The World Wide Web is a massive network of online websites and applications. The internet houses millions of online businesses and blogs that are actively uploading mainstream content each day.
You could find articles ranging from the complexities of quantum computing to a blog website dedicated to guide you regarding the best food for your pet! All this, with just the click of a button.
Given the vastness and diversity of content available for an average user and fresh content being posted every day, staying visible to your prospective audience is no easy task. Some of the optimization tips explained here will help you deal with cut-throat online competition with a sole focus deeply on Search Engine Optimization, to maintain an online presence and visibility.
Search Engine Optimization
There are a ton of tools and ‘hacks’ available that can help you boost your website’s performance and contribute in piping it up on Google’s rankings. But, SEO is a dynamic game since the features that are going to be available to you are also going to be on offer for your competitor website.
How can a website increase its usability and web traffic in such adverse competition that can literally swing either way over a period of a few months?
With millions of search results on Google alone, occupying that coveted first page presence is a mean feat. Sponsored adverts make the job even more challenging. Here’s a break-up of factors you, as a website owner, should probably keep in mind (and execute accordingly) if you want to fight to stay in the ballgame.
Understanding SEO and Avoiding Over-Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is a chemical reaction. In order to influence a website’s traffic and online visibility, firstly, it is highly essential to understand how SEO works. To become adept with the skills and knowledge that can boost the user-frequency of a webpage is just the beginning. Google is known to alter its search engine algorithm once in 6 months. It is constantly monitoring the kind and volume of traffic each web-result is witnessing to regularly rank these web pages and websites. A higher ranking on Google depends on a variety of factors right from how fast a page is loading to how user-readable the content is and whether the website layout is conducive for user re-engagement since traffic to a search result equates to traffic to Google’s search engine which implies more business for the tech giant.
A word of caution: if you are looking to increase a website’s SEO capability, the most common mistake you must refrain from is trying to over-optimize the webpage. Webmaster tools regularly keep a tab on over-optimized content as well, which might lead to counterproductive penalty that are pretty nasty to get away from. Stay true to your content and visiting audience and be patient. A top online ranking is not awarded, over-night.
Another on-page factor that can largely influence SEO is how the website is structured. Google’s algorithm is not just triggered with those tweaks that you make in the website URL or page title. Sure, it makes a difference as to how Google views your webpage, but they are just as keen on retaining the web traffic as they are at attracting more.
A webpage is not doing any good for its SEO if it features a chaotic layout with broken interlinks and shabby user-interface. User experience is the most gratifying factor for successful SEO.
Along with developing your own online presence, bloggers are now using social media to engage with their other successful counterparts. Collaborating with other websites to present in-page interlinks by them can generate additional traffic to your home. However lucrative this might seem, it’s advisable to constantly look out for negative SEO attacks in the form of faulty backlinks which can not only denigrate user-experience but might also lead to penalty.
If you are a website owner, most of the SEO responsibilities are going to be part of the content developer’s job. After all, SEO is majorly affected by the type of content that goes up online and the kind of audience it attracts.
However, mainstream SEO now also relies on the technological aspects of a webpage. Although minorly, the tech-based approach for effective website building is the newest talk of the town. Read up, website designers!
On-page optimization is a major contributor to the effective SEO building. Google monitors the content that is uploaded to a webpage in order to run its ranking algorithm for search results. It tracks the usage of keywords and how the on-page content plays between backlinks and user-friendly content.
The primary feature of a top-ranked search result is that it answers the user’s question and fulfil its needs. Google’s analysis ranks a webpage depending on this relevancy of content. The analytics are capable of over-shadowing and disposing any content that is not synonymous with what the user is searching for.
Appropriate placement of high-res pictures along with captions, to-the-point page titles and efficient use (not over-use) of keywords encompasses a solid on-page optimization for clearing Google’s overview and establish a strong online presence.
A well-crafted URL (Uniform Resource Locator) can prove to be an undercard for shooting your webpage up the rankings. An appropriately scripted URL can do wonders when it comes to getting noticed by the users. URLs are displayed on the result page in the search engine. It literally forms the first of point of contact that a webpage can have with the users. By well scripted URLs, we mean the URL should indicate exactly what’s on offer back at home.
Google scraps longer addresses from the center to fit them neatly into the results page link. So, if the URL is not crafted accordingly, the truncated address might just end up looking extremely ambiguous.
A URL is a combination of the domain name, website category/sub-category and the page name. The truncated link usually only retains the page title.
Some blog hosts like WordPress use a numerical default for URLs which might be a convenient option for linking to brochures or information-intensive content, it is advisable to always use human-readable links. All in all, non-numeric URLs with clear English to steer the users to exactly what they are looking for makes up the characteristics of a high-ranked web-result.
The placement of a webpage on a website must also depend on the category of content. Google monitors the relevancy of content surrounding the main webpage and affects the ranking of the same accordingly. Hence it is advisable to use required keywords which will not only promote the page, but also the sister webpages associated with it.
The eternal discussion about the usage of hyphen or underscore provides a basis about how the algorithm reads sentences involving words separated by either of these two connectors. The presence of a hyphen separates the conjoining words into individual sentences, whereas an underscore maintains the meaning of the entire sentence.
Google’s 2011 rollout, Google Panda, has undergone quite a lot of modifications ever since its inception. Google was facing this issue of websites with little to zero original content ranking higher in the search results than web pages with real, original content. Panda’s algorithm detects which webpages have a genuine readership by monitoring its propagation on social media as well as user interaction in terms of comments and emails.
It uses this factor to rank websites based on new content. This eliminates the previous ranking criterion that was based on the number of clicks received. Content farms with meek content, but sponsored clicking used to rank higher because of this than pages with fresh and relevant content.
PageSpeed Insights is another of Google’s free tools available for optimising website performance. This tool indicates how fast (or how slow) a particular web page loads up. Google’s Keywords Tracker is probably the most important tool a content developer can use. It provides information about the most popular keywords that users are searching for on the platform at any given time. This offers an insight into the users’ search activity, which helps in steering content according to these keywords.
Elaborate websites are advised to develop a sitemap on their pages for user-friendly navigation through the website. This not only promotes a webpage, but makes the user explore more of the same. A sitemap is mandatory for content-rich websites housing a lot of weblinks and blog posts.
Backlinks are a super-way to boost web traffic to a website. Users visiting another website shall be redirected to yours if they click on the concerned backlink. However, this is also a super-easy way to negatively attack someone’s SEO. Black Hat SEO involves linking to some other website irregularly and inappropriately in order to affect that website’s ranking according to Google. It is necessary to file a disavow report as soon as this is noticed.
Increase Website Fluidity
A ton of online open-source web tools like Loader, Blazemeter, Blitz and WordPress plugins are available to monitor web load speeds. Speeds are affected by the internet cable speed as well as the overall website structure. Webpages generally function via HTTP. The speed with which data is distributed from the server depends on the HTTP responses which can be boosted by developing lesser and more streamlined code.
Seems like SEO is a responsibility of content writers and software engineers alike!
Use of Interlinks
Interlinking pages within a content piece is a brilliant natural way to expand the dynamicity of your webpage. Interlinks are highly beneficial when the blog post uses references from previous content. This not only offers users with better understanding leading to a hike in traffic, but also yields better meaning to the content that can lure Google into piping up the web page rankings. But, a rogue use of interlinks will not only hurt the user experience, but Google’s monitoring tools can detect any irrelevancy which will further harm the rank.
Usually, high-ranked content pieces focus on around 500 words of pure meaningful content. It is extremely necessary to cater to a visiting user’s needs and answer their relevant questions. Google takes this part of their business very seriously. If the content is not user-driven, the webpage is very likely to be punished by Google in terms of search ranking.
The ranking keyword should be a part of the first 100 words with the secondary words, finding their place in the body. Any untoward or superficial usage of keywords is going to be deemed irrelevant by Google.
If the content is accentuated by the use of pictures, it is essential to bestow the images with an appropriate title to name them and an alt tag as description. Ensure that the alt tags also revolve around the purpose of the content and feature keywords. Google also monitors the content around the written word to decide the overall quality of content.
Websites like WordTracker preach a regulatory method when it comes to developing content. They have been promoting the building of content in an F-A-B format, i.e. Feature-Advantage-Benefit format. Each content focussed sentence or paragraph must open the premise of the question, explain its advantage and then state the benefits.
SEO is highly influenced by user-focussed content.
Apart from generating user-focussed content for better SEO, it is equally important to produce fresh content regularly. Google Analytics favor websites that can engage their user-base on a daily basis.
The page title is just the second point of contact after the URL. It is essential to keep the title of the page clear and concise to indicate exactly what the web page content is about. As mentioned earlier, Google truncates URLs to make them look pretty in the search results page and so, it is necessary to build a comprehensive title that fits within Google’s restricted limits without posing any ambiguity for the user.
There is limitation concerning the length of the words used, but Google is allowed to fit in approximately 512 pixels of space after the result link. Use of longer or shorter words is entirely up to your discretion as you are allowed to fit in more narrower characters and lesser fatter characters.
Placement of Adverts
Ads are annoying. We get it. But, apart from the traffic and revenue generated through Google, brand adverts are the only substantial source of income for a content driven webpage. A well-structured webpage layout can give you an upper hand in catering to your brands as well as users.
It is essential to place the page title and keyword-oriented content above the ad fold to avoid hindering SEO. Google tracks the overall nature and quality of the upload and if it picks up any trace of advertisements that pose to hinder user experience, it might take a toll on the webpage’s rankings.
Search Engine Optimization through keyword searches is the most used and sought-after form of gaining traffic. But it is dicey business. With the internet clogged with blogs and webpages, usually providing tons of information about one particular thing, it is rather difficult to attract traffic to your blog courtesy to this competition.
Most bloggers face with an option; to either develop content about the most searched keywords and witness little to no web traffic or upload material about not-so-popular keywords to attract moderate traffic and promote sales. Both these choices are colored with their own pros and cons and it depends on how a blogger is looking to enhance his online presence.
Check the Popularity of Keywords
In order to optimize your blog post for SEO, it is advisable to check the apparent popularity of keyword searches that users around the world are making. Websites like Google Adwords and Wordtracker provide consistent knowledge about the various keyword searches that are owning traffic at a particular time.
Optimize for Relevant Keywords
With dense traffic for the most popular keywords at a time, it is advisable to choose a relevant keyword for your blog. A specific keyword will yield enhanced ranking in search results as opposed to a broad-based term. A broad keyword is generally searched for more, but the high competition offers a very dynamic viewership and little web traffic amidst the competition.
Statistics show that 2 to 3 keyword phrases are more searched for than single keywords. So, you are going to be better off including keyword phrases in your content if you intend to attract high traffic.
In order to enhance your blog’s SEO, placing relevant keywords at least twice in the first paragraph drives Google’s Analytics tools to rank the webpage higher in keyword searches.
Title: The title is the first piece of contact between the viewership and the blog. Hence, using keywords in the page title is highly essential to drive SEO.
Headings and Sub-Titles: A well segregated blog post not only makes the content more user-friendly but also helps to increase keyword usage.
Link Text: Most search engine algorithms monitor links more than normal text. Including keyword phrases in link text will help to enhance your blog’s ranking in terms of keyword searches. If there are limited links in the content piece, placing keywords around these links also caters to platform algorithms and will aid in boosting the visibility and higher ranking. Avoid the usage of simple links that just state ‘click here’ and use the power of keywords in links as they are weighted more than normal text.
Many bloggers witness higher traffic due to image searches. Hence, it is an advisable option to use keyword phrases in image links and descriptions to drive higher traffic using images.
Avoid Keywords Overuse
Keyword stuffing is a crime for most search engines. Algorithms are coded to penalize and neglect content laden with pointless keyword phrases. Keyword stuffing yields a negative user experience and attracts the wrath of the search engines. It might not only result in a lower ranking but can induce bans from search engines.
Over the past decade, the popularity of desktop personal computers has reduced massively. But like energy, popularity when it comes to technology, never dies; it just transforms into another form.
With the advent of portable laptops, desktop PCs were on the verge of becoming extinct. Laptops provide the same and better functionalities as opposed to a conventional computer.
Wi-Fi connectivity and portability have enhanced the demand for laptops ever since their first appearance. However, in recent years, users are switching in massive numbers of mobile devices for internet usage. Approximately 10% of the American population are dependent only on their mobile devices for logging online.
This posed as a new challenge for website developers and designers. A webpage that is designed for a 17-inch screen puts out a distorted view if viewed from a 5-inch mobile device.
So, the folks online had to devise new methods to optimize their websites for mobile use without compromising on the functionality that is otherwise offered on a PC screen.
- Why is mobile optimization necessary?
Ever since the spike in mobile internet use, Google has recognized the effect it potentially might have on its search engine business. ‘Mobilegeddon’ as it is called, is an alteration in Google’s search algorithm that focusses on providing visiting users with optimum mobile website experience.
It rakes in the user-friendliness of a website when accessed from a mobile device to rank the concerned webpage in the search results.
Limited bandwidth and a smaller screen, usually hinder the website performance on a mobile device for data-dense webpages seem illegible without the optimized aspect ratio. As a result, Google flags or ranks such websites abysmally which could mean drastic traffic losses. Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test and other online applications provide a free platform to analyze the mobile optimization levels of a website. A click of a button indicates the extent to which the website is compatible for mobile use with a preview to display the same.
- Methods to go Mobile!
With Google stressing and prioritizing mobile-friendly online services, the onus is on web-oriented digital companies to factor a path to go mobile. While developing a mobile site from scratch might not include a lot of effort and money, converting an established page into one, does.
But with Google implementing stringent SEO rules for mobile-friendly content, websites can use any of the following three approaches:
- Independent mobile presence
Online companies are developing independent counterpart websites for mobile use that run on separate HTML documents. They are generally hosted with a m. compared to a desktop version that is accessed by www.
- Adaptive design
This approach is used by online companies looking to go mobile without having to build a separate mobile website. A website designed in this manner configures itself to the viewport of a mobile screen.
This involves changing the underlying code of a website even though it appears almost similar on a mobile device. However, these optimizations are usually carried out for only popular devices like the iPhone and iPad and websites might not be user-friendly on other devices.
- Responsive design
Unlike an adaptive design, this method provides a flexible display layout dependent on different devices. A server sends the same HTML codes for all devices and a website designed responsively is not constrained by a fixed viewport. Content Management Systems like WordPress use independent plugins that support responsive design and offer a mobile outlook to your desktop-oriented web page.
This is highly useful for online companies to migrate part of their business to mobile without having to change the look and appeal of the desktop theme. These CMS plugins develop a separate mobile site with an optimized layout that plays well with Google’s SEO rules.
Conversation Rate Optimization tips
Now that you have optimized your website for better online coverage using effective Search Engine Optimization tips, the next step is to be able to convert that traffic into sales and those visitors into leads.
Generating organic traffic was just the beginning of the ballgame. The real deal is driving effective sales, day in – day out. All that online traffic is not going to account for much if your website is not able to convert existing and new user traffic to promote sales or subscriptions, whatever your website’s goal is to. Sustainability is key.
Visitors are plagued with numerous options to pick from and designing your website in a manner that is not only going to attract traffic but drive sales growth or higher subscription results is essential to stay sustainable, whether you own an expert blog, a commercial website business or an e-commerce portal.
The underlying principles to generate better sales and boost conversion rates is similar for all websites out there. The intricacies will definitely vary according to every individual website’s purpose of business, but optimization of conversion rate follows a common modus-operandi.
Here’s a list of various optimization tips regarding strong conversion rate domains
Building a clear and solid Value Proposition!
A unique value proposition is what sets your business apart from the hundreds of others that are offering similar products. Your value proposition is your website’s USP in the business. It is what differentiates your company from the competition in the industry.
A clear and solid proposition states what your business has to offer and how it will add value to a prospective customer. In today’s digital age, value is what drives growth and attracts newer clientele. A proposition is your medium of communication how the customer is going to benefit from your product or service.
It is very important for your value proposition to be different from that of your competitor’s. It should provide lucidity and present a solid reason for a prospect to choose your service.
Building a go-to-market value proposition requires significant insight into your business’ operation and long-term goals. Crafting a statement that can fit the entire company’s motive in a single line is no easy task. However, this single statement of purpose is what distinguishes the great from the mediocre. It is a constant process of refinement.
Most businesses believe in altering font sizes and types and over-hauling website layouts to appear more appealing for increasing conversion rates. To zero-in on a value proposition, you must test out the different ideas and see what strikes best with your prospects.
The most important optimization tip is testing of the website. Testing is the only tool which provides honest feedback in terms of usability, user-experience, load speed, etc. With optimization, you bring in a load of new features with a revised value proposition and site layout. Testing offers a medium to measure the effect of these changes. How else would you expect to figure out what’s going right and what’s not?
A/B testing is also called ‘split testing’ or ‘variate testing’. Consider this, you have two headlines for a particular product or service which you intend to launch on your website. However, given that both seem perfect to you, it becomes difficult to choose one. With A/B testing, the tool prepares two separate page layouts, each with one of the two headlines. It splits the incoming traffic equally to the two different (but, same) websites.
It provides an analysis concerning the conversion rates of either website layouts, giving you a definitive proof as to which headline is more appealing to prospective clients and which of the two is generating higher sales. It is advisable to run two or more tests on your website simultaneously to derive insights in the business’ operations since client-building is a dynamic game. It is a continuous refinement procedure to constantly select those aspects of your website which work to your benefit.
What to test?
With a ton of factors that affect conversion rates, it becomes rather confusing to predict which is causing significant changes in visitor behavior. Most marketers ‘guess’ what could be going wrong and tend to act on those instincts. However, this approach does more harm than good. Conversion rate optimization works on pure analytical data and any approach other than that is going to yield disastrous results. It is essential to focus on the following aspects:
Build a Sales Funnel!
A sales funnel is a transitional chain of engagements you should have with a prospective customer. It can be imagined as a funnel where at the mouth is your visiting traffic; the next stage is associating with them by email; and the subsequent stages represent the prospects that show interest in your product.
Naturally, the mouth is a prospect-intensive area and as the customers are channelled through the funnel, the numbers keep decreasing. The aim of a sales funnel is to gradually engage your visitors and try to sell them your product and not rush them into making a decision.
The first step is to attract prospective buyers. The aim is to publicize and spread awareness about your business to attract an interested crowd. Many times, the public is unaware of solution providers available to them. The goal is to keep attracting prospective clients and to avoid engaging them for an immediate sale. That’s not how it works. You need to ensure that they keep returning to your website since knowledge about your product is the preliminary requisite for a customer before he makes a decision.
Blogging is one of the most effective tools available to educate your viewer-base about your website and product.
Almost every user does a bit of research before selecting a product. With an SE- intensive blog post, your website can attract such visitors and can help you enhance incoming traffic. The notability of this maneuver is that these visitors are actually looking for solutions to their problems and are not ‘just browsing’.
Engaging with interested consumers on social media is an effective method to generate newer visitors. Customers want to know how ‘friendly’ your company is through contact on social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
A one-on-one interaction with a prospect can largely boost chances of them visiting your service. An active online presence apart from your website can do wonders in attracting customers.
Pay-Per-Click ads on search engines like Google appear when someone searches for a product you are selling. It is an effective and first-hand tool to drive traffic to your portal.
SMS CTAs seem old-fashioned, but they are still highly effective when it comes to attracting the offline crowd.
Once the prospects have been made aware of your presence, the next step is to keep them engaged. This can be done with the following ways:
Once a customer is interested in your product, it is essential to keep them in the loop concerning all your services. Email marketing produces at least 20% of the re-engaged traffic. Obtaining their email address helps you maintain contact with your prospects on a regular basis.
Everyone loves a free trial! This is an added incentive that keeps a prospect involved in the sales funnel. Providing a free trial gives them an opportunity to experience your service before committing to it.
Although, it drives, minimal profit, it helps to keep the prospect in the loop for further engagement.
The purpose of this software is to track the movement of your prospect across the funnel and help you decide where to target them next.
On an average, a prospect is required to be engaged 7 times before you can make the offer. Once the prospective customer is totally involved in the marketing loop, it’s time to push the sale to convert this opportunity.
There are a number of ways to do this; the most common and effective method is through email. It is your job to keep pressing your product or service to the customer. The prospect is not going to find its way to your checkout page. Keep posting the prospect with specials and newer launches to entice them to your website for making the purchase.
This approach is to be assumed when a prospect has visited your site a number of times without making a purchase. It focuses on providing them specialized content by offering free shipping or additional discounts to lure them into making a purchase decision.
This could be done by an integrated system of email marketing to keep prospective and existing customers aware of newer products and changes in your e-commerce websites operations. Targeted adverts can also generate enhanced traffic for optimized conversion rates.
Schedule social website monitoring regularly to find if any, prospects or existing customers are talking about your website or product. Answer their questions if they post any. Social media monitoring helps you stay aware of what is going on outside your domain to grab any opportunity to optimize conversion rate.
Retaining the existing customer-base is just as important as generating new ones. You have put in a lot of effort, time and money to convert what were once prospects into customers. As a means to gratify them, you can send them referrals, which is a brilliant way to extend a gratuity.
An existing customer can generate newer prospects with the referral system where they get rewarded certain freebies if their contact makes a purchase. Pioneering cab service companies like Uber use this system rather efficiently to drive their growth.
Once a customer gets associated with you, try to lure them back to making another purchase by sending emails about new launches and trying to pitch them to upgrade to more expensive products. This can also include steering your customers to a different range of products.
For example, if a prospect has made a purchase of a shirt, push notifications about trousers from the same brand or price range can go a long way in convincing them to make that purchase as well. This approach could also be made to pitch the same product to the customer after they have used it for a while.
Simplify the lingo!
This is the most under-rated optimization tip when it comes to converting visiting traffic into sales. Many online businesses formulate a value proposition replete with complicated business-ey jargon that is just too difficult to comprehend. This notion of adopting a fancy tagline or proposition will do you more harm than good.
People who visit your site expect to understand each and every aspect of value that is on offer. You cannot expect to generate sales if most of your readers don’t even understand your proposition.
The motive of your website along with what you have to offer to your prospects should be displayed in a fluid yet plain English to communicate the business pitch with maximum effect.
The best way to craft this is by imagining selling your product to your spouse or close friend. If it sounds like something you would use in normal day-to-day conversation, you are better off re-scripting it.
Address business issues!
Generally, when a prospect or customer has a problem with your product or service, it is easier to address their concerns in-person rather than solving them out online. However, with businesses that are totally internet-enabled, in-person dialogue gets thrown out the window. Although, there are ways to help a customer online through live chat or video call, it is always advisable to try to eliminate these issues before they can arise.
Here’s a list of the most common questions that users are plagued with and their potential explanations:
- What’s different between your product and the cheaper alternatives?
This question calls for an exhaustive or comprehensive comparison between the values offered by your product and that of a competitor’s and what justifies the difference in price value.
- How is it going to benefit me?
Such a doubt can be effectively addressed by mentioning user experiences of that product which will help your prospects relate to the issues faced and benefits received.
- Generic queries
An FAQ page on your website addressing the most common queries and problems can go a long way in helping a prospect or existing customer with their issues without having to take the pain of reaching out to you for support. Analyze the problems faced by the majority and check them against keyword phrase searches concerning your product.
Optimising your in-site blog post for keyword searching can rank your FAQ page above any other portals. This will not only ensure optimum customer satisfaction, but also promises to produce extra traffic to the website.
The reason most sales do not see the end of day is because the prospects do not find the company trustworthy. Even if a website is selling your premium designer clothing at dirt prices, you probably wouldn’t buy them. Why? The product seems nice and the deal is more than fine. But your trust instincts steer you away from making such a purchase. You get the point.
People do not prefer to buy something from someone if they do not trust them. But... how do you generate trust among a random group of prospects who have probably visited your website or eCommerce portal for the very first time? Here’s how:
Involve third-party citations
If you are an air conditioning expert, your prospects are not going to believe you entirely if you state that your firm can manufacture the most energy efficient units in the market. However, if your website page houses citations from respected journals or regulatory bodies, a prospective customer is going to build its trust in you. User experiences from existing consumers also help in developing trust since people believe other people.
Linking to articles or testimonials provides a means for visiting prospects to verify the credibility of your claims. Most users do not even click on the link, but the fact that you have embedded it on your page serves your purpose.
Show that you are genuine
Provide your office location along with the FAX and telephone contact numbers at the bottom of your website to indicate the credibility of your organization.
Finding a company’s contact details makes prospects think that you are transparent in your business which is a major win when it comes to attracting customers.
Show your credentials and expertise in the service you are providing or the product you are offering. People get impressed if your business has won accolades for doing what you do best. This is a major contributor in the optimization of conversion rates.
Introduce your team
People associate more trust with your website if you show them who is working to deliver them everything your website promises.
Team bios with information about their job roles, past work experiences and families helps build a connect with your prospects.
Make your website look pretty
Most users judge, evaluate and decide if they would buy from a company depending on how their website looks visually. An efficient page layout design with business-appropriate themes make your website look more professional. Do not compromise on quality and invest in a professional designer.
Focus on functionality
Besides improving the visual appeal of your website, focus on the functionality on offer as well. Nothing dishes a prospective customer out like an inefficient, slow and sluggish user interface does. Make sure your entire website is functioning smoothly and those extended links do not associate with any dead-ends or broken (404) pages.
Post fresh content on your website regularly. Whether it’s about this new project you are working on or about the new developments that are being made to the current website, blog about it. A stagnant blog or FAQ page implies that your company is suffering through a lean patch which is the clear indicator to not do any business with you. Fresh, relevant content can also increase your blog’s SEO ratings, which might boost consumer traffic.
Avoid stuffing of sponsorships
Sponsored ads are a buzzkill. They disturb the flow of a website and make it look shabby and chaotic. Users hate sponsored adverts. Try to avoid them as much as possible. However, if you really must feature a few sponsored relations, do so gracefully by efficiently segregating your content from that of the ad’s.
Close the sale!
It is very important to design a fluid checkout and purchase system. You do not want your prospective customer to scour the website to find that ‘make payment’ button. Provide a discrete step-by-step procedure for making the purchase. Try to lay focus on the subsequent step in the chain and not display all the necessary steps together.
Do not give your prospect too many options to choose from. A multitude of options is only going to frustrate the user. Forms are annoying. You will be better off closing a sale by minimizing the number of questions to be answered in the purchase procedure. Ask only what is absolutely necessary and indispensable.
Provide small discounts or free shipping with a purchase of a certain amount. This makes the customer feel happy about the purchase and increases their chances of visiting again.
Optimize the page!
Distractions tend to steer away prospective customers from the concerned page. Optimize your webpage to preach and possess only content relevant to what the user wants to see. Avoid distractions by eliminating unnecessary interlinks about other products. If you think this will drive them to explore your site even further, you are wrong.
External links disturb the user’s site experience and instead of making them explore other domains, it is more likely to annoy them. Keep the content and product descriptions lucid and clear. Try to communicate the value of a particular product.
Prospective buyers today do their homework before committing to a purchase. But, if you offer them the comparison yourself, they will be more than happy to check out your offering. With today’s dynamic market, it is necessary to monitor your competitor’s dealings just as much. Track his offers, his clients and the traffic his website is witnessing.
Find loopholes and areas of improvement, implement them in your product, service or website. A visitor is going to be highly impressed because, why won’t he? You have cut out his task of comparing by not only stating differences, but also optimizing the purchase in comparison to your competitors.
If you do not indicate this comparison and if your competitor does, by claiming to offer a superior deal than anyone else in the industry, it is no surprise that user traffic is going to get attracted to his online portal. Even if your deal is better than your competitor’s, without any proof a prospective customer is not going to believe you. Heck, he wouldn’t even be aware of the differences in the deals in the first place.
In a nutshell, website optimization
for enhancing conversion rates is a dynamic process. It features a network of intricacies and factors that can make or break your online business.
The following optimization tips will sort you out regarding the to-dos in converting conversion rates.
To do list for better CRO
Use of an effective headline
Your headline is the first point of contact between your website and the visiting traffic. 80% of the visitors make a judgment call right after reading the headline. This accounts for a major chunk of your incoming traffic
A clear and lucid value proposition communicates the purpose of your business and indicates to the visitors exactly what’s on offer. Make sure your landing page features content and information only about the concerned product or service. Mention how making a purchase is going to affect them in the positive.
Along with stating the USPs of your service, place appropriate contact information and testimonials to increase the credibility of your website. No user likes to be exposed to fake content. Mention of accolades achieved or the affiliation with a respected external organization further increases the credibility level.
Integrate a live chat feature
Live chats provide 24X7 online support regarding everything from helping out first-time customers to maintenance support for existing users. This increases the average engagement of a prospect to your website.
Push prospects down the funnel
Subject your visitors and prospects to more middle funnel content like email marketing, social media engagement and constant website content updates concerning blog posts and answering questions posed by users. This helps to push them further down the sales funnel and entice them to make a purchase.
Focus on your source
Concentrate on your source of incoming traffic. Whether it is through your Linkedin profile or Facebook account or through search engine results, track down the source of attraction and focus on building enhanced user-engagement processes.
Redesigning the webpage layout increased the conversion rates of many eCommerce websites. Providing a fluid flow is conducive to engaging users and helping them conveniently through the purchase process. An easy to follow flow helps users find exactly what they intend to do.
Changing the call-to-action buttons to RED piped up conversion rates by almost 21% in Performable.
Though, changing the color should not be of primary importance, it does however, make a difference in user behavior.
Use of action verbs
Action verbs like ‘Go grab yours’ or ‘Quickly reserve yours’ drives prospects in making purchase decisions faster.
You can use Google AdWords to rank your web page higher on a standard search results page to attract additional traffic. However, ensure that the link directs the user straight to the concerned product’s landing page and not your home page. This is important because the result in Google appeared since a user was searching for a particular product and it is essential to direct them to a page holding the exact information they wish to access.
Presence of a follower and subscription tab to indicate the respective counts goes a long way in generating faith among new visitors. Viewing a follower count in hundreds of thousands not only shows that your website is established but also indicates that it is well-liked by other visitors.
If you run an eCommerce website, incorporate inventory and stock numbers. This will create a sense of urgency among visitors and they will be compelled to make a quicker purchase decision.
Use of media
Use of video content to explain your product’s capabilities as well as the company’s credibility is proven to boost conversion rates.
Create a funnel
Avoid pushing for a sale too early. The entire purpose of a sales channel is to attract prospective consumers, engage them and subject them to the product’s values and benefits to finally push for a sales decision. A premature approach to sell can drive away the prospects.
Offer your prospects with free shipping for purchases of higher amounts. Give them a free trial for first-hand user experience. This lure them into purchasing the entire deal, thus generating a higher conversion rate.
Keep your site updated
It is very important to upload fresh content on the website regularly. If you run an expert blog, consistent uploads will keep your audience and readership engaged. A keyword-intensive blog post can also be accessed from Google search results by obtaining a higher ranking.
Use of high-res photos
Using high quality professional photos can add the visual appeal to your website that it lacks due to a plain text format.
Test, Test, Test!
is the practice of bringing about changes in an existing web system or designing a new one from scratch with the objective of converting incoming traffic to sales. Your online business is setup to make money.
It really doesn’t make any sense if your venture is attracting global traffic, but cannot convert leads into hardcore sales.
The only path to successful conversion rate optimization is testing. Testing provides the validation that your business needs to course-correct its direction.
Without testing, all those optimization tips amount to nothing.
Marketers usually guess what is going wrong with their website, but, testing provides an analytical solution and insight into the factors that are truly affecting the conversion rate.
Optimization of conversion rates is a growth process. With the right concoction of effective measures, your incoming traffic could be converted into a conversion rate of more than 10%. It is highly important to monitor, track and target the right consumer-base.
You might not generate any sales even after spamming 100000 people, but you might just end up achieving a conversion rate of 2% if you target and pitch of your existing as well as a connected pool of prospective buyers.
You should always have a set of variate testing occurring all the time. There is nothing like enough testing. It is an exponential growth process that provides significant knowledge at each stage regarding the performance of various factors of the webpage.
- Is your value proposition engaging the visitors enough to lure them in exploring your website?
- Is the product headline communicating its value effectively to customers?
- Is the website user-flow, convenient for smooth exploration and shopping?
- Are visitors interested in checking out the associated links of other products?
Various usability indices can indicate how well your website is performing within a specific bandwidth and analyze user behavior to gauge the quality of the UI.
In order to truly optimize the conversion rate, find out the real problem; don’t rely on guesswork. Test the various versions of your website to analyze visitor behavior and find out where the system is lacking.
Craft a lucid proposition to communicate the motives of your business effectively. A user is not going to opt to buy a product which he doesn’t understand, in no way helping increase the conversion rate.
If you own a portal website business with a visitor-base of two distinguishable separate segments of users, try dividing your website such that each part caters exactly to how the users want it to be.
Segmenting is a mean task, so before implementing it, take into account the number of visitors from each segment and calculate if the cost of segmenting is justified.
The optimization tips mentioned in this article are the foundation of effective conversion rate. However, some might work for you and some might not.
It’s up to your testing department to try out newer approaches and zero-in on a stable design with a significant conversion rate.