Paid search, social advertising and SEO are familiar to most online businesses. Companies everywhere use some combination of these three tactics to drive more customers to their site and sell more goods or services. Unfortunately the effort to win customers often stops once someone lands on a website. That means many sites have a poor user experience which can drive potential customers away and cost a business money. It can even hurt SEO and make paid advertising more expensive.
How do you use conversion rate optimisation (CRO) to improve your business?
Step one is matching a customer’s initial experience to the landing page.
For paid search this means making sure the the expectations created by your ad are fulfilled by your landing page. So if your ad says:
“New Sports Cars For Great Prices
At Jims Premier Autos
Find your perfect sports car from our range of BMW, Mercedes and Audis. Call today to book an appointment at our showroom.“
Your customer will see this ad and expect sporty high end cars. If they click the ad and land on the main page of the website that is full of information about sensible small cars for low prices they will be very confused. Your ad promised one thing and delivered something completely different. The goal of any landing page should be to deliver exactly what the ad promised simply and quickly. Along with matching your promise to what you deliver you should make sure the content on your landing page is easy to read even if someone is just scanning. Make it quick to digest so your customers know what they are getting fast.
For social ads CRO becomes even more important. Your ads are competing against entertaining content and the people you are advertising to have not directly searched for your service. To increase your conversion rate you need to do your research. Conduct customer interviews, surveys and/or exit polls. Use that data to talk to customers in their own words. Address their pain points, worries and goals in your ad and landing page content. If you do not hit the right notes in your ad and landing page copy, your social spend just contributes to cluttering up someone's social feed.
CRO for SEO is a bit different. Landing pages are often targeted at people looking for information who are in the early sections of the search funnel. That means some people may not be interested in converting yet. However you want to make sure anyone who may want to convert can do so easily. The best way to do this is to make the next steps in the customer journey clear and provide calls to actions in the content. For example, if your landing page is about how to choose the perfect new sports car, you are probably dealing with people who want to know what to look for before they start shopping. The next step for them might be to look at cars online or book a visit to a showroom. Those would be the things to offer in calls to action.
Step two is to determine the best landing page if no bespoke page is available.
For paid search this is pretty easy. If you cannot build a landing page that does exactly what you want, you should find the best landing page you already have. If you are advertising a specific service but you are directing people to a homepage that offers multiple services they may get confused and leave. Find the page that best matches your customer’s needs. You can do this by using user flow data and click tracking. For example, a company currently sends all its paid ad traffic to the homepage. By using user flow data and click tracking they find out most of the users who click on their ads immediately go to the page which provides more info on their product. That means the more info page would probably be a better landing page.
For social media you should be looking at your landing page user experience. If most of your users are on a mobile device but your page is optimised for desktop the format could be driving them away. You also want to look at things like language and calls to action. Start by understanding your clients and how they use your site, then make your landing page work for them.
For SEO it is important to help users go through every step on your site. We have already made sure our SEO offers users the next step in their journey. Now go through all the logical steps and provide as many of them as possible. Let's go back to the car dealership website example. If someone has landed on your site after searching for “how to buy a sports car”, the next step is looking at cars. You can also provide information on financing and trade in information. This could even be combined into a tool to help someone calculate monthly car payments. The point is that if you provide every step possible that a user might need to go from interest to purchase you can keep them on your site and increase conversion rate.
Step 3 is the same for paid, social and SEO. TEST!
You should run AB split testing on your landing pages no matter what is driving your traffic. Trying new calls to action, new layouts etc. are all great ways to increase your CRO. AB split testing will help you better understand your audience and provide actionable intelligence.
If you follow the above steps you will be able to handle all the basics of CRO. If you want to take your conversion rate optimisation to the next level, Plug and Play Design can help. Contact us today.