Improving Conversion Rates with Conversion Funnel Optimization
When you first begin thinking about how to improve conversion rates, you'll probably start with landing page optimization through A/B or multivariate testing. Landing page optimization is the process of redesigning, testing, and analyzing the pages of your site that are used to receive traffic, the "landing pages."
What you may not realize, however, is that conversion funnel optimization is just as important, if not more important, than landing page optimization.
Conversion funnel optimization is the process of redesigning, testing, and analyzing the pages of your website after the landing page. This can include product detail pages (if category pages are used as landing pages), the shopping cart, and the checkout process.
Simple changes to your conversion funnel can lead to big improvements in your conversion rate. Here are some of the things you should do to improve your conversion funnel:
Decrease the number of steps required to complete the conversion. This is the first place to start. Simple but so often overlooked. Why does billing information need to be on a different page than shipping information? Some of the strongest converting sites use a one-page checkout process that has proven itself with higher conversion rates and lower cart abandonment.
- Decrease the amount of information you ask the visitor for. Do you really need to know everything you're asking for? Think about what you're asking for. Is it realistic? Is it a turnoff to website visitors? This is especially relevant to lead gen conversions. Often our real estate clients want to know everything about a potential converter (age, income, size of house, timeline for moving, etc.). This is great info for the marketer to collect, but it's off-putting to the website visitor. Think about what you're asking for and question whether it's really necessary for the lead gen process, or whether it should be determined during the sales process instead.
- Consider how information is presented to visitors. Is it easy to understand and does it move them through the funnel smoothly? Are visitors distracted by cluttered navigation and special offers? Use clean, simple navigation and good design to lead customers by the hand through the checkout process. Forms should be clean and above the fold. Don't expect visitors to go hunting for the conversion form. Use large text but avoid cluttering the form with too much of it. Use simple language and clearly label what's required and what isn't.
- Seek external help from customers and employees. You cannot expect to improve conversion rates alone. You need input from outside sources, so talk with customer service agents and understand what problems customers face with the website that force them to call in to customer service. You may then want to bring in some potential customers for an in-person usability study, where you give them specific tasks to complete and observe how they go about doing it. You will be shocked!
- Do not make assumptions. Often times, conversion funnel and landing page optimization data will shock you -- the element you thought was innocuous could turn out to be killing your conversion rates. Keep an open mind.
- Test, test, test. Don't stop with one, keep testing. This is a dynamic world and your website should be too. You should allocate at least 10% of your yearly advertising budget to testing, and at least half of that should be spent on testing your landing pages and conversion funnels.
Next Steps: Getting Started with Conversion Funnel Optimization
This is just the tip of the conversion funnel optimization iceberg. Contact us today so we can share more valuable insights and information with you. We'd love to talk with you about your business, your goals, your current landing pages and conversion funnels, and your ideas. We'll then prepare a custom proposal free of charge, laying out our ideas and a plan for increasing conversion rates on your website using landing page optimization and conversion funnel optimization.