Conversion optimisation is a tricky business, and there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for every business out there. But while there might not be a single solution that works for everyone, there are lots of mistakes you can make along the way, which could cause your conversion rate to plummet. As you read this article, ask yourself: are you committing these conversion sins?
Too much choice
You might think it’s a great idea to give your visitors lots of choice – that way, they feel free to make the decision for themselves and won’t feel pressured, right? Wrong! Giving users too much choice can actually be off-putting for them, especially if the amount of choice you’ve offered means they have to go hunting for what they were looking for in the first place. Yes, users like to have an element of freedom, but too much choice and too many options can cause them to fall out of your funnel.
If you have any experience with conversion optimisation at all, you’ll know just how important a great call-to-action is. Your CTA needs to be powerful and bold, giving your visitors very clear instructions on how they should proceed. The language you use should be unique and actionable, and it should be formatted so that it stands out from the rest of the text on the site – whether you change the font, the colour, the size or all three, it needs to draw the attention of your visitors. It also helps to use words that convey urgency, like ‘now’, ‘today’ or ‘before’.
As we’ve already covered, there is no straightforward recipe for conversion success – every single site is unique, and users’ behaviours will be slightly different, even for two brands that operate in the same sphere. The conversion techniques of your rivals or similar companies can provide great inspiration, but straight out copying will not be nearly as successful as using your own data and analytics.
This is perhaps one of the biggest conversion sins you can commit – if you’re targeting the wrong audience, your conversion rate will never hit the dizzying heights you’re hoping for. If you’re not seeing the results you want, and you feel you’ve exhausted most solutions, try going back to the drawing board and researching your target audience once more. Analyse your client base again – find out who they are, their needs, their pain points, and how they were introduced to your company. Build highly accurate and relevant customer profiles, and make sure you’re using visitor segmentation to generate even further insights and enhance your conversion rates.
Changing everything, all at once
There may come a time during your optimisation process when you feel like everything is going wrong. Perhaps the changes you’ve made recently have yielded even worse results than before, and you’re not exactly sure how to rectify the problem. It can be tempting to simply implement a huge raft of changes to see a short-term leap in your conversion rates – but you could be shooting yourself in the foot. One of the main benefits of conversion optimisation is that you figure out which tweaks you need to make to your funnel for success – but if you make wholesale changes, how will you know which changes have been the most effective? You might see a bump in conversions, but you’ll never know exactly why, and you won’t have learned any lessons you can carry forward into future efforts. Be patient, change elements one by one, and track the effects of those changes diligently for the best results in the future.
Rushing the testing phase
Testing is just as important as research. These are the two most time-consuming areas of conversion optimisation – but they’re the absolute foundation of all your efforts, and they shouldn’t be rushed. Sometimes you might be tempted to change something on your website based on something you’ve seen or read – it may even be something on this website! But you should always take the time to run a split test and ensure its efficacy before you implement a change.
Not using data properly
Analytics and the data they produce are your best friend in the world of conversion optimisation. Ignoring them and ‘going with your gut’ can often be an enormous mistake. We know the sheer amount of data generated can sometimes be daunting, but disregarding it can be a recipe for disaster. You might also be misreading certain statistics and patterns, choosing to see what you want to see, rather than what the data clearly suggests. If you’re not sure how to use analytics to your advantage when you’re optimising your site or landing pages, there are plenty of resources online which can help you get started and make the most of this vital data that can be leveraged to improve your site.
Thinking the job is done
A conversion rate optimiser’s work is never done! The saying goes that complacency is the enemy of success, and that’s especially true here. Just because you’re starting to see some positive results, doesn’t mean the hard work is over. In fact, it could be just beginning! You need to figure out how to maintain those good results, while still looking to improve. The same goes for when you achieve a conversion. You might believe that this means your work is done – but a great optimizer would then be thinking about how they can transform a new customer into a loyal, lifelong customer. You should always be looking to hit your next target or take your results to the next level, rather than resting on your laurels.