Did you just miss another customer? One moment a prospective customer is clicking on your PPC ad, email call to action or social media link, the next moment theyre on your landing page, and then just seconds later, theyre already clicking their browsers back button. What went wrong?
The average landing page visitor decides in just seven seconds or less whether theyre going to spend time on your page or leave. While traditional web analytics are an effective means for measuring bounce rate, these analytics also provide very little insight into why web visitors left your page in the first place. SEO can only take your website so far. Your website may be at the top of Googles search ranking, but with poor conversion rate optimization, your website's pagerank is effectively worthless.
Is your landing page under-performing? Heres how to boost landing page conversion rates.
Mirror, Mirror: Mimic Design & Message for Streamlined Experience
Every landing page needs a clear, concrete purpose. Dont dilute your pages value by cramming it with visual junk. Landing pages are not the place for lengthy testimonials or fancy flash graphics. Instead, create a landing page that visually mimics the email or ad that brought visitors to your page in the first place. Doing so creates a streamlined user experience. Whether your goal is to build your opt-in email list or to increase trial subscriptions, all content on the landing page should reinforce this goal. Summarize your unique selling proposition in five lines or less. Select a single graphic or short video that epitomizes your product or service. Be specific, be brief and be compelling.
Cut to the Chase: Eliminate Options to Boost Conversion Rates
Dont let a lengthy sign-up form kill your conversion rates. Fewer fields equal more conversions; its that simple. If you need to collect multiple pieces of information, consider using a series of screens; this keeps would-be consumers from being overwhelmed by too many fields. If your company requires secure login information as part of the sign-up process, consider using a universal login, such as Facebook, to create the users initial account.
Mouse Move Heatmaps & Recordings: Where Do Visitors Click and Why?
Studies show that there is a high correlation between eye movement and mouse movement. Eye-tracking studies are costly and rarely an affordable investment for small businesses. Mouse movement maps and segmented heatmaps, however, are an affordable option for tracking on-page movements. These maps are like looking over your users shoulders, and theyre a great means for tracking where users move and click. For example, if your call to action is under the fold or simply goes unnoticed, this could explain why your conversion rates are so low. Heatmaps are a useful tool for determining page design problems that may be holding back your conversion rates.
Testing, Testing: When to Use A/B Testing
While A/B testing is useful, it should be the final step of any optimization and testing process. Your business first needs to identify the problem (via split page testing or mouse move heatmaps) before A/B testing possible solutions. From overall page design to button color, holistic landing page testing will help identify and correct potential conversion problems. Get started with a general page testing service like fivesecondtest.com; on this website, users have five seconds to view your landing page and then answer questions about this page. Fivesecondtest.com is an important tool for determining if a design flaw is the cause for your pages low conversion rate. Once you have developed a hypothesis about the cause for your pages low conversion rate (e.g., a poorly placed call to action button), A/B test pages with different button locations to determine which button performs the best.
One out of four marketers cite proving the inbound marketing ROI of their activities as their greatest inbound marketing challenge for 2013, according to HubSpot. Proving inbound marketing ROI starts with a clear landing page optimization strategy. Remember, landing page optimization is an infinite loop; what works well today may not meet your customer's needs next year. For maximum inbound marketing ROI, be open to change and continual refinement. Your business's bottom line will thank you.