Archive for the "Beginner Guides" Category
If you have a website, you need to make sure that you market it well. However, to do that, you need to know exactly what your customers are looking for. There are a variety of ways to do this, but the two most debated options are A/B testing and multivariate testing. What are the differences? Which is better for your site?
Learning the Basics of the Two
First, you need to understand the differences between A/B testing and multivariate testing. There are several key differences, so establishing those is the first move creating the most effective landing page.
- A/B testing – After creating two versions of a website, you split the traffic coming to your site evenly between the two.
- Multivariate testing – You only have one version of the website. You are testing a variety of elements inside the page, to see what is most popular.
If you browse our blog regularly, you may have noticed a little green tab at the bottom of the page that reads “Chat with us!” – if you ever come across it, feel free to chat with us! There’s a real person behind it and we don’t bite!
We are always looking for the next best thing for conversion rate optimization, and we’ve noticed lots of websites are popping up with live customer support chat. People usually want instant customer service, rather than calling a 800 number and waiting on hold for 15 minutes for a question that takes 30 seconds to answer. Elements like this can also help decrease shopping cart abandonment, as they can get their questions/concerns dealt with in real time. There are a couple different options in this space, but we decided to go with Olark.
Setting up Olark is extremely simple to install, even more simple if you have a dynamic website. All you need to do is take the code they give you and paste it in your HTML code, thats it!
“Dr. Suess wrote The Cat in the Hat with only 236 words, so his editor bet him that he couldn’t write a book with only 50 different words. Dr. Suess won the bet with Green Eggs & Ham, which became one of the best-selling children’s books of all time.”
This is a quote from my favorite chapter of Steal Like an Artist titled “Choose What to Leave Out”, and it applies directly to EVERYTHING in CRO.
Communicating rich thoughts and ideas with minimal waste is called “word economy” when we’re copywriting or designing headline experiments.
This is directly applicable to minimizing page elements, focused messaging, effective elevator pitches, or building your deck.
On the CRO side alone I’ve written out several examples of this concept in motion:
- Using simple language will improve your conversion rate
- Using simple, ugly design will improve your conversion rate
- Dramatically cutting your content will increase your conversion rate
Simple, beautiful and distilled messaging ALWAYS wins in my experience.
Kind of like this: “Full service conversion rate optimization on a performance basis – contact us today!“
Data keeps your landing page optimization strong. The trouble is that some marketers are lazy with data. They get a report every month. They look at cost. They look at revenue. They throw it away and charge forward.
We want you to be the other marketers – the ones who understand “no pain, no gain.” You have to dig into data to maximize revenue, and testing is only the beginning.
Here are three metrics to start your optimization-fitness program and what to do with them:
Metric #1. Bounce rate
You know this nasty little critter. The bounce rate tells you one of two things:
- The percentage of visitors who saw your page and immediately left
- The percentage of visitors who hit your page and did not clickthrough
Imagine a father is at the ballpark with his son. Two vendors hear the kid whining about being hungry. One vendor yells “hotdogs!” The other tells the father that he can shut the kid up for $5. He gets the sale. Why? Because he uses targeted landing pages. A bit more advanced strategy for your landing page optimization process.
A targeted landing page speaks directly to the needs of a specific type of customer. It connects on a deeper level because it’s not just yelling “hotdogs.” It’s selling a solution to a specific need – and that increases conversion rates.
When done well, a targeted landing page will always have a higher conversion rate than a generic landing page. There are too many types of customers for a single, generic page to satisfy. The page will yell “hotdogs!” and everyone will wonder “why should I care?”
Target one customer at a time
Let’s say you’re a flood insurance company and you want people to fill out a form to request a quote. You could use a single landing page that emphasizes “coverage you can count on.” OR you could use a different page for each type of visitor.
Here are three examples: Read the rest of this entry »
Presidential campaigns are tornadoes of cash. This year’s is the biggest yet. Floods of money have poured into campaign marketing. The money supports a mountain of tactics, and this year we’re seeing a lot of landing page optimization.
Here’s what we found:
Landing page optimization — déjà vu
When you search for each candidate in Google, the campaign website is the first result. Both sites display an email capture form before the homepage, and we’re going to comment on these forms together. Take a look and you’ll see why:
Am I having déjà vu? In terms of landing page optimization, the pages are almost identical! Only a few details are changed.
Here’s what we see:
High shopping cart abandonment rates is a thorn in the side of every ecommerce marketer. People load their carts, see your shipping rates, and say “adios.” Instead of being frustrated, you should see abandonment for what it really is: a big fat opportunity to slash shopping cart abandonment rates!
More than 75% of all shopping carts are abandoned, according to Listrak’s six-month shopping cart abandonment index. That means only one out of every four shoppers converts. The question is, how do you get the other three to pony up some dough?
Here are six facts you need to know to lift shopping cart and checkout conversion rates:
Fact #1. Shoppers want free shipping
Shipping costs are to blame for 44% of abandoned carts, according to Forrester. It’s the number-one cause of cart abandonment, and has been for years.
What do people want to pay for shipping? Zero dollars. Free shipping and coupon codes are everywhere. They’ve conditioned consumers to expect a deal. If you don’t have a deal, they’re going to find someone who does.
This leaves ecommerce sites with two options: Read the rest of this entry »
Remember the last time you bought something at a gift shop? Maybe you were at a museum and bought a commemorative spoon or something? You probably didn’t realize it, but that experience taught you about landing page copywriting.
Whatever you bought, it was insanely overpriced. But you were feeling good. You were on vacation with the kids. You had extra money. Why not?
About a week later you probably saw the spoon and wondered, “What was I thinking?” The truth is that you weren’t thinking. You were “feeling.”
“Feeling” is stronger than thinking
Everyone wants to be logical. We want to weigh facts, consider options and make good decisions. But many times we don’t.
A/B testing gives you more than a lift in conversions. If you test one page each month, you’ll notice a shift. Your marketing team will write different copy. Your design team will create different layouts. Executives will make your coffee (ok, maybe not that last one, but still).
In many ways, A/B tests are only the beginning — and that point is completely overlooked in a recent article from Wired magazine: The A/B Test: Inside the Technology That’s Changing the Rules of Business.
This article is really, really good, so check it out (the print version even has a case study). Brian Christian lays out how A/B testing has taught many companies that the opinion of the highest paid person (HiPPO) isn’t worth a hill of beans compared to data.
The article is loaded with awesome quotes:
- “Most websites suck because HiPPOs create them.” – Avinash Kaushik, Google
- “Assumptions tend to be wrong.” – Dan Siroker, Optimizely
- “In God we trust. All others, bring data.” – Bill Clerico, WePay
The article doesn’t fly off the tracks, but the crazy train starts rolling a little fast when it starts talking about results. Why should editors waste time debating headlines, it implies, when they can test them and let the results decide? And here’s another quote:
“[On a page], why do people like the ottoman better if it appears to the left of the throw rug than if it appears to the right? There’s no time to ask the question, and no reason to answer it. After all, what does it matter if you can get the right result? Keep testing, keep reacting, and save your philosophizing for the off-hours.”
A/B Testing Will Make You a Marketing Genius
Lowering your head and plowing through tests might seem efficient, but it’s really wasteful. Sure, maybe the landing page is earning more conversions, but what else have you got? The answer is nothing unless you take the time to “philosophize” about what happened.
An introduction for beginners
Landing page optimization is the process of increasing the number of conversions that take place on a website landing page or sales funnel. According to wikipedia: “Landing page optimization (LPO) is one part of a broader Internet marketing process called conversion optimization, or Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO), with the goal of improving the percentage of visitors to the website that become sales leads and customers.” Yawn.
Let’s break this down to beginner basics.
You sell the all amazing Super Widget 451 on your website. You are currently getting 10,000 visitors to your site each month, and 1,400 of those visitors actually buy it. That’s a conversion rate of 14%. Niiiice!
You’re feeling like a rock star living life La Vida Loca from all the money you’re making.
But one day you think to yourself, “Man I’m a genius. Seriously, I’ve got the golden touch. But…”, then it suddenly dawns on you that 86% of all the people who go to your site actually say “NO!”. An overwhelming sense of dread sets in… you drop your margarita, get up from your poolside lounge chair and run to the vacation penthouse master suite and cry your eyes out. “Nobody loves me! Waaaaaah!”