atom tips

8th July 2014
By Toby

We provide a number of online marketing services for our clients, including conversion rate optimisation (CRO).

A team here at atom42 has been striving to increase landing page conversion rates by taking a scientific and granular approach. By setting up a number of different landing pages, analysing the results and then making bold changes, a measurable system of constant improvement has been created.

Here are five insights that our team has found particularly intriguing:

1. Understand and alleviate your visitors’ concerns

People who are otherwise close to converting can be put off making that final leap for a number of reasons. But many of the consumer concerns which can hamper that conversion process are easily identifiable.

We hypothesised that by quickly addressing and alleviating those customer concerns we would improve conversion rate. We tested our hypothesis by varying landing page headlines for a critical page of a client’s website, so they alleviated some of the main concerns we knew visitors might be experiencing. By the end of the test, the conversion rate rose by 112%.

Take away tip:

Understand the concerns of who you’re targeting by putting yourself in their shoes and thinking about what would stop you from converting. Then, try to find a way of appeasing this concern on your landing page.

2. Images matter

We set up a killer landing page for one of our clients and were confident that it would drive a large volume of conversions…it didn’t.

The landing page originally included a cover image and a bold, overlaid CTA. As the main features of the page, these seemed like good places to start identifying the problem and testing potential solutions. Changing the image was a priority, and this one simple change yielded excellent results, improving the conversion rate by 72%.

Take away tip:

Simple changes can make a difference. A whole re-design of a landing page might not be the best way forward. Consider small, easy changes before a big redesign project.

3. Less can be more

Compelled by the fear of leaving out some vital information, there is always the temptation to stuff as much information as possible onto a landing page. We are often inclined to add a small piece of information, thinking it won’t hurt. This is until the additions snowball and clutter the page, meaning the user can’t see the wood for the trees.

Much CRO debate has revolved around how much content one should publish on their landing pages, so we tested it. In the test, one page included in-depth information, the other just the most important bits – the bare bones. Interestingly, the ‘bare bones’ version came up trumps, gaining a conversion rate improvement of 25%.

Take away tip:

As web surfers, we are lazy. If the right information doesn’t grab and engage, we bounce. Consider how interesting your content is – when it’s drowning in a sea of other information, the key point you’re trying to get across may go unnoticed.

4. Encourage interaction

One of our landing pages was specifically aimed at cold users – those who haven’t actively sought out the services of the client in question. We felt that we should be encouraging interactivity, rather than just displaying information.

The idea was to keep information to a minimum: a headline, a few USPs and a very simple, three-stage interactive form. As it turned out, we ended up using this landing page for general use, and it’s delivered some excellent results, improving conversion rates by up to 30%.

Take away tip:

It is said that a visitor to your website or landing page is immediately looking for reasons to leave. Consider getting a user’s attention in a different way – focusing their mind on something you want them to do, rather than allowing them to look for confirmation that they shouldn’t convert.

On this occasion, an interactive questionnaire proved effective, which we believe helped the user along their journey to converting by engaging their mind with the benefits offered by the client.

5. Test everything yourself

While the tips above may be helpful, they shouldn’t be taken as gospel. If rigorous testing can teach you anything, it’s that you should always refrain from taking anything at face value.

One article recently suggested that small, incremental changes to landing pages isn’t the way to go and that we should be making big, bold changes for maximum success. Whilst this may have worked well for them, we have found the opposite more effective.

Our final take away tip:

Conduct your own tests and work with the results and insights that these tests bring. By all means, use blogs and articles for inspiration, ideas and guidance, but ultimately, test for yourself.

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