Increase Conversions Without Increasing Spend (Without Magic)

Davids Website Post
David Feldbaum
June 14, 2016

You finally created a beautiful new website for your business with all the bells and whistles. Plus, your new site looks stunning on desktop and mobile formats alike. But there’s one problem.

The phones aren’t ringing. You’re not getting any contact form messages. Simply put, you’re not receiving a return on your design costs. You’re absolutely not alone and we see these situations all the time.

Many businesses think they can create a website—and poof!—the leads and orders start rolling in. However, it’s more complicated than that. It takes SEO work to harness highly-relevant traffic that is prepared to convert on-site. It takes strategic testing for call-to-action buttons, messaging and website aesthetics in order to transform your website into a conversion-ready mechanism.

Don’t worry. Read on to find out how your website can bring in conversions without spending one additional penny on paid efforts.


Optimize metadata

Contrary to popular belief, SEO does not stand for “super energetic office.” (I mean, we are a super energetic office, but that’s not the point.)

When you create a new website for your business, you’re essentially throwing it out into a wide, wide universe of web pages. Google does do its best to make sure that your site will show up on relevant searches, but SEO is here to boost that process.

In order to be seen by your target demographic, you need to make sure that your website can go up in rankings for your business’ most important keywords and pages. That’s where SEO or “search engine optimization” comes in.

Main pages should have keywords vital to your business in metadata and in content. After all, these are two of Google’s most important ranking factors.

As your site goes up in rankings, you’ll receive more relevant traffic that will likely result in more leads and orders from your target customers.   


Test on-page elements

Aside from metadata optimizations like title tags improvements, you will also need to better equip your website to convert new, more relevant traffic.

Let’s frame this process with a simple example. Think about a lemonade stand that you probably set up as a child to make a few quick bucks. You’ve taken the steps to make sure that thirsty neighbors (or your target consumer) can clearly see your lemonade stand.

There’s only one problem. Your customers are lined up and you have a bunch of lemonade, but you don’t have the pitcher and serving supplies to serve your lemonade effectively!

Just like a lemonade stand, your website needs to have the right tools to convert customers into qualified leads and repeat purchasers. Except, instead of a pitcher, you need the following on-page elements.


Call-to-action messaging

A quick and fun way to influence customer sentiment on-site is to strengthen your “call-to-action” messaging. Call-to-actions (CTA’s) on websites are messages in buttons, headers, and content that provoke an immediate mental response.

Great CTA’s are short, snappy, and include action-oriented verbs. Testing different messaging in your buttons such as “Call Now” or “Order Now” or slightly extended messaging such as “Order Pizza Now” can have a surprisingly strong effect on consumers who are perusing your website.

You can also increase lead potential by concluding important service-oriented paragraphs with call-to-action sentences like “Contact us today at (847) 888-8888 to learn more.”

You can step it up even further by wrapping your phone business number with HTML that allows users to click your number on mobile devices. Learn more about mobile click to call HTML here.  


Hero image testing

Another easy way to improve customer interaction with your website is to test different hero image experiences. Hero images are large web banners that are typically the first web elements that users see when they land on your homepage. And, as everyone knows, first impressions matter.

That’s where hero image testing comes in. There are so many things to try out.

You can test different messaging in your hero image contact button to determine the highest converting verbiage. You can test different messaging in the body of hero image or slider content. You can also test hero image creative itself!

As long as hero image tests are closely controlled and monitored, it’s possible to figure out what messaging or imagery works best for converting customers on your website.


Conversion funnel optimization

Our last tip for increasing conversions on the cheap involves conversion funnel optimization. It’s easier than it sounds, I promise.

First, let’s break down what a conversion funnel is. It’s simply the path a customer takes from initially landing on your site to completing a conversion. This conversion path could be anything from filling out a contact form to navigating through your e-commerce purchase process.

The “funnel” in a conversion funnel refers your customer’s journey through your website experience—and the gradual decline in the number of customers who reach each step of your conversion process.

An easy way to evaluate your own conversion funnel is to pretend that you are a customer of your own site. Go through each stage of your conversion funnel and take notes. If there are any overly tedious steps in the process that can be condensed, then streamline that specific experience.

Let’s go through this in more detail. Look at your landing pages in each stage of the conversion funnel. Think about testing different content, different images, and different font sizes and colors. Whatever you decide to test, remember to maintain a scientific experiment by testing versions against your original controls and with identical test durations.

If you have Google Analytics or another tracking platform, keep track of your data during those time periods. Keep an eye on conversion amounts, conversion rates, and other important metrics such as page bounce rate or page exit rate to determine if there are certain landing pages in the conversion funnel experience that users negatively interact with.

You should also evaluate the end of your conversion path. Test your contact forms and sign-up forms with different content above form fields (or without any content above fields!) to determine the effect on contact form completion rates.  

You can also easily test the fields themselves if you have access to your contact form settings.  If you have too many fields for customers to fill out on your contact form, you could be discouraging users from completing it.

Try testing contact forms with fewer fields. Traditional contact forms have fields for customer name, customer email, customer phone number, and the customer’s message. Sometimes we see a field for customer address as well. Try a three field contact form with fields for “Your Name,” “Your Email,” and “Your Message” to increase contact form completion rates. You’d be amazed at how condensing a contact form can increase lead volume and efficiency.


Need more expert advice?

Yes, it really is possible to increase conversions without increasing ad spend. SEO and CRO (conversion rate optimization) is where it’s at. Give our testing tips a try and let us know how it goes!

If you’re ready to take it up a notch, contact us today.


Do you have any other CRO tips? Did you have an insanely successful lemonade stand as a kid? We need to hear all your advice, lemonade and otherwise. Tweet us at @Perfect_Search!

David Feldbaum
Analyst, Search & Social

David Feldbaum comes to Chicago from Memphis, Tennessee. He sincerely wishes he and Jon Snow could be best buds, and says the coolest thing he’s ever done is bungee jump over the highest legal bungee site in the world (Queenstown, New Zealand).

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