Gaining a lot of traffic for your ecommerce store is a worthy goal to aspire towards. Yet, if that traffic fails to convert into a sale, download or lead, then you need to ask the question as to whether you should be doing more to drive business growth.
To get the most of your existing traffic and leads, it’s far better to focus on building a strong Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO) strategy. When done correctly, CRO marketing will help to take your brand to the next level and create long-term growth.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of seven CRO best practices that will help to refine your ecommerce efforts. Before we get into those tips, let’s examine what CRO is and how it’s calculated.
What is conversion rate optimisation?
Conversion rate optimisation is the process of optimising your online store based on the behaviour of your audience, to improve the chances of a conversion. In this context, a conversion is a sale, a request for more information, a new connection and so on.
CRO is extremely important to drive business growth, as it lowers your customer acquisition costs by getting more value from the visitors and traffic that you already have. This comes with several benefits, which include gaining more customers, driving more sales, increasing revenue per visitor and building brand awareness.
How is CRO calculated?
CRO is calculated using ecommerce conversion rate, i.e. the percentage of visitors to an online store that makes a purchase. It appears as the following formula:
Total ecommerce transactions / total visits on website x 100 = ecommerce conversion rate
Example: 10 transactions / 50 visits x 100 = a 20% conversion rate
(an amazing conversion rate! )
A high conversion rate demonstrates more prospects are being persuaded to buy a product and CRO is the process in which these conversions can be supercharged.
Here’s the top CRO best practices we’ll be exploring:
- Create an exceptional user experience
- Calls to action make a world of difference
- Provide highly personalised product recommendations
- Prioritise and optimise your highest-performing blog content
- Have a money-back guarantee
- Harness the power of social proof
- Test, test and test again
1. Create an exceptional user experience
On-site navigation plays a vital role in conversion rate. Imagine if you clicked onto a store that had chaotic service links, a lack of product information and poor landing pages. Would you want to buy from a website like that?
That’s why it’s important to invest in a great user experience from the moment that a visitor arrives on your website. Make sure that you use easy-to-follow navigation links, guide people towards the most relevant products and have a streamlined checkout process.
2. Calls to action make a world of difference
Another CRO marketing technique is to have a wide range of strategic calls to action (CTAs) across your website. CTAs are a driving force behind encouraging prospects to convert. They include text, personalised banners, buttons, pop-ups, pricing tables and more. You can really be quite imaginative with CTAs – the main goal is to get people to do the action.
EXAMPLE: A pop up appears on your customers homepage. You want them to be immediately notified about the huge sale you are having on trainers. You include the discount code and the main CTA ‘shop now’, which is linked to the product listing page. How would you make the CTA enticing?
When choosing the language of your CTAs, it’s important to have powerful, active words. For example, ‘click here’ has been identified as one of the highest converting CTAs at 30%. It’s also worth creating personalised CTAs where possible, as research has shown they lead to an incredible 202% conversion rate!
3. Provide highly personalised product recommendations
A sure-fire way to increase conversion rate is to provide your customers with product recommendations that match their interests.
An example would be to include additional products as part of a bundle when a prospect is browsing a page. This is an effective CRO marketing technique because it creates the idea of extra value for the prospect, and you can further incentivise them by offering a discount on the bundle.
4. Prioritise and optimise your highest-performing blog content
The blog section of your website is a great opportunity to provide content that drives conversions through being educational, entertaining and engaging. That’s why you’ll want to identify and optimise your best blogs so you can continue to leverage them at all stages of the buying journey.
Once you’ve identified the articles you want to focus on, check to see if there are any new keywords that can be included to keep the search engine ranking high and refine any CTAs as necessary.
Another important part of blog optimisation is the title. A powerful headline makes all the difference between whether a prospect chooses to read a blog and research shows they are more likely to check out an article if the headline has a number in it.
EXAMPLE: You sell baking products and utensils. Your next blog title could be based around ‘5 top tips to baking the best caramel shortbread’.
5. Have a money-back guarantee
Building trust is a crucial part of any successful CRO strategy and one of the simplest ways to do this is to offer a money-back guarantee to your customers. This information could be displayed on a checkout page to inform them that they will receive their money back under certain conditions.
The effect of this guarantee is that it demonstrates your willingness to look out for the interests of customers and you’re not just trying to sell to them. It may encourage them to return for repeat purchases.
6. Harness the power of social proof
Another of our CRO best practices is to leverage the power of social proof for building trust with your audience. Social proof is a phenomenon where people are influenced by the behaviour of others and in an ecommerce context it’s highly effective for gaining new leads and sales.
A great example of social proof are customer testimonials, and you should be strategic with how you present them. Whether it’s on a product page or across social media, a testimonial may influence other people to buy into your services.
7. Test, test and test again
Our final tip is that you should always be looking for ways in which you can improve your ecommerce store by testing every aspect of it. Check your page speed, run A/B testing on your CTAs, experiment with different product images and continually refine your CRO strategy.