14 Conversion Rate Tools That Every Expert Needs

Conversion rate optimization tools

Exclusive Bonus: Click here to download all 14 Conversion Rate Tools and Receive 7 Bonus Tools not mentioned in this post

The best conversion rate experts use a set of  tools to help them optimize websites based on research, data and testing.

At the end of 2014, digital marketers’ put conversion rate optimization on the top of their priority list.

That’s right, ahead of content marketing, mobile marketing and search engine optimization, marketers’ listed “driving increased conversion rates” as the number one priority.

And why wouldn’t we? For the same traffic, we get more revenue. It makes sense.

Marketing priorities 2014

So as marketers, how are we doing?

According to the TrustRadius survey on Conversion Rate Optimization, 72% have implemented some CRO processes while only 18% consider conversion optimization as a part of their DNA, which is a bit like saying you do content marketing when in reality, you only blog once per month.

OK, but how are we approaching testing and optimization? Surely we’re doing this better, right?

Unfortunately, that’s not good news either. As sixty-three percent (63%) of marketers’ optimize websites based on intuition and best practices.

How eCommerce stores approach testing

Ugghh! If you have ever wondered why conversion optimization isn’t working for your business, then there’s your answer. You are optimizing your website based on things you have heard or read.

How can I get started with conversion rate optimization?

You need to invest in a great set of tools and through these tools, you will have the data you need to optimize your website.

The data is important because it will help you understand how people engage with your website and how they perceive your brand. And to do this, you need to conduct research, and then from the findings of your research, you will test improvements. Once your tests are statistically significant, you can then implement the changes to your website.

It’s a clear framework – Research your visitors, test your changes and then implement the winning results.

You can’t expect to understand and convert your web visitors without the right set of tools. A handyman doesn’t turn up without his toolbox, does he?

But conversion rate optimization tools are expensive, right? Wrong!

Although the Trustradius report shows that 58% spend more than $10,000 on digital analytics tools for conversion rate optimization, most of the conversion rate optimization tools listed below are free (to begin with). At this price, there are no more excuses why you shouldn’t be doing CRO the right way.

Based on my experience, I’ve used a wide range of CRO tools to help optimize conversion rates in a wide range of industries.

My conversion optimization success toolkit consists of 21 conversion optimization tools. Today, we’re going to outline 14 amazing tools.

Analytics Tools

Why you need these tools: To perform quantitative research, which provides you with the numbers and hard data on where things are going wrong on your website (exit rates, bounce rates, shopping cart abandonment, etc).

Google Analytics
Google Analytics allows you to track website behavior and reports on visitors, engagement, traffic sources, content and eCommerce sales. Google Analytics is the most popular web analytics platform on the market and can help you identify your most profitable marketing channels.
Cost: Free

CrazyEgg
CrazyEgg offers a range of tools, but the best tool to optimize your website is the heat map. The heat map allows you to see where visitors click on your website. The benefit of this is you can identify pain points on a page that show where visitors are clicking and where they are not clicking.
Cost: Free 30 day trial

Clicktale
Clicktale Analytics now comes in a freemium package that tracks up to 5,000 recordings per month. Clicktale records website visitors but will hide any sensitive information for user privacy. You can watch website visitors take action on your website and understand how they use the site, or what issues they run into when navigating.
Cost: Free per 5,000 visitors

Mixpanel
Mixpanel is an advanced analytics platform for mobile and web. While Google Analytics measures page views, Mixpanel helps you analyze visitors actions and optimize funnels. For example, an action can be uploading a picture, watching a video or sharing a blog post. This type of platform allows you to understand exactly how people interact with any web page and how they navigate through your site.
Cost: Free for up to 25,000 data points

Formisimo
Formisimo is an advanced form analytics tool that records how a user interacts with a web form and checkout fields. Formisimo records how users engage with the form, the fields they do not complete and when they use autocomplete/ manually enter their information. This information helps you eliminate fields that cause friction.
Cost: Free 14 day free trial

Research Tools

Why you need these tools: To perform qualitative research, which provides you with insights into the “why” – Why customers complete a purchase or more importantly, why visitors do not buy your product or service.

Peek (by Usertesting.com)
Launched earlier this year, Peek provides you with a free five minute usability test. You simply enter your website URL, and the test participants will review your website. Having a tester browse your website and complete “simple” actions will unlock plenty of hidden usability issues that you can work on to improve the user experience and boost conversion rates.
Cost: Free

i-Perceptions
I-Perceptions has been endorsed by Google Analytics Evangelist, Avinash Kaushik and it’s a pop up that asks 3 simple questions to website visitors. The three questions include “How would you rate your site experience?“, “What describes the primary purpose of visit?” and “Were you able to complete the purpose of your visit today?“.

You can use the feedback to understand how people engage with your website and find opportunities for improvement.
Cost: Free

Survey Monkey
Collecting customer feedback is essential to understanding what turns a website visitor into a customer. Survey Monkey allows you to ask up to 10 questions and collect up to 100 responses for free, which means you can ask questions such as:

  • What made you buy [product]?
  • What’s the best thing you like about [service]?
  • How would you describe [brand] to your friends?

Answers to these questions will give you great insight into how your customers view your brand.
Cost: Free for up to 100 responses

Cross Browser Testing
Cross Browser Testing allows you to view your website in real time through a wide range of browsers and operating systems. This tool helps you to identify why some browsers convert better than others.

For example, if you find that the latest version of Chrome converts better than IE9, then you might want to look at how IE9 is being displayed to your visitors. Using the cross browser testing tool, you can see exactly how is displayed and what you need to fix.
Cost: Free trial for 60 minutes

Testing tools

Why you need these tools: To experiment and test your hypothesis, which is based on the quantitative and qualitative research (Congrats! You’re now testing based on historical data and no longer testing based on best practices).

VWO (Visual Website Optimizer)
VWO offers split testing for as little as $49 per month but the free trial allows you to test for up to 30 days for 1,000 visits. You can edit, modify and remove elements on your webpages through the VWO editor and you can test images, copy, design and web-forms. At the end of your tests, you can see which test won and then implement the changes directly onto your website.
Cost: Free for up to 1,000 visitors

Fivesecondtest
Fivesecondtest allows you to ask for community feedback on new landing page designs, without having to change any elements on your website. Your new design will be displayed for five seconds and then a series of questions are asked to the user. Feedback comes in the form of answers and a word cloud, to identify the post prominent elements that the user remembers.
Cost: Free for 20 responses

Unbounce
Unbounce is an easy-to-use landing page platform that allows anyone to build great landing pages without the need for a designer or IT. You can create landing pages from scratch or choose one of the many landing pages templates. You can use Unbounce to create landing pages for your paid search campaigns or to quickly test out new web page designs.
Cost: Free trial

Website tools

Why you need these tools: To growth hack your way to a better conversion rate. Be aggressive in what you want your web visitors to do and at the very least get that email address from your visitor.

Screen popper
Screenpopper helps you convert more users through a pop-up appearing on top of a web page, with the goal of promoting one single call to action. The benefit is that you get the visitors immediate attention, which can be used to for conversion purposes. If your goal is to get more newsletter sign ups, you can use the pop-up to offer an incentive in exchange for an email address.
Cost: Free 14 day trial

Hellobar
Hello bar is an optimization tool, which displays a visible bar that sits at the top of a web page to draw the web visitors’ attention. Hello bar acts as a primary website call to action. You can include Hello bar on one page, several pages or across your entire website. For example, if you are launching a new eBook, you use Hello bar to include a simple message to promote it.
Cost: Free

Conclusion

These conversion rate optimization tools are easy to implement and most only require a single line of code that you or your developer can insert into the header of your website.

And while some of the tools listed above are free for the basic packages, they do come with limitations. However, even with the limitations, you will still be able to collect mountains of data to help you grow your conversion rate.

At no cost, there are no more excuses. You can double or triple your conversion rates for free!

Get Access to All 21 Conversion Rate Tools

I want you to be a master at conversion rate optimization and so I’ve created a set of bonus tools you can use to optimize conversion rates.

  • First: I’ve put together 7 (seven!) bonus tools not mentioned in this post
  • Second: The bonus tips include seven of my secret tools to help you get even better conversion rate results
  • Third: The entire list of all 21 conversion rate tools can be downloaded as a PDF (to save or print out)

Does this sound good?

(This post originally appeared on Search Engine Journal)

This is how you do CRO. The complete roadmap to earn more with the same number of visitors.

CRO, conversion rate optimization or conversion optimization. Whatever you call it, it’s currently hot. Very hot. Because who wouldn’t want to earn more with the same number of visitors? Conversion optimization is often approached incorrectly… In this article, I’ll show you how not to do it. But more importantly, how it must be done. Step by step.

buttons

CRO is not about button colors!

Do you recognize yourself? You read an article in which Company X increased its conversion rate by 50%, by changing the color of the call-to-action button from red to orange. You happen to have red buttons on your site as well. So you set up an A/B test to see whether orange buttons would work better for you. In the worst case, you don’t even do an A/B test and you just make all your buttons orange in a hurry. Let the money roll in!

But what happens? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. No difference at all.

And so you decide: CRO doesn’t work! Wrong. CRO works ridiculously well. Only not that way.

How should you do it? Like this:

 

1. Research

Here’s where the example went wrong. The majority of conversion optimization efforts are not based on research. And thus not based on data. A data-driven approach to conversion optimization guarantees you the best results.

knee

No good remedy without a good diagnosis

Often a conversion optimization attempt starts with 1 of the 2 following scenarios. And both scenarios are doomed to fail:

  • You read a case study and try to repeat the success from the case study to your site by testing exactly the same thing. That’s like going to the doctor with knee pain and asking for a certain painkiller because that helped the neighbor with his back pain. Every site is different. Different problems. Different solutions. You can only prescribe a remedy if you have made the correct diagnosis.
  • A so-called expert tells you immediately what you need to test. Yes, he has experience. And he will probably hit the nail on the head more often than someone without experience. But that’s like a doctor looking at your knee from a distance and deciding that you need a cast. The doctor might be right. But the chance is also great that he has prescribed the wrong remedy. He can only reach the correct diagnosis with some X-rays and other investigation. And then prescribe the proper remedy.

Without good research, you’re flying blind. You just do something. And that is a waste of time, money and traffic. You can better use your traffic for A/B tests that do have a chance of succeeding. Only in that way can you make it as clear as possible what works best for your visitors. And only in that way can you increase your turnover.

But how does such conversion research go exactly? Follow these 3 steps:

a. Correct data collection.

Make sure that you collect the data in the right way. Most likely, you have Google Analytics (GA) on your site. But is GA configured in the right way? Are your goals set correctly? The goal-directed steps? Your filters? Is event tracking set where needed? And so forth. Do a complete “health check” of your Google Analytics. Because if you bring in data wrong, you’ll draw conclusions on the basis of bad data. And that can have disastrous consequences.

b. Quantitative research

Is your data coming into GA correctly? Super! Then we can now dive into GA to see where it’s going wrong. A good conversion optimizer will need 1 to 2 days to draw ample information from your GA. Your optimizer will play with segments, reports, devices and browsers until finding out where things go wrong.

GA of course never tells the complete story. That’s why with quantitative research you also use mouse tracking tools such as SessionCam or Clicktale. With those, you make (among other things) heat maps, scroll maps and click maps that give you a clearer view of exactly what your visitors are doing on your site.

c. Qualitative research

Here is the focus of your research. The quantitative research will tell you WHERE things are going wrong. The qualitative research will tell you WHY.

Do the following:

  • Send a customer survey to recent customers. Try in that in particular to find out why they bought from you, or why not. Send the survey only to new customers who recently made a purchase for the first time. From them, you get the most valuable feedback: the purchase was recent, so they still remember the process. And in addition, they haven’t gotten used to using the site (like your loyal customers have) and thus you can better learn what the stumbling blocks were.
    Don’t waste any time and money on expensive tools for this. With a simple Google Forms document, I have often achieved fantastic results.
  • Do user testing. You will get very valuable feedback from it and can see live where your testers struggle, what they misunderstand or do wrong.
    Talk with the customer support division. Or if you have live chat on your site: go through all the transcripts from the live chat.
  • Web surveys: simple but insightful

    Web surveys: simple but insightful

    Add a web survey to your site. Qualaroo is one of the best tools for this.

  • Cross-browser testing. Test your own site in different browsers, on different machines and different operating systems. Test it completely. Yes, in principle your web agency should have already done that. But we all know that this is not always done thoroughly. Cross-browser testing takes some time. But it can be very useful. If you note that your checkout, for example, doesn’t work on IE9, while 20% of your visitors still use IE9, then it might be clear that you could earn a lot of extra conversions by handling this problem. A handy tool for this is Crossbrowsertesting.com, with which you can simulate all possible device-browser-operating system combinations.
  • Appeal to an expert for a heuristic analysis. A heuristic analysis is an analysis with which an expert makes use of frameworks and methodologies to evaluate your site. This will more quickly identify the potential flaws of your site. Take note: Everything that is found in a heuristic analysis must in principle be supported after the fact with data from the rest of the qualitative or quantitative research or confirmed (or ruled out) on the basis of A/B testing. Never limit yourself to just a heuristic analysis.
  • Do a usability analysis, or appeal to an expert to do this for you.

 

2. Customer theory

relaxing

Your customer might not be who you thought he is

Now that you have collected all the data and gone through it, you begin to get a clear picture of who your customer really is. Not per se who you thought the customer was. But who the customer really is. Write down your customer theory. This is a description of your customer. You can do this in the form of one or more buyer personas. How detailed you are in this is up to you. As long as your customer theory is a handy working document that you can refer to later. With each decision that you make, you must keep your customer in mind, after all. And you must thus test your decision with your customer theory.

Your customer theory is not static information, but a dynamic document. With each split test that you carry out, you will learn more about your customer. And you add that to your customer theory. In that way, you can for example learn from a test that your customer is not sensitive to discounts, but is sensitive to free delivery. You add that insight to your customer theory. In that way, you get an ever-more-complete picture of your customer. If you understand your customer better, you will serve your customer better. And better service means earning more.

 

3. Action plan

The next thing you do is to set up an action plan for all the problems that you have discovered from the research. Some things are so obvious that you don’t have to test them, but can implement them immediately. Other things will not be completely clear and demand further research. And there will of course be a number of problems for which you have a hypothesis about why it’s going wrong. You’re going to test these hypotheses.

 

4. Test, learn, convert.

Only now is it finally time to start testing. In contrast to many others who have had no success with conversion optimization, you set up your test only when you have a clear hypothesis. A hypothesis that is based on your research. You no longer test randomly in the hope of finding a winner. No, you set up tests with a much higher chance of success because they stem from a better understanding of your customer.abtest

Always start with an A/B test. Only consider multivariate testing if you really have a lot of traffic (more than 100,000 visitors per month).

Granted, not every test will produce a clear winner, certainly not in the beginning. But that is not that bad in and of itself. As long as you learn something from the test. And in that way, you further expand your customer theory. The more clear your customer theory becomes, the better your next tests will be and the higher the chance of success for the next tests. As strange as it sounds: the ultimate goal of your test is to understand your customer better.
Because understanding your customer better = serving your customer better = earning more.

Tools that you can use for this include Visual Website Optimizer and Optimizely, the 2 most-used AB test tools.

 

5. Keep testing

process

Keep testing

Don’t stick with 1 version of a test. Even if there is a clear winner, who can say that it can’t be even better? Put the winner in a new test and compare it with another version that stems from the same hypothesis. From your first test, you learned something about your customer, for example that the customer responds better to free delivery than to a discount. The version with the free delivery is thus the winner. But what if you test that version again, against another version in which free delivery is advertised even more prominently? Maybe that will produce a few extra percent.

Keep testing constantly. You can always learn something more about your customer. And you can always further improve your conversion rate. Maybe you’ll get lucky and double your conversion rate with one or a few tests. But the chance is greater that you will need many tests, each of which delivers a few percent improvement. When you add them all up, you eventually get to a drastic increase in your conversion rate.

 

Hopefully, this article has given you some structure and guidance for your conversion optimization efforts. Conversion optimization is not simple, but if you follow this roadmap, you’ll go a long way. And remember: “There are no losers in the testing world. If you’re learning, you’re winning”. Good luck!

 

About the author:
Joris Bryon is a Conversion Optimization Consultant and the man behind YORRO. He is a ConversionXL Certified Optimizer and obsessed with conversion optimization. He helps e-commerce, lead generation and SaaS sites to maximize their revenue. Learn here how he does that.

 

 

2014 Online Marketing Tips From The Experts

As 2013 draws to a close, it’s helpful for online marketers to start to look ahead as to what 2014 will offer.

At the end of 2012, we asked 7 online marketing experts to share their best advice for 2013. In this post, we’ve gone one step further and gathered 12  experts to share their best tip for 2014 when it comes to online marketing.

In 2012, the expert tips were to focus on mobile, conversion optimization and content creation. And they were right, as these trends exploded. What’s interesting is that similar tips are shared for 2014.

If you missed out on last years tips, you won’t want to miss out on this years advice. We have authors, keynote speakers, founders and CEO’s and all of them are instantly recognizable.

12 online experts share best marketing tip for 2014

rand-fishkin-1

Rand Fishkin | Moz | @randfish

Surveys, interviews, usability tests, phone calls, and emails can all help, but there is no substitute for experiencing your audience’s pain yourself. If at all possible, I love to make myself and my team into real users of our product, trying to solve actual issues with our tools (or find information targeted by our content). That builds a personal experience from which you can project yourself into many other audience mindsets. The only caveat – be careful about over-extrapolating a single experience out to a wide market.

Bryan-Eisenberg

Bryan Eisenberg | Best Selling Author | @thegrok

The single biggest reason why people fail to convert on a website is that they could not get their buying questions answered. Most often this happens because they land in the wrong place and navigation (or internal search) makes it difficult or impossible for them to push their confidence levels high enough to purchase (or become a lead) and not feel any buyers remorse. This year it would be great if you started thinking about your business the way Jeff Bezos thinks about Amazon.com; they are not in the business of selling books but in the business of helping customers buy books. This is true customer centricity. A Bain survey recently shared that 80 percent of company executives believed they delivered a “superior experience” to their customers. But when Bain asked the executive’s same customers about their own perceptions, only 8 percent of customers felt those companies were really delivering. Which camp will you fall into in 2014?

Neil-Patel

Neil Patel | Quicksprout | @neilpatel

My best marketing tip for 2014 is to create really detailed content. I do so on Quick Sprout through advanced guides that are 30,000 to 40,000 words and it is causing me to get hundreds of thousands of visitors.

It takes a lot of time and energy to create these guides, but the traffic is worth it.

Ben-Jesson-Karl-Blanks

Ben Jesson & Dr Karl Blanks | Conversion Rate Experts

Again and again, we observe that our most successful clients have great products (or services). A great product trumps everything.

  • So our tip for this year is: Do whatever you can to create a great product.
  • Once you have a great product, you’ll find it easy to create a great conversion funnel.
  • And once you have a great conversion funnel, you’ll find it easy to afford traffic.
  • A great product is like a firework. The marketer just needs to light the touchpaper.
  • A poor product is like a wet firework. It takes a lot of skill to light it, and you might wish that you hadn’t.
 Chris Goward

Chris Goward | Wider Funnel@chrisgoward

Stop worrying about your bounce rate!

If you’re improving the wrong goals for your web marketing, you could be moving very fast—in the wrong direction. If you’re not sure, start with how to improve the right website optimization goals. Once you’re focused on the right goals, the other decisions become easier.

Then, make a commitment to continuous A/B split testing and optimization in 2014.

 Brian Massey

Brian Massey | Customer Creation Equation | @bmassey

Look at your analytics as a fluffy snugly toy, the kind you take to bed with you every night when you kick off your bunny slippers. Marketers and business owners who can’t grasp some simple graphs and reports are sleeping alone in the cold night of the internet. You don’t have to be “mathy.” But you do have to be friends with data and understand some simple rules about it.

 Peep Laja

Peep Laja | Conversion XL | @peeplaja

Data-driven approach is the future, and if you’re not a master of analytics and testing, you will be left behind. In 2014, invest heavily in becoming really, really good at gathering and interpreting data into actionable steps, and validating your hypotheses through testing. You need to know *exactly* what’s happening on every page of your website. Learn to go from “I don’t know” to “I’ll find out”.

Linda Bustos

Linda Bustos | Get Elastic | @Roxyyo

My best marketing tip for 2014 is to experiment with Twitter Promoted Tweets. It can be tough to build your own audience on Twitter, but this new ad option enables you to reach followers of other users’ accounts and pin your promoted tweet to the top of their feeds for more exposure. It’s inexpensive to run a $100 test campaign to see how it performs, and you can promote individual tweets. So for example, if you are an ecommerce site that sells vintage style clothing, you could target followers of @asos, @nastygal and @modcloth (among others in the niche), and be sure to include images or Vines in your tweet to show off your wares for highest response. It’s a very targeted way to get your message out to new people for customer acquisition.

Stephen-Pavlovich

Stephen Pavlovich | Conversion Factory | @conversionfac

The opportunity in mobile conversion optimization is huge. Having a responsive site is a good start, but testing now will give you a huge advantage over the competition. (And if you don’t have a responsive or mobile site, pick one crucial page on your website and split-test it against a mobile version of just that single page – it’ll quickly show you the opportunity.)

Brad-Geddes-1

Brad Geddes | Certified Knowledge | @bgtheory

In 2012 search marketing started to shift from keywords to audiences and this trend accelerated in 2013. Today, you must understand your target market beyond the keyword. What are your audiences, their demographics, their similarities, their differences, and their online behavior? While we won’t abandon keywords in 2014, if you want to stay on the cutting edge of marketing techniques, you must begin to switch your promotions away from just relying on keyword groupings and towards audience segmented offers.

 Chris Hexton

Chris Hexton | Vero | @chexton

2014 looks like it’s going to be about mobile, at least when it comes to email. There’s a lot of great data out there at the moment about increasing open rates on mobile devices so marketers need to make sure they’re optimizing for this!

Gerry McGovern

Gerry McGovern | Customer Carewords | @gerrymcgovern

Treat your existing customers as if they were prospects. Get to know them better by observing what they are doing online, not what they say they are doing. Recognize the shift in power and influence towards the customer. Always keep in mind that a current customer is a potential not-a-customer-anymore.

There you have it. 12 great tips from some of the best online marketers in the world, which covers mobile, content creation and data driven marketing. If you want to add to the list of marketing tips, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

What is your best marketing tip for 2014? Do you agree with the experts?

* Update: Gerry McGovern added to the list of experts on 19.12.2013

How website speed directly impacts your online sales

When was the last time you abandoned a website because it took too long to load?

In 2006, 40% of online shoppers were abandoning a website if it took more than four seconds to load. In today’s fast paced world, people expect a website to load in two seconds or less. That’s right. 2 seconds.

According to Amazon.com, for every one second delay, conversions will drop by 7%. That’s a $2.5 million loss per year if you sell $100,000 per day.

Conversion rate by page load speed

A study by Akamai in 2009 surveyed more than 1,000 online shoppers and found that more than 47% of people expect a web page in load in two seconds or less. The research also found that speed impacts customer loyalty with:

  • 52% claim that a quick page load is important to the loyalty of the website
  • 64% who are not happy with the site will shop at a competitor
  • 79% are less likely to return to the website

A slow website not only affects your online sales, but 27% are also less likely to shop at the sites physical store.

In 2010, Gomez interviewed more than 1,500 online shoppers in their “Why Web Performance Matters” report.  One of the biggest findings from the Gomez report was that more than two-thirds told others about a disappointing web experience.

A slow website will lead to you losing business online and offline and customers will shop elsewhere

Site speed improves SEO

Another important aspect to site speed is SEO (search engine optimization). A slow website not only provides a poor user experience, but will also get your website penalized in the search results.

Site speed became a focus to search engine ranking factors in 2009, which came from a usability test that both Google and Bing conducted to determine the impact of a slower search results page.

In their study, Google found that by slowing page speed down from 100 to 400 milliseconds. the number of searches per user decreased over a four to six weeks period.

Bing’s study had a measureable impact on clicks and revenue by delaying the search results by two seconds. Bing found that the two delay decreased revenue by 4.3% per visitor. With more than 48 million monthly visitors, that’s a huge loss.

Websites are getting slower

Eight years ago, Amazon announced that for every 100ms of website speed improvement, they saw a 1% increase in revenue. Yet for the leading eCommerce sites, websites are getting slower.

Top 500 Retailers Average Page Speed

In just over eighteen months, studies* have revealed that of the top 500 retailers:

  • Only 8% use image compression
  • The average page load time is 7.72 seconds
  • Sites are 13.7% slower compared to 2012

* Studies using Google Chrome browser

In order to fix your site speed issues, there are a number of tools you can use. Here are three of the best tools you can use to test your site speed:

Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool provides recommendations on what you can do in order to make your site faster. The most common problems experienced are browser caching, un-optimized images and minifying JavaScript/ CSS.

Impact of making your site faster

Prioritizing site speed improvements is challenging.But there are ways to increase site speed, or perceived site speed. One way to get internal buy-in is to run your competitor websites through the WebPageTest tool and using the ‘create video’ function.

SuperOffice compared their site speed with SalesForce, Zoho and Sugar CRM. The test discovered that SuperOffice’s competitor sites were loading in just over two seconds, whereas SuperOffice took 12.8 seconds to load.

By watching the video comparison, SuperOffice could see that the flash was taking a long time to load. As a result, the flash banner was removed from the home page and a new video test was created, comparing SuperOffice websites – One website without flash and three websites with flash.

The second video test found that:

  • Page load speed WITH flash = 11 seconds
  • Page load speed WITHOUT flash – 2.7 seconds

This means that by removing the flash banner, the website speed improved by 10 seconds.

Their website now loads faster, which delivers a greater user experience. But how does this impact conversion rates?

SuperOffice compared the changes five days after the change with the five days prior to the change.

The result was that conversion rate increased by 88%, from 0.36% to 0.67% and goal completions increased by 78%, from 19 to 34.

Impact of Page Speed to Conversion Rates

During the comparison period, overall web traffic decreased by 4% and no other marketing activities were launched. The only change documented was the improvement to site speed.

Make site speed a priority

A slow website will negatively impact your business, and website users expect your site load within two seconds. A fast website is no longer a luxury or a nice-to-have. It’s expected.  And by keeping a slow website, your customers will turn to the competition.

Here are five steps you can take to make sure your website loads faster:

  1. Use the conversion loss calculator to estimate how much revenue you are losing
  2. Use the WebPageTest tool to compare your site speed against your competitors
  3. Send these results to the senior management or CEO to make site speed a priority

Once you have been given the go ahead to improve site speed performance, you can:

  1. Run your most visited 10/25/50 pages through a site speed tool to identify load time issues
  2. Have your IT team fix the problems immediately

Once your page speed issues have been fixed, you can then monitor the improve to your conversion rates.

Looking for More Conversion Rate Optimization Tools?

I’ve created a list of 18 Conversion Rate Optimization tools that every CRO experts needs to boost conversion rates.

And I’m sharing them with you, for free.

Access the tools below.

Use Thank You Pages to Convert More Visitors

Conversion rate optimization is at the core of any website. You want your web visitors to convert, to complete a business goal, whether that’s to make a purchase, complete a web-form or find a contact number. There is a science behind it,which ranges from customer feedback, AB testing and analyzing webpage behavior. But not all improvements are based on scientific research – Some improvements are just about being that little bit smarter.

Whether you are business-to-business, eCommerce or non-profit, you will have a thank you page on your website. Thank you pages are prime real estate for up-selling and cross-selling and keeping your web visitor in the frame of mind of taking action and completing your business goals.

Improvements made to the thank you page

Up until recently, SuperOffice had simple thank you pages asking the visitor to wait until they were contacted. A simple thank you page is better than no page at all, as it serves its purpose of informing the reader of what happens next, but it’s a great opportunity to ask for more.

Converting thank you page 1

SuperOffice had more than 5 thank you pages that were available to be updated. The simple solution was to include links to CRM guides and white papers and suggest further reading.

Converting thank you page 2

An immediate impact on goals completed and conversions

The timing of this change could not have been worse as July is a slow traffic/ conversion month. Based on yearly trends dating back since 2010, traffic starts declining in March all the way through to the end of July. Since 2010, July has been the lowest traffic month of the year.

However, even due to seasonal trends, the results have been immediate. We can see that the number of goals completed have increased by 105% and conversion rate has increased by 90%.

Use thank you pages to convert visitors

By diving deeper into the data, we can see that we have almost half as many goals completed in the first 10 days of July compared to the entire month of June. And if we compare the first 10 days in June to the first 10 days in July, traffic in July is down only 1.4% but goal completions have increased by 17% (and conversion rate has increased by 19%).

The new thank you pages have been live on www.superoffice.com for 2 weeks and will now be rolled out globally. The next steps are to improve the conformation emails, auto-responder emails and ‘thank you’ pages for when a visitor has downloaded a white paper or product sheet.

How do you use for thank you page? Do you use it to cross-sell? Let me know below.

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Getting started with email remarketing campaigns

7 out of every 10 customers abandon their online purchases, resulting in over 300 billion dollars of lost E-Commerce sales each year. The top 5 reasons for abandoning are split between price and timing. If a visitor leaves the shopping cart and does not return within the first hour, the probability of them returning to complete the sale is reduced by 90%.

Tribes - Abandoned cart reasons

With 90% unlikely to purchase from your site within the first 60 minutes of leaving, this means you have a very small window of opportunity to make an impact. Executing an effective remarketing campaign is difficult and why only 26% of e-commerce sites remarket.

Tribes - Only 26 percent brands remarket

Remarketing to web visitors that abandon your shopping cart is at the top of US marketers activity list, according to E-Consultancy, One of the main reasons for this is a recent report from Forrester Research that found that remarketing emails can generate nearly 4 times more revenue and 18 times greater net profits compared with marketing using simply non-ntargeted mailings.

Shoppers that abandon your website are visitors that almost purchased from you. It’s no surprise that real time, personalized emails within the first hour at highly effective. The more personal and relevant the email campaign is, the more likely the shopper will convert.

Many shopping cart recovery emails under perform because they look either like generic promotional emails or automated messages. Based on research from SeeWhy and E-Consultancy, there is a formula to getting the best out of your remarketing campaigns. Here are five tips for effective email remarketing:

1. Send your email remarketing campaigns within the first hour of abandonment in order to keep your brand at the forefront of the customers mind. Remember, they almost bought from you.

2. Personalize and tailor each remarketing campaign to the abandoned shopperr. Address them by name and offer your support in helping the visitor purchase your product or service. They may have left due to a technical error and are in need of assistance.

3. Tell your customer when his/ her shopping cart will expire. Make it clear that you will save the product/ service and you are happy to keep it until X(eg. 30) days before you put it back on sale on the site.

4. Show which item is in the shopping cart to remind the abandoned shopper what they almost purchased. Provide a clear image of the product and support it with guest reviews within the email.

5. Make your call to action prominent and link directly to the saved shopping cart. You want your abandoned shopper to see where to click within the email and that they arrive at the shopping cart checkout page. Do not send your shopper to your home page. Make it as easy as possible.

As online marketers look to find new ways to generate traffic and sales, get ahead of your competition and implement remarketing. For best in class campaigns, each email sent will probably be your most profitable campaign, generating up to 100 times the return that you would expect from a regular email campaign.

How you seen a significant increase in conversion rate since implementing email remarketing? Please share your comments below.

Case Study: How CrazyEgg Heatmap & Overlay Reports Increased Conversion Rate by 51%

Softmedia, founded in 2003, is the world’s leading provider in penny auction software. On October 11th, they implemented CrazyEgg Analytics on the top five most visited web pages on their site. The goal was to identify areas for improvement on the website and increase lead generation.

CrazyEgg’s pricing is as low as $9 per month with a promise to “Increase your website’s conversion rate or revenues within the next 30 days… or your money back.”. With a low cost pricing model, Softmedia were happy to test the tool to see if conversion rate or revenue increased.

Theory

By visualizing problem areas on the website, we can remove distractions and increase form completion rates.

Findings

Twelve days after implementing CrazyEgg, Softmedia had collected more than 10,000 page views of data. Using the heatmap report, they immediately noticed distractions on the site that sent visitors away from the web form.

Softmedia heatmap

A “Do not click here” button was leading visitors away from the “request a quote” button (on the second most visited page) and by having a video demo on the contact page, the video acted as an incentive for users to be directed and navigate away. We removed these distractions immediately.

Providing these improvements were successful, traffic would increase to the inquiry form. The next step was to use CrazyEgg’s Overlay report. They wanted to make the form as simple as possible, without compromising the quality of the leads.

Softmedia form

The overlay report allowed them to identify fields that are not being completed (note: not all fields are required). By removing fields that users did not complete and data that Softmedia did not use, they immediately improved the web form.

Result

The recommendations found from CrazyEgg heatmap and overlay reports were sent to the web development team. The improvements made to the site took 10 minutes and the impact was immediate. According to Google Analytics, the site conversion rate has now increased by more than 51%.

Softmedia conversion rate

Conclusion

By removing distractions on your website, web visitors will be more likely to complete your on-site goals and thus increase the number of leads to your business.

CrazyEgg delivered on their promise and for $9, Softmedia were able to increase conversion rate and the number of daily leads. Have you used CrazyEgg analytics and did it have a positive impact on your conversion rate?