Most businesses don't define: What counts as a conversion on our website? And this could lead to wasted resources and lost customers. So let's understand conversions in relation to your business.
In this article we will explain:
Website purpose vs Website conversions
Why you shouldn't design your website for its purpose
Types of website conversions
How to choose the right conversion for your website
How to increase your website conversions
Website Purpose vs Website Conversions
Before designing your website or revamping an outdated website, one of the first questions to consider is:
What is the purpose of the website?
And usually it will be one of the following four answers:
"To build brand awareness"
"Get more leads"
"Increase online sales"
"Provide information about our business"
This is normally an easy question to answer and most businesses understand what the purpose of their website is. The next question to consider, which also is the most important question:
What would count as a conversion on the website?
And this is normally where most businesses are unsure.
Many businesses owners understand what they want their website to achieve but what metrics would be used to determine the success of their website is not as clear.
As most businesses have not thought much about what they would like their website users to do once they land on their website.
This mistake could lead to a website that does not encourage a user to engage with or convert on your website. Losing your customers.
A great website is built for conversions and not the purpose.
This may seem crazy but let's take one of the most common website purposes from above and understand what the difference is.
Website's purpose: "Get more leads"
A website designed with the purpose in-mind of getting more leads will include ways for customers to leave their details in possibly many different ways (or more ways than a previous website).
The website will also most likely be designed so that it would be very easy for a user to find a contact form or the business's contact details so that they may become a lead.
For our website, Deep Coral Agency, our goal is to get potential customers to fill out this form:
Conversion metric: "User submits a form on the website"
A website designed with the conversion metric in-mind will have to look deeper and understand the website's users in more depth.
Instead of just making it easy for a user to find the form, the website will need to be designed in ways that:
Bring the user's attention to the form.
Convince a user to fill out the form.
Make it a user-friendly process when filling out a form.
For example, as well as making the form easy to find on the website, the form may be optimised to increase conversions by reducing the number of form fields from 11 to 4 which can result in a 120% increase in conversions.
A website that is designed for conversions and not purpose takes a more proactive approach to ensuring it's users are engaging the way the business would like.
Only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their conversion rates and one of the contributing factors could be due to a poorly designed website.
Designing a website for conversions will increase the conversions on and off the website as the website's design is helping guide the user to important bits of information such as social proof or unique selling points.
Types of website conversion metrics.
There are many different types of website conversions and each will be closely related to the purpose of the website.
The conversion metric you use will most likely also be linked to the type of website you own.
Here are a couple of the most common conversion metrics:
Specific page view
Time spent on site
And the most common metrics for specific types of websites:
Deciding on your metric is one of the most important tasks when designing or re-designing your website as the whole website will be built to encourage the user to perform that specific action.
How to choose the right conversion metric for your website.
A simple way to choose your metric is by imagining a user has landed on your website, but this user may only complete a single task. What would you want that task to be and what metric would you use to determine if that task was completed?
What must the user do, so that you may make some money?
This may be a form submission so your sales team can sell the user on your product, or maybe the user must visit a page on your website that has an ad from another business on it and you will get paid you every time someone sees that ad.
Now, this doesn't mean that task is all the user would do as normally website visitors will jump around websites.
Unfortunately, users don't just complete the form (that would be amazing if they did!)
A great way to help narrow down the choices is to also do some research online about your industry and see what are most common metrics being tracked by your competitors.
Also, chat with a website designer and ask what are the most commonly used metrics for your niche and see if they would apply to your business.
Increasing website conversions.
Depending on the metric you choose, how to increase your website's conversions may differ.
10 of the most common ways to increase conversions on your website are:
Add videos to your website to your website
Reduce the number of form fields
Get your users excited about your offer
Don't require registration to buy
Match your copy to your audiences reading level
Experiment with different CTA's
Test your website's layout
Add a chat tool to your website
Reduce the load speed of your website
1. Add videos to your website to your website
Adding videos to your website can help boost your website's engagement and keep users on your website for longer. This can also be a great sales tool to sell a product or offer as the video can demonstrate how the product is used. 64% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded social videos (via tubularinsights).
2. Reduce the number of form fields
Reducing the number of fields in your form is always a great way to increase form submissions. Or find creative ways of helping customers fill out the forms easily by pre-populating the forms for them. One study showed by adding only one form field they decreased conversions by 11%.
3. Get your users excited about your offer
Why does the Lotto do so well? One of the main reasons is because everybody gets excited about what they could do with their winnings. If you get your customers excited about your offering there is a great chance they will convert better. Doing this may require you to get a bit creative but some of the most common ways are by using photos and videos of happy customers after they have used your offering.
4. Include testimonials/reviews
Business and product reviews left online are 12-times more trusted by other customers than the product descriptions of the business. So reach out to your customers and ask them to review your business online. Having customers review your business on Google My Business and Facebook are great ways to boost your website's ranking in search engines and even better for convincing your customers to choose your business over your competitors.
5. Don't require registration to buy
We all trust Amazon, well most of us, but what if you are new in the e-commerce game it's the first time customers have heard of your store. Then customers are more likely to be wary of your business. Asking first-time buyers to sign-up may cause an increase in abandoned carts and a loss in sales. Making their first purchase as frictionless as possible is a great way to start increasing completed purchases.
6. Match your copy to your audiences reading level
Selling Reverse Osmosis Dihydrogen Monoxide in 1 litre Silicon dioxide bottles sounds like something you might use to remove old paint from a rusty tool. In plain English, the sentence says "water in a 1 litre glass bottle". And I think we both could guess which would sell better on a hot summer day at the beach. Matching your copy to your audience is key to reducing your customers confusing and therefore increasing conversions.
7. Experiment with different Call To Action Buttons (CTA's)
Performable found that red CTAs boosted their conversion rate by 21%. This is one of the easiest and best ways to get more conversions if you are tracking conversion metrics such as link clicks, form submissions or purchases. Try different CTA colours, shapes, sizes and placement on your website.
8. Test your website's layout
You may love the layout of your website but your customers may find it confusing or complicated. One experiment showed a 681 percent increase in conversions when changing from a double-column layout. The best way to test your website's layout is by creating a landing page, sending some traffic to the landing page and then tracking to see if your conversions increased or decreased. If the conversions increased significantly, then it may be worth changing your websites page.
9. Add a chat tool to your website
In the digital age, customers expect to be able to connect with a business 24/7. To answer FAQ's, alloy any fears and help with any troubleshooting problems. A chatbot is a great way to be available to your customers no matter what device they are using. Helping your customers understand your offer and reducing fears give the customer confidence in your business and will help increase conversions.
10. Reduce the load speed of your website
Every second you make your customers wait for your website to load, you can expect a 12% decrease in conversions. The loading speed of your website is also a ranking factor and if your website is slow you won't only be losing a customer but your website will show lower in the search results. To analyse the load speed of your website use Google's free page speed test here. Speeding up your website's load time is one of the most important factors when increasing your website's conversions but you may need the help of your webmaster.
Understanding what counts as a conversion on your website, and not only your website's purpose, is one of the most essential first steps when designing or re-designing your website.
Then ensure you define what metric you will use to identify a conversion.
From there use the 10 steps above to start seeing more conversions on your website, and test things you believe would increase those conversions.
If possible make test changes on a separate landing page so that you only ever make a change to your website if you know it will produce the desired effect.