om inverse logo - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

What is CRO?
An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

If you’re an eCommerce business owner, a salesperson, a marketer, or simply an eCommerce enthusiast, this detailed guide on conversion optimization is for you! In short: if you want to sell more online, you’ll love it. Let’s dive in.

ecommerce conversion optimization 724x1024 - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

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Chapters

Chapter 1

eCommerce Conversion Optimization Basics

1 eCommerce Conversion Optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Conversion rate optimization can be defined as increasing the percentage of visitors to a website that convert into customers, or more generally, take any desired action on a site.

That particular action they take can be called a conversion.

In order to understand how to optimize your conversion rate, let’s properly define conversion rate.

 

Conversion rate indicates the percentage of visitors that come to your site who become actual customers.

 
conversion optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

In order to find your conversion rate, you need to take the total number of sales divided by the total number of visits to your site. A conversion can be identified as the successful completion of a set goal.

You can choose what counts as a set out as a goal in your analytics tool such as sharing of a piece of content, clicking onto a particular page, opting into a pop-up on your site, etc.

When speaking of conversions in eCommerce, we usually refer to a purchase being made on your store’s site.

So, how do you practically go about conversion rate optimization? Here’s a simple, 5 step process of conversion rate optimization to follow:

5 step process of conversion optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: VWO

  1. Research Phase: This is where you discover the parts of your conversion funnel that needs tweaking
  2. Hypothesis Phase: This is where you form a working hypothesis based on your metrics and research
  3. Prioritization Phase: This is where you figure out what to attack first for your optimization
  4. Testing Phase: This is where you put your hypothesis up against the existing  version of your website
  5. Learning Phase: This is you deploy the winning hypothesis and gather information for future tests and planning

One thing to keep in mind: A/B testing is part of good CRO, and not the conversion optimization itself. You need to implement regular A/B tests along with other optimization techniques to get the best results.

Chapter 2

Getting Data: Measuring What Matters

2 Getting Data - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Conversion Rate Optimization should be seen as a continuous cycle where you’re constantly measuring, analyzing, optimizing, and testing.

This not only helps you improve your user experience but also helps you stay ahead of your competitors in all aspects. The best way to get ahead with conversion rate optimization: gathering solid, actionable data.

Where You Should Begin By Gathering Data

Collecting solid data begins by setting up clear and attainable Key Performance Indicators or KPIs. 

How can you know what needs to change if you don’t have clear goals? 

When you have clear goals set out, you can see how if you’re getting the traffic you wanted, you can see if people are clicking on your product pages, and you can see if people are buying. 

This guide gives a deep overview of what Key Performance Indicators are and how you can set them up in your business. Indicators like Customer Acquisition Cost, Customer Lifetime Value, Monthly Recurring Revenue, and Sales Cycle duration are just some to be aware of.

ecommerce marketing dashboard from klipfolio - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Klipfolio

Gathering Qualitative and Quantitative Data

Quantitative data can be defined as “the cold, hard numbers”. 

This is the hard information that is not up for interpretation and just is what it is. 

In eCommerce, quantitative metrics include: click-through rates, time on sites, visitor counts, and really any marketing measure that can be represented numerically. 

Quantitative data is often collected through heatmaps, surveys, KPI analytics, and A/B tests. For the numbers nerds, quantitative data is like being a kid in a candy shop. However, quantitative data does not paint the full picture of your analytics. 

 

To gather data that will dramatically improve your business, you also need qualitative data. 

 

qualitative vs quantitative - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Qualitative data leaves more room for interpretation and can be analyzed subjectively. Instead of just accepting what the numbers say, qualitative data asks “why”.  

  • Why are the traffic numbers so low? 
  • What problems could users be having on the site? 
  • Why are the cart abandonment rates so high? 

These are questions that qualitative data can answer.

Some popular ways to collect this data include: customer interviews, focus groups, and other observational methods. 

Google Analytics Metrics That Impact Conversion Rate Optimization

With Google Analytics, you can literally track anything. You’ll find a plethora of articles online telling you to measure this metric, and definitely measure that metric, blah, blah blah. 

google analytics dashboard - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

How do you cut through the noise and focus on the metrics that will tell you how to improve your conversion rate?

Here’s a good place to start: our guide to the 12 most important conversion metrics you should measure is required reading. 

Metrics like Traffic Sources, New Visitor Conversion Rate, Return Visitor Conversion Rate, Interactions Per Visit, and Cost Per Conversion are some of the top metrics listed in the guide. 

Note: Even with the best-written articles on what to measure, you set your own goals in the beginning and you’re ultimately in control.

Resources like Neil Patel and Supermetrics are there to add clarity to your eCommerce business, but they’re not there to set the goals for you. 

Customer Surveys

Any successful business will tell you that the reason they are successful is because they value what their customers think

By value, I mean implementing customer suggestions to site design, responding quickly to social media inquiries, continuously creating feedback channels for new and old customers. 

 

Customer surveys are a great way not only to show that you care but to also find solutions to problems you’re not even aware of.

 

ecommerce customer survey flip - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

In this post, you’ll find real examples of great customer surveys and actionable insights on how to use them in your business. 

Want to know the must-have questions to include in your surveys?

Here are 6 of them: 

  1. What convinced you to buy from us?
  2. What other options did you consider before you bought from us?
  3. Were you unsure about anything when you made your purchase?
  4. What are you using our product for? What problem does it solve for you?
  5. How is your life better thanks to it?
  6. What do you like about our product the most?

Usability Tests

A/B Tasty defines usability testing as asking people and monitoring how intuitive and how easy it is to use a product, app, website, or service. 

 

Conversion Rate Optimization is all about finding ways to make the experience at every level of the cycle as efficient and user-friendly as possible. 

 

You’ll find great examples of usability tests in this incredible resource from the team at Usabilityhub. 

How To Mine Your Data For Actionable Conversion Insights

Ok, so you’ve gathered all this data, how do you go efficiently go through it and put an action plan together? 

By using proper data evaluation methods. 

Let’s go back to our customer surveys for a second. When looking at the survey responses, analyze patterns, objections, and language: 

  • Make note of the repeated words, things that are emphasized, etc. 
  • For objections, make note of the “points of resistance” or places that made browsing, searching, or buying difficult for your users. 
  • And lastly, closely analyze the language used to describe your website, your design, your business, etc. The words used in these surveys make for incredible social proof, powerful sales copy, and other compelling marketing intel. 

Here’s a more in-depth look at how you can mine data for actionable conversion insights.

Chapter 3

Optimizing The User Experience

3 Optimizing ux - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

One of the biggest pieces of conversion optimization is understanding the customer journey. 

Put simply, the best businesses put this at the top of their list. 

Think of how smooth and effortless browsing on Apple’s homepage feels

Think of how easy the checkout process is when shopping for something on Amazon (both desktop and mobile). 

That’s what great UX is. 

How do your users find navigation on your site? Are you making their experience as enjoyable and simple as possible? Are you providing the same excellent experience across their numerous devices? 

These are all important questions you’ve got to have answers for when talking about the customer journey. ecommerce customer journey - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization GuideLet’s dive into some eCommerce design principles that make companies successful with their UX. 

The user journey in general should flow a little like this:

Website Discovery

Product Search/Discovery

Product Page

Cart

Checkout

Confirmation

At every step of this journey, you should be optimizing.

For example, in the website discovery, you should position the brand clearly and create a positive first impression as soon as possible. 

In the Product Search, you should make it as easy for your users to find what it is they’re looking for. Tools like predictive search and autocomplete can go a long way in improving the user experience.  

When the user gets to the Product Page, your calls-to-action like “buy now” or “add to cart” should be in prominent places and as easy as possible to find.

You should describe the products using power words and clear language. 

This guide by Toptal gives a detailed breakdown of this as well as examples of top companies that have mastered visual hierarchy and hacked conversion rate optimization on their product pages: ecommerce design principles.

Many eCommerce business owners squander the wonderful opportunity that is the shopping cart. 

With the average cart abandonment hovering around 69%, this is clearly a problem that desperately needs a solution. 

You can shrink this number dramatically by implementing positive user experience techniques like: showing a clear cart summary and having tailored exit messages that enrich the shopping experience. 

The checkout and confirmation stages of the product cycle can be optimized by letting users checkout as guests, accommodating a wide range of payment methods, providing detailed order confirmation after checkout, and sending updates via email (Ex: Your Package has been dispatched.) 

Site Usability

As we mentioned in the previous chapter, usability tests are an indispensable part of optimizing the user experience. 

 

Tools like Crazy Egg, Qualaroo, Mouseflow, Try My UI, and UserReport are all useful for collecting the best possible customer insights.

 

Here’s a detailed list of these usability tools, their pricing plans, and more on what they can help you achieve. 

If you’re really trying to geek out over usability, Yoast has assembled an awesome guide where you can get best practices on internal search, category page optimization, and check out page optimization

Use of Colors

It’s pretty crazy how colors affect our day-to-day life. 

You may be familiar with common expression such as “I’m feeling blue” (often used to describe a state of sadness/melancholy) or “The new guy is a little green” (to describe being an apprentice or novice in something). 

Other than being used in references, colors have an enormous impact in eCommerce. To discover how colors affect conversion rate there’s research that says:

Colors account for a whopping 85% of individual purchasing decisions. 

For example, having a regular primary and secondary colour not only compliment each other, but they also transmit a certainity, uniformity, and reliability to your users. 

So, how do you decide which colors goes with the overall “vibe” of your business?

Here’s a breakdown on colors and their common associations: 

psychology of color - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Infographicnow

Learn more about deciding which colors best fit your business here, and dive into this piece for examples of businesses who understand the psychology of color

Page Speed

How fast do your pages load?

If you don’t know the answer to that, you may be missing out on an opportunity to convert more visitors. Here are some facts about page speed according to Shopify: 

  • 79% of customers who are dissatisfied with a website’s performance are less likely to buy from that site again 
  • 64% of smartphone users expect a website to load in 4 seconds or less 
  • 47% of online shoppers expect web pages to load in two seconds or less 

These percentages may seem abstract now but they represent thousands of dollars gone just because your website was slow. 

Don’t waste your time, check your page speed insights by using this free Google application:

google pagespeed insights - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Lucky for you, there’s a helpful resource here that gives you quick and relatively easy solutions to fix your page speed problems. 

In it, you’ll discover how to get a hosting solution that offers fast uptimes, how to leverage a content delivery network, and how to organize tracking using Google Tag Manager. 

Mobile Optimization

In this increasingly mobile-first world, it’s imperative to optimize for mobile. You’re putting yourself at a serious disadvantage if the sizes, design, load times, and browsing experience are off on mobile devices. 

Tools like PageInsights or Mobile-Friendly Test can help you take inventory of places where mobile optimization might be lacking.

google mobile friendly test - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

When optimizing your site for the best possible experience, ask yourself these questions: 

  • Might you need to eliminate some of the content on smaller devices to simplify the experience? 
  • How will your navigation work on different devices?
  • Are clickable elements easily tappable?
  • How will you handle layout of grids and images on different devices?
  • Are your images beautiful and crisp on retina screens?
  • Is the add to cart, checkout, and payment workflow optimized for different screen sizes?

Mouse Tracking and Heatmaps

Heatmaps play a vital role in your conversion rate optimization process as it provides a more visual way of understanding audience behavior. 

Tools like HotJar help you track user movement in real-time to find out things like where they’re spending the most time on your website, which piece of content they clicked on most, where they often hovered to but didn’t click, and much more. 

hotjar heatmap - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Hotjar

With this type of visual data, you can get a little more context as to areas of improvements and areas that are working well.

The team over at ConversionXL have a great resource on Mouse Tracking and Heatmaps

Chapter 4

eCommerce Website Optimization

4 eCommerce Website Optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

What makes your store different than the others? 

If you don’t have an answer to this question, that’s a serious problem. 

 

Creating a strong value proposition is an essential part of running a successful eCommerce business. 

 

Your value proposition is your brand’s identity. It’s what you use to create trust and build a tribe of loyal brand evangelists that will be singing the praises of your store for years to come. 

So where do you begin?

What is the formula for writing a kick-ass customer value proposition?

Here is the formula in brief: 

  1. Identify all the benefits your product offers (Note: benefits means how does your product impact, transform, or makes things easier for your customers. Benefits are not the same as features.) 
  2. Describe what makes these benefits valuable 
  3. Identify your customer’s main problem 
  4. Connect this value to your buyer’s problem 
  5. Differentiate yourself as the best person to provide this value 

Here’s a great example from Nutro that highlights on the homepage that their products made of real, recognizable, non-GMO ingredients.

value proposition example - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Building Trust

The rise of advertising fraud, fake reviews, and fake influencers have made shoppers very wary of brands in general. 

This decline in consumer trust means you’ll have to work that much harder to gain it and keep it. 

The best way to create trust? Make a hell of a first impression. 

 

This means making sure that your focusing on website optimization. Your website is clean, mobile-responsive, contains high-quality images, displays information properly, and generally offers a pleasant browsing experience. 

Making a good first impression is awesome, but will only take you so far.

Here are some of the top trust-building techniques employed by eCommerce businesses: 

  1. The use of trust signals (Testimonials, video product reviews, professional/medical affiliations, celebrity endorsed, etc)

    trust building with reviews - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide
    Source: Nutro

  2. Showing off the products using high quality images 
  3. Showing empathy for the users (By making helpful docs, tutorials, and other material easy to find, it relays to the customer that you care about their experience on your site) 
  4. Making the user experience accessible (Are you catering to users with disabilities? Is your site too reliant on visuals? Do you have other options for people to search for what they want?) 
  5. Validating your user’s beliefs (Some of the most helpful articles start with “If you’ve had enough of wasting time looking for X, you’ve come to the right place”. This is just one way of validating users’ beliefs and getting them to trust you as the person to help make their lives a little easier) 
  6. Playing the long game (Trust takes time to build and you’ve got to keep this customer-centric way of operating in all that you do. Always make sure that they have the easiest and most pleasant experience when interacting with your brand).

Increasing Scarcity and Urgency

Why do some people camp outside (even in crappy conditions) for up to 3 days in advance waiting for the latest Supreme drop? 

Why do some people literally fight over Black Friday deals at Best Buy (yes, I know it’s ridiculous)? 

It’s because they’ve figured out how to create scarcity and urgency and take full advantage of it. 

FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) is not just another 4 letter acronym for you to use to show how cool you are, it’s a real and powerful marketing strategy that you can replicate in your business. 

Of course, shopping online is a little different than lining up at a physical storefront, but it’s still possible to create this “craving” for your products with the right execution. 

There are many ways to make your visitors feel there is a ticking clock urging them to make a purchase now.

Let’s take a look at some great examples from Groupon.

One of the best ways to create a sense of urgency in your customers is a product that is only available for a limited time.

Limited quantity is a similar solution for this purpose – or you can combine them, as Groupon does so well. They encourage their visitors buy a product before they run out of time or the item is no longer available.

increasing scarcity and urgency - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Groupon

Another powerful way for creating a sense of urgency is by showing that the product a visitor is currently looking at is already in the shopping cart of another customer.

Or, you can display how many people are currently viewing the item, how many times it was viewed today (see below) or in the past week.

Simply presenting the number of purchases and remaining stock can be also effective to encourage your customers to make a purchase:

increasing scarcity and urgency groupon example - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Groupon

Find a detailed breakdown of the psychology of scarcity and other real-life examples here: psychology of scarcity.

Homepage Optimization

Think of your homepage as your virtual storefront. 

It’s an excellent place to seduce your visitors and turn them into customers using powerful conversion techniques we’ve covered up until now.

Here are some additional ways for you to turn your eCommerce homepage into a conversion magnet: 

  1. Use browsing history as a personalization tool 
  2. Put all the ways to save front and center 
  3. Present all of the options for live chat support 
  4. Encourage sharing 

Optimizing Product Listing Pages

We’ve all had that experience of going on a wonderful looking website only to be disappointed with the horrible product listing page(s). 

From low-quality images, catastrophic product positioning, and hard-to-understand descriptions, many eCommerce businesses neglect this important aspect when thinking about user experience. 

Avoid losing customers with your product listing pages by employing these techniques: 

  1. Pay attention to your headers (Simple, informative, and helpful is what the headers should be)
  2. Use good product thumbnails (Good product thumbnails show professionalism and also piques the interest of the user)
  3. Make navigation intuitive (Help your user find items faster by with these filters:  Color, Type, Shape, Category, Size, Gender) – like Nordstrom does:

    product list page optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

  4. Display on the most important information (These can include: star ratings, discounts, best-sellers, short descriptions, and colour options)
  5. A/B test your product listing page (Be open to experimenting and trying new ways of displaying. Never settle and always look for ways to make your users lives that much easier)

Navigation Optimization

Simply put, good navigation makes your users enjoy browsing your site which leads to more sales and higher revenues. 

 

On the other hand, poor navigation leads to frustrated users that will leave your site and never come back.

Most eCommerce sites do not rank that high when it comes to navigation optimization  They ignore those little additions that will go a long way in making the user experience more pleasant. 

Here are some techniques you can use to optimize navigation: 

  1. Use autocomplete in the search bar for faster result loading and intuitive browsing 
  2. Use a bigger and more visually appealing navigation menu (users can benefit from large images and quickly find what they’re looking for) 
  3. Use a fat footer (this gives an overview of your entire site to the user at a glance) 
  4. Use a feature rich drop down menu (this provides more information about the product without overwhelming the user and thus leads to a better user experience) 

Here’s another example from Nordstrom that not only uses a beautiful feature rich navigation system, but they also help the users search with autocomplete:

ecommerce navigation optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Creating an About Page New Readers Will Love

Too many eCommerce businesses owners treat their about us page as a “necessary evil” that they have to get out of the way. 

By doing this, they miss out on the opportunity to make users fall in love with them by sharing their values, their “why”, and or a personal story their brand. 

Here are 5 steps you need to follow to create a killer About Us Page: 

  1. Set the Scene with a compelling story (Talk about how life was before you launched this product, talk about the “aha” moment that occurred prior to launching the business, etc. This part is where you draw the reader in) 
  2. Introduce the problem
  3. Talk about how you set out to find a solution to the problem 
  4. Discuss the solution (aka your eCommerce store) and proudly speak about important milestones you’ve hit 
  5. Paint the picture of what’s next and share your vision for the future of the brand

By the way, have you seen our About us page? 🙂

optimonk about page - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Advanced eCommerce Site Optimization Tips

There are countless tactics you could try out to boost lead conversion, sales, and revenue that you can try.

Check out this mega guide from the team over at BigComerce for more actionable techniques: eCommerce site optimization tips.

Chapter 5

Product Page Optimization

5 Product Page Optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Your product pages play a major role in your conversion rate optimization process. 

When you put together powerful copy for your product pages, pair it with high quality images, and killer product descriptions, you’re setting yourself up for success. 

The goal of your product pages is to get the user to give you an emphatic “yes” to whatever you’re proposing.

In a moment, we’ll dive deeper into the various factors that make product pages outstanding, but before that, let’s define what a Product Page is: 

A product page is used to provide the user with information about your product, service or brand and should be used when doing just that – providing information to your entire audience.

Writing Killer Product Descriptions

You don’t need to be the next Ernest Hemingway or a copywriting genius to write solid product descriptions…

However, you do need to harness copywriting principles like good storytelling, how to use magnetic headlines, focusing on benefits, and making your words as clear as possible. 

In addition to using the language of their potential buyers and introducing the item in more details, Revelation! highlights all the most important product-specific information such as which airlines allow you to take the cabin case on board:

product description in ecommerce - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Of course, it’s easier said than done so that’s why we’ve included this useful guide on eCommerce copywriting here. 

Effectively Using Photos

Notice how top companies like Nike, Adidas, Apple, and ASOS showcase their products?

 

The use of high-quality imagery  multiple viewing options, showcasing different variants, displaying different angles, using the right thumbnails, and maintaining consistency throughout play a major role in their success. 

 

Without exaggeration, you can learn a lot from BestBuy.com, but they are especially good at using product images.

They use huge, you might say, gigantically large, top-quality images – what’s more, video presentations – to demonstrate what a product looks like.

product photos in ecommerce - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Of course, these are huge brands that can dedicate seemingly unlimited resources on photoshoots and creative directors. You don’t need to be a billion-dollar brand to adopt these techniques, you just need to be creative with what you have. 

The Power of Product Videos

If you’ve read any conversion articles online the last couple of years, you’ve probably come across the phrase “the pivot to video”.

That’s because video is quickly rising as one of the best tools for marketing and sales in just about any industry.

Here are some interesting stats on the power of video marketing

  • Including a video on your landing page can boost your conversion rate by up to 80%
  • Video increases organic search traffic on a website by 157%

 

With eCommerce, video is just as powerful and get results in a dramatic uplift in leads, sales, and revenue.

 

How?

Here are 5 powerful ways of effective use of video in eCommerce: 

  1. The “How-to” video (Shows you to use your product) 
  2. The “Product-in-use” video (This is a good way of using actors who look like your target audience as well as demonstrating the product in use) 
  3. The “Close-up” video (This zooms in your product to show the details, the craftmasnship, and other aspects that you want to highlight to entice users to buy) 
  4. The “Installation” video (This describes how to install or take apart your product) 
  5. The “Story” video (This is where you describe the story of your product and why it came to be. This video is a great opportunity to use copywriting principles such as emotional and power words to draw the audience in) 

How to Leverage Social Proof For Trust Building

People are more likely to buy a product when that product has been validated by other people (especially if it’s by friends or acquaintances).

 

With the general decline of consumer trust in marketing and advertising, it’s more important than ever to have real social proof on your website. 

 

You can leverage social proof by displaying customer reviews and user generated content on key pages (product, pricing, checkout, etc), in search ads, in marketing materials, and on social media.

Check out how BOOM! by Cindy Joseph leverage the power of social proof with 20K+ reviews below one of their lipsticks:

social proof for trust building - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: BOOM! by Cindy Joseph

Increasing Sense of Urgency

We mentioned before that increasing urgency on your product pages is a no-brainer in eCommerce. 

The quicker shoppers act (read: buy from you), the higher your conversion rate and the better the chances are that they will keep buying from you. 

Companies like Amazon have a host of urgency-increasing techniques on their product pages. You’re probably familiar with their “Same-Day Delivery or Next Day Delivery before a certain time” technique.

increasing sense of urgency - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Amazon

This technique is so powerful  because it provides instant gratification (getting your product as soon as possible), something that 75% of shoppers value. 

From displaying  product stock levels to creating time sensitive discount codes, there are a host of urgency creating techniques for you to implement. 

Upselling

Upselling can be defined as offering your customers a better (more expensive) item when they add a product to their cart or at the checkout page. 

However, the most profitable ecommerce sites combine upselling, cross-selling and down-selling to find the best way to maximize their profits with each customer.

upselling cross selling down selling - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

So, why is upselling a big deal? 

For the average business that offers upsells and recurring products 70-95% of revenue comes from upsells and renewals. 

This is is because it’s a lot easier to sell to existing customers rather than to sell to new ones. Careful, upselling can come off too pushy or tacky with the wrong approach. 

Here’s the 4 step guide to successfully upsell without being annoying: 

  1. Install An Upsell App/Plugin (Huge eCommerce platforms like Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce all have different upsell apps for you to try out. These are quick-and-easy plugins that can integrate with your site seamlessly) 
  2. Determine The Best Products To Upsell (Bundle “him and her” products, uspell accesories, create a “buy one, get one for a certain amount off offer, promote related or recommended products, etc. Those are just some ideas to get you going when thinking about product pairing)
  3. Run Your Offer For 1-2 Weeks (Run a discount campaign or another upsell type campaign to and check the conversion rate. By A/B testing things like Price, Item offered, and Copy, you can get a better sense of how your campaign is doing after this period)
  4. Measure, Tweak, Repeat (If one of your campaigns work, that’s great news! As mentioned before, always be open to experiment with other ideas and look for ways to improve the ones that are performing well) 

Chapter 6

Landing Page Optimization​

6 Landing Page Optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

In eCommerce, landing pages act as a tool to persuade the visitor to take action on an offer. 

Even though landing page research suggests that 1 in 4 of your shoppers will begin their journey on one of your product pages, they most likely won’t be ready for a purchase immediately upon landing. 

That’s where the optimized landing page comes in. 

landing page optimization for ecommerce - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

A high-converting landing page uses elements like a magnetic headline, powerful body copy, convincing social proof, and an irresistible call-to-action button to persuade shoppers to make that purchase. 

The Magnetic Headline

This is where you initially draw your user in. 

 

It doesn’t matter if you have the best copy in the world on the rest of the page when your headline is weak. 

 

The headline should speak directly to your user’s pain points, their worries, and most importantly, it should be attention-grabbing. (Here are some examples of remarkable headlines on landing pages.) 

Look, writing headlines can be hard. 

Because they’re of the utmost importance, we’ve included a comprehensive list of proven headline formulas here.

Not only will you get powerful headline formulas for landing pages, you’ll also get ideas to boost your email open rates and social media ad clickthrough rates. 

Body Copy

So you’ve piqued their interest with your headline, how do you get them to continue reading the rest of the stuff on the landing page?

By using body copy that will completely win them over. To create delightful landing page copy try the following: 

  • Make use of patterns in sentences 
  • Vary sentence length and formatting to create texture 
  • Remove objections by adding the “even if” clause 
  • Limit sentences to hold one idea 
  • Appeal to their emotions 
  • Write in the second person 

Here are some examples of some of these principles in action: landing page principles.

Implementing Captivating Social Proof

The power of social proof is undeniable and could be the key in taking your landing pages from good to great. 

As we mentioned earlier, social proof is that positive peer pressure that makes people gravitate to things that are already popular (for example: reviews) or things that have been validated by celebrities. 

 

Humans are hardwired to connect with faces and individual stories rather than just random numbers.

 

captivating social proof - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Flipcart

There are various types of social proof that you can use. 

Here are some of the most popular ones: 

  1. Counters: Counters taps into the “herd mentality” idea that people will follow the crowd. You may have noticed some websites mentioned the exact number of people on their email list to influence you to be part of the group. Humans like to belong, to be part of a group or class and that’s why this concept will go a long way, especially for new visitors. 
  2. Testimonials: Testimonials are effective because they highlight individual stories.  These detailed quotes, often paired with a smiling headshot or title play a major rule in building trust. Here are some examples of this in action: social proof marketing.
  3. Client Logos: When you display the logos of brands who have used your product, you’re saying that these brands endorse you because they’ve done business with you. This can be one of the most powerful uses of social proof, especially if the brands are powerhouse (Think Nike, Adidas, Apple, etc). 
  4. Reviews From Other Sites: Reviews from other sites make for compelling social proof because they appear objective. When brands essentially put their name out there singing the praises of your product/brand, this can lead to a positive trickle-down effect with other brands.  

Landing Page Design Principles

High converting landing pages may look different but they all have the same, basic principles when you analyze them closely.

There are certain design principles that are pretty much universal when it comes to increasing conversions.

Here they are:

  1. Dedicating your landing page to one purpose. Don’t confuse your visitors by asking them to do 2 or 3 things. Each landing page should have a singular call-to-action for a singular goal.
  2. Make your content skimmable. Your visitors are busy and you don’t have that much time to keep their attention. Leverage a short and sweet call-to-action and balance visuals to get the point across of your landing page.
  3. Properly display trust indicators (For example: social proof)
  4. Place your call-to-action above the fold (Make your call-to-action as obvious as possible).
  5. Use the right color scheme (The colours you use have a profound impact on your users’ moods, their emotions, and generally, their entire experience on your site. Make sure your color scheme makes sense on landing pages and across your website).

If you want to learn how to apply the fundamental principles of design to increase your landing page conversion rates, check out these videos about landing page design principles from Unbounce’s co-founder, Oli Gardner:

landing page design principles - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Power Words To Skyrocket Conversions

Power words are words that can crank up your marketing by evoking emotion, triggering curiosity, and just giving your marketing efforts that little bit more “juice” to convert visitors. 

The words you use can mean the difference between a campaign falling flat or bringing in more leads and sales for you.

I want you to have as many of these power words as possible in your marketing arsenal so I’ve included a guide with 401 of them here: power words

No more excuses for using the same word over and over again, you now have literally hundreds of power words to take your marketing to another level. 

Need a word to describe memorability? 

You can use Captivate, Undeniable, or Unforgettable. Need powerful synonyms for Beauty? You can use awe-inspiring, dazzling, or swoon-worthy. 

Chapter 7

Checkout Optimization

7 Checkout Optimization - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Cart abandonment is when a shopper visits a website, views the product page, adds one or more items to their basket but DOES NOT complete the purchase. 

This is a real and persistent problem in eCommerce and an area of opportunity for optimization. 

shopping cart abandonment - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

According to a study from ReadyCloud, cart abandonment rates can be as high as 80%. 

This means that millions of businesses are leaving money on the table because their customers are leaving their website right at the finish line.

Here are some ways you can optimize the checkout process: 

  • Keep shoppers on the same domain (redirecting people from one site to another causes disorientation and can increase distrust) 
  • Reduce alternative navigation at checkout 
  • Be transparent about prices (no ever in the history of life has been thrilled at hidden fees. Also this is one of the top reasons why shoppers abandon the cart
  • Make next steps super clear 
  • Offer payments options that people actually use 

More useful cart optimization tips can be found here: optimize checkout process

Using Discounts and Coupons as Incentives

Offering discounts can be a great strategy to increase conversions, offload excessive inventory, and increase customer loyalty.

discount popup christiano ronaldo - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: CR7.com

So how can you use discounts and coupons without them hurting your pockets? 

Here are some ideas: 

  • Reward new customers by offering them a generous discount for their first purchase. A decent discount on the first purchase can lead to more sales down the road 
  • Offer a post-purchase discount that gives customers a small discount on their next purchase 
  • Offer special coupons/codes that customers can use at checkout when having sales 

Read up on the impact of the discounts on consumer psychology as well as find examples of great discount usage here. 

5 Ways to Recover Cart Abandoners

It’s not all gloom and doom when it comes to cart abandonment because there are a number of ways for you to recover cart abandoners.

Here are a few examples: 

  1. Use personalized messages when sending reminders and other notifications (Don’t send generic messages when it comes to reminders. Be funny, use wit, and keep reminding shoppers of your value)
  2. Send them compelling offers to get them to finish their purchase (Some companies give shoppers incentives like “Buy 1 Get 1 Free after purchasing”)
  3. Use urgency (You can offer a special code or discount that’s valid for 20-30 minutes to get them to finish purchasing) 
  4. Use storytelling during remarketing campaigns (By using a benefit-driven story, you can paint the picture of the shopper’s life before and after your product) 
  5. Use proven calls-to-action in your remarketing campaigns 

Remarketing campaigns and recovery of cart abandoners can be a daunting task. Let these case studies serve as inspiration for your next campaigns. 

ecommerce cart abandonment case studies - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Chapter 8

Lead Generation

8 Lead Generation - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Believe it or not, user behavior and psychology are closely linked. 

When users browse stores and click around, there are a lot of emotions and hardwired instincts that come into play. 

Tapping into these emotions can help you create happy customers that grow your business at a rapid pace. 

 

How do you tap into these emotions? You’ve got to have a deep knowledge of your customers. 

 

The Psychology Behind The Purchase Funnel

The purchase funnel is an interesting concept that highlights the mindstate or “stages” the customer goes through before making a purchasing decision. 

Of course, humans are complex and there are so many random decisions that can be made on any given day, but there is generally a pattern when it comes to shopping. 

The Stages of Change Model (a model based on the life cycle of smokers who were trying to  quit) that was created in the 1970s bares a remarkable resemblance to what we know as the typical buyer journey today. 

Here’s what the Stages of Change model looks like: 

Precontemplation

Contemplation

Determination

Action

Relapse

Maintenance

Here’s what the typical purchase funnel looks like: 

ecommerce purchase funnel - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Code95

Smoking and marketing funnel, what’s the link? 

In order to get someone to move from one stage of the funnel to the next, they’ll need motivation, assistance, and powerful incentives (discounts, calls-to-action, loyalty programs, etc). 

In this article, you’ll learn more about these two models as well as see how companies like Tesla use them in their marketing and pricing strategies: customer psychology

Understanding Website Visitors Through Buyer Personas

Retail giant Amazon always leaves an extra, empty seat at the table for an invisible customer when they have meetings. 

amazon empty chair buyer persona - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Rounders England

Why? 

According to CEO, Jeff Bezos, it’s a visually compelling way to reinforce the company’s stance of “start with the customer and then work backwards”. 

 

With a reported $72.4 billion in Q4 revenue in 2018, it’s safe to say that this stance on “customer first” has given Amazon an incredible competitive advantage in the eCommerce space. 

 

You don’t need to have an empty seat at your meetings but you do need to nail down your ideal buyer persona

A buyer persona is document or file that describes your customers’ needs, preferences, motivations, and inhibitions.

The more you know about your ideal customer, the better your web content, marketing campaigns, emails, and products will be. 

Here’s a useful checklist of factors to include when building a compelling buyer person: 

  • Job title / position
  • Work experience
  • Industry / business type
  • Location (a type of place is fine)
  • Gender
  • Interests
  • Age
  • Family (number and type)
  • Income
  • Decision maker? (yes/no)

Building Your Email List

Jeff Walker, Creator of the Product Launch Formula says having an email list is a licence to print money. 

Wow, pretty bold statement right? 

Despite all of the new social networks, the “get-more-customers” hacks that flood the internet, and the “gurus” peddling their newest “become a millionaire in 60 days” programs, good ol’ email still outperforms most channels in 2019. 

After an analysis of over $1 billion in sales on the Shopify platform, email led the way in conversions with 4.09%, followed by search, direct, and then social media.

conversion rate by channel - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Smartinsights

Email performs well because of a few reasons: 

  • It has people who are interested in your content and/or your products on your list 
  • Receiving an email feels more personal as opposed to social media or a generic ad 
  • It’s one of the best places to build trust and create loyal brand evangelists (the people that will sing your praises to their friends, colleagues, etc) 

Even if you’ve started building your email list already, our team has created this comprehensive guide that shows you how to build an email list from scratch (including a real list building example). 

How to Make eCommerce Content Marketing Work for Your Site

Content marketing is one of the best things you can if you have any sort of business online. It’s free, it can dramatically increase your traffic, and can be a perpetual lead generating source. 

Moreover, the average conversion rate with content marketing is 2.9%, compared to an unimpressive 0.5% for sites not using it. 

content marketing conversion rate - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: ScoopIt

When people say “Content is King”, it’s not just to sound cool or to be “on trend”. 

Good content connects with people. Good content builds engagement. Good boosts brand loyalty which in turn can skyrocket conversions and sales. 

Here are 5 powerful  ways for you to make your content work harder: 

  1. Deliver your content via email (Above, we went over how email provides the highest return on investment when it comes to conversions. Delivering your content through email helps you to build that much-needed connections with your customers) 
  2. Create easy-to-read guides and summaries for your users (Put together visually appealing guides on how your product works and use these guides as an opportunity to further educate your customers. This engages users and helps to create more trust) 
  3. Share customer stories (By now, you know how powerful social proof is to your success as an eCommerce store owner. Customer stories come from the customer which simplifies a lot for you. All you have to do is round up the stories and distribute them) 
  4. Create a glossary of commonly asked questions, terms, and industry jargon (Not only does this build you as an authority in the industry, it’s a helpful tool for your customers and potential customers. The more confusion you’re able to reduce for your customers, the more likely they are to buy from you). 
  5. Share hacks or secret tips (How satisfying is it when you watch those quick 5 minute hacks with household items on YouTube? It’s like you’ve discovered a completely new world! You can do the same by sharing hacks, tips, and guides for your products (see the article below from an eyewear store). Tapping into the human need to solve a puzzle can do wonders for your conversions) 

 

content marketing example for ecommerce - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Vintandyork

The suggestions above are just the tip of the iceberg. Here’s an excellent resource chock full of interesting eCommerce content marketing ideas for you to try out. 

Using Popups to Build Your List

“But popups are annoying”… is probably what you thought when reading the title.

Fair enough. 

There’s nothing like a massive popup with an almost-invisible-exit button taking up 80% of the screen as you’re reading something online. 

However, the right popup with the right messaging, at the right time can work wonders for your list building. 

collect email addresses with popups - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

For popups to work, they need the following elements: 

  1. A compelling call-to-action 
  2. A personalized offer (This will make the difference between annoyed and intrigued) 
  3. Eye-Catching design 
  4. The right timing 
  5. Optimized for both desktop and mobile 

Here’s a 25-point checklist to help you get started with popups.

Chapter 9

A/B Testing​

9 ab testing - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

As mentioned above, A/B testing is an important technique in your overall conversion optimization arsenal. 

When you regularly test various parts of your website and store, you keep a pulse on market trends and what your users are most responsive to.

So what should you be testing? 

Before that, let’s properly define what A/B testing is: 

A/B testing (also known as split testing) can be defined as the practice of splitting your audience to test a number of variations of a campaign and see observe which one performs better. 

a b testing in ecommerce - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

You can show version A of something to one part of your audience, and version B to another part of your audience. Just because you can A/B test pretty much anything doesn’t mean that you should. 

Why? 

Well, these tests can take a lot of time, they can be costly, and if not done properly, can a negative effect on your business. 

What You Should Be A/B Testing

Before testing anything, familiarize yourself with the right way of A/B testing using this guide from marketing leaders, HubSpot.

Now, that you’re ready to start testing, remember that:

 

A/B testing will be the most effective when it removes consumer pain points.

 

Remember the anecdote on Amazon above?

This is where they truly shine.

Amazon has meticulously tested to remove hassles such as:

  • Comparing similar products
  • Filtering to find a specific product
  • Repeatedly filling in billing information
  • Determining the quality of a product
  • and much more!

You probably don’t have the resources Amazon has but you can still adopt their consumer-led A/B testing methods. 

Start with the 3 most pressing problems your customers have about your store (your heatmaps, customer surveys and buyer persona will give you the answer). 

For example, if we take the biggest problems that eCommerce store owners have, it would probably be page layout, hidden fees/lack of transparency, and poor messaging. 

You would dig into these and try out different layouts and various styles of copy with different segments in an effort to boost conversions.

what to ab test - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Source: Convert.com

What A/B Testing Tool Is The Best for You?

It’s 2019 and that means there are more choices than ever… for everything. 

There seems to be a new conversion blog, a new sales software, and new A/B testing tool coming out every week.

In order to save you time and unnecessary headaches, I’ve created a list of the top 10 A/B testing tools for you to check out: 

  1. Google Analytics and Google Optimize: Google Analytics is THE analytics tool. You can track just about anything with it and run a variety of tests. Google Optimize is also another great tool for data collection and testing.
  2. Optimizely: As one of the leading Conversion Rate Optimization tools out there, Optimizely offers far more than just A/B testing. You can also find a suite of useful personalization messages, segmenting options, and others. 
  3. Adobe Target: This enterprise A/B testing personalization make the list for its enterprise-led solution and testing capacity.
  4. Evergage: This tool uses machine learning to and seeks to create the best customer experiences based on user behavior, this is for you.
  5. AB Tasty: As the name suggests, this platform excels at A/B Testing but also offers a suite of other basic personalization features.
  6. Leadformly: Some of the tools mentioned in this list will fall short on the finer specifics of your pages like web forms and this is where Leadformly picks up the slack. Because web forms often lack a degree of depth of insights, Leadformly can help you with deeper analytics and more A/B testing features. 
  7. Unbounce: Arguably one of the most popular landing page builders in the game, Unbounce knows a thing or two about conversion rate optimization. Their simple drag-and-drop builder and integrated A/B testing make them an ideal choice for a first- time test. 
  8. VWO: This is often seen as the simplest possible solution to A/B testing and conversion rate optimization. With an all-around platform and simple pricing structure, this tool is a favourite in eCommerce. 
  9. Nelio A/B Testing: WordPress powers about 42% of all websites on the internet so a WordPress plugin rightfully earns its place on this list. With this plugin, you can manage your A/B tests, check heatmaps, and improve results, all without leaving WordPress. 
  10. Apptimize: This list wouldn’t be complete without the mention of an A/B and optimization tool that focuses on mobile. If you have a business that revolves around apps and mobile, Apptimize’s data collection system, mobile vs desktop comparison and more is the right tool for you.

Planning Your A/B Test

A/B testing doesn’t happen on a hunch or a feeling. 

 

You’ve got to be methodical about what you want to test, when you want to test, and more importantly, how you’re going to use those results to hopefully advance your conversion rate optimization. 

 

Here’s a detailed guide to planning for your A/B test

Remember, the key to these tests is FOCUS.

Handle the most important parts first and then continuously test at intervals you select. You don’t have to test everything, but you must test regularly. 

How to Understand Your A/B Test Results

The length of your test and when you want to analyze results ultimately depends on you.

 

The general rule of thumb is to let tests run for at least 3 weeks to a month before acting upon the results. 

 

Note: The longer you run it, the more accurate your results may be. Ask yourself these questions as you look through your results: 

  • Was the original version better? 
  • Was the second variation superior? 
  • Did they both fall short somewhere? 
  • Where did they both fall short? 
  • Did they both underperform? 
  • Where there any outside factors that influenced results? (For example, seasonality) 

After taking inventory of your results, safely store them and revisit when you run further A/B tests. Just because a particular variation won out this time doesn’t mean it’s the absolute best you could do. 

There’s always room for improvement.  

A/B Testing Mistakes Even The Experts Make

Conversion Rate Optimization can have a profound effect on your business in every sense imaginable. 

From your emails to sales, there are so many opportunities for you to tap into something that will generate more leads and more sales for you.

 

With that being said, there are pitfalls that even the most experienced marketers fall victim to. 

 

Being aware of these pitfalls will save you a lot of time and grief in the future.

Here are some of the most common ones: 

  1. Expecting A/B Testing to be the silver bullet 
    When you set out to build your eCommerce store, you have dreams of running a successful store with brilliant marketing and the sales to match.

    As you get into to fierce world that is eCommerce, you realize that it’s not that easy. You realize that those 6-figure months of sales are tough to achieve.
     
    So you go on and dive into the top CRO tactics and A/B testing tools out there thinking they’ll be the cure to your problems. When your tactics don’t work, you’re left more frustrated than before.

    This is a familiar story for many in eCommerce. Sometimes tweaking the color of your CTA isn’t the problem, sometimes it’s the hard reality that no one wants your product.  

  2. Ending a test too early  

    The possibilities of A/B testing can be exciting to the point where it’s easy to end tests early and call a winner prematurely.

    Maybe you ran variations for 2 days and the challenging variation decreased conversions by 30%. Easy to call it a winner, isn’t it? What if you let the tests run for a month and that same challenging variation was increasing conversions at 45%?

    You would have been missing out on great CRO opportunity simply because of impatience. 

  3. Trusting Everything You Read Online 

    Blindly following things you read online is very dangerous for your business. Yes, even the greatest success case studies from Digital Marketer or Neil Patel may not work for your business.

    Heck, it might even hurt your business. If another company changed their button copy and got a 35% increase in conversions, that’s awesome, but there’s no guarantee you’ll get the same results.

    There’s a lot of more than meets the eye for many of these case studies such as specificity to industry, seasonality, prior tests, etc. There are obviously general gems to take from them but it’s important for you to know that someone else’s success story will not also automatically become yours. 

Chapter 10

Using On-site Messages

10 Using Onsite Messages - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Relevance, relevance, relevance. 

That’s the name of the game for optimizing with onsite messages. 

It’s not enough to just have popups on your website and store exit intent messages.

 

You need those messages to be relevant to your users and for them to feel like they’re being given a custom experience. 

 

We’ve mentioned personalization before and hopefully in this part, you’ll see just how important it is to your business’ success in 2019. 

Popups

There are a variety of popups you could implement on your site to boost your conversions. You’ve got to know which ones will serve their purpose without disturbing the user experience and resulting in fleeing shoppers. 

optimonk popup goals 2 - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Customization with popups is an essential part of their success. 

Don’t have popups promoting your new Men’s Winter collection when the user is reading about packing summer dresses. General popups with random propaganda is outdated and will backfire on your sooner rather than later. 

On-site Messages

In 2019, brands with personality are dominating just about every industry. 

From the hilarious tweets of Wendy’s official account to the entertaining emails of the Morning Brew newsletter, it’s refreshing to see the human element seep into communication, marketing and sales. 

Attracting customers to your site is already a hard enough task.

Getting them to stick around is damn near impossible if you have generic, boring messaging.

optimonk lucky wheel gamification 2 - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Here’s how you can create a solid onsite messaging strategy that will make your brand memorable and lead to higher conversions – just like this lucky wheel above did for Patchpanel

  1. Use the data that you already have (When users opt-in your email list or fill in their information on forms, etc, use that to create personalized messaging/outreach for them) 
  2. In addition to basic data, use heatmaps to notice trends in customer behaviour on your site. (Different behavioural triggers leads to different messaging. For example: whether a visitor is new or recurring, whether they are active or inactive on a page, whether they are about to exit, etc.) 
  3. Omnichannel personalization (Providing coherent, consistent personalization for customers on different channels is a powerful conversion optimization tool). 

In addition to the information above, make use of tools that are specifically designed to improve customer onsite messaging.

Tools like OptiMonk offers a wide range of onsite messaging to help transform your traffic into satisfied customers. 

jb freemium - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Reducing Bounce and Exit Rates

There’s nothing more frustrating than spending time, money, and effort into creating a solid traffic generation strategy only to have visitors leave seconds (if that) after they get to your website. 

 

When a visitors lands on your website and leaves without viewing other pages, it’s called a bounce. 

 

The bounce rate can be found by dividing the number of bounces by the number of entrances (visitors).

A lesser know but important metric is the exit rate. 

 

Exit rate can be defined as the percentage of visitors to your site who click away to a different site from a specific page after having visited other pages on your site. 

 

The takeaway?

The less the percentage is of both, the higher your conversions.

Here are some ways to reduce them: 

  1. Improve your content’s readability (using tools like Yoast SEO
  2. Avoid annoying and irrelevant popups 
  3. Use compelling calls-to-action 
  4. Target keywords with high-value traffic 
  5. Attract the right visitors 
  6. Create multiple landing pages with high-volume keywords 

The powerful optimization techniques mentioned throughout this article are useful for reducing bounce rates as well, but here are some additional ones for your reading pleasure: reduce bounce rate

Bonus Chapter

Other Ways to Increase Conversions

11 Bonus Other Ways - What is CRO - An eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization Guide

Throughout this article, we’ve tackled the many parts of conversion rate optimization. 

From understanding buyer psychology to bounce rate optimization, there’s always an opportunity for you to improve the user experience on your website and get better quality leads and more conversions. 

Here are 5 little-known but impressive advanced conversion rate optimization tips: 

  1. Keep your best content above the fold:

    Above the fold refers to the area that is immediately visible when you first land on a site without scrolling. UX designers everywhere would tell you that this is a crucial place for conversions.

    Check out some uses of this technique here: effective conversion optimization techniques.

  2. Keep The Fields in Forms Short:

    Forms that have 10+ fields of info to fill in are a huge turnoff. You want your questions to be as succinct as possible and only look to collect the most important, immediate information.

    Some companies see success by making the form filling process as candid as possible and displaying how many steps there are as the visitor fills out the form. 

  3. Give your Calls-To-Action A Little Pizzazz:

    The use of complementary colours, wit and clarity in your calls-to-action can go a long way in boosting conversions.

    Instead of ‘Submit”, maybe try telling the users EXACTLY what happens after they click the button. Will they be starting a class? Will they be watching a video? Make it crystal clear.

  4. Connect the Desktop and Mobile Shopping Experience:

    Many visitors return on a different device from their first so be sure to provide a seamless experience regardless of the device.

    The more resistance you can remove from the shopper buyer experience (for example: Elimination starting over from zero rebuilding their cart, cutting out irrelevant messaging, etc) the better. 

5 Underrated Conversion Optimization Tools

Conversions are the lifeblood of businesses.

Here are additional tools that will help you get more conversions without pulling your hair out and spending 14 hours days in front of your computer: 

  1. Marketizator: This market research app lets you create behaviour based surveys that monitor what visitors do on your website 
  2. SimilarWeb:  Keep an eye on your competition and see what strategies are working for them so that you can improve your own 
  3. ClickTale: This user behaviour app lets you identify customer needs and intent throughout the engagement process 
  4. Formisimo:  This analytics tool specializes in measuring user experience as it relates to online checkout and enquiry forms specifically. 
  5. OptiMonk The human element in marketing is more important than ever. OptiMonk can help you deliver customized messaging to your traffic and turn them into customers.  

Closing Thoughts...

In this article, we’ve covered a lot of techniques that can help you boost conversions in your eCommerce store.

By understanding your customers, creating engaging content, constantly testing, and keeping an open mind, you’ll be setting yourself up for success.

With that being said, Conversion Rate Optimization is certainly not an easy process and will most definitely test your patience. 

This guide will be there for your in those difficult moments. This guide is not meant to be the “Bible of CRO.” It’s meant to centralize powerful techniques and tips that you can always come back to.  Whether it’s tools, case studies, or just a friendly reminder that you’re not alone in the jungle that is eCommerce, this guide is for you. You can bookmark this, download it as a PDF, email the link to yourself or whatever helps you keep this guide within reach. Remember, real optimization is not a series of tricks and techniques.

Real optimization is truly understanding what’s right for your store and your customers. 

 

Now it's your turn!

I hope this guide showed you how to convert your visitors into customers effectively.

And now we’d like to turn it over to you:

Did you learn something new from this guide?

Or maybe you have a question.

Either way, leave a comment below right now.

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