What You Should Know About Different Data Types And Website Testing

In website testing for CRO, most things are pretty definitive. Did a customer visit convert into a sale or not? Was it A or B, yes or no, win or lose? The simplicity makes data both easy to collect and easy to analyze. But are we missing out on something with this simplistic model? The ones and zeros that make up a binary digital signal combine in the countless billions to form images on our TVs, phones and computer screens. In the same way, we can use data to make our website testing paint a more complete picture, sometimes with…

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What You Should Know About Different Data Types And Website Testing

Conversion Rate Optimization: Why Now is the Best Time to Get Started

Assume for a moment that your site’s doing well across many key performance indicators (KPIs). You have healthy traffic stats thanks to your SEO, paid search, and social media campaigns. Things look to be on the up and up, except for one problem—sales remain stagnant. What’s going on? Isn’t web traffic the Holy Grail of digital marketing? In reality, it’s not so simple. While traffic is an important foundational metric, not all user visits are created the same. As such, it’s important to remember that while traffic is important, the real goal should be finding ways to correlate traffic metrics…

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Conversion Rate Optimization: Why Now is the Best Time to Get Started

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What does Evolutionary Site Redesign in action look like? Like this.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

TL;DR: After 7 months of testing with weBoost, an electronics manufacturer, their website looks radically different and the company has seen an over 100% lift in their year-over-year conversion rate. This is evolutionary site redesign (ESR) at work. Read the full case study here.

The company

weBoost homepage
The hero section from weBoost’s (current) homepage.

Our partnership with weBoost began in the summer of 2015. weBoost is an ecommerce retailer and manufacturer of cellular signal boosters. These boosters provide stronger, more reliable cellular signals while simultaneously enhancing the user’s ability to receive and transmit data.

The goals

Beyond the goal of simply increasing ecommerce sales, the weBoost team was looking to fuel their entire marketing program. In order to do that, weBoost executives were also hoping to gain customer insights through WiderFunnel’s proven conversion optimization process: the Infinity Optimization Process™.

At the outset, there were several questions that weBoost was looking to answer through a partnership with WiderFunnel:

  1. What kind of information do we need to provide about our products in order to make the sale?
  2. Are our customers well-informed for the most part, or do they need more technical, descriptive details about our products?
  3. What user flow results in the best conversion rate?
  4. How can we learn about our customers to fuel marketing efforts across the company?

The results

After 7 months of testing, the weBoost website looks dramatically different and the company has seen a lift of over 100% in their year-over-year conversion rate.

The insights achieved along the way have allowed weBoost to broaden their further up-funnel programs as well as boost e-commerce sales. The benefit of conversion optimization, then, is not just about direct sales, but increased brand awareness and overall growth.

And this is only the beginning.

Mike St Laurent

The testing we’ve done with weBoost is a perfect example of evolutionary website redesign (ESR). Their website looks radically different than it did when our partnership began, and it’s converting at a much better rate.

Michael St Laurent, Optimization Strategist, WiderFunnel

How did we do it?

In this case study, you’ll read about several tests we’ve run on 3 key areas of the weBoost site: the homepage, the product category page, and the product detail page. We have been able to redesign the entire website iteratively, based on statistically significant wins on each of these pages: this is evolutionary site redesign in action.

ESR works by implementing a system of continuous A/B split testing throughout an entire website and digital marketing. Rather than relying on gut feeling and flawed intuition, website decisions are made against the crucible of customer actions.

Check out the full case study for the specifics:

  • A shortened weBoost homepage sees huge success
  • A well-intentioned layout change on the category page goes south
  • A stronger scent trail on the product detail page leads to a 27% increase in completed orders

…and more!

Jamie Elgie

WiderFunnel delivers Wilson Electronics [weBoost] a cadence and quality of A/B testing that is game-changing for our brand. Direct sales increases are enabling us to increase our spend on other advertising because of the known performance return. That in turn is driving our overall brand awareness. Put simply, WiderFunnel does not just help us sell directly; it is rocket fuel for our entire cross-channel marketing program.

– Jamie Elgie, Chief Marketing Officer, weBoost

Read the full case study here

Learn more about how the weBoost website underwent a dramatic transformation through evolutionary site redesign (and how it’s now converting at a much better rate). Read the full case study here.

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What does Evolutionary Site Redesign in action look like? Like this.

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4 Post-Conversion Autoresponder Tactics to Keep Your Leads Alive

resurrect-landing-pages-from-the-dead
Bring your leads back from the dead with an engaging autoresponder.

There’s no shortage of top-notch online content aimed at optimizing your landing pages. Ultimate Guides, Best Practices and Perfect Anatomies abound.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of all that amazing content ignores what happens immediately after your visitor converts… and that, ladies and gentlemen, is where your landing pages go to die.

In other words, unless you have a plan for what happens after someone signs up or says “Yes,” all the conversion momentum you bled to create — not to mention the ripest opportunity you have to engage — might be for nothing.

This means crafting an authentic, engaging autoresponder — whether that’s a confirmation email, download link, or even just a friendly “Thanks for signing up” — in a way that bonds you to your prospects right from the jump.

To do that, let’s take a look at four proven tactics guaranteed to keep your landing page alive… after a lead opts in.

1. Give ‘em what they asked for

Here’s the brutal truth: people don’t sign up to your list because they like you nor because they want to hear more about you and your company’s awesome products.

No, they sign up because they want something you’re offeringto them, for them, to benefit them. That offer can run the gamut from an ebook to an industry report to a free coaching session to a simple ecommerce discount.

Whatever your offer is … the worst thing you can do after someone signs up is get in the way of letting them have it.

That sounds obvious, but even enterprise-level organizations can make an absolute trainwreck of the confirmation process.

Take, for example, investment platform Seeking Alpha.

Two weeks ago, I registered for a free account at Seeking Alpha. I’d been researching Lowe’s Home Improvement recent use of Facebook ads and found what looked to be a primary-source goldmine: Lowe’s Companies’ (LOW) CEO Robert Niblock on Q3 2015 Results – Earnings Call Transcript.

I tore through the first two pages of the transcript. But when I tried to move ahead to page three this pop up appeared:

read-transcript-overlay

Naturally, I’d already invested myself in the first two pages of the article, so I filled out the form and hit “Register.”

And that’s when the nightmare began.

First, Seeking Alpha served up this pretty standard “Thank You” page:

seeking-alphabet-thank-you-page

Thinking that I’d already created an account by giving them my email and a password, I clicked “log in,” was redirect to the “Member sign in page” and filled out the fields.

To my surprise — despite using the same email and password I just entered — this error message appeared:

seeking-alphabet-sign-in-page

A bit discouraged but still hungry for page three, I jumped over to my inbox where this confirmation email waiting for me:

seeking-alpha-confirmation-email

“Good,” I thought, “Just need to confirm my registration and then … page three here I come.”

Instead, when I clicked “Confirm Your Registration,” I was sent to an additional three-step form:

customize-seeking-alpha

step-2-seeking-alpha

seeking-alpha-step-3

After being forced to answer a series of segmentation questions, opt in to an additional list and supply four or more stocks to continue, I was sure clicking “Save & Continue” would finally send me to page three.

But once again … no.

In lieu of page three, a previously-unannounced fourth step appeared that now required me to enter my phone number in order to “Get the App,” something I had shown zero interest in during my previous responses. I wasn’t even on a mobile device at the time:

seeking-alpha-get-theapp

But oh! How I wanted page three. So I plugged in my phone number, clicked “Text me a link” earnestly hoping that finally I’d be given what I’d asked for.

Tragically — and you probably saw this coming — what I got next was … nothing.

No redirect, no thank you page, no article, no link, no page three. Nothing. Just a dead end screen with nowhere to go next. In order to ultimately reach page three, I had to go back to the login page and walk through the entire search process.

All told, it took ten separate screens to go from page two to page three of the piece I’d originally asked for.

What’s the moral of the story?

People value one thing above all others: time. What’s more… people respect people who respect their time. When someone signs up for your email list, all they want is to get what they asked for.

You can do this in one of two ways.

Ensure that your initial autoresponder includes a direct link to whatever offer your new lead signed up for

For instance, whenever someone signs up for my Ultimate Content Creating Checklist, I use GetResponse’ autoresponder workflow to send them a simple, stripped-down email with just one link to the resource itself:

content-creation-checklist

If a new lead doesn’t click that link within 24 hours, they get a even more stripped down email with a friendly reminder:

did-you-miss-it

Create a redirect or popup after your form page that gives new subscribers direct access

That’s how Unbounce and Onboardly’s new ebook The Growth Marketer’s Guide to Landing Page Optimization does it. Immediately after completing the form comes this popup:

onboardly-unbounce

Boom — just like that, I’m in.

Bottom line?

Do not waste your prospects’ valuable time with useless emails, additional questions, or by making them jump through hoops.

Just give ‘em what they asked for.

Optimize Your Email Automation & Boost Your Conversions!

Get a FREE copy of The Smart Guide To Email Marketing Conversion.
By entering your email you’ll receive weekly Unbounce Blog updates and other resources to help you become a marketing genius.

2. Start a conversation

Just like the first tactic, our second tactic should be obvious.

Sadly, it isn’t.

Often confirmation emails and autoresponders are brutally humdrum. If someone takes the time to customize their autoresponder at all, the conversations are blatantly one sided. Why? Because we’ve forgotten that behind every computer screen is a real, live human being.

As a result, you and I can differentiate a personal email from an autoresponder a thousand miles away.

That, however, shouldn’t be the case. Done right, you can not only make someone feel like they’re talking to another person… you can even get them to respond.

Think that’s impossible? It’s not.

In fact, that’s exactly what happened to Oli Gardner when he signed up for Sujan Patel’s ebook.

As Oli admitted on Unbounce’s podcast:

“Two days ago I downloaded an ebook by Sujan Patel. … And that’s when the trickery began, because I got an email, an automated email that was so well crafted that I thought it was real.

He made it sound like he recognized me.

So I responded.

And then I was like, ‘Mother [expletive]!’ I looked at it again and realized, ‘He didn’t write this to me. He put it as an autoresponder.’”

Sujan’s autoresponder is the living proof that you can start a conversation from the jump:

sujan-patel-email

On top of that, starting these real human conversations drives bottom-line results. In my own massive Landing Page Optimization Guide, I asked Sujan about how well his conversational approach works:

“First, of the people who subscribe to the blog, 6.6% click on a link to one of my two software products — Narrow.io or ContentMarketer.io — or on one of my two books. And 39% of those clicks eventually convert into either a product trial or a book purchase.

Second, of those who preview my ebook, 12% purchase the full book and an additional 3% start a trial of either Narrow.io or ContentMarketer.io.

Third, of the people who buy my ebook, 1.9% end up buying the other book and another 15% start a trial of Narrow.io or ContentMarketer.io.”

Bear in mind, those big numbers are all generated by simple and conversational emails like the one above.

To start your own real human conversations, keep these two principles in mind.

Write the way you talk

Don’t make the mistake of trying to impress your new contact by using jargon-heavy language, formal introductions, or corporate mumbo-jumbo.

Simply read your emails out loud to yourself and if they don’t sound like one human talking to another, go back to the drawing board until they do.

Most notably, use short words, short sentences, short paragraphs and (of course) short emails.

Take Henneke Duistermaat’s initial email when you sign up for her Snackable Writing Course as a model:

henneke-autoresponder

Personalize your emails

Deep personalization — especially for ecommerce — includes a host of advanced segmentation features, customer and lead tagging, product-offer coordination, upselling, cart-abandonment emails and even off-site strategies like retargeting. All that can easily make your head spin.

For your first email, don’t over think it.

While it’s not techncially a confirmation email, Inbound.org nails truly human personalization. By keeping the format plain, adding an *FName* field, and by only sending emails on topics their users have already shown interest in, I’m constantly tempted to write back to Ed directly:

ed-fry-autoresponder

3. Ask a question

Do not underestimate the power of a good question.

Why?

Because the human brain is hardwired to automatically engage with a question.

Neurologically speaking, this is called “The Zeigarnik Effect,” named for the Russian psychologist who discovered it.

The power of a good question lies in its ability to entice, seduce and above all demand a response. That’s why some of the most successful advertisements in history start with a question:

do-you-make-these-mistakes
Rather than insulting its audience by pointing out their deficiencies, Maxwell Sackheim’s advertisement sparked curiosity and generated direct responses for forty years.

John Caples’ uber classic Tested Advertising Methods lists “Have your headline ask a question” as one of the proven methods for writing “headlines and direct mail teasers.”

Of course, the theory and that example are more than a generation old. So do questions still work?

Absolutely.

Late last year, Retention Science reported that “punctuation [in an email subject line] impacts email open rates” significantly:

The presence of any type of punctuation mark increased open rates by 9 percent.

And can you guess the most conversion-generating piece of punctuation?

Question marks:

Question marks are particularly effective at engaging recipients. In fact, the study found subject lines with question marks have open rates 44 percent greater than those with exclamation points.

The application of this principle to your autoresponder should be clear: add a question.

Of course, you can easily scatter questions — rhetorical or otherwise — within your emails. For instance, Neil Patel of Quick Sprout asks two questions and encourages you to reply:

neil-patel-email

However, a better application of this tactic is to build your very first email around a single, driving question that matters to your audience … not you.

This is precisely what Ann Handley does. Sign up for Ann’s list and here’s the very first email you’ll receive:

ann-handley-subject-line

total-annarchy

At the risk of getting a bit meta, I replied to that question email with a question of my own:

ann-handley-email

And do you know what Ann did?

She actually wrote back:

“When I first launched AnnHandley.com’s email subscription option, I used to thank new signups, as I do now. But the question was different: I used to ask them to share with me the most innovative or interesting bit of content they’d seen lately. I was looking for something that engaged them… or that they found surprising. Because, I explained, I was always looking for stellar content examples.

About 10% of those who subscribed actually responded with a content example.

Over time I realized that the response rate was pitifully low, especially given my approachable vibe and voice.

It dawned on me that maybe that was because my note was essentially about ME — tell me what you like, because I am always looking for good example. It was not about the subscriber. It was not about what I could do for them.

So I rewrote the Welcome email to be about the subscriber and not about me.

I asked very basic questions: What are you doing here? What do you hope to learn?

Now, roughly 60% of those who subscribe actually write me back. And when they do respond… I always try to respond BACK. (I may have missed a few here or there… but I try not to.) I don’t write a book — but I do acknowledge their response. People always appreciate that I’m actually monitoring responses. I get a lot of ‘wow I can’t believe you wrote back….’

It’s funny how a little time and care goes a long way.”

Yep… it sure is. And it all starts with a question.

4. Provide unexpected value

Admit it. You love surprises. After all, who doesn’t?

Surprise parties, unexpected gifts, out-of-the-blue good news. We all love that feeling of getting extra value in our lives, especially when we don’t see it coming.

The only secret to success — regardless of the industry — isn’t really a secret at all: don’t just add value… add more value than anyone else.

The great Tony Robbins enshrined this bed-rock principle in his recent book MONEY: Master the Game:

Money is nothing more than a reflection of your creativity, your capacity to focus and your ability to add value and receive back.

If you can find a way to create value — that is, add value for a massive number of people — you will have an opportunity to have a massive amount of economic abundance in your life.

What’s true for the world at large is also true of your subscribers.

This fourth tactic — provide unexpected value — increases the loyalty of your new leads, builds rapport and trust and leans hard on the persuasive principle of reciprocity all by exceeding their expectations.

For instance, if people signed up to download a free SEO report, you could easily offer a free one-page checklist or website audit as a way of showing your gratitude.

On the other hand, if they signed up to learn more about your nutrition coaching business, you could surprise them by giving away a detailed list of easy recipes to help them lose weight.

The point is: they didn’t expect those things and because of that element of surprise, what might otherwise be just another lead magnet provides far more value.

For example, when you sign up for one of the Robbie Richard’s case studies, he surprises you by giving away an extra case study:

robbie-richards-email

Likewise, Derek Halpern – author of Social Triggers – applies the same principle. After you sign up to download one of his worksheets, he gives you a “surprise gift”:

derek-halpern-email

Remember Sujan Patel’s conversational emails? After signing up for his blog, he provides readers with “a few of my best posts while you wait for my next newsletter”:

sujan-pattel-email

Brian Dean from Backlinko? Yep, he does it to:

dean-bakclinko

Even Blog Tyrant Ramsay Taplin uses this tactic. Notice that not only does he provide an unexpected resource, he also offers a conversational tip and an invitation to connect with him directly:

tyrant-troops-email

What do all these first-contact autoresponders have in common?

They all provide unexpected value… and you should do the same.

Don’t let your landing page die

Sure, Ultimate Guides, Best Practices and Perfect Anatomies abound. And it’s wise to optimize your on-page elements for maximum conversions.

But, that doesn’t mean you can overlook what’s next: after the page.

To ensure that your landing pages live on, follow these four proven tactics:

  1. Give ‘em what they asked for
  2. Start a conversation
  3. Ask a question
  4. Provide unexpected value

Got a favorite autoresponder tip? Be sure to share it in the comments… especially if it tricked you into writing back.

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4 Post-Conversion Autoresponder Tactics to Keep Your Leads Alive

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Win a Free Trip to CTAConf 2016 [Prize Package Valued at $6,000]

TL;DR: Win a trip to the Unbounce Call to Action Conference in Vancouver this upcoming June 19 – 21 (a prize valued at over $6,000) by creating a landing page that converts.

For the past two years, we’ve hosted an epic contest to send deserving marketers to our Call to Action Conference in Vancouver.

>>This way to win your way to CTAConf

We received some pretty remarkable landing pages entries. Hilarious videos were created. Retargeting happened. Directional cues were used. A ton of personality, memes, dancing, creativity, blood, sweat and tears went into these pages.

In short, we were pretty blown away. So we’re doing it again.

But this time it’s going to be a little bit different.

The challenge

Listen closely.

We’ve created a new landing page template all about CTA Conf 2016 (hosted by Unbounce this upcoming June 19 – 21) and why we think every marketer should attend. It’s 95% complete…

But we think it could use your help.

The challenge is simple:

  1. Check out what makes the Call to Action Conference so special.
  2. Log in to Unbounce (or create a free account) and head to our templates library.
  3. Create a new landing page using our Call to Action Conference Contest template, and add your own finishing touches to persuade people to click that call to action! Make the copy more persuasive, the color palette prettier — whatever you think will result in more conversions.
  4. Publish and share your landing page with all your marketing friends through email, social, remarketing or any other creative idea you come up with.

The honorable judge

Last year we had a mix of Unbouncers and speakers as judges. But this time, there is only one judge: data. #micdrop

Whoever’s page drives the most conversions (form submissions to our Call to Action Conference Agenda page) will win a free trip to Vancouver to attend Call to Action Conference. Tickets, flights, accommodation, fun touristy activities — the whole shebang!

What does the Ultimate CTAConf Package Include?

In other words, why should you put your blood, sweat, tears and conversion chops into this?

Check out our prize packages:

First place

The first place prize package includes:

  • One CTAConf ticket for you and one for a friend
  • One flight to Vancouver (up to $1,000)
  • Three nights at the Delta Vancouver Suites from June 19 – 21
  • Your choice of Sunday Funday activity before the conference
But wait, second and third place are rewarded for their efforts too!

Second place

If you’re next best, you’ll get two free tickets to CTAConf 2016, an invitation to the private speaker dinner on June 19 (think of all the unlimited mingling you’ll get to do with marketing experts!) and your choice of Sunday Funday tourist activity before the conference.

Third place

And if you come in third, you’ll still get to come to the conference for free — Sunday Funday included! And you’ll walk away with an Unbounce swag back.

Up for the challenge? Read the rules, download the template and get crackin’.

The contest ends June 9, 2016 at 5:00pm PST.

Happy converting!

P.S. If you don’t want to make a landing page but still wanna come to the conference, we’ve got a special discount for our blog readers. Get an extra $200 off your ticket at the checkout by using the promocode “UnbounceBlog” until the landing page contest submissions end on June 9, 2016 at 5:00pm PST.

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Win a Free Trip to CTAConf 2016 [Prize Package Valued at $6,000]

How Videos Can Make a Powerful Impact On Your Online Conversions

What internet retailer wouldn’t want to increase their average order value? A survey of online retailers (Best Buy, Newegg, and Under Armour – to name a few), found an increase in average order value (AOV) when they implemented product videos. Retailers that had videos on all of their product pages had close to 9% conversion rates. 9% might not sound like a high number at first – but think about it for a moment: For every 100 visitors to that page, 9 of them made a purchase. That’s not too shabby. It’s also reported that customers who watched more videos…

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How Videos Can Make a Powerful Impact On Your Online Conversions

What To Do When Your Sales Funnel Fails

These days it’s hard going even a single day without hearing something about sales funnels. For the past year or so they’ve been a huge buzzword in the online marketing space, and for good reason! They work. Except… when they don’t. Many people understand the value of funnels and why they should work, but still struggle putting together a funnel that actually maximizes their conversions. Today we’re going to fix that. Over the past several years I’ve generated about $50 million in revenue from sales funnels in more industries you could imagine, in companies ranging from startups to multiple 8-figure…

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What To Do When Your Sales Funnel Fails

The Definitive Guide to Measuring Your First Paid Social Campaign

There’s no doubt that the social media marketing landscape has changed. Across platforms, organic efforts simply don’t see the cut-through they once did — agh, what’s that noise?

blog_social_infographic_v3

That’s a lot of noise to compete with.

Paid and promoted posts, however, are an effective way to cut through the noise to reach your specific target audience when executed strategically.

But all too often, people dive head-first into paid media without a strategy.

They test several elements at once without a goal in mind. They’re left not knowing what worked and what didn’t. Their managers and teams are then hesitant to try it again (or even try it the first time) because they don’t have a clear picture of the value added or investment returned.

With proper objectives, processes, plans and measurement, however, paid ads on social can add measurable value. They can drive purchases or signups, get eyeballs on your content or allow you to learn more about your target audience — specifically, what resonates with them and what doesn’t.

Below, I’ll walk you through:

  1. Defining objectives and KPIs for your social media campaign
  2. Prepping and launching the campaign
  3. Measuring results
  4. Reporting on results and iterating for your next campaign

We’ll eliminate any uncertainty around what should be measured and what should be communicated with your team. And you’ll walk away with a step-by-step approach to measuring your campaign effectiveness so you can get your message to the people who need it.

Step 1: Defining your objectives and KPIs

You’re not going to know if your campaign is successful or not if you don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish.

Behind every well-executed paid social campaign are two important elements:

  1. Clear objectives: i.e.: drive brand awareness, increase product purchases, increase visits to a specific piece of content, increase Facebook page likes, drive event attendance, get more mobile app downloads, etc.
  2. Key performance indicators (KPIs): hard metrics that tell you if you’re achieving or tracking towards your objective. In short, KPIs tell you if your campaign is performing or not.

Here are the different KPIs you’d use for the different objectives and stages of a paid social campaign:

objective-tables

For every KPI, you’ll also need to establish benchmarks and targets — the baseline numbers you’re starting with so you can measure growth.

Based on your current conversion rate, how many more visitors do you need to hit your revenue target? Or, how many more attendees do you need to meet your ticket goal?

Together, a benchmark and a target provide context around your KPI; they give you something to measure against.

(Running a campaign for the first time and are unsure of an appropriate benchmark? Nanigans have great resources covering this.)

Step 2: Prepping and launching the campaign

Once you’re clear on your goals, you’ve got a heck of a lot of work to do before you can launch.

Every step is a beast of a topic that warrants its own post — so be sure to do your research before you proceed. At a high-level, you’ll want to:

  • Define your target audience.
  • Plan your ad creative copy and design that will resonate with that audience. This includes creating snazzy ads and corresponding landing pages that will resonate with them.
  • Set up tracking for your landing pages using a UTM code builder. UTM codes are a bit of text added to the end of your URL that tell you where exactly visitors came from (which channel, type of ad, campaign, etc).
  • Build out your campaign. Each network has its own super-detailed tutorial (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter).

Step 3: Measuring results

You can check on the results of your campaign in several places.

Google Analytics

In order to know what exactly a visitor is doing after they click the link you’re promoting, you’ll want to track your ad through Google Analytics. This way you can measure more than just post clicks and engagements (likes, comments, shares).

Google Analytics allows you to track conversions from your ads and see what other pages they visited, where they bounced and more. This intel will help you determine whether or not you targeted the right audience with your ad.

The UTM codes you set up in step two help you check Google Analytics for which networks are bringing you the most traffic.

After your ad is running, Google Analytics will tell you how many visitors came from which ad if you click on Acquisition All Traffic Sources/Medium:

google-analytics-source-medium

It will look something like this:

google-analytics-fb-cpc
Image source: ryanshaw.me

While this will come in handy when seeing which social media network is performing well for you, it can also be valuable for testing which creative is converting best (if you create a separate campaign/UTM code for each set of creatives).

When A/B testing, just remember to keep your KPIs in mind. Is your test bringing you closer to the results you set out to get?

Social media dashboards

Google Analytics is effective for tracking conversions and the visitor journey, but it won’t tell you what type of impact your ad had on social media in terms of engagement and awareness.

Social media ad dashboards tell a different part of the story around how your ad is performing. They will tell you how your campaign has impacted your brand awareness on social. Use social media ad dashboards to track followers, likes, shares, comments and clicks within your ad.

To illustrate, let’s look at an example of a promoted post that appeared in readers’ Facebook newsfeeds.

To track the performance of your ad, you’d visit your Facebook Ads Manager. Here, you’ll find all of your campaigns laid out with results, reach, cost and amount spent.

facebook-ads-shannon-byrne
An overview of all campaigns as well as results, reach, cost and amount spent.

To dive deeper, click on each campaign name for detailed results.

facebook-ads-performance-shannon
A breakdown of cost vs result (click, comment, share, like) for one of our recent promoted post campaigns. A cost per result of $0.83 is about average.

In the Performance tab, you can also click “Custom” to drill down and look at specific results by action, reach, impressions and cost per result. In this example, we’re looking at Actions, which are measured by engagements – specifically, likes, clicks, shares and comments.

facebook-ads-actions

To see how viewers are specifically engaging with your ad, scroll down past the graph. In the table, in the Columns drop down, select “Engagement.”

facebook-ads-engagement

Here’s you’ll find post likes, comments, shares, link clicks and page likes from the promoted post.

facebook-ads-dashboard-4
We would have liked to see more shares, but we were happy with 23 comments and 31 likes.
Bonus tip: Promoted posts are typically used to give some extra visibility to a post or piece of content that’s already performing well.

When you do this, you lower your cost per click because the piece has already proven to be of interest to your audience. Essentially, if content performs well organically, the social network knows it’s good content. More clicks = less cost.

A broader view of all networks

So Google Analytics tells one part of your ad’s story, and social media dashboards tell another. How do you get them all together to paint one holistic and simple picture for yourself and your team?

One solution is to create a live paid social campaign dashboard. (Disclaimer: I’m from Geckoboard and we provide a tool to build dashboards. Other dashboarding tools are available!)

A dashboard provides a broad view of your ads’ key performance indicators. It’s also something digestible to share with stakeholders at a glance without having to bog them down with Excel data — or complicated reports from GA and social platforms they might not even have access to.

A dashboard tracking ad campaign success might look something like this:

social-media-campaign-dashboard

Rather than focusing on one channel, the dashboard above is tracking snapshots of KPIs in an at-a-glance format across all paid campaigns, illustrating how they compare to each other and which is performing best.

Unpacking this a bit:

  • In the far left you see the most important stat: number of conversions vs. your target conversions (being signups, purchases, registrations – whatever a conversion means for you). In this example, at 56, we’ve reached 35% of our goal of 160 conversions.
  • Moving right, you’ll find how much you’re paying for each acquisition through your paid social efforts.
  • Below that is a line graph indicating how much paid ads on each channel are converting. In this example, Facebook is performing much better than the other channels in terms of volume.
  • The three KPIs being measured in the last row show you at-a-glance what we walked through in the Facebook Ads Manager above: your campaign’s impact on engagement and awareness.

What kind of insight does this sort of high-level view bring?

Comparing these two graphs (line and bar), it’s clear that LinkedIn is costing more, and you need to either optimize the CPC down by adjusting the audiences you’re targeting or pull back the spend based on the volume of conversions. It may also be worth looking to see if you could increase the volume of conversions on Twitter and Instagram by increasing your CPC bid, given they’re significantly lower than the other two channels.

Step 4: Reporting on the results and iterating

The final step in your paid social campaign is to share the data with your team. You’ll get more ideas and discover new insights as you discuss the campaign results together.

Ideally, the dashboard you’ve built has been front and center in your office or available to your team members no matter where they are (and what they do). You never know, a team member from a different department may have a great idea for a KPI, goal or creative of your ad.

So then, are you ready to start running and measuring your first social media campaign?

To get started, check out the tools Facebook offers for creating ads. Have any questions? Leave them in the comments below – I’d be happy to help!

Original article: 

The Definitive Guide to Measuring Your First Paid Social Campaign

Boost Your Conversion Rates on Your Own Without Spending a Year Learning CRO

If you’re getting a lot of traffic to your site but struggling with converting that traffic into a lead or customer, don’t get frustrated. According to Bryan Eisenberg, every website has a problem with conversions. Don’t get locked into seeing conversion rates as a “problem.” Instead, look at your conversion rates as an opportunity, and treat conversion rate optimization as an ongoing process that you’re constantly improving. It’s not a process that you need invest a lot of money in; hiring an agency isn’t always necessary. You also don’t have to study for months (or years) on end to master…

The post Boost Your Conversion Rates on Your Own Without Spending a Year Learning CRO appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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Boost Your Conversion Rates on Your Own Without Spending a Year Learning CRO

How to Deal with Negative Customer Feedback for your eCommerce Business

Customer feedback goes a long way in generating trust for your online store. Let’s just say that testimonials put the ‘T’ in Trust when buying online.

Going by the Brightlocal Survey 2014, 88% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

But customer feedback, as we all know, may not always be wrapped in adulation. According to the American Express Survey 2014, on an average consumers tell 8 people about their good experiences, and about 21 people about their bad experiences.

But on the positive side, reports also suggest that negative reviews can be in fact good for businesses and help build credibility and authenticity. Receiving negative feedback is a great chance for you to identify what can make your customers love you more.

So how do you go about handling negative customer feedback? Let’s find out.

In this post, first we’ll take a look at a three-fold solution to respond to negative reviews. Next, we’ll take a look at the different channels where you’re likely to receive negative customer feedback and what can be done for them in specific.

Responding to Negative Customer Feedback – The Three-Fold Solution

Research into the Incident

First and foremost, check for the validity and relevance of the feedback. Delete it, if it’s purely spam or profane. You could have to look at the commentator’s name and email address for more insights into the credibility of review.

After ensuring validity, look further into the particular incident. Some questions you need to ask yourself before hitting reply are:

  •    What went wrong? ( slip-up from a vendor, poor product quality, shipment gone wrong or a technical error)
  •    What can be done? (immediate solution that you can provide)
  •    Reputation and tone of the customer? (how influential and how angry is he)

This will help you tailor your response according to the situation and not send in an automated response. For example, if the commentator is complaining about poor product quality, give him an option of exchange or refund. Also discuss the situation with the people involved (internal team/vendor/shipment company) to avoid these mistakes in the future.

If it’s taking time for you to assess the situation, maintain communication still. Tell them that you’re looking into the problem and will get back to them as soon as possible.

This extract from an infographic by Kissmetrics depicts how quickly do customers expect a brand to reply based on different channels. A majority of them expect a response within one day.

Ideal Response Time for Customer Feedback

Craft a Reply

This is the most crucial part, as the response would most likely be read by not only the complaining customer, but also your potential customers.

You should look into incorporating these 3 ’A’s to craft a perfect reply:

  • Acknowledgement: Accepting and apologizing for your mistake and empathizing with the inconvenience that it may have caused to the customer.
  • Assistance: An immediate and handy solution for the problem at hand. Consider offering freebie/discount depending on the severity of the issue.
  • Assurance: Assuring them that the issue has been resolved and won’t recur — and if it did, that you’d only be more prompt with your service.

Also remember to personalize the response by addressing the issue at hand directly. Look at these responses which hit the nail:

Negative Customer Feedback Response by Amazon

Negative Customer Feedback Response Nordstrom
Source

Encourage them to Update/Revise their Review

After you have successfully resolved the issue, you could even venture to ask your customers to update their response. Exercise caution here. Timing is essential, gauge the sentiment of the affected customer and slip in a polite request to take down the negative review if their concerns have been addressed.

See how Nordstrom managed to turn a negative reviewer into an evangelist with great customer service (screenshot below).

How Nordstrom changed Negative Customer Review to Positive One

Negative Customer Feedback on Different Platforms

Apart from the solution described above, there is a little extra that you can do based on the channel on which the feedback is received. The popular channels (apart from the traditional email) where customers are likely to provide you with some kind of feedback are:

  • Reviews on your product page
  • Social Media
  • Third party review websites
  • App store/Play store

Reviews on your Product Page

Reviews provided by customers on the product pages are known to increase conversions highly. According to the eMarketer report, consumer reviews are significantly more trusted (nearly 12 times more) than descriptions that come from manufacturers.

A lot of negative product reviews can deter the potential buyers from your website. And if you closely examine a considerable number of these could be invalid, incorrect or simply mal-intentioned. The best way to deal with those is to delete them. However, make sure you don’t tamper with a genuine customer’s response while doing so.

To ensure the validity of the feedback, you could employ smart gamification tactics like upvote/downvote and special incentives. Amazon does this beautifully by categorizing reviews under two umbrellas of “most helpful” and “most critical.” (See image) Most helpful reviews are the ones found most helpful by other customer and most critical are are the ones with least ratings.

Amazon also offers a myriad of incentives to their top reviewers, like freebies, early access and more, encouraging others to do the same.

Amazon Review on Product Page
Source

Social Media

A 2013 survey by Zendesk found that 88% of the respondents said negative reviews on social media affected their purchasing decisions. No wonder then that consumers tend to use this one the most to air their feedback — negative feedback in particular. The same study found that customers are 15% more likely to leave a bad review on social media than they are to sing praises.

Customers choose social media to report issues to catch immediate attention. A majority of customers have noted a response within the same day on Facebook (51%) and  Twitter(83%).

Expected Reponse Time for Customer Feedback on Social Media

Customers flock to social media for faster response time, so active and regular presence there will be wise. You could use the many online reputation management tools to stay on top of all the mentions of your company on the internet. Apart from the popular monitoring tools like Hootsuite and Mention, you could also set up alerts to be updated on all that is being talked about you on social media.

Another thing that can be done on social media is to contact the negative reviewer by direct message. You could try to have a conversation about a problem in private, thereby allowing you to build a more personal relationship and an opportunity to delight.

This could also be helpful as offering discounts or freebies publicly to assuage the issue may lead to other people creating problems just to get that special treatment. So it’s best to keep these practices off the wall.

Third Party Review Websites

There is also a likelihood of customers giving you a negative feedback on various third party review websites like Trustpilot, Yotpo, Consumeraffairs, etc.

These reviews are important as your business pages on these sites tend to rank well in search engines. Look at these results that crop up on searching for “amazon reviews” on Google.

Amazon Third Party Customer Review

Google seller ratings, an automated extension that runs with your Google Ads, also picks and aggregates data from these platforms amongst others.

The best course to take for this channel is to claim your account on these websites, allowing you to be notified with each new comment. You could look at this list to find a list of online review collecting websites.

App Store/Play Store Review

Mobile apps are an important channel for driving eCommerce sales. Mobile commerce accounts for 30% of U.S. eCommerce and is expected to grow 300% faster than traditional e-commerce.

Ratings and reviews on App store are crucial to driving rankings, discovery, downloads, updates for your app mobile app.

One app maker reported that even a 0.1 drop in an online app rating caused a 5% decline in downloads, and a 0.3 decrease resulted in a 60% drop. Talking of reviews, about 70% of people read at least one review before downloading an app. Actively responding and resolving negative reviews thus becomes crucial.

Apart from regularly fixing reported bugs, you could begin with an in-app feedback loop. Asking for customer feedback within the app could make it less likely for your customers to leave a negative feedback in App store/Play store. Instabug — a beta testing, user engagement and crash reporting software for mobile apps, found an 80% decrease in negative reviews by doing so.

Since the reviews are, by default, shown in chronological order, you could look at ensuring that your latest few reviews are all positive or are dealt positively.

Conclusion

Mistakes happen and negative reviews are a business reality. Nevertheless, handled timely and patiently, negative feedback can turn into customer delight. Mistakes are forgivable if you’re willing to learn from them and fix them.

How have you been faring at dealing with negative reviews? Do you have a negative-feedback turning to customer delight story? Tell us and our readers right below in the comments.

The post How to Deal with Negative Customer Feedback for your eCommerce Business appeared first on VWO Blog.

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How to Deal with Negative Customer Feedback for your eCommerce Business