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10 Conversion Rate Optimization Hacks for 2019

Tiago Santana
Aug 28, 2019 8:13:48 AM

Are you satisfied with your current conversion rates? Of course, not -- otherwise, you wouldn't be here. 

And you're not alone. Around 22% of businesses aren't happy with their conversion rates. But figuring out where you’ve gone wrong isn't the hard part. 

It's doing your best to pinpoint how to enhance your site with conversion rate optimization. That's what we're going to discuss today. 

Let's review 10 conversion rate optimization hacks you should implement today. 

1. Review and Analyze Your Site's Traffictoby-christopher-LiMP8mmZbLQ-unsplash

Getting more traffic to your website is ideal because it increases your chance of converting more leads. But what if your site's visitors isn't the audience you want to attract?

Then you're going to see your conversion rate suffer. It doesn't matter how many people are coming to your website -- if they're not interested in buying your product or service, then they're not going to convert. 

So what's the solution to this dilemma?

The first step is to review and analyze your site's traffic. How many "sessions" is your site receiving, and how many of those sessions are unique visitors?

Then you want to find out where they're coming from. Are they finding your website using Google? This will help to identify whether your search engine optimization (SEO) is working or not. 

Maybe they're finding links to your site on social media or third-party blogs. If you have an email or pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, you may see traffic stemming from there as well. 

Next, you can look at your bounce rate. 

If this is high, then this is an indicator that you're either attracting the wrong people or your site needs improvement. This can mean enhancing the site's design or the message in your copywriting. 

If you've been tracking your site's traffic for months or years, then you can compare recent results to the past. Is it increasing, decreasing, or stagnant? 

More importantly, what are they doing when they get to your site? With tools like Google Analytics, you can identify which pages your visitors are bouncing away from. 

Other tools such as Hotjar allows you to record website visits and create heat maps that let you know exactly what the user is being more attracted to when landing on your site. If you have an e-commerce store, Lucky orange may do the job!

If you notice a pattern, like most visitors leaving after visiting a particular landing page or product page, then check it out. 

It may be time to create another version to see what the problem may be. We'll get more into A/B split testing in a second. 

But for now, you want to identify if there are potential areas of your website that aren't performing optimally. It helps to have a specific goal you're trying to reach. This way, you can determine whether your strategy is working. 

For example, if the goal is to get more email subscribers, then you can view how many of your visitors are converting. Or maybe there's a particular sales page you're sending visitors to from a PPC (pay-per click) campaign. 

Are they purchasing or bouncing away?

If you don't have S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-based) goals, then it'll be harder to measure results. For instance, saying you want to increase your traffic is too general of a target

It's better to have a specific goal, like boosting traffic by 1,500 visitors per month by the end of the year. This isn't outrageously hard to do, and you have a time frame for when you want to see results. 

If you're not reaching your goals, then it's time to make some changes to increase conversions. 

Some ideas to increase conversions is to:

  • Target a specific group of people (don't go broad)
  • Improve your SEO (select keywords to help your site rank on Google)
  • Insert calls-to-action to help your current visitors to convert
  • Design your site, so it's easy for visitors to find what they're looking for
  • Make it easy for visitors to convert (no long forms or external links)
  • Use web analytics tools to monitor KPIs

2. Optimize Load Times for Your Web Pagesbrad-neathery-nPy0X4xew60-unsplash

Today's consumers are less patient than ever before. And how can you blame them -- they have access to high-speed internet, mobile devices, and next-day shipping. 

So it's expected that your website will load at the speed of light on whatever device they're using. If it doesn't, then your chances of converting visitors fly out the window. 

According to a Google study, 53% of mobile users will leave a site if it doesn't load within three seconds. And unfortunately, most websites take between 8 and 11 seconds to load

But not everyone's on mobile -- right? If you think that 50% of consumers shopping on mobile as "not everyone," then sure. 

The truth is, mobile browsing is on the rise, so if your site isn't responsive or loads slow, then you're going to potentially lose half of your visitors (if not more).

It's also worth noting that Google's new algorithm (released July 2018) takes page load speed into account when ranking. So this could potentially hurt your position in the search engine results pages (SERPs).  

Now, how do you go about optimizing your site load speed? 

The first step is to test the speed of your site. You can check multiple pages to see their rate. There are several analytics tools you can use to test website speed:

  • Pingdom
  • WebPage Test
  • GTmetrix
  • Page Speed Insights (Google)

Insert the URL of the page you're trying to test, and it'll send a ping. In no time, you can see how quickly the page loaded. 

If it's coming up on the slow side, then it could be due to several factors. Start by analyzing the page -- are there a lot of images? 

While visuals can help to spice up your site's look, it can also bog down its performance. Rather than removing them entirely, you can instead shrink the size of the images. 

Ideally, you want your page to be under 500 KB. But the reality for most web pages is somewhere between 1.3 MB and 2.5 MB. 

How do you shrink an image? One option is to use a tool like ResizeImage.net. Or if you're technically-inclined, you can go to the original photo and edit it using your favorite tool (i.e., photoshop). 

Another option is to change the format of the image since some are larger. For example, .png photos are bigger than .jpg images, which are compressed. And you won't have to worry about losing the quality of the picture. 

Now, if you're using CSS (cascading stylesheets) or javascript then consider making improvements here. For instance, rather than using the same code on each page, you can move CSS rules and Javascript snippets to external files. 

This way, your site's only loading the document once for every visit. 

Here are some other ideas to optimize your page load times:

  • Cache your web pages (WordPress offers plugins for this)
  • Remove redirects (301 and 307 redirects)
  • Use a content delivery network (CDN)

3. Write Content that Convertsle-buzz-KiEiI2b9GkU-unsplash

You have a website that looks great, attracts your target audience, and loads fast. But what if people are still bouncing away without converting? 

In this case, you may want to look at your content. 

When visitors land on your home page, is the content optimized to navigate them to where they need to go? For example, if you're trying to sell invoicing software, then your home page should talk about the benefits of your product and include a link to where they can purchase, learn more, or get a free demo. 

It's the same when you're using unique landing pages for a social media or PPC campaign. The content should speak directly to the audience you're attracting. 

This includes talking about the pain points they have and how to resolve them. If you're selling a high-ticket item, then you should have testimonials or case studies to help convince them your product is worth every penny. 

Also, include CTAs (calls to action) throughout each page -- above the fold, in the middle, and at the end. We find that 90% of visitors that read your headline will also read your CTA. 

But it's not just your sales copy that needs work -- your blog content should also be optimized for conversions. Here's how you can write content that converts:

  • Appealing headline (no click-bait, deliver on the promise)
  • Subheadings for skimmability
  • Short paragraphs for easy consumption
  • Targeted keywords to help with SEO
  • CTA (sign up, download, buy, etc.)

If people aren't reading your blog posts, then it may be due to the headline, content quality, or readability. To improve how it reads, focus on talking conversationally. Omit technical words and jargon as well. 

If this isn't the issue, then see whether visitors are getting to the bottom of the page. 

If not, then it could be due to the message. Maybe it's bland, irrelevant, or hard to follow. Without proper flow, readers won't make it to the end.

Those that do make it to the end should have a call to action, like subscribe to your newsletter, download a free ebook, or purchase a product/service. 

Without a CTA, your audience will leave without converting.  

4. Add Forms to Your Landing Pages

If you're attracting people at the top of the funnel, then you know your prospects aren't ready to purchase yet. So the goal is to capture their information. 

Gathering leads is easier when you have forms on your landing pages. You can place them on your home page, at the end of blog posts, on product landing pages, or even in popups. 

Forms are an extension of your call-to-action. You can create a lead magnet, such as a free ebook, guide, or checklist. Then to get the download, visitors must fill out a form with their contact details. 

You can use these details to nurture your leads into a conversion, using email marketing.

Now, to make your forms work, you need to segment them. For example, for an audience looking for more info, you may want to offer a guide going over the causes of their problem and the benefits of your solution. 

Then for someone who's looking for help, you could offer an e-book outlining how to resolve an issue they have. The idea is to show your expertise and that you're looking to help, not make a quick sale. 

Tie these forms to relevant landing pages and use that to segment your lead nurturing email campaign. 

To improve the effectiveness of your forms, use these tips:

  • Use proper placement (above the fold, popup at the end of a blog, etc.)
  • Include a strong call-to-action
  • Note your privacy policy (people like to protect their personal info)
  • Don't ask for too much (name, industry, email, phone number)
  • Use two-step confirmation
  • Split test CTA and form location

5. Include Relevant CTAs clem-onojeghuo-6tedMQIJpNI-unsplash

So far, we've discussed different areas of a site that need calls to action. But what makes a CTA work?

Well, the purpose of a CTA is to incite action. In other words, it should compel your visitors to do whatever it is you're asking them to do. But this will only work if your CTA resonates with them at that moment. 

This is where things get tricky. Knowing the stage of the conversion funnel your visitors are in and what they're seeking is vital. One way to take the guesswork out of this is to research your market. 

What process do they use to go from the awareness stage to the final purchase? Is their first stop on Google? Or maybe it's on YouTube. 

What issues are they having that makes them search? What common roadblocks do they have when deciding to make a purchase? 

Is it a money issue, lack of knowledge about a solution, or trust issues? 

With all of this intel, you can come to solid strategies to improve your CTAs. 

For example, if your audience uses YouTube during the awareness stage, you can publish a series of videos that educates them on their problem. These videos can point viewers to your website where they can learn more. 

Once they're here, they should see CTAs on the home page, product pages, and popup forms relating to their issue.

You can use tools to customize your popup forms based on where visitors derive. For instance, if the visitor came from YouTube, the link will send them to a specific landing page, such as a blog post. 

Then for that blog post, you have a form at the bottom with a CTA to sign up for a six-week email course that'll help with their problem. 

You'll have to play around with different copy to see which headlines and CTA buttons work the best. Just be sure your CTAs are relevant to your audience.

6. Use Attractive Typographylesly-juarez-DFtjXYd5Pto-unsplash

Typography is likely the last thing on your mind when designing your website. But your goal is to create web pages that are appealing to visitors. 

You can't achieve this if the typography you choose is unsightly or illegible. Some businesses try to get creative with their fonts, but to their own demise. 

The best marketing copy is easy to understand and, more importantly, easy to read. If your visitors are unable to see what you're writing, then how will you convince them to convert? 

Typography is more than just the style of font you choose. It also consists of:

  • Typeface (not the same as a font)
  • Line length
  • Kerning
  • Tracking
  • Leading

Let's say, for example, you choose a cursive font. But it's too squiggly, making it difficult to read. It's better to be basic and clear than creative and hard to understand. 

It's also essential to include the color of the text and background. This should be easy on the eyes. For instance, you don't want to have a bright font on a dark-colored background. 

It's challenging to read lime green text on a black screen. This is why most websites use white backgrounds with black font. In some cases, you'll find black screens with white bolded text. 

The idea is to make content that doesn't strain the eye. 

Now, the typography you use can determine how trustworthy your brand is. Visitors will also use it to make assumptions about your business. 

There was a study conducted by the University of Michigan regarding this. The participants were separated into two groups and asked to read instructions for an exercise routine.

The first group had a manual with Mistral typography (a decorative brush style). And the other read a manual with an Arial font. 

The group with the Mistral typography manual assumed the exercise routine would take 83% longer than the routine in the Arial manual. So they were less willing to follow it. 

This goes to show the power of typography and how it forms irrational decision-making cognitive biases. 

In this case, the bias is, if it's hard to read, then it's hard to do. 

Typography can also influence:

  • Whether or not people trust your site
  • How long visitors stick around
  • Amplification of your message (humorous, serious, etc.)
  • The senses 

It's an interesting topic on user experience that's worth researching. 

7. Do Some Browser Testing

Humans aren't the only ones you have to optimize your website for. You also have to design it for web browsers. 

Have you ever visited a website that worked well on Internet Explorer, but malfunctioned on Google Chrome? This is because the website owner failed to do browser testing. 

This is when you test your website on multiple browsers to ensure the pages load correctly. 

It's also essential to look at the design -- is the layout the same on all browsers? How about the links -- do they work properly? 

Also, various elements on a web page may appear differently, such as the fonts, images, shadows, transparencies, page layout, text formatting, hover stats, and so on. 

So if you're in the beginning process of designing or revamping your website, then determine which browsers you'd like to support. This will allow your developers to code the site accordingly. 

A website that behaves buggy is a quick way to kill the user experience and lose prospects. So be sure to stay on top of testing your site on all browsers (and devices) your audience uses. 

8. Check Your Mobile Friendlinessbruno-gomiero-jp7J14W9sSg-unsplash

Consumers are rapidly adopting mobile devices for internet browsing (and shopping). If your site isn't optimized for smartphones and tablets, then you're going to lose a ton of traffic. 

Not only will they bounce away, but Google will penalize you by de-ranking your site. It's impossible to rank high in the search engines without being mobile-friendly. 

But does this mean you should have a separate mobile version for your website? Of course not, although several marketers like to create landing pages specifically designed for Mobile, as they can be formatted in a different way. 

Instead, you should opt for responsive web design. What this means is that you have a single site that responds to the device the user's on. So if the site detects a desktop or laptop, then it'll display the desktop version. 

If they're on a tablet or phone, then it'll display the mobile version. This is the most efficient method because it saves you money from building two sites. And it reduces maintenance since you only have one site to manage. 

Now, when it comes to designing the mobile version of your site, you want to keep key things in mind, such as:

  • Not cluttering the page with images
  • Making the content and pages easy to skim
  • Prioritizing features and content users need the most
  • Keeping your site features and functions consistent 
  • Creating a clear path to action (your CTA)
  • Include a search bar
  • Make links and buttons large enough for thumbs to press
  • Include a click-to-call feature for your business phone number

9. Remove Website Clutter with White Space

Some businesses aren't strategic with their website design. They think that adding a bunch of visuals, flash animations, and other items to a page will make it more enticing and engaging. 

But a website that's cluttered is confusing, ugly, and annoying. Because of this, users are more likely to bounce away. It's also worth mentioning that a cluttered website looks spammy. 

When designing the layout of your website, it's critical to think of the user experience. Select areas of your site to be more prominent than others.

This way, you can direct visitors to the sections that'll help them to convert. It's not possible to pull this off when there are too many distractions. 

The best way to prevent this is to include lots of white space on your site. You can think of white space as the air or atmosphere of a room. 

When it's free and clear of lots of shoes, clothes, dressers, beds, and toys, it feels more spacious and relaxing. This is one reason why productivity experts recommend keeping your desk clean -- it helps to clear your mind and enhance focus. 

And it's the same for website design. A clean and crisp layout with generous amounts of white space offers the same effect. For example, it can help to:

  • Enhance the legibility of text
  • Organize your content
  • Create emphasis and focus
  • Provide structure to content
  • Improve aesthetics
  • Showcase professionalism or even luxury

Now, this isn't to say that your background has to be white. It can be any color of your choice. 

The key takeaway is that the background of your site (whatever color it may be) should be visible more so than not. Don't clutter the page. 

10. A/B Split Testing

We can't discuss conversion rate optimization without going over A/B split testing. This is, by far, the most crucial component in optimize your site for traffic. 

It's what will help you to identify what's wrong with any given page and how to enhance it. 

But first, what is A/B split testing? 

It's when you take a single element of your site, such as a landing page or popup window and create two versions of it. The idea is to change only one aspect of the page, such as the headline, body copy, or call-to-action. 

This way, you know why one performed better than the other. 

It's ideal to perform split tests regularly, even when traffic is good. There's always room to enhance optimization results. 

There are several ways A/B split testing can help conversion rates. For instance, it can help:

  • Solve pain points for your visitors (i.e., irrelevant content)
  • Improve ROI from existing traffic
  • Reduce bounce rates
  • Allow low-risk modifications
  • Achieve significant results

Ideally, you should run A/B split tests for your website, popups, blog posts, email marketing, and even PPC campaigns. 

Is it Time to Improve Your Website Conversion Rate?jungwoo-hong-cYUMaCqMYvI-unsplash

A business should never quit improving its conversion rates for your website.

With the above conversion rate optimization tips, you should have no problem pinpointing problems and resolving them. 

All you need now is a team on your side to help. 

Our team of experts can assist with generating qualified leads and boosting conversions. 

Get in touch with us today to see how any of our growth strategists or growth hackers can help grow your business!

 

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