an inquiry or buying from the website. Conversion Rate Optimisation affects all websites across all types of industries; including eCommerce sites. In short, if your website has not been optimised for the highest conversion rates, then you WILL  be loosing customers.

Let me give you an example. Have you ever gone to a website and been totally confused about who they are or what they offer? Have you been to a eCommerce website looking to buy a product and been unable to proceed to the check out area? Have you ever landed on a web page and could not find out how to contact them? If you have answered yes to all of these scenarios then you have visited sites that are in desperate need on conversion rate optimisaton.

At Hopping Mad Designs we are experts at pinpointing and highlighting areas of your website that are hampering and hindering potential buyers and clients from contacting or buying from you. We have in house conversion experts that can conduct a full website audit and make the necessary design and interface recommendations that will make your website a more powerful sales and marketing tool. A site that is completely focused on driving those visitors into paying clients. CALL US TODAY ON 02 9360 8514.

What is a Good Conversion Rate?

Conversion rates can vary widely BUT if you look at the major brands and most commonly known websites such as eBay and Amazon, you will find that their conversion rates are around 10%. This means that 10% of the people who visit the site will actually engage with the site economically – that is, buy the product. Now before you think this is way too low, let’s look at the average conversion rates for most Australian websites. They are around 1% and can in some cases be around 0.5%. These figures are quite low and the best way to improve on these is buy addressing the issues surrounding your site and trying to lift these poor CRO percentages.

What Are Some of the Factors That will Affect your Conversion Rate?

There are many factors that affect websites conversion rates. Some are no brainers and some are a little bit more involved but following will give you a guide as to what to look for when examining your low CRO rates:

Website design – Without doubt this is the first factor that will have a MASSIVE impact on your conversion rates. In many cases businesses have gone down the cheap web design path or even tried to have a crack at doing the website themselves and in return have a site that is underperforming and not really working that well. I have seen and spoken to many people who have wanted to save a few marketing dollars when getting their website designed and are now paying the heavy price with really low and terrible conversion rates. It’s a common mishap as the desire to go with web agencies that offer really cheap prices is often far too hard to refuse. The best thing to do now is speak with a professional web studio like Hopping Mad Designs that can turn these abysmal CRO figures around for you. This is the very first and most important step – without proper web design your CRO percentage rates will ALWAYS BE VERY VERY LOW no matter what you do.

Eliminate Flashing Images and Confusing Messages– Flashing signs all over the web page are a massive distraction. People don’t know where to look or where to go on the page. My advice is to keep things as simple as possible, with clear calls to action. Remember, you audience is on your website to find something, so PLEASE try to NOT put any road blocks or hurdles in their path of discovery. If you are the type of person who wants a flashy website with all the bling then please note the affect this will have on your conversion rates.

Inquiry Form Above the Fold – put an inquiry form with no more than 5 fields at the top of the page – perhaps even next to the top banner. People will be more inclined to make that inquiry if there is a form right in front of them. Don’t forget to ask your web agency to add a ‘Captcha’  text box to avoid those spammy emails. More and more companies are adopting this inquiry form box as it does work really well.

Offer Something Free on the Website – People love freebies. It doesn’t matter what it is. It could be anything as simple as: free shipping, free giveaway or first consultation free. It doesn’t matter as long as it’s clear, visible and in their face. Having this scream out at the user will help reduce web bounce rates and in turn improve site conversions. Make sure in some cases you cap the time limit to give a sense of urgency about it. Anything to make them stay on your site, fill out the inquiry form or make that call – give it a go and see the type of results you are getting. If they don’t work, try refining, modifying these offers till you hit on the right formula.

Work on your Social Media and Build your Brand – People will be more inclined to buy from someone they trust online. Constantly adding to your social media and attracting a loyal customer base is a great way of brand building, generating loyalty and increasing conversion rates. Keep up your postings on Facebook, Instagram, Google + and Twitter. This may seem like a hassle and a lot of hard work but these social media platforms are there for you to use at your discretion.The more your post the more followers you are going to eventually get and this will give your brand so much more authority, trust and power. Got a new product you want to promote or an upcoming sale you want to tell people about – then put it on your social media and direct them to your site. If they like what they see and are not put off by shoddy designs then they will be more likely to buy from you.

What is your website copy like? – Was it written a long time ago by someone in your company with no skills or was it put together quickly just for the sake of having something up there? Web copy is an area that is often over looked BUT and I really want to hammer the point home here, IS NOW CRITICAL to the success of your website and conversion rates. You MUST get a professional copywriter to have a look at your web content and make sure it’s geared up and written for the consumer. Unless you are a skilled wordsmith then you better forget about writing the copy….spend some money at this stage of your web strategy and you will receive huge dividends. There is nothing more off putting than BAD copy. It’s a real sales killer and will put potential customers in a negative mind set. On top of this Google will reward websites with unique, well crafted copy and push these higher up on the search results. Essentially my point here is that for a website to work you need to combination of great copy, awesome graphics and a user interface that is very consumer friendly. These are the 3 pillars of increasing customer conversion rates and if you follow them religiously you will see fantastic results quickly.

So, How Can I Improve My Websites Conversion Rates?

If you are realistic then you should know that a 10% conversion rate is near or next to impossible UNLESS you are a big well known brand. But let’s put a positive spin on this. You can look to double or even triple your conversion rates in the short to near term by following my 3 pillars. For some businesses this is huge. Imaging being able to double your CRO from 1% to 2% and increasing sales by 100% – this is the power of CRO and this is why all businesses should now be taking this very seriously. Cause if you don’t, your competition will!

Once you have established a formula you can then look at a long term strategy till some day you do reach the pinnacle of a 10% conversion rate. It can be done, it just takes some will effort from your side of things and a willingness to get this started. A will to invest in a web, graphic and CRO specialist agency like Hopping Mad Designs is the very first step. We will take a very strategic approach to your CRO and look at ways to make a few simple improvements to start with that will have an immediate impact. So what are you waiting for call us today and start turning your sales slump around now!