Conversion Rate Optimization, or CRO, is at the heart of successful ecommerce. Converting more visitors to buyers means you make better use of the money you spend driving traffic to your site.
Every time a customer visits your ecommerce site, you have an opportunity to improve your conversion rate. You should learn from their actions to make your site and your value proposition better for the next visitor. Use tools and data to get in touch with what works for your customers and continually improve your approach.
These 10 Do’s and Don’ts will help you find the right path to conversion optimization on your site.
1. Use the latest technology: Conversion Rate Optimization is about using the latest technologies available in digital marketing to improve conversion. Try the latest tools and platforms and stay up-to-date with emerging technologies.
2. Be a scientist: When you are improving your conversion rate, act like the lead scientist for your ecommerce site. Create experiments and test different versions of pages and popups with different content and color choices.
3. Try something out of the ordinary: Remember, act like a scientist, keep an open mind and form hypotheses, and run experiments. Try something different and you’ll be surprised by what works!
4. Measure your results: There are plenty of tools available to help you capture and measure results. Google Analytics offers a suite of tools for tracking your site’s performance and conversion rate. Other tools to consider are Optimizely, and Unbounce. You’ve got to capture and review data. Using a software tool saves a lot of time and effort.
5. Focus on what’s important: While you should try something out of the ordinary, keep your attention on what’s important. You can change all the colors you want, but when your shipping costs are too high, for example, you need to offer a discount for free shipping to see measurable results.
6. Optimize sales and signups: Some customers may not be ready to buy when they visit your site. Give them the opportunity to signup to an email list and you’ll have the opportunity to market to these visitors over the long run.
7. Keep your finger on the pulse of your site: It’s important to keep your finger on the pulse of your ecommerce site. You know your site and your customers best. Keep an eye on the key metrics that you know are important for driving conversions on your site.
8. Know your audience: While it’s important to use the latest technology and try things that are out of the ordinary, it’s important you know your audience. Be sure your messages are audience-directed towards the values and needs of your customers.
9. Use exit-intent technology: Exit-intent technology gives you a second chance to convert visitors right before they leave your site. By offering an incentive in a well-timed message you can increase conversion rates by up to 10%.
10. Get as much data as you can: Conversion Rate Optimization is a numbers game, you’ve got to have enough data to see what works and what doesn’t. Use one of the testing tools and make sure you have their code setup across your entire site so you can capture as much data as possible.
1. Predict the outcome before it happens: Scientists actually have a name for this, it’s called confirmation bias. Keep the mindset of a scientist running experiments. You don’t know the outcome until you see the results.
2. Think you know everything: Don’t think you’re so right that you can’t be wrong. Stay focused on the numbers as they are, not what you think they should be.
3. Be afraid to use paid traffic to get started: Any new ecommerce site needs a way to get visitors through the door. Don’t be afraid to run paid advertisement on search engines or social media to start gathering data on your site. You need enough data to start with, and the clock is ticking. Don’t sit there and watch the clock, and don’t be afraid to use paid traffic to give your ecommerce site an early boost.
4. Be afraid to make mistakes: Unless you try some new ways of approaching your customers, you won’t know what works. You might have a few misses, but even pro athletes don’t make 100% of their shots. Don’t hold yourself to an impossible standard, and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
5. Try to hit a home run everytime: Everyone wants to wake up to a 300% increase in conversions, but trying to make drastic changes can result in a decrease in conversions. Conversion Optimization is the science of making incremental improvements and tracking them over time. It’s the incremental improvements that add up to a big difference in the long run.
6. Change too much at once: When you change too many things at once, it becomes very difficult to determine which change made a difference. Change one thing at a time and measure the results. This could be the amount of a discount you are offering, or the copy on your site. Don’t try to do too much at once or you’ll go nowhere fast.
7. Make a decision too soon: Don’t make a decision too soon, you could miss a great opportunity to connect with your customers. Change one variable at a time and make sure you have enough data to make a clear decision before optimizing your conversion rate further.
8. Ignore your instincts: You know the core metrics of your ecommerce site better than anyone else. Follow your instincts, look for trouble areas, and then use that data to help you pinpoint where the problem is.
9. Spend your time copying and pasting from one platform to another: Use tools that can simplify or reduce the amount of time needed for your tasks. Integrate platforms when you can, and automate tasks that don’t require your attention. Don’t spend your time copying and pasting, look for tools and platforms that have integration and automation built-in.
10. Forget your business metrics: Don’t forget to track important business metrics when you look at the conversion rate on your ecommerce site. Sales and profit are the bottom line for any business.
There’s one important ’Do’ we forgot to mention: Do have fun!
Make your own path to conversion optimization and have fun trying different experiments. When something works and you start seeing results, you can announce like Dr. Frankenstein in his laboratory, “It’s alive! It’s alive!”.
Keeping things light-hearted will also help you keep an open mind. Being open-minded, capturing as much data as you can, and using the latest software and tools are sure steps on any path to ecommerce conversion optimization.
About the Author
Csaba Zajdo is the founder of OptiMonk and several other projects specializing in conversion. OptiMonk is one of the most powerful lead generation tools in the world, leveraging the power of Exit Intent Popups. We’re pioneering the use of exit-intent technology at OptiMonk, we’ve developed an easy to use platform that has customization and testing built-in!