Conversion Rate Optimization

So you think you know CRO? Think again…

December 14, 2017

How important is CRO to your company? According to a recent survey conducted by Econsultancy, 59% of company respondents consider it to be a crucial part of their digital marketing strategy, while 98% believe it carries a significant degree of importance. If this same survey had of been recorded 10 years ago; the results would vary dramatically. CRO has made its debut in the industry, and only recently has it been recognised as a significant cog in the digital marketing wheel. The question is, how well do you know CRO?

Conversion Rate Optimization

What is CRO?

Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) is the process of optimising a website with the aim of increasing the percentage of visitors, who complete the desired action. Put simply, whatever you want your visitors to click on, sign up to, or purchase; you need to measure this act and optimise the process accordingly, to increase the likelihood of it occurring.

5 Most Common Misconceptions… dispelled:

As internationally recognised digital marketing keynote speaker & thought leader, Tim Ash (CEO of the strategic CRO agency SiteTuners), has noted; over the last 10 to 15 years the biggest change in CRO is that it has become institutionalised. It has a very similar trajectory as the SEO/SEM people had; as now it’s a job description, even directors, VP and C-Level people are claiming to have an optimization title.

Providing the latest insight and knowledge at UnGagged’s last event in Las Vegas, Tim Ash identified common issues with online marketing programs and provided a clear roadmap to deal with them. While the secrets shared during Tim’s session could never be repeated…(UnGagged policy), below are a few common misconceptions that could be affecting your marketing strategy.

Misconception #1: A/B Testing is the be all and end all

While A/B testing has been a blessing for many digital marketers out there looking to see the performance of differing headlines and subject lines, it has also become too relied upon when it comes to optimization. Many entrepreneurs will insist upon A/B testing design tweaks of the site when trying to determine what is interrupting the customer buying journey, rather than considering alternative tests or structural problems with their site. Instead, a basic usability test using the “think aloud protocol” is a great way to reveal some issues that are preventing a visitor from buying from your site. Be sure to benchmark your data before and after any changes are made to give you a guide to what works and what is necessary. Overall, you need to understand when A/B tests are appropriate and when other means are more suited for optimising your website.

Misconception #2: Inconclusive tests are of no use

If you find yourself running test after test, all producing inconclusive results; don’t be too disheartened as it could be exactly what you’re looking for. Often entrepreneurs will change the semantics and be faced with the same inconclusive result. This actually allows you to try something dramatically different, a new approach or message you thought of trying but never had a reason to. It provides you with the opportunity to learn from these inconclusive results and pushes you to get to the core of your message.

Misconception #3: Tactical testing is the way to go

Most companies tend to view conversion optimization inside their company as a segment of their digital marketing strategy, rather than taking a holistic approach. As Tim Ash describes this as a “digital marketing ghetto”, the “swim lane” approach consists of pay per click, SEO and CRO; which all need to be looked at in conjunction to one another, as opposed to individually. Ultimately, if you “treat it as a tactical testing activity, that spells death.”

Misconception #4: Blindly following the ‘best practices’

The “one size fits all” mantra certainly doesn’t apply when it comes to your CRO practices.  Considering every company is selling their product/service differently to the next, how can an array of audiences all follow the same customer journey and share the same experience and gain the same reaction to a product than the next? In short, they can’t; which is why you need to determine what practices work for you. Forget the lists you’ve found on the internet of what thought leaders have recommended on what ‘works’, and instead, test different changes you make on your website to confirm what works and that you are improving your conversion.

Misconception #5: It’s all about the design tweaks

Sorry to say, but changing your ‘checkout’ button colour from green to blue, doesn’t cut it. While cosmetic/design changes are a small part of your optimization strategy, CRO is more complex than this. Consider various factors of the functionality and usability of your site, such as your website is too slow, your content is hard to read, there is a lack of trust or confidence in your site, the customer journey isn’t clear, etc. There are many things you can test that can all help you get better conversions.

What The Experts Say…

If you have found yourself in a slight state of panic about your CRO and are in need of training and further explanation of the processes and tools you could personally implement; look no further. UnGagged is returning for an industry-altering conference in London on the 11-13th of June, 2018. While the team at UnGagged are working tirelessly to find, test and create the best speaker line-up yet; you can be assured that you will learn the latest in all the top areas of SEO and Digital Marketing as an attendee.

Join us to experience a close-knit circle of digital marketing professionals; on a large scale in London 11-13 June, 2018.

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