Websites get designed with a purpose, and every web page should have a primary goal. When visitors come to your website, you expect them to perform the desired action. The action could be to buy a product, to procure a service, to sign up for a newsletter, to download a free e-book, to participate in a survey, or to give feedback on some content. You may also expect the visitors to your website to subscribe to an app, fill your “Contact Us” form, complete a personal information form, or take any other action that your web page aims to promote.
The percentage of website visitors who complete the desired action during a particular period is known as the conversion rate. You need to increase or optimize your website’s conversion rate to ensure that your visitors do what you expect them to do. It is against this background that this article provides all the information that you need to know about conversion rate optimization (CRO) for Hong Kong in 2020.
The article defines CRO and discusses the paramount importance of CRO marketing for your business. It also discusses the CRO process and where it happens to companies. While appreciating that there are so many CRO strategies, the article provides information on where you should begin. Also discussed in the document are useful CRO tools and nine rules of conversion rate optimization. The report also discusses four ways that you can use to optimize CRO with a conversion-focused design.
What Is Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)?
CRO is the process of making it possible for a website’s visitors to take any action that the site intends to encourage. CRO depends on the conversion rate, which, as noted above, is the proportion of people who perform a particular action whenever they visit a website. On its own, the conversion rate implies that not all the people who visit a site will make an action. If some people do not find what they are looking for on a website, they will leave without taking any action.
CRO thus means, to ensure that as many people as possible take the desired action while they are in the process of viewing your website. You can achieve CRO by designing and adjusting certain aspects of your webpage to increase the possibility that the site’s visitors will be converted into leads (prospective customers) or customers before they exit the site. CRO is all about improving the rate at which a website’s visitors are converted into leads and customers by performing actions that the site aims to have them do.
The Paramount Importance of CRO Marketing for Your Business
CRO Marketing is the systematic process of increasing the proportion of your website’s visitors who take an action that the site means to facilitate. The process is vital because it helps increase your brand visibility and improves your return on investment (ROI) as well as overall revenue. More details about how you can benefit from CRO marketing for your business are listed below.
Gain a Deeper Understanding of Your Leads & Prospects
CRO involves testing several factors on a site to evaluate whether and how these factors impact conversions. By getting involved in CRO marketing, you can get to understand what visitors are doing on your website and whether the people who visit your site get eventually converted into leads or customers. For example, you can determine the number of visitors who buy your products, use a service, or provide their contact addresses upon visiting your website. Therefore, CRO is of crucial importance when it comes to knowing your leads, customers, and sales prospects.
Boost Your Sales, Increase Your ROI
CRO marketing deals with converting the people who visit your website into leads or actual customers. Websites designed to translate visitors into leads or customers result in a conversion rate of approximately 1 per cent. To raise your level of sales, you need to attract more traffic to your website.
But using CRO, you can increase sales without necessarily having to drive more traffic to your website. With conversion optimization, you increase the conversion rate from the traffic that your website already has. With an effective CRO strategy, you can increase the number of website visitors who become your leads or customers by between 2 percent to 3 per cent, without necessarily having to invest more resources in attracting additional visitors to your site. In turn, this leads to an increased ROI.
Decreased Cost per Lead: Increased Returns with the Investment Levels
Cost per lead (CPL) is a digital marketing strategy whereby the client (advertiser) pays a predefined price for every sale lead generated. In other words, if you have a business and you advertise its products on a CPL basis, you will pay a specific price for each lead you get from the advertising process. And this is where CRO marketing comes in handy.
Through conversion optimization, you don’t have to incur extra advertising costs to attract more visitors to your website and increase your chances of getting more leads. With CRO, you simply get more sales leads from the people who currently visit your site through more conversions. It reduces your cost per lead and ultimately enhances your return on investment.
Improve Your SEO Strategy with Conversion Rate Optimization
SEO and other marketing strategies focus on helping bring traffic to websites, but CRO marketing aims at converting the traffic into leads or actual sales. It implies that SEO and conversion optimization are closely related.
With effective SEO and advertising, your website can get more traffic. Your CRO marketing process can then ensure that the web traffic driven to your site gets converted into leads and actual customers. Therefore, through CRO, you can improve your SEO strategy to ensure that the people who get driven to your website via SEO become your customers.
The Conversion Rate Optimization Process and Where It Occurs for Businesses
CRO marketing is concerned with website conversions, where they occur, and the conversion rate. These concepts are listed below.
What Is a Conversion?
A website conversion is what happens when a visitor to a website performs a desired action, such as buying a product, signing up for a newsletter, sharing a web page on social media, registering for a webinar, downloading a file, or completing a contact form. If a person visits a website and does any actions mentioned earlier or any other desired by the site, the person said to have gotten converted. It is because by performing the required task, the website visitor becomes a lead or an actual customer.
Where Do Conversions Occur?
Many websites have designs that are focused on converting the people who visit them into customers. Conversion can happen at various sections of a website. Such areas include the homepage, the blogs section, the landing page, and the page that provides information about pricing. These areas can get optimized to increase the rates of conversion, which can be micro or macro.
A micro conversion refers to a small step by a website’s visitor towards the primary conversion objective, which represents a macro conversion. Micro conversions include instances such as a visitor viewing a product video, downloading an e-book, sharing a page on social media, or signing up for a newsletter. On the other hand, macro conversions include website visitor actions such as making a purchase, providing a lead, donating, or requesting a quote or demo.
A website’s homepage is one of the critical areas where conversion occurs. The homepage is the main page of your website, from where visitors get access to other pages through the hyperlinks provided on this page. The homepage thus creates the first impression, presents an opportunity to retain visitors, and leads them further into other the other pages of the website.
It is possible to increase the rate of conversion through the homepage of your website by highlighting links to product details, providing a sign-up button, or offering help that users might need while they are browsing. The homepage can generate micro and macro conversions.
The blog section of a website provides an excellent opportunity for conversion. It is because, in addition to publishing incisive and informative content about the industry in which you are operating, you can also use blogs to convince your readers to use your products or services. It is achievable by inviting readers to submit their contact details so that they can be provided with more information or providing additional call-to-action aspects in your blog.
The visitors who act as desired based on the blogs can be said to be undergoing micro-conversion.
A landing page is a separate web page explicitly designed to facilitate an advertising or marketing campaign. A typical landing page will, therefore, be inherently intended for viewers to take the desired action. For example, a landing page for a product or service can be optimized with a video about the product/service to elicit purchase behaviors from the site’s visitors.
When a visitor buys a product or service due to content provided on a landing page that is a conversion. Landing pages can lead to micro or macro conversions.
The pricing page of your website can be a determining factor when it comes to your website’s visitors deciding whether they will buy your service or product. If the price is too high or not well structured, it can be a put-off for many potential customers. On the other hand, if the price is competitive or well-illustrated, it can drive some visitors to make a purchase or a commitment to buy.
Therefore, CRO marketing activities should involve offering flexible price ranges, describing the features of the product that relate to each price, and providing contact details for customers to request a price quote. The pricing page can also lead to micro or macro conversions.
All about the Conversion Rate
For CRO marketing to make any business sense, it is vital for you to understand the conversion rate formula, whether your website’s conversion rate is optimal, and the average conversion rates of other players in your industry. It can help you in your effort to improve your conversion rate.
Calculating the Conversion Rate
The conversion rate formula comprises the following elements:
- The total number of visitors to a website.
- Number of conversions
Calculating the conversion rate is easy. You simply have to divide the number of conversions within a given period by the total number of visitors to your website and multiply the result by 100 to get a percentage.
For example, if in a given period, your website had 21,468 visitors, and out of this number, you had 3,297 conversions, you will calculate the conversion rate as follows:
Is My Conversion Rate Considered Successful?
It is important to note that conversion rates mean different things depending on the quality of the data that you use. If the number of people who visit your website is minimal, your conversion rate may be unrealistic. For example, if only one person visits your site, and the same person requests for a price quote, your conversion rate will be 100 percent. This rate looks great, but it is misleading.
On the other hand, if you get 500 conversions out of 10,000 people who visit your website, you will have a conversion rate of 5 percent, which is low but realistic or dependable.
The conversation rate varies by industry. For instance, e-commerce websites have an average conversion rate of 2 to 5 percent. Industry average across different sectors is 2.35 percent. The top 25 percent of firms have an average conversion rate of 5.31 percent, while the top 10 percent achieve a rate of 11.45 percent or higher.
How Do I Compare to My Competitors? Conversion Rates by Industry
It is essential to understand how your website’s conversion rate compares with those of your competitors. According to WordStream, a company that helps turn website visitors into customers, the average conversion rates for all industries and some of the major industries (e-commerce, legal, B2B, and finance) vary, as shown in the table below.
With So Many CRO Strategies, Where Do I Begin?
A CRO strategy is a way of enhancing every stage of your marketing process, relating to how to design or modify your website. There are so many strategies that you can use for conversion rate optimization. Your focus should be on getting the best plan. As a beginner, one way to achieve this is to think of an iterative process, as explained below.
Think in Terms of an Iterative Process
Iteration involves repeating the stages of a process until you get the desired results. Thinking of an iterative process consists of looking at the steps of what you would like to achieve from the perspective of a funnel. By looking at each level on an individual basis, you may begin to see holes that need fixing. The iterative CRO strategy has several steps, as described below.
Step 1: Analyze Your Funnel Using Data
A conversion funnel is a concept that helps to visualize and understand the entire course through which a prospective customer arrives at your website and goes ahead to take the desired action. The process is a funnel because, as a marketer, you are using your website to guide the customer towards conversion.
A simple model of conversion funnel can get illustrated as a funnel with website visitors on the broader end, leads in the middle section, and customers at the narrow end.
Step 2: Hypothesize on What Failed to Work
The next step is to come up with a hypothesis about what failed to work. Basically, at this point, you are trying to answer the question of why there are too few conversions against a considerably higher number of visitors to your website.
Some of the reasons why your website may be having a low conversion rate include the site making a wrong first impression and not being mobile-friendly. The website may also have a minimal conversion rate because of not having a clear customer base, having poor navigation or low-quality product images, or having an unclear call to action, among other reasons.
Step 3: Design a Treatment
Once you have come up with a hypothesis on what failed to work, i.e., what caused your website to have a low conversion rate, the next step is to design a treatment for the problem. Possible treatments include improving your homepage to give visitors an excellent first impression. Also, by making your site mobile friendly, developing the website’s content with a focus on a specific demographic, improving the site’s navigation or product images, and making your call to action more accurate and actionable. You should have two alternatives for each hypothesized problem.
Step 4: A/B Test Your Alternative
A/B testing is a method of comparing two variants of a given variable, typically evaluating how a subject responds to variant A vis-à-vis variant B and concluding which of the two alternatives is more effective. For example, if you have hypothesized that your website’s low conversion rate is due to the site’s mobile unfriendliness, you can use A/B testing to affirm or dismiss your hypothesis. In this case, A/B testing will involve making a comparison of two forms of your website to determine the one that can lead to higher conversion.
Step 5: Keep Testing Until You Achieve a Significant Difference
Since the iterative process is about repeating a process until you find the best solution, you need to keep testing your suggested solutions until you find a solution that makes the most significant difference.
Useful CRO Tools
There are several tools that you can use as part of your conversion rate optimization process. CRO tools can help you to gather information about your website’s visitors and how they interact with the website. CRO tools are also crucial for hypothesizing problems such as low conversions rates and finding appropriate treatments. CRO tools also aid in testing your plans to ensure that you select effective alternatives that contribute significantly to increasing your website’s conversion rate.
For providing more information about the various useful CRO tools, they get categorized into five groups. These are research tools for gathering performance data, customer behavior mapping tools, hypothesis frameworks, tools to design and build your treatment, and A/B testing tools.
Research Tools for Gathering Performance Data
CRO research tools help in collecting data about how website visitors interact with the site’s content. These tools also help marketers to find ways to improve their websites to enhance visitors’ experience. Examples of CRO tools for gathering performance data include MixPanel, Amplitude, and Woopra.
Mixpanel is a professional analytics platform used to enhance mobile and web applications by monitoring how users interact and engage with the apps. Mixpanel’s USP is that using the platform, and you can track your website’s visitors’ actions at every stage of the conversion funnel and identify those that are not converting and why. You can also get better analytics to optimize the way visitors flow through your website and their conversion.
Users can use the free Mixpanel version or opt for the paid platform that starts at $89/month.
Amplitude is a behaviour analytics platform that enables marketers to understand website visitor behaviours and factors that contribute to the conversion. One of the key USPs of the platform is its funnel analysis feature, which enables website owners to visualize and measure how users browse through various aspects of the website.
Amplitude offers a free premium service that enables customers to get up to 5 million monthly events for free. You can also pay $299 per month for up to 50 million events per month.
Woopra is a real-time customer analytics tool. The platform helps clients optimize customer lifecycles by providing instantaneous website visitor behaviour information. The USPs of Woopra include helping understand customer profiles, providing real-time analytics data, and tracking all customer activity.
Woopra has three subscription plans:
- Core (no charges)
- Pro ($999 per month)
- Enterprise (based on the type of service required)
Behaviour Software to Map Your Customers’ Behavior
Behaviour software to map customer behaviour are tools used to tell the story of a visitor’s interaction with a website. Such tools graphically illustrate the path that a customer takes across different points of their interaction with a website. Examples of customer behaviour mapping tools include SmartLook, UXPressia, and Matomo Analytics.
SmartLook is a qualitative analytics software for mobile apps and websites. The software’s USPs include always-on visitor recording support and the use of heat maps to show real user behaviour. SmartLook uses automated event tracking and conversion funnel features to identify trends in website user behaviour.
There is a free version of SmartLook as well, as a subscription version that starts at $16.00/month.
UXPressia is a software that helps clients who would like to define website visitor behaviours and map visitors’ journeys to design products or services that enhance customers’ experience. The software’s USPs include customer experience analytics and customer journey mapping tools.
You can go for a free version of UXPressia or opt for the paid version that starts at $20/month. There is no free trial.
It is a free and open-source web analytics tool that tracks online visits to websites and provides reports for analysis. The USPs of the platform include real-time data updates, event tracking, and content tracking.
Matomo Analytics has a free trial period, and subscription starts at $9.00. You can also get a free version of the software.
Use Tried and Tested CRO Hypothesis Frameworks
CRO hypothesis frameworks help to develop hypotheses that can enable you to perform a dependable CRO test on your website. Examples of these tools include Craig Sullivan’s Hypothesis Framework, Conversion.com Hypothesis Framework, and the LIFT Model®.
Craig Sullivan’s Hypothesis Framework
Craig Sullivan’s Hypothesis Framework helps to develop CRO hypotheses based on the available customer data, what you expect to change, and how to measure that data that is required. The framework’s USP is that it is available in two forms: a simple kit and an advanced kit. Hence, you can select the version that best suits your needs.
Conversion.com Hypothesis Framework
Conversion.com Hypothesis Framework helps in hypothesis formulation based on the trends observed in website visitor data and what you expect to happen to help understand why website visitors don’t convert. The USP of this framework is that it uses available data to come up with a hypothesis, thus enhancing reliability.
LIFT Model is a framework used to analyze mobile and web experiences and develop A/B test hypotheses. The USP of the LIFT Model is that the platform focuses on six key conversion factors: relevance, value proposition, urgency, clarity, anxiety, and distraction.
Tools to Design and Build Your Treatment
Tools to design and build your treatment help to address the problems that your website gets hypothesized to be having, which makes it have a low conversion rate. Such tools include Lander, LeadPages, and Unbounce.
The Lander app helps in designing treatments for issues identified on your website’s homepage, blog, landing page, and pricing page to ensure that the site has an improved conversion rate.
LeadPages is an online platform used to collect data about a website’s email subscribers. The platform’s USP is that it also provides templates that can be useful for webinars, lead magnets, and landing pages to improve your website experience.
The pricing for LeadPages starts at $15 per month. You can also subscribe for the Standard package at $25 per month, Pro at $48 per month, and Advanced at $199 per month.
Unbounce is a platform used to build landing pages and optimize websites to increase leads and customers. The USP of the platform is that it allows users to custom-make landing pages without the need to code. Unbounce’s pricing starts from $79/month.
A/B Testing Tools
A/B Testing Tools help to compare two versions of things such as web pages, emails, or other marketing tools to determine the most effective version. Examples of these tools include Google Analytics & Google Optimize, Optimizely, VWO, and Adobe Target.
Google Analytics & Google Optimize
Google Analytics is an application designed by Google, which monitors and provides reports about website traffic. On the other hand, Google Optimize helps track social networking sites and apps, video, and Flash.
The standard version of Google Analytics is available for free if you have a Google account. You can also buy the premium version (Google Analytics 360) at $150,000. For Google Optimize, you can buy the whole collection of tools for a monthly fee of $12,500 or subscribe to an individual project.
Optimizely is a technology that helps in A/B testing as well as multi-page experimentation, which is one of the tool’s USPs. The pricing for Optimizely starts at $50,000/year.
VWO (Visual Website Optimizer) is an A/B testing technology that enables users to develop and compare different versions of their landing pages and websites to determine the one that produces better conversion rates. VWO’s USP is that the platform does not require HTML knowledge for developing different versions of web pages.
The pricing for VWO starts from $99 per month.
It is a rule-based targeting and testing platform that can be used for analytics and developing reports to improve customers’ experience. The platform’s USP is that it provides everything that you may require to adapt and personalize your website visitors’ experience.
9 Rules of Conversion Rate Optimization
Conversion rate optimization aims to convert the people who visit your site into your leads or customers. Below are nine guidelines that you need to follow to get the best results in the CRO process.
Some years ago, a study by Google suggested that if you slow down the speed of the research results page by less than 0.5 seconds, this reduces the number of searches by between 0.2 percent and 0.6 percent. These results show that people are becoming more impatient and that a slow loading page is a big put-off. Therefore, the CRO process should focus on increasing the speed of your website.
Rule of One
When designing a landing page as part of a CRO project, it is essential to focus on one item (e.g., an offer) rather than many. The point here is that less is more. When you provide fewer options, fewer distractions, and fewer reasons to make a visitor exit your website, you are likely to get more conversions.
Simplicity is Key
You should not add clutter that could distract a visitor from doing what you would like them to do on your website – to convert into a lead or a customer. Every element on your website in general and individual pages, in particular, should support the goal that you intend the site to achieve. You should embrace simplicity to make your visitors come closer to performing the action that you need.
Website pages should get centred on two aspects. One is the reason why a person has come to the page in the first place. Two, the page should focus on meeting the needs of the target audience. In other words, you should focus on what your visitors need.
To enhance clarity, you should create a firm connection between your keywords, ads, call to action, and other relevant aspects. You should also provide precise information about your products, avoid technical language, and provide any additional information that may be necessary.
The Ability to Identify
Your CRO strategy must identify the audience that you are targeting. Remember that, like any other marketing strategy, you are targeting a group of people, not the entire population.
To identify your audience, you need to do the following:
- Each page or email should target your key market segment.
- Understand your market by visiting the websites and social networking sites that they often visit.
- Study how review sites such as Yelp and Amazon do their content and use this format.
- Carry out customer surveys to gain a deeper understanding of your market.
Your website needs to create a good impression to attract your audience to do what you want them to do. To catch your audience’s attention, do the following:
- Put yourself in the website visitor’s position and ask about the important thing that the website helps.
- Include keywords in your headlines and subheadings.
- Ensure that your content is consistent with the message that you want to deliver.
- Connect with your audience using words like ‘you’ in your content.
The aim of your website should be to create a desire in your visitors so that they can buy your product or service, request a price quote, give you their contacts, or take any other desired action.
To elicit desire, take the following steps:
- Show what the customer stands to benefit.
- You should showcase testimonials and real stories about your product or service.
- Use clear images that depict why your product or service stands out.
- Mention your prominent customers so that your audience can desire to be associated with your brand.
Fear causes people to act quickly. Therefore, your CRO strategy needs to create some sense of concern about what your visitors will miss if they don’t take the desired action on your website. For example, you could highlight an offer that no visitor wants to miss. You may also emphasize the business opportunities that someone will lose by not using your service. Make it clear that there is a need for the visitor to take action, or else they will miss something vital.
While you are at it, it is essential, to be honest. Do not give any distorted information because when you come out as disingenuous, you will damage your reputation.
Websites are about building brand consistency and fostering trust. For your business to stand out as a trustworthy company, your website should have a great design that people can trust and be eager to use. A poor design makes people have doubts, lack trust, and possibly leave. Your CRO effort should involve making your website simple, presentable, and interactive. You should also present testimonials and make your contact information available and easily noticeable.
4 Ways to Optimize CRO with Conversion-Focused Design
Conversion-focused design is key to translating the people who visit your website into leads and customers. Some of the ways to make your website conversion-focused include using persuasive image captions, giving users directions to take, using short landing pages, and installing a progress bar.
Persuasive Image Captions
When designing a web page, it is often easy to ignore image captions. Captioning your images is a great way to add some style to your website and to offer insight into the subject of the picture. When using images in your conversion rate optimization process, you should ensure that the images create more visual interest and become a unique mark of your website or brand.
Give Users Directions to Take
Since the CRO process is about increasing conversions, you should use the opportunity to ensure that your website visitors don’t exit the site until they have taken the desired action. Your website design should help visitors to quickly find the direction to follow to see what they need. For instance, links should be visible and well-marked. More importantly, the design should be persuasive to trigger a favorable action from the visitor.
Using Short Landing Pages
Landing pages help in showcasing the value of your business’s services, products, and content and aid in promoting conversion. If you are keen to get more customers or leads from your landing pages, you should make the pages short. Again, the idea here is that less is more.
Shorter landing pages have unambiguous information and fewer distractions, which means that there is no hindrance to visitors taking the action that you want them to. For example, it is easier to fill a sign-up form when it is shorter than when it is lengthy and time-consuming.
Installing a Progress Bar
A progress bar helps to display the progression of a web or app activity such as page loading, downloading a file, or installing an application. Having a reliable measure of operation makes users have a sense of control, and this helps to improve the conversion rate for visitors engaged in different actions.
How Conversion Rate Optimization Helps Your Business
CRO involves increasing the rate at which the people who visit a website become leads or customers by performing an action that the site promotes. Through CRO, you gain a deeper understanding of your leads and prospects, increase your sales and ROI, reduce cost per lead, and improve your SEO strategy.
MediaOne provides all the solutions that you may need to optimize your website’s conversion rate. If you need help with improving your website’s features, testing various website designs to enhance conversion, or making your website’s design conversion-focused, we are here to assist you. Our contact details in Hong Kong are listed below:
4/F the Lee Gardens 3, 1 Sunning Rd,
Causeway Bay Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 9226 4438