We have prepared a series of posts to clarify what CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) is all about. Once you read them all, you’ll learn how to:
- Run A/B tests
- Optimize landing pages
- Convert visitors into customers
This part, Part 1, is for those who are tapping their toes in CRO. I hope you find it useful.
Related: Conversion intelligence: AI for CRO
Source: CXL Institute
CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) is a combination of tasks you perform on your website or a separate page to attract more users to perform the targeted actions. These actions differ from your end goal. For example, it can be a purchase or a subscription.
An online store? A sale.
A blog? A subscription.
A SaaS product? A trial period.
Conversion rate is my friend?
CR or Conversion Rate is another term you might come across. Why is it important? If you do the math and find that the numbers are pretty low, well, you’re marketing strategy or website isn’t working as it should. You’ve invested a lot of resources (time/ MONEY), and if not many visitors convert into buyers, you’ve spent too much money.
Another way of looking at it would be to say why conversion rate can be misleading, why it’s so complex, and why it may not impact your business as a whole. But we’ll save that for another time.
This is the average conversion rate across all industries, but it really depends. Still, it’s a good starting point to set the bar. If you’re hitting around 2 to 3%, you’re good.
Where do I start with CRO?
Two words: data collection. Not just random checks, but smart ones. The problem is that most skip the “What do I actually need to learn first?” step and go straight to testing. Some random things, like the color of the CTA button. Btw, this has worked for some, but it’s hard to tell if it’ll work for you.
Quick Tip: About the CTAs. If color is important to you, make sure the buttons are the same color throughout the site.
In other words, to increase conversion rates, you need to set clear goals before testing.
Evaluate and set goals
- Define your business/site goal. Make sure your initial business idea is clearly communicated to your customers.
- Determine what your conversion goals are. Do you want your business to reach more customers or customers to stay with you long-term? Depending on the answer, your CR goals will vary.
- Figure out what your KPIs are and what metrics you need to focus on to achieve them.
Collect qualitative and quantitative data
Digging into Google Analytics (GA)
Google Analytics helps you understand where the weaknesses and strengths of your project are or analyze and learn from your quantitative data. GA can show exactly where users tend to stop using your product/become buyers.
To measure conversions in GA, you need to define the goals (to learn more, visit Google Analytics).
YES to qualitative data
Qualitative data is useful for understanding why users aren’t doing what they’re supposed to do on your website. It can help you figure out what’s stopping them and where the problems lie. Collecting this data can be challenging, but there are a few ways to collect it:
- Interview people in person, have them fill out online forms, or conduct interviews on Zoom for SaaS projects.
- Ask experts to evaluate your site to see if there are any issues with how it’s set up.
- Analyze tech support information and chat logs to see people’s struggles.
- Conduct tests with users to see how they use your site and get feedback
The most important thing is that you ask the right questions.
Both quantitative and qualitative data are vital. Especially the latter, because once you have your feedback, you can plan your product optimization steps. That will eventually lead you to test those strategies or a/b testing.
And now there is a Bonus.
Fun fact about conversion rates in eCommerce
Stores that sell sporting goods online have a harder time convincing people to buy from them compared to other online stores. Seems like people prefer to buy sporting goods from a physical store where they can get them right away.