So, what is a conversion?

When visitors to your website make an action, or complete a goal (like signing up for your newsletter) that’s a conversion. Your goals are unique to your business, and can be a range of things. They’re not just about completing a purchase, for example, but could be making an enquiry, getting a quote, or downloading documents. It all depends on what you want to measure and optimise. 

When deciding your goals, you should consider your visitors’ mindset. Not all first-time visitors to your website are going to “convert” (even if that’s what we’d like). Visitors will be at different stages of the purchase cycle, so it’s a good idea to split your conversions into macro and micro goals.

Macro goals

The main goals you want to track: sign-ups, leads, and sales.

Micro goals

Goals that are signals of intent – smaller actions that suggest users are in the consideration phase: downloading documents, spending a long time on certain pages, watching videos, or using calculator tools.

Customer purchase cycle
When they're visiting your site, customers are typically at different stages of the purchase cycle.

Why you need CRO

There are many benefits to running optimisation programs. Essentially, it’s all about getting the most out of your website and marketing efforts. Benefits, to name a few, are: 

  • increasing conversions (whether that's leads or sales)
  • make marketing and social campaigns more efficient
  • increasing customer value and retention
  • promoting your brand
  • increasing your profits. 

Developing insight through audience research

With any optimisation program, you’ll need to start with a good understanding of your business, your objectives and your goals. You’ll then focus on your current and target audiences. Prepare to be surprised – your current audience isn’t always who you think they are. 

By researching your audience, you gain a good understanding of their behaviours and motivations. To gather data and develop insights that can be robustly tested, use a range of quantitative and qualitative research methods, for example web analytics and user testing. From here, it’s into the testing cycle: hypothesise, prioritise, design, test, analyse, implement and repeat.

The right test for the task

A/B testing is the most common testing method. However, other forms of testing may be more appropriate depending on the insight, priority, and level of effort required. For example, you might A/B or multivariate test your website, but run user testing on a prototype. 

A common misconception is that A/B and multivariate testing is about testing the colour of buttons. Short answer: it's not. It’s about robustly testing the recommendations that have been uncovered during the research phase.

Whichever method you choose, one important thing to remember is that no test ever fails. You'll always learn something and gain insights from each test you run – even if that’s simply understanding what doesn’t work.

Should you build a new website? Or look to CRO?

Well, that depends. If your current website is delivering value, but there are opportunities for improvement, we’ll work with you to refine and improve that experience. And if we think you need a new website, we’ll be up front about that too.

CRO can even be used if you're planning a new website. You can test ideas on your existing website and decide whether they should be a feature on your updated site. If you’ve already invested in a new website, closely monitor your performance metrics and get testing as soon as you can. The digital landscape is forever changing and what worked for you last year isn’t necessarily going to work this year.

Ready to optimise? Get in touch for a convivial conversation about conversion.

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