This article was published on April 8, 2011

How to optimize your conversion rate without bothering your tech team

How to optimize your conversion rate without bothering your tech team
Danny Wong
Story by

Danny Wong

Danny Wong is the co-founder of Blank Label (an award-winning luxury menswear company). He is also a marketer-at-large for Conversio (an all Danny Wong is the co-founder of Blank Label (an award-winning luxury menswear company). He is also a marketer-at-large for Conversio (an all-in-one ecommerce marketing dashboard), Tenfold (a modern phone intelligence platform) and Big Drop Inc. (a web design and development agency). Want to connect? Reach him through his website.

Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the hot new thing because of the potential it has to double your revenue without doubling your costs, which also allows you to increase your marketing budgets and makes marketing your business more profitable.

Most companies neglect CRO though, not because they don’t think it’s important, but because their tech team is preoccupied with many, many other things. Building great products and software as well as maintaining them certainly isn’t an easy job.

First, let’s focus on a few rules on what to test for CRO and how to test:

1. Define the challenge (more sales of A, more newsletter subscriptions, more visitors funneling to the next page) and the webpage to test

2. List potential reasons for your low conversion, problem areas on the webpage

  • Think about what’s essential to the webpage and what could be removed
  • Get some users and survey them on where the friction is. Ask them questions like “What would you change on this page?”
  • Use tools like CrazyEgg to get heat maps that show where people are clicking and where their attention is drawn

3. Consider alternatives for the problem areas on the webpage

4. Create and edit images and buttons, change up text (maybe even size and font), rearrange things, or create new pages entirely

5. Don’t get too crazy with all the data and feedback. Go ahead and start testing with just a few variations, see what’s working and optimize some more

When you’re ready to execute on CRO, you can do A/B testing and create your own landing pages without bothering your already busy, probably frequently annoyed-with-you, tech team.

A/B Testing

Optimizely has one amazing service that lets you A/B (and C and D) test any page on your site. How? Insert a simple script into your site, then click, drag, remove and replace images, change text size and font, and even play around with buttons without having to know any code in an interface that’s as intuitive as Paint (but clearly 1,000 times better). You can create multiple variations of a page and change the distribution of pageviews to each variation, then track important metrics to see which variation converts the most visitors.

Landing Pages

Start with a simple template on Unbounce and create basic, clear and to-the-point landing pages, like many of the best landing pages (less noise, more signal). Here, you can also play around with different landing page variations for testing purposes, but unlike Optimizely, you cannot manipulate current pages on the site. You can, however, create completely new and indexable pages as needed.

Optimizing the Sales Funnel

Another interesting thing you can do with both services, without having to call on your tech team for help, is optimize the sales funnel. Since buttons can be easily manipulated to redirect to any other page within the website, you can add additional steps to the sales funnel or omit them as needed. This way, you can see if additional steps might help the user’s experience and the conversion process or if omission of certain steps can improve sales.

Your tech team will love the fact you’re off their backs to make changes for testing and optimization purposes, and you’ll love how streamlined CRO will be when you can create and update pages as easily as you imagine them. Let’s also hope your bottom line thanks you very nicely too.

If you know of any other important things to consider for CRO, and great ways to get around your tech team and optimize your conversion rates, share them in the comments!

Credit goes to our conversion guru, Jorg Ruis, for contributing to this post.

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