How many of your visitors are converting?
As a marketer, I spend a lot of time focused on getting people to my (and my clients’) websites. But if that traffic never converts, it may as well never exist; the end goal is getting some value from your web visitors, whether they purchase something or get one step closer to a purchase, and if you fail in that goal, it doesn’t matter how many people are visiting your website.
The average conversion rate falls somewhere between 1 and 5 percent, depending on a number of factors, including the type of conversion you want, your average customer, and your industry, but if you’re sitting below 1 percent (or significantly below your industry average), you’re missing out on significant revenue you could be getting from the remainder of the traffic you’re already seeing.
Unfortunately, many marketers are sabotaging their conversion rates without any idea what they’re doing to themselves. Don’t let yourself become one of them. Avoid these 10 major problems:
1. Your content is subpar. Don’t underestimate the power your brand’s reputation can have on your conversion rates. If a visitor comes to your site and starts reading your content, but finds it to be thin, unoriginal, or inaccurate, they’ll instantly lose trust in your brand. When you greet them with a pop-up, encouraging them to convert, they won’t want any part of it. Prevent this outcome by spending some extra time polishing your on-site content, including your main pages and blogs.
2. Your CTAs aren’t visible. How easy is it for people to find and see your calls-to-action (CTAs)? Ideally, they’ll be scattered throughout your site, so no one can spend more than a few minutes on a page without running into one. They should exist in the body of your blog posts, off to the side, and possibly even in a pop-up (so long as it doesn’t negatively interfere with the average user’s experience). You can make these CTAs more prominent with bold formatting, strong colors, and other visual indicators.
3. Your forms are too time consuming, too hard, or too annoying. People don’t want to spend a long time in the conversion process — even if it’s something they really want. If your form has too many fields to fill out, if it’s clunky or annoying, or if it takes too long to load and complete, people are going to abandon the process. In fact, merely reducing the number of fields in your form from 11 to 4 can result in a conversion increase of 120 percent.
4. Your design is spammy or untrustworthy. If you try too hard to make your CTAs visible, or if you rely on gimmicks to get your users’ attentions, you might come across as untrustworthy or spammy. For example, if you have too many pop-up ads, or if your design contains obnoxious animations, you might lose consumer trust.
5. You’re not offering value. Every conversion is an exchange of value in some way, whether it’s someone paying money for a product, or submitting their personal information (such as their email address) in exchange for a piece of content (such as an eBook). Ask yourself — are users getting a fair value in exchange for what you’re asking? If not, you may need to offer more.
6. Your users aren’t getting enough information. Consumers want to know what they’re getting into before they finalize a form (or purchase). Are there opportunities for them to learn more about your brand, such as through a separate landing page that explains your brand and its history? If not, users may be unwilling to proceed.
7. There’s no incentive to convert NOW. If users have the chance to think too long about your offer, they might delay converting. If they delay converting, they’ll probably never convert. The solution is to imply a sense of urgency, with limited offers or a clear reason why “now” is better than “later.” Without that, your conversion rate will suffer.
8. Your copy is repetitive, unoriginal, or tacky. Your headlines, bullet points, and descriptive copy has a huge effect on your users’ minds. If your copy is repetitive, unoriginal, or tacky (borrowing from decades of other ads), users aren’t going to trust you. Spend some time to pick just the right words to get someone’s attention and concisely describe what you’re offering.
9. You haven’t given your users a reason to trust you. Why would a user trust you? If there isn’t a clear indicator in or around the CTA, your users aren’t going to convert. Use trust badges, reviews, testimonials, or other indications that your brand knows what it’s doing to earn the trust of your users and convince them to follow through. You can also use money-back guarantees and free trials to cross that gap.
10. You aren’t experimenting. One of the easiest ways to optimize your conversion rate is to try two different approaches side by side and compare them against each other (known as an AB test). It’s a simple experiment that helps you figure out which techniques are best for your brand (and then keep them around) — yet only 56 percent of marketers use this tactic. If you aren’t using it, you’re limiting your own potential.
Are you responsible for one or more of these problematic conversion mistakes? If so, you’re not alone. Conversion optimization is a difficult art to master, and it’s easy to repeat a mistake when you don’t even know you’re making it.
Take this time to fully audit your conversion strategy, and make adjustments to improve your rate over time. This is your chance to get the results your brand deserves.
For more content like this, be sure to check out my podcast, The Entrepreneur Cast!