It’s all well and good driving visitors to your website with an aesthetically pleasing design, SEO copy, and eye-catching ads. But traffic alone doesn’t bring in profit—conversions do. That’s why conversion optimization is important for your ecommerce business.
Understanding conversion optimization
Conversion rate optimization (CRO) involves optimizing your website, landing pages, marketing emails, etc., to drive more conversions from existing visitors.
“Conversions” don’t have to be purchases. They can also be newsletter subscriptions, loyalty program sign-ups, or e-book downloads.
Calculating your conversion rate is straightforward using the following formula:
Conversion rate = (Number of conversions / total number of visitors) x 100.
Let’s say that in the last month, 600 people visited your landing page. Of these, 50 went on to make a purchase. Divide 50 by 600, times it by 100, and you have a conversion rate of 5.5%.
Conversion optimization’s growing significance
Conversion optimization is important because it’s essentially how you turn traffic into profit.
Traffic is expensive to obtain. With customers having more choices and higher expectations than ever, poor conversion optimization can see hoards of visitors disappear without making a purchase.
CRO is also important because it helps you understand your customers better, increase your digital marketing strategy effectiveness, and drive business growth.
Benefits of conversion optimization
To truly understand why conversion optimization is important, let’s explore some of the main benefits.
CRO involves strategically optimizing the customer experience to create a streamlined and personalized path to conversion.
By making conversion easier and more aligned with your customer’s preferences, you can improve your website conversion rates and boost sales.
Enhanced customer satisfaction
A CRO strategy gives you valuable insights into customer needs and preferences. The more you know about what your customers want, the more accurately you can personalize their buying experience to meet their needs.
The result? More satisfied customers.
If you’re able to turn satisfied customers into repeat, loyal customers, you can drive business growth. Loyal customers will recommend your brand to friends and family, effectively performing word-of-mouth marketing for you.
A recent study showed that 55% of consumers have discovered a new brand through word of mouth, making it the most successful marketing channel out there.
Optimized marketing budgets
Conversion optimization is also important if you want to optimize your marketing budget.
High traffic doesn’t always drive high conversions. Using data analytics, you can identify your most profitable marketing channels, campaigns, and advertisements. This means you can direct more funds into optimizing these areas for conversion.
In turn, you can reduce or stop funds from going into poorly performing areas.
Remember when we said the more you know about your customers, the better? Well, conversion optimization increases website traffic, which allows you to accrue a wealth of data from new and existing customers.
You can use this data to identify trends, create better buyer personas, and make informed, growth-driving business decisions.
Quick strategies for effective conversion optimization
Of all the CRO strategies out there, here are six of the most essential.
Conduct data analysis and research
In-depth customer analysis provides valuable insight into your target customers’ ideal shopping experience.
Begin by collecting quantitative data (e.g. how long customers spend on specific pages, the calls to action they click on, the products they buy, etc). Then, create accurate, data-backed buyer personas and use what you know about their preferences and behaviors to influence your CRO strategy.
To effectively manage this data, you’ll need ERP software.
What is an ERP, you ask? Well, enterprise resource planning (ERP) software can help you manage everything from customer and marketing to financial data. Along with centralizing and automating rich customer databases, it can trace conversions back to specific marketing campaigns and generate detailed reports.
Implement A/B testing
A/B testing involves splitting your customers into groups and showing them two different versions of a variable—a landing page, advertisement, web copy, etc.
By observing your conversion rate across each variable, you can determine which was the most successful. From there, you can implement substantiated changes that align with the data you’ve collected.
This is a CRO strategy that works. Marketing expert Francis Shovlin says that by A/B testing their button design (which you can see below), they improved conversion rates by 11%.
You can also use AI attention heatmaps to glean more insights from your landing pages, including which areas engage your visitors the most.
Optimize user interface and web design
Your web design needs to be visually appealing in a way that resonates with your target audience. It also needs to be responsive, intuitive, and accessible.
Get all of these things right, and you immediately create better customer experiences that drive conversions.
So, optimize your website by creating a minimalistic, aesthetic, and instinctive user interface and design. You can eliminate customer confusion by adding menus to aid navigation and reduce frustration and high bounce rates by ensuring your website has fast loading times. You should also continuously test that your website is responsive across different devices.
Streamline the conversion funnel
Talking of responsiveness, a mobile responsive website also streamlines the conversion funnel.
When customers have to switch between devices to browse your website, they’re more likely to bounce. But enable them to access your website on any device, and customers can move much quicker down the conversion funnel, resulting in more sales.
Other ways to streamline the conversion funnel include using strong calls to action and providing multiple payment methods.
Make personalized marketing campaigns
You can use the data you’ve collected about your customers to create personalized marketing campaigns. For example, using a customer’s purchase and browsing history, you can make personalized recommendations that align with their interests.
This is an easy way to improve your conversion rate, as 56% of customers expect brands to always personalize offers.
There are a few key metrics that you need to track to measure CRO success. These include:
- Bounce rate.
- New vs. returning visitors.
Here is another example of when a cloud based ERP software can be invaluable. Not just because it can help you to keep track of your KPIs but because a cloud based option can also help to eliminate silos. It provides access to everyone from your web design team to your content creation crew, which means teams can monitor performance and collaborate to meet shared goals.
So, now you know why conversion optimization is important. By analyzing customer behavior and identifying preferences via A/B testing, you can optimize your user interface, conversion funnel, and marketing campaigns to secure more of them.
Other useful CRO strategies include leveraging lead capture forms, pop-ups, videos, and social proof.