Conversion optimization can seem difficult at first, but once broken down it often becomes a process of addition and subtraction. Elements that increase conversions are made more prominent, while those that reduce conversions are eliminated.
While certain page elements – from testimonials to clear calls to action – can raise your landing page’s conversion rate, others can have a significant negative effect on its conversion rate and your return on investment.
In this blog post, we’ll list five frequently ignored on-site elements that can hugely reduce your website’s conversion rate. If you notice any on your landing page, run an A/B test with and without them to see if they’re affecting your conversions.
Look at the signup forms used by sites like Facebook and Instagram – they’re only just as long and detailed as they need to be. Think carefully about how much data you really need; a lot of it can be acquired after a new user has registered.
As a general rule, aim for a maximum of five fields in your signup form. Obviously checkouts and sales-focused signup forms can be more detailed. In every case, it’s best to avoid unnecessary fields that complicate your signup or registration form.
The goal of your landing page is simple: to encourage visitors to call your business, join your email list, sign up for your product or community or make a purchase. If your landing page is filled with links, achieving this goal becomes more difficult.
Why? Because as readers make their way down your landing page, they’ll be more likely to click away to read the content that you’re linking to. Because of this, it’s a good idea not to include blog-style inline links on your landing or checkout pages.
Remember that you’re creating a path for the user to follow. Links, videos and any other on-site elements that lead them off the path you’re creating all tend to have a negative effect on your total conversion rate.
‘Busy’ website design
Is your website clean and simple or cluttered and confusing? Many businesses – B2B companies, especially – use websites that haven’t been redesigned in years, built on outdated design principles.
From cluttered navigational bars to content that’s too dense to read easily, having a ‘busy’ design often reduces your conversion rate. The most effective landing pages tend to be clean, simple and designed to optimum readability and navigability.
A great rule to follow is the squint test: if your page elements aren’t clearly visible when you squint, your landing page is too cluttered. If you use Google Chrome, you can check your landing page’s design simplicity using the Squint Test extension.
If you sell a product or service and accept payments online, sending visitors off your website could be affecting your conversions. Most of the time, on-site checkouts (an order form hosted on your website) have the highest conversion rates.
Examples of off-site checkouts include the PayPal off-site interface, which redirects users to PayPal’s checkout before returning them to your website, and other third-party payment processors such as 2Checkout and Google Wallet.
Whenever possible, keep your checkout on your website in order to maximize your conversion rate and avoid lost sales. Many customers will drop out of the process if they’re sent off your website to a checkout platform that looks unfamiliar.
Generic calls to action
The best calls to action are targeted and specific, expressing everything the user is required to do in order to complete an action. Using a generic call to action – Click Here!, for example – could be hurting your conversions more than it’s helping.
Whenever possible, your call to action should directly relate to the content on your landing page or product page. Instead of “Click here to buy,” a better call to action on a product page would be something like “Check Out Now.”
Be descriptive, straightforward and action-focused. The more closely your calls to action mirror the action that the user will be taking, the more likely it is that they will increase your conversion rate.
When a visitor first lands at your website, what do they do? Which pages do they view and interact with? Where do these pages lead them? How many clicks will it take for them to reach your first sales-optimized landing page?
If you can’t answer the above questions, your website is likely in need of either a redesign or some serious optimization. Many B2B companies ignore the essential principles of web design, assuming that content alone is the best marketing tool.
The reality, however, is that following best practices for web design and usability will not just make your website easier for visitors to navigate; it will also make it significantly more profitable.
In this blog post, we’ll share 10 design, usability and conversion best practices for your B2B website. Think of this as a checklist – after you read each best practice, review your website and see if it needs to be optimized.
Ensure every page has a clear goal
Every page on your website should have a clear goal. This goal could be to inform the visitor about a product, provide them with contact information or generate a conversion. Check that all of your pages have a clear, easily identifiable goal.
Don’t over-optimize for search
It can be tempting to optimize your website for SEO by using keywords heavily in your content. While some degree of focus on SEO is certainly a good thing, it’s not good web etiquette to overdo keyword optimization if it affects readability.
Link info pages to landing pages
Not all pages on your website will be focused on sales. However, all pages that are informational should link to sales-driven pages. Make sure there’s a call to action linking every informational page on your website to a sales-focused landing page.
Keep contact information visible
Not all of your customers will want to place orders using your website. Having an email address or support phone number that’s easily visible will allow customers who want to learn more about your product to get in touch.
Avoid overly ‘busy’ design
Many B2B websites, particularly those designed several years ago, have designs that are overly busy and difficult to navigate. Your website’s design should be simple and clean without distracting on-page elements that could confuse users.
Include logos and testimonials
Logos and testimonials are both fantastic tools for improving conversions. If you’re interested in increasing your conversion rate and earning more money from every visitor to your website, consider including persuasive testimonials.
Limit fields on lead capture forms
Every lead capture form on your website – from email opt-in forms to sales forms – should only be as complex as it needs to be. Avoid including unnecessary fields that complicate the buying process, unless the data is absolutely essential,
All of your calls to action – from buying buttons to links to phone numbers – should be immediately identifiable and obvious to visitors. Consider using a contrast color to make your call to action stand out and attract the attention of users.
Use a fully responsible design
Even in the B2B sector, a huge amount of traffic is mobile. Optimizing your website for mobile opens you up to a massive audience that’s very unlikely to buy or send a sales-related email from a desktop-only website.
Always use analytics software
If you’re not tracking your conversion funnel, you’re never going to be able to make informed tweaks to your online marketing process. Make sure your website has an analytics platform linked and carefully monitor the data your website gathers.
How many of the 10 best practices does your website follow?
Not every website is perfectly optimized and up to date, and violating one or two of the best practices listed above is understandable. However, if your website follows very few of the above best practices, it could be a good time for a redesign.
We’ve previously discussed what responsive web design is and what it would mean for business to take on this new web development to their websites. At this era of portable devices, responsive web design allows the website to accommodate users with mobile devices. Responsive Web Design (RWD) works with CSS and mostly uses media queries to help implement the flexible grids and display websites in different devices such as tablets, smart phones and desktops. Business owners often must decide between creating a website that can handle both mobile and fixed devices, and creating a separate website for each group of users. Designers and business owners generally collaborate on decisions based on the type of business and users for that website.
But first, what type of mobile devices are we dealing with here?
We have feature phones and then there’s smartphones, desktops and tablets. So what’s the difference? As Google Developer defines it, feature phones cannot render normal desktop webpages while the modern devices mentioned above can do so at an extent. The browsers in modern mobile devices like iPhone, iPad or Android-based devices can render most desktop platforms such as HTML5.
Limitations of Responsive Web Design
Let’s admit any integration or platform has its own limitations. RWD has a number of drawbacks compared to a separate mobile counterpart.
1. Media queries are not supported by most mobile devices
Media queries are codes embedded on a site’s CSS to help detect a user’s viewing size and apply a specific layout that will fit the screen size. Sounds very sophisticated, right? However, when media queries fail particularly on small devices, the text get smaller that it’s unreadable. Remember, there is still a big margin for businesses to grab opportunity for feature phone users.
Media queries are supported in most desktop and smartphone browsers. However, feature phones that have their own browsers don’t support codes in media queries, that the site doesn’t turn out the way you want it to look like. It takes major tweaks and conditional coding to implement and get things right.
2. Brings Little or No Help in SEO
While RWD contains more content, it gives little credit to SEO. In fact, Google doesn’t even recognize websites designed with RWD. Why? Google has its own mobile bots called Googlebot-Mobile and they only recognize just a few number of sites unless the user agent is elaborately declared in the site’s header.
Another thing is, mobile sites are more optimized for mobile users in terms of search. Consider that mobile users have a different way of searching than desktop users. They may use shorter terms to quickly look up. When RWD on a website is implemented, not all onsite optimization will apply to mobile users and that could be a problem.
3. Site Loading Speed and Image Resizing
This is also true for images, as the normal protocol would be to download the images in their original sizes and the phone’s browser would resize them to fit the screen. This is another work for a mobile device which takes up more memory usage and processing.
4. Time Consuming
For a website to be fully integrated to have a responsive web design, all the necessary elements should be thought of. It will take a lot to get the conditional codes working properly, a series of trial and error. This is why, it is better off to start from scratch.
Separate Mobile Sites
Smart phones comprise an increasingly larger share of the mobile phone market, although basic phones are still slightly more common than smart phones. However, most of the mobile phones acquired since June 2012 are smart phones. To give you an idea, smart phones have penetrated the mobile market to 55% global users to date. But there’s still remaining 40-45% users that haven’t been using smartphones.
According to Business Insider, the conversion cycle is just getting started and by 2016, most if not all global users will convert to smartphones. That’s four more years into conversion, which is a very opportune time for website owners to do mobile sites. No, we’re not telling you that you don’t need to have your site on RWD yet but the point is, mobile sites help in creating a user experience for those who are not yet ready for smart phones, at the same time, respond to those who have already converted.
Website designers will have greater difficulty implementing RWD as the website becomes more complex. One alternative is to develop a secondary website designed specifically for mobile devices. Users initially view the primary website, which redirects the user to the secondary site if it detects a mobile device.
Designers can also create a mobile application on the website that will allow the user to view the website on a mobile device. This approach to mobile site design allows the designer to avoid the work of developing an RWD website.
Basic phone users in general are most likely to be older, which is attributable to these users holding on to a device with which they are familiar. However, users who have recently acquired a basic phone tend to be younger. The users most likely to have a new basic phone are between 13 and 17 years of age, who are primarily using them as starter phones.
The mobile phone market will eventually be comprised entirely of smart phones, although this process is being slowed by the higher cost of a smart phone and its data plan. However, the price of smart phones is continuing to drop, and shared data plans will also reduce the cost of owning a smart phone. The conversion of the market from basic phones to smart phones should become complete when the price of a low-end smart phone is close to that of a basic mobile phone.
Business owners must perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine if the most profitable solution is to implement a single site with RWD or develop a separate website for mobile users. RWD is generally the best solution for websites with a low level of mobile users. However, business owners must also consider the fact that smart phone usage is increasing rapidly and the growth of mobile internet users will continue to outgrow desktop internet users.
Here’s a number of things to consider:
- Visitor Demographics
- Target Markets
- Likelihood of mobile device usage
The number of smart phone users will eventually increase to the point that virtually all businesses need to develop a website for mobile users. Large organizations with more resources for development are likely to begin this process earlier than small businesses. Additional factors that affect the decision to develop a mobile website include the type of users that the website has. Websites are more likely to need a mobile website if its customers are in remote locations. High-end customers are also more likely to use smart phones which will benefit from a website using RWD.
Photo Credit: Old Woman with Mobile. Ambro from FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Here’s hoping you all had a refreshing holiday!
Below is a little video I’d like to share with you as a kind of Thanksgiving token for your patronage of my humble blog.
In this video I make a comparison between your business and owning a car. When I made this video awhile back I was wracking my brains for a good metaphor that’s accessible to most entrepreneurs. After making a list, I decided on a car, which you will agree, is one of the basic business tools for folks like us.
As I am a fan of speed, this video is only 2 minutes, 31 seconds long! I hope you pick some quick nuggets of wisdom. Feel free to send me your car analogies as well over at the comments box.
We at Bliss Drive use an integrated approach to helping entrepreneurs drive their business from point A to B. Call us today at 949-229-3454 to get a free consultation. We can help you accelerate so you can reach your goals faster.
Responsive Web Design or RWD is a way of approaching a site’s design so that it responds well to different types of viewing screens.
This equates to seamless navigation and as little fidgeting from your viewer (scrolling, resizing, panning) whichever device they are on, be it a laptop, a tablet or a cellphone.
Why should you care?
You need to know about RWD because more and more new media options are replacing print material. Different market segments access online information in myriad ways, both big and small. It is in your site, and by extension, your business’ best intention to be well represented in all sizes of the web. For example, your site may look good on a desktop layout but crappy in a small phone screen. It is not rare that a customer will access the Internet using more than one device on a daily basis. You need to represent your page well whatever incarnation it may be.
Getting Started with RWD
Achieving RWD almost solely the responsibility of a web designer as it involves many technical considerations. A good designer can apply codes and scripts on the website that will enable automatic device detection and adjust the layout according. The designer will also be able to determine how best to design your page as they take into factor important considerations like optimal screen resolutions or incorporating ads. One good resource is Google’s GoMoMeter, where you can check if your website is optimized for responsive web design.
Bliss Drive can help. We’d like to extend a complimentary RWD consultation. You need not busy yourself with the nitty gritty of web design. Call 949-229-3454 and we’d be happy to explain how we can help. Let us determine what’s best for so that you can concentrate on what you do best – that is, managing your business.
Image courtesy of bplanet / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
A redesign of your website, if done right, could produce favorable sales results for your website. Tweaks in the web design to the right direction could spell the difference between a trickle and the steady flow of incoming sales leads for your business.
Here are just some of the most important elements that will lead to improved lead generation for your website:
A Self-Selling Landing Page
A landing page is the page where viewers of your site first arrive at. Most often, this is your website’s first impression. Since this is the end user’s first touch, it would be wise to setup the page so that it prompts your desired action, such as a purchase or data capture. A clear message written in the second person (You, or Your) will help deliver a persuasive pitch. Team it up with design that’s visually free of clutter and you’ve got a winning combo.
Make Closing Easy
Closing could either mean a sale, or the completion of a desired action. Imagine a viewer browsing your page, credit card in hand, ready to seal the deal. Or a viewer ready to leave their contact details but don’t know how. This lead is precious. Too often, the all-important call to action is buried deep inside too many clicks, buttons, and/or links within your site’s inner pages. Don’t make the mistake of keeping this type of viewer trapped in unnecessary page bottlenecks. A common example: placing an order form inside two inner pages rather than immediately out front. Make audits within your pages and immediately trim down the steps between your customer’s interest and their point of action.
Fast Loading Speed
It is important for your pages to load fast. Attention span has gotten shorter and shorter these days. If your page takes too long to load, you just made a bad impression on your audience. They will not hesitate to look elsewhere for what they need. That’s a potential lead lost. It only takes 3 seconds or less to get the visitor’s attention, so make it count.
To achieve fast page loading speeds, reduce unnecessary clutter in the layout of your website. Reduce the image size of your graphics without sacrificing quality. The more you trim, the faster your page will appear in front of your valued viewers.
Consider testimonials your digital word-of-mouth. Showcase these gems in high traffic areas within your entire site. Word-of-mouth is free, catchy and very effective. If your pages are peppered with these elements, it would be a cinch to inspire customer confidence and and even easier for existing website viewers to replicate the good word to their friends, potentially increasing new leads to your site.
Itching to get more leads for your website but not sure how to go about it? Try out our Free Website Audit and get a whole new insight about your business on an online perspective. You may also call 949-229-3454 today to get a free consultation about your business’ internet marketing options.
If you haven’t got a mobile strategy yet, do not waste time. By next year, (less than six months away) more web users will get online using their phones vs computers. In two years, there will be a one to one ratio of mobile phone to earthling. These figures cannot be ignored – you simply need to create your website’s mobile version today.
The most important thing to understand about the mobile web is that your customers are already mobile. More and more, end users are doing the things they used to do on their desktops over their mobile phones. Web activities like research, social media and shopping are as important on the big screen as it is in the small screen.
In this article I will share simple yet high-impact tips to help you provide an engaging mobile experience for your viewers. End-user engagement is key!
Rule of Thumb
Make your interface thumb friendly for easy navigation. Remember that phone users get around with their thumbs, so be sure to make the page design large enough for thumbs to take the place of web activities that are usually meant for a mouse or a trackpad. A look that’s designed for large hands is best for overall useability.
Make it Easy on the Eyes
Eyestrain is the mobile user’s common enemy. Be particular about designing your color scheme for improved visibility, especially in low-light areas. Select colors that emphasize contrasts. Be also mindful of the page contents fitting inside the webpage without the viewer having to squint.
Make Use of Mobile Site Redirects
Mobile Site Redirects are codes that can help signal if a visitor is using a mobile phone. This code will automatically show the version that is appropriate for the viewer. You will need the help of a developer to plug in the redirect code on your website.
Design for Speed
Phone users are more often in a hurry to get tasks done or retrieve information. It is important to design your mobile page so that it loads quickly and exhibits easily digestible text. Keeping things quick will help more viewers patronize your page.
Sync for a Continuous Experience
Translate as much of your desktop sites’ features as you can into your mobile site. If your desktop version is in close sync with your web features, you’re delivering a seamless experience for your customer.
You need the help of a skilled developer to implement your new mobile look. The best way to begin is with our Free Website Audit which includes a Mobile page consultation. Call 949-229-3454 today to get a free consultation about your business’ mobile marketing options.
Let me give you a simple definition: your website conversion rate is the percentage at which your website visitors complete a desired action.
For majority of small business owners, the main purpose of websites is as a showcase to sell your product or service. So if we switch to a profit-driven viewpoint, your website conversion rate now means the percentage of visitors who actually buy the stuff you sell or leads who contact you for your services.
Did you know that on average, the conversion rates for websites come to a low 3%? The good news though is that many websites actually convert at 10% or higher.
But how, do you increase your website conversion? How do you spruce up your low-converting site to a high-converting one? Let us count the ways.
Identify your customers. Properly segmenting your target market puts you in the right direction for better website designing. Identify the immediate needs of your customer and use them as ideas for a unique selling proposition. For example, if you are a service provider. People want your services to be fast, needs quick pricing quotes, etc.
Make customers want you with your USP. Your USP or Unique Selling Proposition is your drive to get leads and later on convert to sales. With the needs that you identified with your customer what can you come up as your unique selling point? Make sure your unique selling point responds to the need or if you’re aggressive enough, create the need.
Make website visitors listen with their eyes. Now, that you have defined your unique selling proposition, how do you make it clear to your potential customers? The answer is strategic enticement. Shout out your USP with bold headlines, Want visitors to sign up to your newsletter? Add buttons that will make them sign up. The key is making sure every element you put in your website contributes to funneling visitors to do an action that you target. Call-to-actions are old-school but they work every time. Sales copies with clear and strong message also do the trick.
Be easily available. Not one customer I know wants a tedious task before they can finally talk to someone. Not one. Making your contact numbers obvious on your website is a good rule of thumb. Always put them in your website’s header and make it big.
Having a chat on site is also recommended especially if you have an Ecommerce site. A question about a product can convert into a sale if you can answer an inquiry right away.
Does your contact form have too many fields? Try to cut it down to essentials and get information that can be easily contacted.
You see increasing conversions means you’re willing to step up and generate more leads with your website. It creates better action funneling and may improve customer service and sales. It may mean further web development but every step is worth it.
Ready to improve your website design for conversion but don’t know where to start? Try out our Free Website Audit and get a whole new insight about your business on an online perspective today. You may also call 949-229-3454 today to get a free consultation about your business’ internet marketing options.