Conventional wisdom suggests that when you don’t get enough sales from your website, you probably need more traffic. However, a careful analysis will tell you that actually you do not need more traffic. What you need is to improve your conversation rates. While your site is getting good traffic, somehow this traffic is not converting to paying customers.
Here is a shocking statistic. For every $92 spent to bring customers to their site, companies spend a measly $1 to convert them. And with already low conversion rates of 1 to 3%, the amount being spent to try to convert the vast majority of the traffic remains pathetically low. Let us take a look at 5 tips that you can use strategically to improve your site’s conversion rates.
1. Speed it up
The attention span of the average human being has been falling constantly, from 12 seconds in 2000 to 8 seconds at last count. This means that every second counts while trying to attract people on to your site. In fact, a delay of a single second can decrease your conversions by 7% as per data from Kissmetrics. You have to cater to this attention-deficit traffic by boosting your site’s loading times. Make your site faster by disabling all unnecessary features, functionalities and plug-ins. Sacrifice a little bit of aesthetics on the altar of speed and better loading times and you will be rewarded generously.
That a faster site would attract more traffic and better engagement would sound like common sense, and yet the majority of websites has yet to figure why faster loading times mean more money and still languishes with bad speeds. Only a few websites have great loading times and their popularity is testimony to their efforts in speeding up their sites. The fastest website in the world, according to Radware, is a Brazilian online shopping site called Mercado Livre, and it is owned by eBay.
2. Display your trust signals
Trust is the single largest reason that people will buy from you. Where people have to make online transactions they make doubly sure that there are no chances of their PCs getting infected from malware and ransomware infections and that their privileged data is safe and secure. If your site doesn’t feature security seals, it is likely that 48% of the people visiting your site won’t buy from you.
Unfortunately, the majority of the customers aren’t the trusting kind. A Forrester research says that 84% customers who were surveyed did not think that websites protected their privileged data enough and 76% respondents told a market research company that they abandoned an online shopping site due to security concerns.
Using a security trust seal from prominent brands and displaying them noticeably and enabling the SSL security protocol goes a long way in building trust for your site. Let your customers be able to click on the “security seal” and verify for themselves that this is a genuine seal and not just an image that has been copied and pasted on to the site.
3. Educate your customers
Brands that educate customers don’t lose them to their competition. In fact, they gain their customers’ loyalty and trust. Genuine customer education is not promotion and it provides information on products, services such that the customer has multiple options to choose from. Even so, the customer will choose the brand that goes a step ahead to educate and inform them.
Take Whole Foods, for example. On its website, it asks visitors if they want to “learn/do/both.” They also maintain a high quality Community Blog where they share recipes and tips for healthy eating. They also use videos for recipes and for information rather than just text to drive home the point.
4. Leverage social proof
Social proof is when you tell your potential customers how much your earlier customers loved your products and services and why you are simply awesome. Customers love brands that have earlier wowed people.
There are different types of social proofs, as explained by Aileen Lee. These are social proofs from celebrities, experts, users and wisdom of the crowd and that of friends. Social proof strategies that you can use on your website include testimonials, rating and reviews, influencer endorsements, client logos and social shares, among others. When customers see this social proof, their decision making ability is influenced by this and they are more likely to “follow the crowd.”
Take a look at the website of JW Surety Bonds, America’s Number 1 volume surety bond service. They prominently display their clients, which is social proof of their great services. Below that they display client ratings and reviews, which is also a major social proof.
5. Use this psychological hack
Psychologists are aware of the term “sensory adaptation.” This means that over time, the responsiveness of the sensory system to a particular stimulus decreases. Sensory adaptation is the reason why an irritating noise seems less irritating, or is even ignored altogether, after continuous hearing.
This understanding can be used to create a site design that provides constant stimulus to the senses (eyes, in this context). For example, CTA buttons should have dissimilar colors as compared to other design elements and should “stand apart from the crowd.” Try to break the design monotony by introducing something radical that attracts attention. Take a look at the site of Feex. The CTA breaks the design monotony and provides additional sensory stimulus.
Do you have any more tricks to increase your websites’ conversions? What do you think about these tips? Do share your thoughts with me in the comments!
Feature Image Credit: Paul On Flickr