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Top Conversion Tips

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The classic motto "build it and they will come" is often a misconception about retail websites. Taking that a step further, getting people to visit your site isn't the same as getting them to make a purchase or complete whatever other goal your might have for your website visitors. Conversion optimization is sometimes an art form since there are so many complicated nuances of conversion. Search Engine Watch recently posted a list of the top 20 conversion tips. Here are 10 of them, for all 20, see [URL="http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2187317/Top-20-Conversion-Optimization-Tips"]Search Engine Watch[/URL].

1. Use the Right Tool for Your Business

Conversion optimization tools have distinct methodologies for testing, vastly different performance capabilities, varying levels of vendor support and service level agreements, different cost structures (from free to freemium to costly), distinct reporting capabilities and significantly varied resourcing needs.

2. Optimize Acquisition Channels First

This is particularly useful if you need to realize a quick win to show the value of conversion optimization because it is easy to show a reduction in overall cost per acquisition. Start with paid search and display advertising landing pages first, delve deeper with top referred pages but be careful with organic search entry pages due to varying traffic volume and search engine algorithm changes.

3. Scrutinize Lift Versus Shift

Optimization efforts usually count success in lift, but never consider the possibility of shift. Lift can be defined as an incremental and sustained increase in positive business growth. Optimizations with true lift do not disrupt existing conversion events. If your optimization creates localized lift and destabilizes conversion events on other areas of your site, youíre really seeing a shift.

4. Feel the Pain

Put yourself in the shoes of your customer and brainstorm their goals on your site. How easily could you perform the same tasks youíre asking your customers to complete? Do you set realistic expectations on how quickly someone can complete these tasks?

5. Analyze the Competition

Think youíre smarter than your competition? Try testing their ideas with your audience to find out what they might be doing better. Remember that regardless of how similar you site, product offerings, or services might be, no two sites will perform exactly the same.

6. Engage Test Groups

Try user research groups to test your website. There are free tools online such as fivesectiontest.com and usabilla.com as well as paid online focus groups such as usertesting.com and even session replay software such as Clicktale and Tealeaf. Sometimes user testing is the easiest way to get in your visitorsí head and find prospective customer pain points.

7. Recommend Products and Services

Industry giants like Apple, Dell, Amazon, and GoDaddy leverage the art of the upsell and leverage analytics to increase conversion volume and value per conversion.

8. Improve Self-Help

Areas on a website dedicated to helping people are most often frequented by loyal customers that prefer to solve their own problems. Help them save you money and phone calls and consider testing your self-help content by offering video tutorials, FAQs, comprehensive download archives, public service messaging and ensure youíre responding to social media channels.

9. Obsess Over Search Like Google Engineers

Search functionality on your website is often a last-ditch attempt that prospects and clients use to find what they want. Itís also probably the last capability youíll ever consider to optimize. Start optimizing for search queries with no results and continue to optimize by matching synonyms and common misspelling with more relevant content.

10. Be Careful With Promotions

Incentives and urgency can have a strong effect on conversion rate but undesirable effect on lifetime value, use with caution. Online-savvy prospects are pre-conditioned to give a little to get a lot and are less likely to repeat purchase without further, unprofitable promotion.

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