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To do conversion rate optimization right, you need to test.
But what if you’re just starting out and don’t have much testable traffic? Or, what if you don’t have the budget for testing resources, like software, plugins, or hiring a conversion optimization agency?
While CRO is as much an art as it is a science and therefore what works to improve one site’s conversions may not work as well for another site (hence the importance of testing), there are some basic best-practices you can count on.
So even if you don’t currently have much traffic or testing resources, you can still improve your conversion rates if you follow these suggestions.
Check Your Loading Times
People are impatient. People have short attention spans. Consequently, page loading time matters—a lot.
A faster site means improved UX and conversions, And, according to Google, site speed also factors into your site’s page rank.
Ecommerce sites shouldn’t take any more than 2-3 seconds to load. Anything longer than that means the chances of people abandoning your site increase
To figure out your site’s loading time, use Pingdom (it’s free to try for 14 days). Just input your site’s URL along with your testing location and hit “start test.” Pingdom reveals your site’s load time, page size, the number of requests your site gets, plus, it offers your site an overall performance grade.
If your load time is too slow, one of the quickest fixes is reducing the file size of your site’s images using the WordPress Smush plugin or Optimizilla. Other tips include setting up browser caching on your server, enabling compression, and optimizing your CSS.
Keep Your Design Clear And Simple
Especially on their homepage, businesses often include too much information along with too many images and offers. Too much of anything isn’t good, though. And in the case of web design, including too much can be overwhelming or distracting.
Ask yourself, what is my webpage’s primary goal? Is it to get people to purchase, subscribe to my list, download a PDF?
Whatever the case may be, come up with a goal, then cut any page elements that don’t support that goal.
In addition to simple, make sure your design and copy are crystal clear as well. You should include enough white space between elements so as to not overwhelm and you should avoid using technical jargon. Everything on your page should support the page’s primary objective and it should do so in a way that meets your visitors’ expectations (i.e. the reason they decided to visit your page).
Conversion rate optimization is about your visitors, your target audience. It isn’t about you or what you like, prefer, or need. Everything about your website should be in service to your target audience.
Accordingly, establishing trust is highly important, as trust serves as the gateway to whether or not people will even consider doing business with you.
A couple of ways to make your website and business feel more trustworthy include prominently displaying your contact information (e.g. in the footer and header) and showing social proof.
You can demonstrate social proof through reviews and testimonials. Or you can show logos from clients or companies you’ve done business with or logos from awards you’ve won or press coverage you’ve received. Including case studies is another way to convey social proof.
Testing is an important part of conversion rate optimization. But if you don’t have the funds, resources, or ability to hire a conversion optimization agency, you can still get the CRO process going by applying the above best-practice suggestions to your site.
What do you think of these basic CRO principles? Are there any other suggestions you can think of that are pretty universal and easy to implement? Contact us via social media and share your insights!