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 . . . Read the rest of this entry »
A new CNN article suggests that “Merry Christmas” still rings brighter over “Happy Holidays”
Overall poll results for Americans:
- 64% prefer “Merry Christmas”
- 31% prefer “Happy Holidays”
- 5% are unsure
Ok. So now you’ve got some data from a obscure poll that says solid majority of Americans prefer you to say “Merry Christmas”. The question is what do you do with that? Do you put “Merry Christmas” on every page? Maybe on banner ads? What about emails? Or should you say it at all?
Well, since we are into testing, we cajoled one of our clients to let us test Merry Christmas v. Happy Holiday a couple Christmases ago. The client allowed us to test this with specific email campaigns, and below are results: (from a prior post.)
We wanted to know if using “Merry Christmas” versus “Happy Holidays” in an email campaign to a small segment of customers would impact conversion rates?
We were able to randomly select a group of 100,000 customers for a client and tested these subject lines:
A few notes on the test:
- The client is a large retailer, their customers mirror a general sample of the USA.
- The email mirrored the subject line’s message; all other elements were the same.
- We sent the email on the 21st of December.
The results showed a HUGE difference . . .
As you can clearly see, “Merry Christmas” killed it, nearly doubling the click through rate of the other subject lines.
Although we’re not allowed to share the “buy” data, it was just as impressive. Nearly doubling the number of transactions by changing an email subject line shows just how important it is to test and try new things. If you’re not constantly testing, you’re throwing money away!
Have any of you tested MC vs. HH and seen a difference? Do tell us. We wish you a Happy Holiday season! ;-P
We analyze some of the largest online retailers landing pages for one of the biggest online shopping days Cyber Monday.
- Good looking headline with nice background design
- A great way to lay out the different categories of the site with icons/text links
- Large red callout with “hottest cyber week deals” and “show now” button
- Keeps it extremely simple with a large headline text reading “shop cyber monday deals today!”
- With the simple theme has links for all categories on the site
- Good red blurb on top left showing ‘free shipping’
As a designer, one thing I’ve noticed as a web-design trend lately is to feature Apple products in the design, primarily iPhones. While I understand that they are beautiful devices I don’t think they are as beneficial to a design as many may believe.
While I do believe that showing shots of your application or site being used is fantastic because being demonstrable is a great tactic for conversions, it’s that I don’t think an iPhone should be used in all cases.
For example, the site cookwiz.me shows an iPhone on the landing page, yet the application is only currently (at the time of this article) available for Android devices. In fact, based on this past quarters smartphone sales, Android has 72% market share for new mobile devices. Since Android has grown to be the most widely used smartphone OS I would guess that any given target market has a high chance of being primarily Android users.
With that said, here is a small collection of nicely designed sites featuring an iPhone, whether it be the best option or not.
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
Election Day 2012 is here! Moderators have grilled the candidates on “important issues,” but they will dodge the most important topic of all: landing page optimization.
We’re not afraid to ask the tough questions. Following our analysis of the 2012 presidential candidates’ homepages, today we look at their strategies for PPC landing pages.
Barack Obama’s Landing Page Optimization
Let’s start with Obama’s PPC ad:
Although faintly reminiscent of a religious cult, the ad makes a good emotional connection with the text, “Barack is counting on you. Join us.” Once clicked, the ad brings visitors to an email opt-in page: Read the rest of this entry »
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:
You have a competitor with a large budget. Or maybe a competitor that does more optimization testing than you. Have you ever been tempted to play ‘Follow the Leader?’ After all, you know the company does tests. Why not let them do the work and steal their landing page designs?
Here’s why: because that is insane.
There are principles of landing page optimization, but they manifest differently on every page. For example, the conversion process must be simple and easy. But what is simple for one audience can be a huge burden to others.
Have you ever been annoyed by a “helpful” video that automatically played when you hit the page? I know I have. But some people do find such videos helpful, and they are proven to increase conversion rates on many sites. But it doesn’t work on every site!
So you must test your pages. Ignore the competition. Your job is to beat them, not follow them like a lost puppy!
Here are three more reasons it is insane to copy competitors’ pages:
Difference #1. Value proposition
Customers choose you over competitors for a reason. There are unique and compelling aspects of your company that appeal to them. Those aspects are your value proposition – the reason your best customers purchase from you.
Your value proposition differentiates you. It says, “We have the best prices,” or “We provide the only full-service solution.” Notice those superlatives: “best” and “only.” They are exclusive. You are the only company that has these things. Read the rest of this entry »