February 10, 2016
Owning an online business or a website of any kind can be a tough task. This is particularly so, if you do not have the right tools to facilitate the job. There are those who make owning a website seem such a simple activity. They talk about posting content on the site and that is it. However, you have to make sure that your site is performing well. Remember, the search engines rank websites depending on their popularity. On top of this, visitors have to find your website useful. This is where conversation rate optimization (CRO) comes into the equation.
What exactly is CRO?
Before explaining what CRO is all about, it is important to point out what a conversion is. At the most basic level, a conversion is any action or activity that you would like the visitors of your website to perform when they land on your website. These activities could be anything from making purchases to downloading, to signing up, to subscribing etc. There are the major conversions such as the purchases for eCommerce websites and there are the minor conversions like subscribing to a blog.
CRO (conversion rate optimization) is simply a system which you can employ to enhance the percentage of visitors to your website. When you optimize your site, you will be able to use CRO to increase the proportion of your traffic, which finds your site useful. The conversion rate is a very important measure especially in the digital marketing world. It allows you to monitor the performance of your marketing campaigns.
CRO goes hand-in-hand with A/B testing or what is commonly called split testing. This is generally a comparison of two versions of a webpage to see the one that performs best. Using this method, you show the two variants of your website to similar visitors at the same time. The variant that gives a better conversion rate is the option to take. A/B testing is helpful in conversion rate optimization.
Why optimize conversion rate?
For starters, you are guaranteed to get a good return on investment (ROI). Getting paid traffic is a costly affair but the amount of money that you will spend to increase the conversions is relatively low. Just a bit of optimization can increase lead generation and sales significantly.
Secondly, you are guaranteed that you will get the ‘right’ kind of customers. CRO will not only help you retain customers, but it will also be very good in bringing in new customers. A majority of these customers will be those who have evaluated your products and are interested in interacting with you. Since your products please your customers, they are more likely to stick with your business and may even promote your business for you.
It also gives your website more focus. One of the rules of online business is that you should always be focused. Continued optimization of your conversion rates will also reveal the elements of your site that need to be eliminated. This helps to make your website more focused and, by extension, your business becomes much better at providing value and quality to its customers.
Live evidence that CRO works wonders
Jumia is one of the leading eCommerce websites on the planet. Recently, the company ventured into the East African market and, to be more specific, in Kenya. Currently, it is the biggest eCommerce site in Kenya with hundreds of thousands of people shopping there every single week. It has done tons of advertising on social and broadcast media, but has also used a lot of CRO to boost its sales. The site tracks the products that you purchase. If you often buy phones, it will present you with options to select from, especially if there is a specific brand that you are fond of purchasing, it will note that and ensure that when you visit the site, it is the first option presented to you.
If you want to gain great success through CRO, the best thing that you can do is to get a number of tools for the job. These include the likes of:
- Split testing (A/B testing)
- Surveys and usability tests
These are very simple tools to use. Aside from user friendliness, they are also very effective when it comes to CRO tasks. You can be sure you will be on your way to greater success if you implement these methods. Do not just post content, sit back and wait for traffic to increase in hopes that conversions will increase.
Lalit Sharma is a SEO consultant who runs a SEO house called Ranking By SEO. He is specialized in link building and other SEO related activities. You can also find him on Twitter, Google+ and his personal blog.