So you’ve worked on your sites On-Page and Technical SEO as well as worked on creating an authoritative link profile and your site is enjoying some good visibility & traffic.
With the traffic coming in it’s important to ensure that as many visitors as possible are converting into sales or signups. There are several reasons a visitor may not convert on your site such as the product/service itself, the set price, any competition to your business and several different elements that build on your credibility. In this post I’ll cover some really simple things you can do as part of a Conversion Rate Optimisation process that should help to improve the numbers of sales or signups for your site. Many of these points will be tailored to products on a site rather than services but they also apply to them in many cases.
Clear Header Telephone and Email Contacts Having your businesses telephone number and email address clearly visible in the header of your site helps to add a layer of credibility. It helps reassure the visitor that you aren’t a fly-by-night and also helps to show that you are available if they have any issues or questions. Better credibility through this simple addition can lead to better conversions.
Offer More Than One Contact Method In much the same way as the above adding more than one contact method also shows you are an established business thats ready to take feedback or solve problems. This can be further telephone numbers, alternative email addresses or local postal addresses. You could even make use of the opportunities for contact through your social profiles.
Simple Navigation To The Products This one should have been part of the site design from the start however in some cases it wasn’t and this could be losing you sales or signups. A few simple things you need to consider to make your navigation more conversion friendly are the following:
- Keep it short and simple – The visitor should get from their landing page to your product and checkout pages in the shortest and simplest way possible.
- Consider a faceted navigation approach – This will make it easier for visitors to filter down the possible variations of a product in a category section without the appearance of the page reloading.
- Make use of breadcrumbs – This will help the visitor to more easily understand where they are on your site and work their way back if they need to.
- Have a robust internal search engine – Covered below.
- Include ‘Recently viewed products’ – Adding this on the top level pages as well as more relevant versions on individual category and product pages will help visitors to find alternatives to what they are currently looking at.
Quality Product Descriptions It sounds like a given but its often the case that the actual products on sale have poor or thin product descriptions, this limits conversion rates. Thin product descriptions mean that you aren’t offering the visitor any benefits to buying your product. It also limits your opportunity to overcome any of their objections to buying. Thin product descriptions can also limit the ranking value of a page and lead to lower visibility for them.
Clear Images This is pretty simple, the better quality your product images are the easier the visitor is going to find it to imagine it in front of them. Good quality zoomable images from different angles will definitely improve your conversion rates. Making those images shareable may also increase the reach of the products themselves too.
Clear CTA’s If it’d not easy for the visitor to see a buy/signup/basket/contact button then it’s definitely going to reduce the number of conversions you receive. The same is true of the content on the page. If it doesn’t direct the visitor onto completing a conversion or focus the visitor towards your desired result then it is likely to reduce the number of conversions you are likely to receive. A good CTA button should be:
- Clear using a distinct colour, size and shape.
- Obvious of its result i.e. an add to basket button should be obviously that and not just a ‘+’ button.
- Consistent throughout similar pages on the site.
A good CTA within the content should:
- Focus the visitors attention.
- Help to overcome any objections.
- Use language that creates a sense of urgency to motivate action.
Chat Feature Resources dependant, this could be a great way to improve conversions on your site. Visitors can use it to get realtime information about a product or service, ask a question about the business or delivery details. Also as the chat admin, when a visitor starts a chat you can use it (when appropriate) to further sell the product or service and overcome any objections. You can use features within your CMS to identify visitors on your site who might need assistance and offer the chat to them.
Search Feature Most larger sites have a search feature in one way or another and many visitors (probably more than you expect) end up using it during their time on the site. If you’ve set up your Google Analytics profile to track site searches you’ll be able to understand what the visitor couldn’t initially find on the site. This can help you to improve navigation on the site or reposition elements to make them easier to find for the visitor. You can also use the search feature as a selling tool too. By ensuring that the sites products and pages are all appropriately tagged and categorised as they should be, and you’ve got a robust internal search engine installed it’s quite likely that visitors will get find the products much more quickly and convert. It’s also important never to return empty results, always show something!
Blog Articles Your sites blog is a great internal opportunity to build credibility and trust that can lead to more converting visitors. You can use your blog to show your knowledge of your niche as well as highlight what sets you apart from your competition and offer something to your visitors that they won’t get from your competitors. You can also use your blog to answer recurring questions you face or to overcome any objections that you’ve often come up against. It’s also a perfect opportunity to further sell a product through How-To’s and Tutorials that can link through to the products themselves.
HTTPS A secure site overall or a secure checkout process adds an additional layer of credibility to your site. It shows to the visitor that you value the security of the data that they leave on their site when they register or complete a checkout process. To the average visitor the little padlock’s added credibility can be a good conversion rate improver! The jury is still out (currently) on the impact on search engine rankings since HTTPS was announced as a ranking signal but its clear that Google even see’s the value in securing your site for the benefit of users…
Checkout Process Getting people to click to add a product to a cart is only part of the battle, often many users leave the site or abandon their carts and there may be ways to improve conversions. The following are a few ways to drive more conversions and less abandonments:
- Make it as simple to complete as possible with minimal steps to completion.
- Make it clear, understandable and uncluttered.
- Show the prices clearly.
- Display all taxes early on to avoid any surprises.
- Display shipping information and choices clearly.
- Clear and focused completion buttons to drive the attention.
Third Party Reviews & Testimonials Making the most out of reviews and testimonials from previous customers can be a valuable way to add trust in your business and the products or services you provide. There are some great external review sites out there like Reevoo, Feefo and Trustpilot which allow users to add verified reviews based on what they have bought from your site. These sites also offer the business owner to respond to the reviews and resolve any issues to add transparency and show ownership of problems. You can integrate these reviews onto your sites pages to show your star rating, add credibility and trust in the product which will work to improve the chances of converting the visitor. These integrations can also, if set up well, can pull through into search results for both Organic and Paid Ads!
Third Party Endorsement This may not be as simple as some of the other tips but it can be a fairly powerful tool to your conversion rate improvement arsenal. Within pretty much every niche there is an authoritative source or sources that write about things relevant to their readers. In some instances these sites review products & services or write How To’s mentioning businesses, sometimes providing a link to the page itself. When a credible source endorses a business or product it can help to pass some credibility onto that business which can lead to the visitor trusting more, and driving more conversions. I hope this article has been useful and if you have any questions or any other examples of simple conversion rate optimisation tips to the ones I’ve covered, please feel free to add them into the comments section below.