Over the past few years we have used one simple holiday tradition to help our clients increase their conversions. We decided that we would share this tradition with you by building a simple Christmas countdown timer that you can download and instantly implement on your site!

We often preach to our clients, as well as our readers, that creating a sense of urgency for your users can often increase conversions. An effective tool to achieve this sense of urgency around the holidays is a countdown timer until Christmas. Here’s a snappy widget that you can use to test on your traffic this holiday season.

The element:

Here’s the countdown:

And here’s a larger version:

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If you have a landing page, you obviously want it to boost your conversion rate. Whether you’re giving away a free e-book or selling a product, the goal is to get the customer to the next step. There are some elements that your landing page needs to have to help with your conversion goals. Here are nine must-haves for landing pages that convert:

1. Unique Selling Proposition


Image via Worldsstrongestlibrarian.com

What about your product is going to excite your customers? Ask yourself, why should they buy from you? Your unique selling proposition, or USP, is the most important part of your landing page. What sets you apart from your competition? Make this the most prominent element of the landing page with an easily identifiable message. So, what exactly is in a valuable USP?

Consider a header that tells your customers what they’re getting. You want to quickly and efficiently let them know the selling point of your product. In many cases, the USP is also a company’s slogan. (more…)

Let’s be honest – as a business owner you, are doing something wrong. Now, this isn’t something to cry about, but it is important to acknowledge and understand. You can’t convert potential sales to real money unless you know why people are leaving their carts without making a purchase. So, what are some things you are doing that are causing people to abandon their carts?

Offer Long-Term Saving

http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3387/3301664196_fe3a222290.jpg

Image via Flickr by the_english_guy

Whether someone wants to compare prices, they don’t have the money today, or they just wanted to get an idea of your products, many people leave their carts because they simply don’t plan to buy today. However, if you give customers a long-term cart, they are more likely to come back to you and purchase. A username and password can ensure that a customer’s cart is ready any time they are.

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Hot off the conversion press and just-in-time for Christmas.

Last year we posted about our Merry Christmas v. Happy Holidays test we ran for one of our clients. This year we decided to create a Christmas timer that you could download and instantly implement on your site!

If you’ve followed our blog before, you know that creating a sense of urgency for your users to act usually increases conversions. Since we practice what we preach, we decided to run a headline on one of our client’s websites doing just that. We tested a headline that reminds them how near Christmas is. We came up with 2 variations of this headline: one that just states the days, and another that states the days, hours, minutes, and seconds and counts down in real time.

The test:

Here’s the countdown:

And here’s a larger version:

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During the holiday season when retailers are at peak-spends to drive traffic to their websites, squeezing every nickel of profit out of each sale is crucial.

Back in the early days of web marketing (2002 to be exact) we managed website conversion testing for a site called Wholesaler’s Handbook.

The product was aimed at EBAY sellers to provide access to wholesale product sources, and was priced at $49.95.

Around this time we’d begun experimenting with “Price Elasticity Testing”, which was originated by an economist in 1890.

By applying this methodology, we nearly doubled the site’s profit margin in about 2 weeks . . . (more…)

Facebook wants you on its network, and it has some great bait. No, it’s not giving you free credit and beer; it’s giving out free data. Facebook Insights is a surprisingly rich analytics platform that you can use for landing page optimization.

facebook optimization marketer bait

Insights will teach you about your Facebook fans (for free) and show you what they’re up to. Of course, it’s always good to know your audience before you reel them in.

Know who you’re dealing with

If you have a Facebook page, Insights’s data will shed light on two big aspects of your audience:

#1. Preferred topics – you can see the reach, sharing activity, and clicks captured by your posts on Facebook. This reveals which types of content resonate with your fans.

Look at the data and ask yourself, what does the audience prefer? (more…)

Big results are great. You can point to them and say, “That’s what we do, son. We earn money.” But do you know what’s better than a great test? A solid landing page optimization process.

sexy science optimization process

Optimization Testing: The sexy science

An optimization process is not as sexy as an A/B test, but it always increases results over time. A test only increases results once. How’s that for sexy?

The marketing team at Firstmark Credit Union knows this well. The bank has 11 branches around San Antonio, and its

marketing team went on a full-bore testing rampage last year. The team earned:

  • 250% increase in average email conversion rates in 11 months
  • 6.9% conversion rate on a recent direct mail campaign that leveraged insights from online tests

“There has been a continuous increase in response rate and converted sales throughout everything we’re doing,” said Fred Hagerman, CMO at Firstmark. “It’s a result of the process.”

We sat down with Hagerman and Mitchell Shaw, Senior Marketing Analyst at Firstmark, to understand how they set up an optimization process that never stops earning results. (more…)

The mobile web is about to kick down your door. Some say mobile users will outnumber PC users on the web in three years. You should be thrilled. Why? Because when you optimize mobile landing pages, you become a better marketer.

You are about to go from a karate student to a Samurai Warrior of Optimization. Mobile landing pages will demand it. You will follow the same principles of optimization, but you will need a mastery of the art, and this blog post will help you.

5 Landing Page Optimization Strategies for Mobile

First, you must understand why people visit your site from smartphone or tablet. One thing you can be sure of: they have a goal. They are not pointlessly browsing. They do that on PCs at work.

Behaviors vary on the mobile web, even within industries and across devices. So track mobile visitors. See where they go. Review the keywords they use.

Ask yourself:

  • Are they looking for coupons?
  • Downloading PDFs?
  • Checking product information?
  • Filling out a lead form?
  • Buying a product?
  • What do they want?

This will point to pages to optimize for mobile visitors. Other ideas to try: (more…)

Shutterfly order confirmation page optimization

Confirmation Page Optimization: Shutterfly

Congratulations! Your landing page earned a conversion. Don’t get too comfortable, though. You need to push marketing ROI even higher, and you can do that with landing page optimization for your confirmation pages.

Too many websites have useless confirmation pages. Visitors fill out forms, buy a product, or download content, and all the page says is, “thanks!” What it should say is, “if you liked that, you’re going to love this!”

Companies spend millions of dollars to drive traffic to websites. A small, highly engaged fraction of that traffic converts and is still on the site. You have their attention. Engage them!

Re-engagement should begin immediately after purchase on an ecommerce site. Lead nurturing should continue immediately after downloads on a B2B site. Your goal should be to build relationships with these people. Don’t dump them like a one-night stand!

Rules of engagement for confirmation pages

Below is a list of test ideas for your conformation pages. But before we get to that, let’s set some ground rules for your offers:

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Proper Trust Logo Placement for Rockin’ Conversions

Verisign recently published a study demonstrating that the “trust index” of your average web visitor is at a paltry 61.5 points out of a possible 100. (

In other words, your average web visitor is extremely wary and rates the overall trust worthiness of unfamiliar websites just above an “F”.

It’s for this reason that many security & trust logos exist – they’re designed to bring outside credibility and reinforce that a new user can trust your website.

Most of the big players in the trust logo space offer a litany of studies demonstrating how simply adding their logo will improve your website conversion rate.
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