Oxford College of Marketing tutor, Lynn McBain shares her advice on accessing the golden egg and making sure your website visitors are doing what you want them to do.

It’s all about Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO); although this has been a hot topic for well over a year, it’s still very much “out there” in terms of maximising the benefits and ROI of your website. Whether your aim is to ensure visitors purchase your products, sign up to your newsletter, download an app, support your cause or share information, CRO is the way to achieve greater success.

Set The Tone With The Right Copy

Copy optimisation is all about getting the right message across, in the right tone, with the right non-branded keywords. For example, you may find that a message stating a pricing benefit is more effective that one stating a product benefit. You can use A/B testing to check out different versions of a similar message.

Understanding Customer Behaviour

By understanding what makes your customers behave in a certain way, you can create competitive advantage and ensure your business continues to grow. Of course, conversion rates are important in both online and offline scenarios, but we’re mainly looking at online activity here. Customer behaviour is becoming increasingly erratic and unpredictable as the choices available to them increase; knowing what elicits certain behaviours is vital to the success of your organisation.

Optimise Your Conversion Rate

Conversion Rate Optimisation means ensuring your website is optimised for customer conversions; more conversions mean more business. Areas to concentrate on include A/B testing, analysis of the customer journey and copy optimisation. A/B testing is the process involved in testing variations of the same landing page; so that one-half of your visitors are directed to one version of a landing page and one-half are directed to a second version of the same landing page. The page that performs best is the one that is used. You could elect to change the position of the “Proceed to Checkout” button, or the colour of it, or perhaps you could use a different design for the “sign-up to our newsletter” form and so on. The secret to success is to keep on testing!

Analysing your customer journeys will allow you to understand the pain points that your customers experience as they interact with your organisation, this includes both online and offline interactions. Minimising pain points will ensure your customers are more likely to persevere with their interaction with your business and arrive at their intended destination.

It’s All About Strategy

Having a strategy to approach Conversion Rate Optimisation is so important; those companies that consistently carry out Conversion Rate Optimisation are far more effective and successful than those who don’t. Your website really needs to work for you, make sure it’s not merely a sales brochure.