Do you feel as though your site is not converting enough? Think about it, how many visitors to your site are actually turning into qualified leads or buying online? If the answer is “not very many” then now is almost certainly the time for you to make a change. Here are a few reasons why your business isn’t converting sales.
Conversion Rate Optimization
If you’re an e-business, your online goal is likely conversion optimization, so you need to know that online success isn’t about how much traffic your site gets or even how large your social media platforms are. We call those vanity metrics because they might make you feel better, or look good, but don’t necessarily translate into converting sales.
Vanity metrics are things like registered users, downloads, and raw pageviews. They are easily manipulated and do not necessarily correlate to the numbers that really matter: active users, engagement, the cost of getting new customers, and ultimately revenues and profits
Your online goal is all about how many conversions your site is making, whether that’s direct sales on your website, driving traffic to a brick and mortar store, or developing leads for a salesforce.
While websites differ widely, the average conversion rate across a broad range of sites is around 2.35% which means that all of the revenue from your site is coming from a very small percentage of the traffic you bring to your site. For some firms that don’t do a great job of targeting their traffic sources, converting sales happen at an even lower rate, while the top 25% of sites convert at a little better than 5.3% and the top 10% of sites are converting sales at a whopping rate of almost 11.5%, although the performance of e-commerce sites is much lower, typically just over 6%.
Driving traffic to your site, in reality, you’re normally driving traffic to a particular landing page designed with a single CTA (call to action) and a click on that CTA represents conversion and, when the CTA leads to a sale, you’re converting sales and this traffic isn’t free. Hence, poor performing sites normally translate into high ROI (return on investment).
Among the costs you incur are:
- website design, which for a large site can cost upwards of $1 million
- hosting for your site
- advertising, both online and off
- SEO, which often means valuable content created on a consistent basis
- monitoring analytics, including A/B testing to optimize your landing page
- and a host of other expenses that don’t go away if your efforts don’t bring more traffic to your site. In fact, a poor performing landing page might result in additional expenses to make an attempt to reach goals
Options for converting sales
You can always keep paying more for your ads, hoping that you’ll get more traffic but, at the end of the day, it is far better and way cheaper for you to optimize your site so that you increase your conversion rate using less expensive tactics.
Conversion rate optimization helps you to fill in the crucial gaps in your customer journey so you ensure they are progressing through the funnel properly. For every additional click necessary to complete a transaction, cart abandonment increases, with the optimal number of clicks to achieve conversion is 4-6 [source]. More than 6 clicks have a serious negative impact on conversion.
There are lots of ways to reduce the number of clicks needed to convert a visitor, such as filtering to show only items that closely match customer needs and allowing 1-click buying (such as on Amazon) — several studies show 1-click buying increases conversion by 5% [source]. If you find your payment system takes too many clicks in your online store try this portable payment machine to make it easier for your customers to convert.
Source: Pexels (CC0 License)
Focus on the Customer
Consumers and prospects see your business as a single entity across all your touchpoints, including your website, your social media, and public relationship. If they receive a disjointed experience such as multiple login requests, pricing variation across platforms, or murky brand image, their perception of your company and brands declines and it also potentially affects the trust that they have in your business, too.
In an increasingly digital world, communication isn’t a one-way street and communication for other customers conveys their opinion of your brand and your company as a whole. This peer-to-peer communication is often a stronger influence on consumer attitudes than your own communication efforts and can swamp efforts to control messaging.
A good example of brand backlash by consumers comes from the multiple missteps of Chick fil A. Among other faux pas, the brand came out against LGBTQ by funneling money to a group with those leanings. Then, to counteract the resulting drop in sales, Chick fil A, eliminating funding, which caused a backlash among its more conservative patrons. The mess is ongoing.
Businesses need to find ways to put their customer first, acknowledging their values in the many types of communication they engender, while also making sure that they provide a seamless experience.
One of the primary and most important factors, when you try to determine the success rate of your site or your landing pages, is relevancy to customer needs and the way they search for information.
If you aren’t relevant then your customers are spending way less time on your site, or finding the right product requires more than the optimal number of clicks, and they probably won’t convert as a result.
For instance, when searching for a blouse or shirt, the brand may be irrelevant to many customers, while sleeve length, color, or material might be the focus of their search Implementing relevancy fits with the advice above, about knowing your customer and what’s important to them.
Search relevance also matters. When users search, Google and other search engines attempt to decipher customer intent and prioritize results so that the user easily finds a link that matches their intent. This comes down to keywords you’re optimizing for on your site and landing pages. Try to use keywords that fit your content and match customer intent. Also, consider that voice search now requires firms optimize for long-tailed keywords that match the way users speak into enabled devices.
If you want to find out if there are any problematic pages on your site, Google website analytics help. You should set up a custom dashboard in Google Analytics, which is free, so you have relevant metrics gathered in a single place to ease the analysis burden.
Your dashboard should prioritize meaningful metrics rather than vanity metrics and include key metrics such as:
- Visitors to the site, which, while not critical in isolation, gives you relevant information on your conversion potential. The more visitors, all things being equal, the higher your revenue.
- Map the conversion funnel
- Conversion rate
- Metrics about customers such as:
- Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
- And a host of other metrics that might vary based on your individual needs
Your site content is incredibly important when it comes to buying decisions that your customers make.
Structural issues can stop your visitors from finding pages they want, or might even be the reason why they are not able to move through your site as efficiently as they would like. All of this can affect your conversion rate and it can also leave your customers feeling very frustrated. This is the last thing that you need, so make sure that you are doing everything you can to maintain a proper level of page hierarchy at all times.
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