The process of identifying roadblocks to conversion by examining user feedback and analytics to remove them from a website is called Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO).
Why is CRO carried out?
You are likely to lose the opportunity of signing up people who use your browser if there is a blockage somewhere in you signup widget, for instance, it not working on Chrome. CRO helps you look at problems from a new perspective so that you can identify and fix your barriers to conversions and get more footfalls on your website. CRO includes an in-depth analysis of everything on the landing page of your website, starting from the structure to the content of the page.
Best practices for CRO
Though there is no solution for CRO that can be applied for ever situation, there are some practices that can be considered as ‘best practices’ for how you can get started with CRO. These practices are:
- Assess where exactly you’re losing traffic
Finding where you lost your traffic can be made easy by setting up your Google Analytics with goals and funnels. Considering traffic can be lost at any transit point, what you should be looking for are pages and forms that show higher number of exits and bounces rates.
There is no fix-all solution for CRO because what converts well for one site might not work at all for another. But there are still some best practices for how to get started with CRO. This information will clarify where you need to focus your first CRO efforts. Items to consider here are:
- Site navigation: Find out if there is enough information. Whether the information provided is too much or whether it is intuitive.
- Call To Action (CTA): Make sure your site is clearly worded in a clearly visible location where a new visitor would understand what to do next.
- Images: Make sure the images you use are adding to your story and not distracting from the CTA.
- Value propositions: Make sure everything is clearly articulated.
- Social proofs and testimonials: Make sure your site has enough social proofs and testimonials that speak to your customers.
- Number of clicks to complete an action: Make sure you are not taking unnecessary steps.
- Page speed: Make sure your pages are not loading faster than the attention span of your customers.
2. Think like a visitor
Look at your website and / or its pages from a visitor’s perspective. Make sure the navigations are clear and the links visible. Make sure nothing is sticking out. Read your content out aloud to get a fresh perspective on your content.
3. Data collection and testing
The issues you had identified need to be tested. To get data about the potential barriers to conversion, every test is crucial. The best practices to keep in mind while designing tests and surveys include the following:
- Don’t make the test too crammed – Try not to put everything in one test. Adding too many variables in one test will make it impossible to know exactly which option succeeds over another. Design experiments that are simple and demand clear answers as one variable works best for any test.
- Assign a control group – A control group will help you study how your present website will interact with your visitors (as it is now), and how they will interact when the proposed changes are applied.
- The size of your sample is crucial – It should be big enough to give statistically significant answers and small enough to not break the bank on testing.
Surveys are a great way of knowing what people think about your site. Survey responses can be gathered in quite a few ways. Some of them are emailing your customers, setting up a survey with Google Consumer Surveys, or using Qualaroo or a pop up window that polls people while they are on your site.
- Usability tests
With a usability test, you can harness the power of live users by using tools like Usertesting.com or Clicktale that help you set up tasks and / or tests for users to complete. Depending on the tool you use, feedback can be received in form of reports, audio and video recordings, and so on. This is an intelligent way of keeping a check on conversion barriers that you may never have considered otherwise.
6. A/B tests and Multivariate tests
Tools like Optimizely, Unbounce and Google Content Experiments allow different users to get a different version of your website. You must project different versions of your site to different users so that you can receive data on what is a better convert.
7. Heat maps and Scroll maps
Tools like CrazyEgg can detect and show heat maps that tell you where visitors click the most on your website as well as where your CTA is required.
Once enough data is gathered, the evaluation can begin. This will help you in making the changes required to unblock your funnel. Since CRO is an ongoing process, you will have to keep testing, iterating and evaluating. You will get closer to a better conversion rate with each pass. Keeping your CRO up will mean that your site will adapt well to its customer’s suitability and behaviour changes.