Tag Archives: conversion

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Color your way to Conversions!

Red means passion, black is equal to luxury and yellow gives a feeling of freshness. Use orange for your CTAs to increase conversions and this case study proved that red is a better button color than green… BLAH!

There are more than 16 million colors and any great blog-post that you come across on the internet will tell you the “feelings” conveyed by only a handful of colors. If you sell to people from different ethnicity and cultures, choosing colors for your website can become even more difficult as one color that relates to wealth and prosperity in a country may relate to mourning in another. How do you go about it then?

In this post I will help you choose colors for your website’s CTAs, background and other important entities that you want people to focus on. A believer of “one size doesn’t fit all” and “data (not opinions and experience) gets most respect“, I will not be able to spill out some magic potion and tell you the exact colors you should use. But I promise to take you through 3 actionable tips that you could go back and test right away to increase your website’s conversions.

1) Color the Primary Goal of your Website to Make it Stand Out

Imagine a shopping list of 20 items, all items written in blue ink except for one which is in red. If asked to scan this list for 10 seconds, which item do you think you are most likely to recall later? Multiple experiments have confirmed that outliers (or the item in red in the example) is what people remember most often. This is because of a phenomenon known as the Von Restroff effect (also known as isolation effect) which states that an item that stands out is more likely to be remembered than others.

Applying this to your websites, if you want your calls to action to get immediate attention, make them stand out. Use a color that has high contrast compared to your background and that hasn’t been used for any other entity on the page. Look at how Facebook and LinkedIn do it on their homepage:

Facebook homepage
LinkedIn homepage

Choosing a contrasting color for your primary CTA is not very difficult. You just have to look for a color diagonally opposite to that of your background color or most-used color on your page from the color wheel.

color_wheel

Image Credit: Wikipedia

Let’s for a moment go back to the red button v/s green button case study. Have a closer look at the screenshot below. You will find that the color scheme of the original page has some emphasis towards green. The Performable logo is green, the screenshot used on the page has some elements in green and one of the features also has an icon in green. A quick scan doesn’t really make the CTA stand out from the rest of the elements. I wouldn’t be surprised if testing the original page against a variation with the CTA in yellow or orange would produce same or better results.

red_green_button_case_study

The important takeaway from this case study is to create a visual contrast for your goal. End of the day, it’s not the button color that is going to sell your stuff but how prominently you display it for people to take a decision before abandoning your website for the competitors’.

2) Choose Colors that are “All”-User Friendly

In United States alone, about 7% of males (roughly 10.5 million men) and 0.4% of females have some form of color blindness. In Australia, these percentages are 8 for men and 0.4 for women. The most common problem being difficulty in telling red from green.

Needless to say, when deciding colors for your website and the areas where you want people to focus on, it becomes imperative to keep in mind people who have some form of color blindness. And if you have a SaaS product, that shows some results in charts and graphs, it becomes even more important to choose the right colors so that they are easily distinguishable for everyone. See below, how a contrast between foreground and background appears to people with certain forms of color blindness. You will notice that while eyes with normal vision would easily be able to read the text, people with Protanopia and Deuteranopia (most common forms of color blindness) will just not be able to read what’s written.

Normal vision:

normal_color_vision

How the above appears to people with Protanopia:

protanopia

And to people with Deuteranopia:

deuteranopia

Image Credit: Studiopress.com

Common solutions to ensure a great experience for everyone:

  • Choose colors many steps away from each other on the color wheel
  • Use tints (mixture of color with white) for background and shades (mixture of color with black) for foreground (or vice versa). Or make one element even more dark and the other even more light to create better contrast.

3) Train Visitors with your Color Key

Consider how bar graphs work. To look at data of one particular type, you just follow its color or pattern. Once you understand what a particular color or pattern bar stands for, you are able to compare easily focusing only on that particular color or pattern.

Similarly, if you use one color consistently on your website for a particular CTA (say signup), you will subconsciously train your users with the meaning of that color on the website. As an example, let’s suppose someone is evaluating a SaaS product on your website. And you have a shiny orange button for free trial on every page. When done evaluating their eyes will look for the orange thing, on whichever page they are, to sign up.

This way, you can even tell them which colors correspond to a heading, which means links and which call for a purchase.

See how CampaignMonitor does it beautifully. CTA buttons on all of their pages, which ask people to sign up for an account, are in green. And for no other CTA has the same color been used. This createa a consistent visual memory for visitors.

campaignmonitor_homepage

Let’s Talk

How has your experience with website colors been? Tried any A/B tests that worked well? Or may be which didn’t? Would love to hear all of it in the comments section below!

The post Color your way to Conversions! appeared first on VWO Blog.

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Color your way to Conversions!

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Test Your Call to Action to Boost Conversions by 13%

I came across an article recently called, “71 Things to A/B Test.”

While this article is an amazing resource—stuffed with great ideas for what to test—it’s a little overwhelming…

71 things?! Eck!

Where do you start?

Especially if you’re a small business, operating without a full-time conversion optimization team, or an independent blogger?

Where do you find the time and energy to set up, analyze, and implement the results of so many tests?

call to action testing can be overwhelming

The good news is, you don’ t have to do all 71 things today—or even this year—to greatly improve your conversion rates and put more profit in your pocket.

In fact, you can do just one thing this week to see a big difference.

Hubspot did it by testing their call to action. But, before I explain what they did—and how you can do it too—let’s make sure we’re all on the same page…

What is a Call to Action?

Simply put, a call to action is a phrase that asks or “calls” the audience/reader to take action right now.

I did a few searches and also found this longer definition:

call to action definition

Did you notice that the definition above says, “A commercial without a call-to-action is considered incomplete and ineffective”?

That’s just one reason I recommend implementing a call to action now… if you haven’t already.

Let’s look at a few examples of calls to action:

call to action example

This call-to-action example is calling the viewer to enter their email address and click, “continue.” This is commonly called, “Opting-in” or lead generation.

Here’s another call-to-action example from AAA Motor Club, where they aim to generate leads for a “free planning session”:

call-to-action-example-2

Finally, here’s a call-to-action example as a pop-up:

call to action examples

Want more? See 21 Call to Action Examples here.

Now that we all know what a call to action looks like, let’s move on.

Hubspot’s Call to Action Test

As mentioned above, Hubspot tested their call to action and saw a 13% increase in conversions. Here’s their test:

call to action example

“HubSpot tested the shape and style of our demo CTA to see which performed better. The CTA shaped like a button (on the right) rather than the CTA that included a sprocket image (left) performed significantly better, giving us a 13% increase in conversions.”

The Effect of 13% on Your Business

To better understand the effect of a 13% increase in conversions, let’s turn to our friends at WiderFunnel.com. Get their ROI Calculator here—it’s free.

Here’s what it looks like:

call-to-action-sample-metrics-4

I encourage you to fill this out for your own business so you can see exactly what impact a 13% increase in conversion rate will have on your business.

Here is the same worksheet filled in with numbers from an example company:

call-to-action-sample-metrics-3

After you input your numbers, the worksheet advises us to go to Tab #2 to see our results. On Tab #2, we’re asked to enter our “Potential lift in customer conversion rate.” For this example, I used “13%”:

call-to-action-sample-metrics-2

Here are the results:

call-to-action-sample-metrics

See the potential of conversion optimization?

In this sample business, a 13% increase in conversion rate would add 10 sales transactions per month or $12,355.20 to their first year’s annual revenue! (Plus, the cost per sale is reduced!)

So, how can you boost your conversions by as much as 13%?

4 Steps to Running an A/B Test on Your Call to Action

After seeing the results Hubspot got, and then seeing how the numbers could work in your own business, you’re probably eager to start testing.

Here are the 4 steps to running your own “call to action A/B test.”

1. Research and analyze the data.

Before you guess what might work in a test, gather some data.

If you’re currently using a call to action, what is the conversion rate? Have you tested it in the past? Why did you choose it? Do you have any feedback or opinions on your current call to action?

If you don’t have a current call to action, why not use this opportunity to create two versions to compete for your first call to action?

To gather research without a current call to action, look at your target market profile, any analytics you do have, and even heatmaps. You could also check out industry forums, your support tickets, or interview customers to “get inside their head.”

The point of step one is to know your customer well enough that you can make “an educated guess” about what call to action may or may not work well…

2. Use your data to make a prediction.

This step could also be called, “Brainstorm.”

Basically, look at your data, think about your customer, and make a prediction about what elements might be better than what you currently have…

If you already have a call to action, your brainstorming might go something like:

You: “Our green button doesn’t seem to be working …”
Co-Owner: “I know Company ABC tested green buttons and saw a huge increase in conversions… why isn’t it working for us?”
You: Maybe because our dominant company color is green…
Co-Owner: Yeah, the button just doesn’t stand out…
You: Let’s try orange instead!”

Or, “Our customers are very concerned about their security online… maybe we should test adding a security seal to our form?”

If you don’t have a current call to action, you’ll need to create two versions. Just remember to stick to testing one element at a time. As Hubspot points out:

“You want your A/B test to be conclusive—you’re investing time in it, so you want a clear and actionable answer! The problem with testing multiple variables at once is you aren’t able to accurately determine which of the variables made the difference. So while you can say one page performed better than the other, if there are three or four variables on each, you can’t be certain as to why or if one of those variables is actually a detriment to the page, nor can you replicate the good elements on other pages. Our advice? Do a series of basic one-variable tests to iterate your way to a page you know is more effective.”

Beyond the few examples above, there are thousands of things you could test in your call to action…

  • The actual words. Just one idea: “click here” against “yes!”
  • The color. A showdown between your company color and a contrasting color could be interesting
  • The layout or location of the call to action. For instance, top right vs. top left
  • The style: “flat” graphics against “Web 2.0”
  • Even the shape of the call to action can be tested: round, square, rounded rectangle
  • The options are endless

But, we can’t test everything. So, after you spend a few minutes brainstorming, predict which SINGLE change you think has the greatest chance of increasing your conversion rate.

Then…

3. Construct your experiment.

This step will vary depending on the tools you use and the test you’re running.

At a minimum, you’ll need your A/B testing tool of choice (to run the test and read the results) and two variations of the element you’re testing.

Review this article to make sure you have the basics in place for your test.

4. Run your experiment.

Next, you’ll want to let your experiment run.

Remember, to get accurate results, you must wait until your test is complete to determine a winner. I recommend using a sample size calculator just to be sure your test results are as accurate as possible.

5. Analyze.

After your test is complete, it’s time to review the data…

Like last time, you’ll use the new data to make a new prediction to test. Hopefully your last test gave you something to work with and your next prediction is better.

If not, no worries. Conversion optimization is a never-ending game. Some would say that’s part of the fun.

Over time—as winners of your tests emerge—you’ll better understand your target customer and be able to make more refined predictions.

So what about you? Have you been testing your call to action? Any results you’d like to share?

Let’s talk about it in the comments below.

Read more Crazy Egg posts by Christina Gillick.

The post Test Your Call to Action to Boost Conversions by 13% appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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Test Your Call to Action to Boost Conversions by 13%

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6 Ways Social Proof Can Increase Conversions On Your Site

In February 2004, Facebook was a small and unknown website, used only by Harvard students. By summer, they had expanded to other Ivy Leagues, but they were still pretty small.

Typically, VCs don’t invest in companies that are so small and have no idea how they’re going to make money. Watch Shark Tank or Dragon’s Den to see how brutal they can be on budding entrepreneurs who think they have got a million-dollar idea. For all purposes, Facebook was still an idea during the summer of 2004.

If you’ve seen the movie “The Social Network,” you know what happens next. In walks successful entrepreneur Sean Parker. He uses his clout to set up a meeting with billionaire investor Peter Thiel, who then invests in the fledgling company.

At a whopping valuation of 5 million dollars!

That’s the power of social proof. And this power can be replicated on your site to increase your conversion rates. Let’s see how.social proof - placeit

Logos

The Crazy Egg homepage just has two elements. The first is the ‘free heatmap’ URL box, which brings visitors into their free trial. The second is a block of customer logos.

Crazy Egg social proof

Multi-nationals and household names like Intel and Yahoo are just a few of the 200,000 businesses using Crazy Egg. These companies are very careful about the software they use so the fact that they use Crazy Egg must mean something.

If you have clients or customers that are well-known in your industry, displaying their logos on your website will send a signal to visitors that you are worth investing in.

One of the changes Voices.com made to their homepage to increase conversion rates by over 400% was to add a row of customer logos. The social proof went a long way to impressing visitors and converting them into customers.

Voices.com social proof

Logos also work if you have impressive partners. They need not use your product or service, but the fact that they work with you lends credibility to your business.

Cook Travel, a corporate travel agency, partnered with reliable airlines like Virgin and Air France to negotiate bulk discounts on tickets. They used their logos on their site and increased their conversion rates by 48%.

Reviews

Product reviews are integral to ecommerce sales. It’s no secret that adding reviews to your product pages increases conversion rates. In fact, a study conducted by Forrester and Jupiter Research found that 77% of customers read reviews before they purchased something online.

In an experiment conducted on Figleaves.com, it was found that products that had reviews had a 12.5% higher conversion rate than those that didn’t. The more reviews a product had the higher the conversion rates were, with an increase of 83.85% for 20+ reviews.

Authentic reviews signal to consumers that others have used your product and that it has worked for them. Showing reviews from real people, and including negative reviews, builds trust as well.

By merely adding a reviews widget to their product pages, Express Watches increased sales by 58.29%. On their site they made claims that their watches were authentic and came with a warranty, but consumers were still not convinced. Once they saw reviews by other customers, it became clear to them that this was the real deal.

Express Watches social proof

Testimonials

A testimonial is almost like a recommendation and works best if an authority figure provides it. Peter Thiel invested in the fledgling Facebook because of recommendations from Reid Hoffman and Sean Parker.

As with logos, the more well known the person giving the testimonial, the better it will perform. He or she needs to be an influential person in your industry to impress your audience.

For example, Noah Kagan targets entrepreneurs on his blog OkDork. He got Hiten Shah and Andrew Warner, two successful entrepreneurs, to write testimonials for him.

Noah Kagan social proof

The important part about these testimonials is that they aren’t generic. They don’t just use empty statements like, “Noah is the best!” These can actually do more harm than good. Instead, they are tailored towards Noah’s audience and explain why you should join his email list.

Now you may not have industry leaders using your product or service but that doesn’t mean you can’t try using testimonials on your site. Ask your existing customers to say something about you and test how it works on your site.

WikiJob used three simple quotes from customers on their homepage and saw an increase in conversion rates of 34%. The testimonials were very bare bones and didn’t even have names attached to them. It might backfire in some cases, but luckily for them it worked.

WikiJob social proof

Testimonials can be used on e-commerce sites too. Onnit sells sports nutrition, so their customers are athletes and sport people. They got some big names in the industry, including well-know trainers, sports champions and doctors, to use their products and give a testimonial. Instead of using reviews on their product pages, they use these testimonials.

Onnit social proof
You’ll notice they also have a short video testimonial. This makes the testimonial even more believable than just a name. You might be able to fake a quote, but an actual video with the athlete holding your product is hard to fake.

Case Studies

Case studies are extremely powerful, especially when you make claims about how your product or service can help people.

Have a look at Neil Patel’s consulting service. Neil says that his services will make you more money. Work with him and you’ll end up richer. It sounds like an outrageous claim, so Neil backs it up with solid evidence in the form of case studies.

Neil Patel social proof

Again, Neil has worked with some big names in the industry so it’s even more impressive that he has helped them make more money. The underlying message here is that even profitable companies go to him for help, and they get tangible results. That’s social proof you can’t ignore.

When creating case studies, make sure to include actual data. If your product helps companies increase conversion rates, show what their rates were before they used your product, and what the rates became after. Include a problem statement, how your product solved the problem, and then the final results.

Try to publish a variety of case studies, each one highlighting a different benefit of your product or service. When potential customers come to your site, they’ll look for the one that most resembles their problems.

Fitbit creates case studies in the form of success stories. Each story shows how a customer used their fitness tracking devices to lose weight and become more active. The stories are inspirational and they in turn convince other consumers to buy the product.

Fitbit social proof

Social Media Popularity

The number of fans, followers and mentions you have on social media is proof of your popularity. In some cases, strength in numbers beats out other forms of influence when it comes to conversion rates.

Betfair ran tests on their website to see how different forms of influence affected their conversion rates. Their regular landing page, the control, had a call to download their mobile app.

Betfair social proof

The variations were reciprocity, scarcity, and social proof. All three variations did better than the control, but the social proof variation performed the best with a conversion rate increase of 7%.

Share buttons and social media boxes are other ways to show off your fan following. If you look to the left of this post you’ll see a floating bar with share numbers. To the right you’ll see a section called ‘Stay Connected’ where it displays the number of likes this blog has on Facebook.

On the flip side, having very low social media numbers can actually hurt you. You don’t want your Facebook fan box telling visitors that only one person likes your business and that it’s your mom. People might assume that you’re too new and too risky, or that your product doesn’t work.

Media Mentions

Much like high-profile testimonials and customer logos, getting covered by media adds social proof by implying that they vouch or you. It’s why so many startups pitch themselves to TechCrunch. One mention of their app and they get a huge traffic boost.

Here’s another example from Neil’s website. He has pulled quotes from news mentions on sites like Entrepreneur Magazine, Forbes and Wall Street Journal. These are universally read publications and trusted sources for business news.

Neil Patel social proof

You may not be covered in the press like Neil, but even blog mentions can help. If you’ve landed guest posts on a popular blog, or even been mentioned by them, you can try displaying their logos on your site.

 Show Us The Proof

Get it? You show customers the social proof and they’ll show you the money. Try out some of the above methods and see if they improve your conversion rates. Then come back here and post the results in the comments!

Are you using other forms of social proof on your website?

Read other Crazy Egg articles by Sid.

The post 6 Ways Social Proof Can Increase Conversions On Your Site appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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6 Ways Social Proof Can Increase Conversions On Your Site

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The 7-Step Guide to Create a Mind-Reading Landing Page

If you could create the perfect landing page, what would it look like? Dream for a minute. What would conversion rates be like? What would the color scheme be? How would the value proposition read?

In this article, I want to explain a step-by-step process for creating an ideal landing page — one that virtually reads people’s minds and causes them to convert.

I’m not exaggerating my point when I discuss “mind-reading.” A successful landing page is one that understands how a user is thinking. It’s pure psychological intuition. Based on that knowledge of the user, you can develop a landing page that speaks directly to their needs and wants, and then guides them through a process that shapes their thinking. The result is a conversion.

That’s where we’re headed below. You want more conversions from your landing pages. You accomplish this by creating a mind-reading landing page.

neilpatel-placeit-1000Source: Placeit.net

Step 1:  Start with a persona.

Let me start with some basic marketing advice here. This point should be obvious, but I need to mention it. It forms the entire foundation for reading the user’s mind in the steps ahead.

You need to create a persona.

In my guide, Double Your Conversions in 30 Days, I sketched out the following persona.

customer persona

When I create my personas, I don’t whimsically put together details and ideas. With focus and calculation, I decide exactly who the persona is. After all, I’m going to be selling a valuable productto people just like this.

I can’t successfully sell anything to that person unless I know them. You must allow your persona to shape your thinking throughout the entire process of landing page creation. Some marketers suggest using Post-It notes to keep the persona idea in the front of their mind.

post-it persona

Image from Portent.com.

Spend as much time shaping your persona as you need to. Whatever you do, don’t skip over this step. It is foundational.

Step 2:  Target the right keywords.

Don’t create your persona in isolation from your keywords.

A lot of times, PPC bids are made by one company department, and landing pages are made by another department. The two teams aren’t talking to each other.

This is a mistake. Keywords and personas go together. Your persona has enormous implications for keyword selection. Taken together, the two define how you should develop your landing page.

keywords

Every keyword is typed by a persona. You can’t separate the two. Your job as the creator of a mind-reading landing page is to 1) look at your persona, and 2) know what she’s searching for as she reaches for the keyboard.

Personas type in keywords. You need to know both the persona and the keyword if you’re going to be successful.

Determine what keywords are used at certain stages in the buy cycle.

Keep in mind that different keywords suggest different things about where the user is in the buy cycle.

  • The user is searching for “types of coffee makers.” They are early in the buy cycle. They need to understand the differences between certain types of coffee makers and why the type you’re selling is the best.
  • The user is searching for “drip coffee maker reviews.” The user has now settled on the type of coffee maker to purchase, but is not ready to make a purchase. First, they need to find out which coffee maker is the best.
  • If the user is searching for “keurig coffee maker best price” then they are probably going to make a purchase. Their credit card is out; they are ready to buy.

The user’s position in the buy cycle is reflected in their keyword usage. This buy cycle position affects the way that you construct your landing page.

Discern the user’s intention or end goal in using their keywords.

When you look at keywords, give special attention to the longtail variations. These variations tell you exactly what’s weighing on the user’s mind.

This is different from the stage in the buy cycle above. When examining the longtail variations of keywords, you want to understand what’s driving the user’s interest in the product.

  • “Cheapest vacuum” – She doesn’t have much money to spend. She’s price-conscious.
  • “HEPA filter vacuum” – She has allergies. Her husband has a dog. She needs to figure out how to keep the air clean.
  • “Most popular vacuum” – She wants to keep her home clean in style. What people think of her is very important.
  • “Best rated vacuum” – She’s concerned about quality, and wants to see charts and data that prove a vacuum’s superiority to all others.
  • “Vacuum cleaner next day shipping” – Her carpets are dirty, and she’s having a guests the day after tomorrow.

This is how your landing page takes shape. The persona plus the keywords give you all the information you need in order to read the user’s  mind.

Step 3:  Introduce visual power.

It you takes hours to shape the perfect landing page. But it takes the user seconds to decide if she wants to convert. You must create a landing page with an unforgettable visual interface so they will linger on the page.

The brain processes images far faster than text. Although the exact number is not verified, some estimate that the brain’s visual processing abilities is 60,000 times faster than the brain’s textual processing speed. This has enormous implications for the speed at which the landing page speaks the user, and also the cognitive and emotional impact that it has.

In Mike Parkinson’s oft-quoted article, visuals have a two-fold power:

Cognitively: Graphics expedite and increase our level of communication. They increase comprehension, recollection, and retention. Visual clues help us decode text and attract attention to information or direct attention increasing the likelihood that the audience will remember.

Emotionally: Pictures enhance or affect emotions and attitudes. Graphics engage our imagination and heighten our creative thinking by stimulating other areas of our brain (which in turn leads to a more profound and accurate understanding of the presented material).

Visual power can come in a variety of forms. As Oli Gardner has capably explained, there are many “visual design techniques to focus attention on your landing pages.”

This landing page has visual power. Though I question a few of their conversion techniques, I can’t criticize the magnetic visuals:

neil 4

Image from Coloredblog.

This landing page introduces a lot of color and interest:

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Your goal as the landing page designer is to give the user a full visual experience to immediately immerse them in an environment that overwhelms them with the presence and appeal of your product.

Step 4:  Answer the big questions in your headline.

Your landing page headline is incredibly important. If you’ve been reading your user’s mind, you will understand what they’re searching for and why they are searching.

Have determined their underlying intent, you now need to answer the two big questions:

“What is this?”

First, the user needs to know what they’re looking at. What is the page about? The average user reads the average headline in 2 seconds or less. You have that much time and space in your headline to engage them.

  • Answer the question clearly. This isn’t the time to be cute. This is the time to be clear.
  • Answer the question with interest. You can be clear and interesting. Use words that reflect action and movement.
  • Answer the question so they will ask more questions. Use your headline to create more questions and invite the user further down the page.

FluidSurvey’s landing page uses a straightforward headline to inform the user of two things:  1)  This page is selling online surveys. 2)  These online surveys are the best. The headline is clear but interesting, and it makes me wonder, “why are they the best?”

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By contrast, landing page below answers no questions. Instead, it confuses me. My query was “buy pens online.” In addition to some design errors (overlapping elements), I’m confused by multiple headlines, the offer of “free setup” (which I don’t need), and 200 options. This landing page probably has relatively low conversion rates.

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“How will it make me happy?”

While the user is asking “what is it?” they are also wondering “how will this make me happy?” People do whatever gives them the greatest amount of personal satisfaction. Your landing page should address this pervasive human desire for satisfaction.

Even landing pages with B2B audiences can address this need. For example, let’s say a CTO is searching for a great Internet service provider. He’s going to be happy if his employees can meet their goals, while at the same time ensuring that he stays within his budget. This headline will speak to his happiness. Why? Two things: 1) speed and 2) price.

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Your headline should convey your landing page’s mind reading power. You know the two major questions in your user’s mind:

  • “What is this?”
  • “How will it make me happy?”

Answer those questions.

Step 5:  Answer the little questions in your copy.

If you successfully answer the big questions, the user will linger on the page.

This is why I’ve given you a step-by-step approach. Mind reading must include two things — 1) knowing what the user is thinking and 2) knowing the order in which they think those things. There is a sequence. You need to answer the right questions at the right time.

Now it’s time to answer all the little questions. The specific little questions depend on the user (persona), their query (keywords) and your product. Here are some common types of questions they might be asking:

  • Quality:  Is it good quality? How does it compare with other products?
  • Price:  Is it affordable? Are there discounts?
  • Features:  What does it do? How does it work? What is it for?
  • Perks:  Do I get anything else? Free shipping?
  • Assurance:  Can I return it if I need to? Are there guarantees?

The answers you provide in your copy will work to improve the user’s trust and reduce friction.

Don’t be afraid of going long. In many cases, a longform landing page is the best approach. There are two ways of doing longform landing pages:  The crappy way, and the good way. Peep Laja dug up a variety of pages that reveal the horrific results of longform landing pages done wrong. This was one of them.

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This page has 7,781 words. A longform approach isn’t bad, but their execution is abysmal. This is the crappy way — throwing an avalanche of text at the user and expecting them to convert. What they will actually do is bounce or choke on their saliva, whichever comes first.

The difference between crappy and good lies in the design.

This page, AppSumo, has outstanding design with a longform approach.

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The length is comparable. AppSumo’s page has 7,168 words. Design and layout make all the difference.

Step 6:  Satisfy all the objections in your discussion.

After a user has their questions answered, they will either convert or start objecting to the proposal. Now, you need to satisfy their objections.

The specific objections will vary widely based on your persona, keywords, product, etc. However, the idea is this:  They’re going to try and think of every reason why they shouldn’t convert.

Here’s what you, the mind reader, need to do

  1. Know those objections.
  2. Understand their meaning.
  3. Respond to the objection.

Let’s take an example of how this rolls out in a practical example:

  • User’s objection:  “Wow, that’s a really expensive vacuum”
  • You understand this objection:  The user is hesitant to spend this much money. They are anticipating buyer’s remorse. They want a good deal. They don’t want to lose money.
  • You respond to the objection:  1) You add a warranty. 2) You explain the cost-saving benefits over six months of usage. 3) You provide a money-back satisfaction guarantee. 4) You create a chart that shows how your vacuum is cheaper than four competitors. 5) You create a visual diagram that demonstrates how this vacuum will work for 15 years.

To successfully outmaneuver the user’s objections, conduct a brainstorming session. Think of every possible objection that a user might think of. Write down each one. Make sure you understand what’s driving these objections, then respond to them with images, copy, content, and other persuasive methods.

Step 7:  Close with a powerful CTA.

All of this strategizing drives to a single conclusion:  The CTA.

Your mind reading powers focus on the goal of causing the user to convert. If you’ve carefully and successfully followed the steps outline above, a conversion should be easy.

But don’t give up yet. You still need to create a CTA that pushes the user to the final point of decision-making.

Your CTA should have as much mind-reading intuition as the rest of your page. CTAs aren’t all created equal. Follow best practices, but add that extra twist to make the CTA perfect for the specific user.

Conclusion

The surefire way to have a conversion-rich landing page is to have a mind reading landing page. No voodoo skills required. It starts with a deep knowledge of the user, and develops a response. Follow the seven steps, and you’ll watch your conversion rates rise:

Step 1:  Start with a persona.

Step 2:  Target the right keywords.

Step 3:  Introduce visual power.

Step 4:  Answer the big questions in your headline.

Step 5:  Answer the little questions in your copy.

Step 6:  Satisfy all the objections in your discussion.

Step 7:  Close with a powerful CTA.

What techniques can you use to develop a mind-reading landing page?

Read other Crazy Egg articles by Neil Patel.

The post The 7-Step Guide to Create a Mind-Reading Landing Page appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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The 7-Step Guide to Create a Mind-Reading Landing Page

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5+ Ways to Improve Social Media Conversions

Social media is a great place to have conversations, but how do you turn those conversations into conversions so you meet your marketing and financial goals? Here are 5+ areas you need to address to get the most from the time you invest in social media.

1. Set Goals, But Don’t Get Hung Up on the Numbers

5+ Tips on Getting Better ROI from Social Media

Image: Pixabay

To start with, you need to think about conversions on social media differently from other channels. This isn’t the same as your usual marketing where you are duty-bound to push your product. Instead your goals can be about interacting with customers, creating relationships and building brand loyalty.

So it’s not a numbers game (there’s no point in having a gazillion fans and followers if none of them are talking to you) but about making genuine connections that might just turn a few customers into brand ambassadors or advocates or can help you get 1,000 true fans that really make social media useful for you.

If your social media goals are about interaction and engagement, you will soon have something to measure.

2. Create Landing Pages to Make Connections

Social media landing pages are useful for a couple of reasons. First, they give you an easy way to measure how well you are doing on each channel. Second, they help you create a personal relationship with your social media followers by addressing them directly.

On a side note, I think there’s still work to do here. While a landing page that addresses me as a Twitter or Pinterest user grabs my attention, it would be even more awesome if it grabbed my username and used that.

A social media landing page makes visitors feel welcome and is a good way to deepen interaction in one place. For example, you could include social proof (such as how many fans and followers you have), links to your best products, services or content or an offer specifically for those users. You could even do all three.

A social media landing page lets people know what they will get from connecting with you, and that’s what customers increasingly want from the brands they follow.

Tip: be honest and transparent to win with customers. Here’s a case study that shows a campaign for National Golf Day included a social media landing page and doubled the social media attention for the campaign compared with the year before.

3. Spruce Up Your Image

If you haven’t updated your social media cover image in a while, now’s a good time. Cover images can be used on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn. (I’m betting you’ll soon be able to use them on Pinterest too.)

Images are a great way to showcase your brand’s personality to drive conversions, but more than that, cover images can drive action and sales, as this case study on UNICEF shows. Using the same cover image across social media reinforces branding and makes it easier for people to feel connected with you no matter which social media site they are on.

5+ Ways to Improve Social Media Conversions

Image: Pixabay

But it’s not just about the covers—including posts with photos is proven to boost clicks, which has an impact on conversions. One recent case study on Convince and Convert found that using multiple photo posts on Facebook resulted in a 1290% rise in the number of clicks. And a Hubspot split test found a 55% increase in leads when images were added to tweets.

Whether you’re talking memes, images with calls to action or quirky images that showcase your brand’s personality (see how Grammarly does it) people respond to images, which is why they are the most shared social media content.

Add them to the mix to bring people back to your site. Check out this guide from Jeff Bullas to get social media images sizes right every time and our own guide to finding great images.

4. Use More Video

You already know that video drives conversions, as viewers stick around longer and follow links to purchase products. Not only are videos great place to include multiple calls to action, but you can play them on Twitter (if you’re using a mobile device), on Pinterest and on other social networks.

The longer people are on your social media profiles watching a video, the more likely it is that they’ll follow a link and see what else you have to offer. Learn how to improve video conversions in this article by George Mathew.

5. Feed the Content Beast (at the Right Time)

Feed the hungry content marketing beast

Image: Pixabay

Everyone knows that content is important. Whether you’re creating content for social media or bringing fans and followers back to your site, you need to have the best content you can. Here are some tips for getting it:

Once you have the content ready, then it’s all about timing, as we saw in a recent post about Twitter conversions. Check out the studies linked in that article to set a posting schedule, then monitor its effectiveness using your favorite analytics tool.

Think also about post frequency: too few and you won’t make an impact; too many and you risk overwhelming your audience and turning them off.

3 Bonus Tips on Social Media and Conversions

SignalFire says you can get more people to your social media profiles and from there to your site, by including social media usernames or links on your offline marketing material too.

Invesp points out that you don’t always have to send people back to your site to achieve conversions. Sometimes a pin pointing to an external review of your product or service can provide the social proof that customers need so they feel comfortable purchasing.

Unbounce highlights two case studies showing the importance of split testing social media posts to find out which ones win the most clicks.

Finally, measure constantly and adapt to get the most from your social media conversion strategy. What social media conversion tactics work best for you?

Read other Crazy Egg posts by Sharon Hurley Hall.

The post 5+ Ways to Improve Social Media Conversions appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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5+ Ways to Improve Social Media Conversions

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Could an App Boost Your Conversion Rate?

For many of us, hardly a day goes by that we’re not interacting with an app. From messaging to online shopping to just plain fun, apps have grown roots and seeped into our lives in ways we never could have imagined.

For many companies, this kind of interaction signals greater brand awareness, engagement and customer retention. But is an app the right choice for every business? Read on to discover some unique ways that well-known brands are using apps to boost their conversion rates and reach new customers.

apps - placeitSource: Placeit.net

A Super Breakfast Leads to Exclusive Content

If it’s one thing kids love, it’s superheroes. Cereal maker Kelloggs noticed that kids and their families were always in a rush at breakfast, so to help strengthen this vital part of the day, they called upon none other than Spider-Man. Through the use of an augmented reality app, kids could scan the Spider-Man art and download the app to mom’s smart phone to access exclusive movie clips.

spiderman

This, in turn, created more viral chatter on YouTube as well as other social networks. With over 250,000 active participants, it’s safe to say that the app, along with merchandising and related tie-ins, was a resounding success for Kelloggs. The campaign exceeded all expectations in terms of sales lift, ROI, and display.

Key Takeaway:  Even when you’re promoting something as commonplace as breakfast cereal, it pays to connect with the same figures that people admire (even if those people are 3 feet tall) to create the kind of atmosphere that generates feelings of comfort and togetherness, and reflects those feelings back onto your own brand.

eBags: Hot or Not?

Inspired by dating app Tinder, which lets prospective partners narrow dating options with a swipe of the finger, eBags released its own “Hot or Not?” style app with a focus on none other than handbags:

ebags-app

By previewing bags and then swiping those you like versus those you don’t, eBags not only lets you personalize your shopping, but they also gain valuable information about you as a shopper as you browse.

Your browsing and buying habits are exactly the information any serious e-commerce company would love to have, and eBags is doing a great job of getting it with this app.

Of course, they’re keen on making this feature as interactive and unobtrusive as possible. With over 100 individual “judging” factors in its algorithm, the more shoppers using the app, the more it learns about their likes and dislikes, eventually showing only bags it thinks they would like. Users can also filter the results by color or style.

The results were astounding. On August 5th, the app was tested with 100 consumers. According to the study, the average user swiped a heart (love) or an X (dislike) a total of 76 times. On average, 14 swipes were hearts, and 62 were X’es.

Perhaps most significantly, 10% of consumers who used the app ultimately purchased a handbag from eBags; a 10% conversion rate after just two days. That’s well beyond the estimated conversion rate from eBags’ general mobile app, which is 1.4%.

Key Takeaway: If you can find a way to duplicate the general functionality of a specific app, but apply those same mechanics to your business, users will start to get involved. Love it or hate it, gamification of e-commerce products is rapidly approaching critical mass. Expect to see even more companies taking advantage of this trend as smartphones become even smarter, and data and bandwidth charges drop.

Mobile Means Convenience

We smartphone users have no problem swiping through product categories and zooming in on displays, but when it comes to ordering online, we’re all thumbs. That’s because the majority of mobile e-commerce is still in its infancy, relying on clunky “bolt-on” systems that were not built for, nor designed to accommodate, mobile users.

Enter office and industrial supply shop W. W. Grainger. Because its customers are often out in the field doing site work, they don’t always have access to a PC.

grainger

According to Geoffrey Robertson, vice president of product innovation and business integration:

“With the help of the mobile app, a mechanic or maintenance worker in the field can quickly find the exact MRO product he needs, such as the right type of replacement light bulb. Many products in the app are pre-authorized for purchase, and, if necessary, the app enables personnel in the field to send more specific purchasing information to a manager with purchasing authority before completing the transaction.

Using Grainger’s order management system, customers can set up their own approval workflow that identifies who can approve an order request, and at what dollar amount. This can speed up the purchasing and authorization by process by as much as 40%.”

The results so far have been pretty spectacular. Today, the app accounts for 40% or $23.4 million dollars of Grainger’s sales, and that number is expected to hit 60 to 70% as more users adopt smart phones for quick orders on specific projects.

Key Takeaway: Look for ways to shortcut the purchasing process, such as making the authorization process easier and faster. Mobile phone users won’t stick around to deal with a bulky e-commerce system. Make sure yours is not only responsive, but fast-loading and smart about a customers’ previous purchases and browsing history where possible.

Threadless Puts Artists in the Spotlight

Crowd-sourced tee design shop Threadless has been popular for years, putting fresh new artists in the spotlight and making it easy to order custom-designed tees online. Now, they’ve taken the elements that made them famous and poured them into an iOS app.

threadless

The release of the Threadless app is still too new to share any numbers, but users are already heavily participating in the simple voting structure, highlighting their favorite artists and discovering new tees through a scrolling feed.

Key Takeaway: When crafting your app, never forget what features have made your site popular in the first place. If you can streamline those same benefits into an on-the-go version that makes it even easier for your audience to interact with you, so much the better.

So Is an App the Best Choice for Your Business?

As you’ve seen from these stories, there’s no doubt that a solid app can lend both credibility and convenience to your ad and branding campaigns. Done well, an app can add a layer of fun, entertainment or simply ease of use to an existing business model.

What are your thoughts? Do you think branded apps are just a fad, or are they here to stay? Share your perspectives with us in the comments below, and if you’ve tried a branded app, we’d love to hear your experience about it as well!

Read other Crazy Egg articles by Sherice Jacob.

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Could an App Boost Your Conversion Rate?

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How to Quickly Convert Trial Users Into Paying Customers

Want to know the secret to converting trial users to paid customers? I’ll answer it in one word: communication.

It’s not enough to have a robust website with video tutorials and a well-stocked knowledge base. Sure, that helps, but you also need to reach out to users personally and make them feel like you’re a human. 

We’ll get into the nuts and bolts below, but let this be your guiding light: people want to buy from other people that they trust. One way to build trust with new users is to talk to them via email, SMS, and push notifications. 

crazyegg email - placeit 800Source: Placeit.net

Did you know that 66% of the companies that use the free-trial-to-pay model have less than a 25% conversion rate. Why? Users enter the SaaS equivalent of the Bermuda Triangle. They enter the trial and are never heard from again, and that’s mostly because companies fail to keep in contact.

And the first three days are the hardest. If you can keep a user active within your SaaS for at least three days, they are four times more likely to convert. 

Luckily it doesn’t take a full sales and support team to reach every user. With just a good behavior-based messaging tool and awesome copy you can reach out to every user automatically.

Let’s look at these seven ways to engage and prime users for conversion using email, push notifications, and text messages:

Emails

1. Send a welcome email 

Did you know that around 75% of users expect a welcome email after sign up? Not only are they interested in your product, they’re giving you permission to share more information with them.

When a customer enters a trial, automatically send a welcome email. And send it within the hour after they sign up. 90% of leads go cold after one hour. New users will often tinker around with your service and forget about it. Sending a welcome email establishes your relationship. 

In your welcome email, be personal. Send from an email address that the user can reply to. Tell them how often you’ll be emailing. Be sure to include why your service is valuable. Leave the email with an open offer to assist them. (That’s your call to action.) Expect some users to write you back and be sure to answer them.

A welcome email like this could help onboard and convert more users:

emailExample---welcome1

Hey Customer Name}, 

I just noticed you signed up and wanted to say thank you. 

I also wanted to reach out and help you get started. Is there anything you’re confused about or need help with? 

I’m always here to help, but I’ve included a link to a few helpful videos to get you started. 

Please email me anytime. I’m here to help!

-Jill at Autosend.io

2. Send out emails to engage inactive users

Send out emails to engage inactive users. For example, after 2 days, send out a best-of tutorial, or a list of tips on how to get started with your service.

Most people stop using your app because they don’t know how to use it. 

An email like this should help and engage inactive users:

emailExample---inactive1

Hey Customer Name}, 

Here are ways you can use our app to help you save more money. 

  • Import your bank statements (this takes 2 minutes)
  • Tell us your favorite stores so we can find coupons for you (this takes 3 minutes)
  • Tell us about your next purchases so we can find the best deals (this takes 5 minutes)

If you click here, you can start setting these up now and have them save you money forever. 

You can also get attention from inactive users with a “We miss you”email. For example, if a user isn’t active after 2 days, remind them that they’re missed and what they can get from your app if they come back. 

Hey Customer Name}, 

Where have you been? We’ve added a few new features that you haven’t had the chance to try yet. These could really help you meet your carbon footprint reduction goals.

We’ve added: 

  • a meat-free recipe search that helps you eat lower-impact meals
  • public transit map to help you find a different way to get around town
  • a bike rental search you can use while you travel

Just click here, sign in, and you can start using these features in seconds. 

Your email shouldn’t just be about how cool your app is. Your only goal is to get people using the app again. To do this, remind them why they signed up and how your app can help. Make sure you add a call to action to your re-engagement email. It needs to be something that gets the user excited to come back. 

Good call-to-action examples for your re-engagement email are:

  • Create your date productName} now
  • Try it out now
  • Grab yours now
  • See it in action
  • Watch this video now

3. Offer a Trial Extension

The trial extension isn’t meant for every user. Users who are already inactive by the end of the trial won’t be swayed with more time.

A free trial extension is for that segment of your users who are active every day throughout their trial, but churn as soon as the trial is over. 

Here’s an email you could send to active users to invite them to extend their trial:

emailExample---trialExtend1 Image source: Autosend.io

Hey Customer Name}, 

I noticed your trial just ended, but you’ve been enjoying our app quite a bit. 

Do you need a few more days to use our trial? I’d be happy to give you a few more days. Just let me know.

For these users, you can also send out an email asking for feedback along with a trial extension. Pay attention to the feedback, because that information will help you convert future users.

Text Messages

You may be thinking, why should I send by text when I can talk to users by email? 

Two reasons:

It’s less competition. Compared to 1,216 emails, the average user only receives 178 texts. 

A guaranteed read. 99% of all text messages are read, and 90% of them are read within 3 minutes. Compare that to the open rate for emails (22%). The click through rate is also higher for text (19%) vs email (4.2%).

4. Ask for Feedback by Text

Instead of email, send a text to inactive users or those with expired trials. Use their feedback to answer their questions and point them to resources that will help them. 

When you ask for feedback, go short and sweet. Here are possible texts to use:

textExample--feedback1 Image source: Autosend.io

  • Thanks for using data planName}! We’d love your feedback.
  • Hey Customer Name}, do you have a couple of seconds to give us your feedback on data planName}?
  • Here’s your chance to have your say! What do you think of service}?
  • How can I help you use data planName} better?

5. Send a Text About Failed Payment

If you’ve converted a customer, don’t lose them because the payment fails. Failed payments happen more than you think. In fact, between 11-14% of transactions dont go through

Maybe the customer entered the wrong credit card number. Maybe your website crashed. Maybe they used the wrong browser.

Whatever it is, automatically text the user when their payment doesn’t go through. Offer to personally help the user complete the purchase. You can also send them a link to a prefilled alternative payment method page. 

Here are a few examples you can use:

textExample--checkout1

  • Hey Customer Name}, looks like our checkout page is giving you some trouble. Need me to call to walk you through it?
  • Hey Customer Name}, I noticed you’re having trouble checking out. Need my help?
  • Hey Customer Name}, is our pricing page working for you? If not let me know and I’ll be happy to finish your checkout for you.
  • Hey Customer Name}, it seems like you’re running into trouble on our check out page. Here’s a link to alternative page http://example.com.

It’s the final stretch. Do whatever it takes to convert the user, especially since you know they want to buy. 

Push Notifications

Push notifications have three times faster response than email. If you’re looking for a quick response, use a push. Two ideas to convert users with push are:

6. Offer a Discount

Sometimes users make it to your purchase page but don’t upgrade from trial to paid. When this happens to you, do something about it. Send these users a special discount. 

pushExample--upgrade1

  • 25% off data planName} for the next 2 hours! Get it while it’s hot.
  • Thinking about joining? Here’s your reason! 20% off with code data code}.
  • Thank you for trying. Buy now and pay 25% less with promo code data code}.

7. Incent Users To End their Trial Early

You don’t have to wait until the end of the trial to get the user onboard. An active user who loves using your app can be converted quicker with an incentive. Remember, users who actively use your app for 3 days, are four times more likely to convert. Use this opportunity to convert active users to paying customers early.

The type of incentive you offer depends on what motivates your users. 

It may be a discount. It may be an upgrade to a premium service at a lower price. It may be a free high-value consultation with an expert that can help them grow their business. 

Try sending a push notification like this to get your users out of their trial earlier:

pushExample--endtrial1

  • You’ve saved $data moneySaved} with our app! Here’s 10% off to upgrade now.
  • Enjoying our app? Do more by upgrading now.
  • Want access to all the features? Upgrade now and get 1 month on us!

Whatever you choose, remember that people like to feel special. By communicating with them early and often, you can make them feel like part of your community and avoid the churn. 

So what will be the first email, SMS, or push message you send to your users? Are you already using trigger-based messaging to convert more of your trial users into paid users? Check out other Crazy Egg posts on email marketing and conversions to learn more.

Happy converting!

Image source: Autosend.io

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How to Quickly Convert Trial Users Into Paying Customers

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3 Tips to Optimize a Content Offer in Professional Services

So after a great deal of hard work, you’ve managed to get the right piece of content in front of exactly the right audience. Congrats! But don’t pat yourself on the back for too long, because that’s not the end of the story.

What happens after a visitor reads your blog post or watches your video?

Maybe they’ll remember your firm…or maybe not. The key is to use content offers to provide them with more engagements—next logical steps—that will be relevant to their needs, continually reinforcing your expertise and offering more in-depth content or services.

These offers aren’t an opportunity to get suddenly self-promotional in an otherwise educational content offering. Instead, they should be created in the same spirit, pointing visitors toward further resources that they will find genuinely useful: solutions for and perspectives on their actual business challenges.

professional-services_placeit

Below we’ve put together three tips to help you make professional services content offers as effective as possible:

1) Always offer a next step.

Content offers should be bold, attractive, and immediately visible: in the sidebar of a blog post, for example, you might offer an ebook on the same topic, using the book’s cover art to make the offer pop.

Make sure your offers are related to the content a visitor has just viewed. The most important thing is to provide a natural way to continue your relationship with the reader, and for readers to continue to get the information they need from you.

For visitors early in the sales pipeline—those not ready for a sales pitch—this might mean that they exchange their email address for your free, attractively presented ebook. Once you have an email, you can continue to make relevant, targeted offers for progressively closer engagements.

You can see this strategy in action in the content marketing model below:

content model

Content offers point the way for visitors to climb the steps from your most freely available content like blog posts to an ongoing relationship.

So for visitors who downloaded your ebook, you might send an email offering a webinar on the same topic, but going more in-depth or exploring it from a different angle. Then you might offer webinar attendees a free consultation on a related aspect of their business. Once these audiences are ready for a sales pitch, you’ll have their attention.

2) Make your offers clear and succinct.

In content offers, you have to strike a balance between clarity and succinctness, making it absolutely clear what you’re offering without losing your audience’s attention.

So if you’re offering an ebook in the sidebar of a blog post, don’t just say, “See more about this topic.” Instead, your offer might read, “Download our free ebook, Title of the Book.” While being necessarily descriptive, keep those words to an absolute minimum—visitors aren’t likely to read more than a short sentence.

Remember, too, that your content offers need to be focused. You might think you should offer different levels of content on a blog post—a webinar and an ebook, say—for audiences at different points in the sales funnel, but this would be a mistake.

Only use one offer at a time on a given piece of content: any more, and you’ll dilute the effect, confusing viewers and complicating the path forward to closer engagement. A good offer strategy is all about making things both useful and simple for your audience.

3) Know the context of your content.

Think through your content offers as part of your larger content strategy, considering the target audience for each piece and type of content. Offers included in content for first-time readers should require much less effort and commitment than offers for long-time, late stage visitors.

As you create and offer more content, it’s critical to continuously monitor your audience, their interests, and how well your content is connecting with them. Note that “Analyze and Adjust” is the final stage of the content model above. Taking a data-driven approach to your content eliminates the guesswork from finding topics that matter to your target audience—as well as the best way to reach them.

You can accomplish this through careful and ongoing use of Web and email analytics, learning a range of lessons that will help you iterate and improve your content marketing:

  • You may find that certain topics are better suited to visitors earlier or further along in the sales funnel. Often, the interests and needs of prospects differ depending on where they are in the sales cycle.
  • Some subjects will likely prove to have more lasting draw than others. These “evergreen” topics will be a valuable tool, and often they will take you by surprise. Monitoring your Web analytics and finding out what your audience really wants to know about and responding to that need is a key part of the process.
  • A/B testing offers in emails will allow you to learn which design elements, copy approaches, types of content, and other elements yield the most audience engagement. In these types of tests, make sure to test only one element at a time.
  • How are visitors accessing your content? Web and email analytics will reveal, for example, the percentage of your audience using mobile devices to read your content. This may encourage you to produce more mobile-optimized content and think about how to design offers that will be most effective on mobile devices.

The moral of the story here? The better you understand your readers and how they interact with your content, the more effectively you can provide them with offers that will make them more responsive and more engaged, propelling them up the content ladder to build trust and forge a lasting relationship.

As you implement your offer strategy, make sure to give it the same level of thought and creative consideration as your content itself. If you succeed at this, you’ll have set the stage for a content strategy that brings in more leads—and helps them qualify themselves.

 Read other Crazy Egg articles by Lee Frederiksen.

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3 Tips to Optimize a Content Offer in Professional Services

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Using Google Consumer Surveys for Conversion Optimization

Google Consumer Survey’s is a feature from Google Analytics that helps to bring you data directly from the minds of your audience. When creating a consumer survey, Google makes sure your question is getting put in front of the right people; your only job is to ask the right questions and analyze your data.

One aspect of your online success where these reports are particularly helpful is when it comes to conversion optimization.

google surveys

How Google Consumer Surveys Work

According to Adam Heitzman, Managing Partner of SEO Company HigherVisibility, “Consumer Surveys are one of the Web’s best-kept secrets,” and I’d have to agree. You don’t hear too much about the feature, but it is one that can give you the exact data you’re looking to find.

They work just as they sound: You ask a question and then Google will take that question and put it in front of a relevant audience to answer.

Below is a screenshot of the general page that shows you the three easy steps it takes to make a survey happen:

consumer-surveys-1

To break down the process, Consumer Surveys will show your question across different online news sources, blogs, entertainment websites, etc. by either embedding it into the content or including it on a mobile app.

People will answer the question in exchange for being able to read an article, listen to a song, gain a free app, etc. What Google offers in return is up to Google, but typically it’s something relevant to your company (that’s why the audience answering the questions is going to be relevant to your audience).

On that note, the person’s demographics, like age and location, are assumed based on that person’s browser history and IP address (hooray for not having to ask the questions yourself!). If they search for something related to your industry or product, it’s likely they will be targeted by Google to answer your question.

So what types of questions can you ask? Not only can you ask about whatever appropriate subjects you want, but you have a choice as to the “type” of question.

Types of questions include multiple choice, a rating system, side-by-side images, open-ended, and then all of these options coupled with an image. Below is the screen offering you these options.

consumer-surveys-2

How You Can Use Google Consumer Surveys to Improve Conversion Optimization

As you have probably inferred from above, the biggest thing that these survey’s offer is a way to find out what your audience is thinking. By figuring out what they are thinking about your product, your landing page, or your industry in general (or a million other questions you may want to ask), you can optimize your pages for higher conversions.

After all, conversions happen because of your visitors and the thoughts those visitors are having—the more you can understand those thoughts, the better.

Below are a few different things you may want to consider asking, along with how you can use the answers to optimize your website and/or landing page:

1. Ask about landing page or logo preference.

Example: Which logo do you prefer? Which button would you be more likely to press? These are always good questions with two images side-by-side.

Your Move: By including two screenshots of your same website or two pictures of your logo and/or product with slight changes, you can get a vote from a relevant audience as to which they like best. Of course, if they like something better, they’re more likely to convert.

2. Ask about the likelihood of needing a particular product at any given time. 

Example: Do you plan on traveling this summer? Why or why not? This is a great open-ended question.

Your Move: Ask this type of open-ended question to find trends in your industry. For the example above, a travel agent could use this information to decide which packages to feature on the homepage of the website. If people are planning to travel in the fall, feature more fall travel destinations to help improve conversions.

3. Ask how much someone would be willing to pay for a general product.

Example: How much would you be willing to pay for the perfect pair of custom sneakers? The multiple-choice option usually works best for this type of question.

Your Move: By knowing how much someone is willing to pay for something, you can not only make sure you price your product correctly, but you advertise that on your landing pages. Go slightly lower than your average, and make an announcement that most people would pay X amount for X product. Having these statistics could help urge someone to convert, and you know you have that at a price point that really works (also important for conversions).

4. Ask what brand they think of most often when thinking about your industry.

Example: What brand do you think of first when you think SEO agency? An open-ended type works well here.

Your Move: This will give you insight into your real competition (and usually it will be local), so you can visit that company’s website and see what they are doing differently than you. The more aware people are of your brand the more traffic you will have, so spending time trying to give your audience something similar to what they are already responding to is important. Adogy.com has admitted to using this tactic to help gain ideas for their “Work” page.

5. Ask what promotional deal they would like best.

Example: What deal would you like best? Give multiple-choice options like Free Shipping, 20% off, Free Returns, Buy Two Get One Free, etc.

Your Move: This one is pretty self-explanatory. If people are going to click on a deal you’re offering, they’re already well on their way to converting—you may as well use the deal that the highest number of people like!

Extra Uses and Ideas

While conversion optimization is incredibly important and a great way to use the tool, it’s worth mentioning that Consumer Survey’s can give you answers to just about anything regarding your audience. Google highlights eight other possible uses:

  1. Concept and Product Development
  2. Market Trends
  3. Brand Tracking
  4. Marketing Design
  5. Campaign Measurement
  6. Timely Questions
  7. Customer Satisfaction
  8. Custom Survey Portals

Getting Started with Google Consumer Surveys

You can visit this link to get started with Consumer Surveys. It will cost you 10 cents per every question that is completed and $1.10 – $3.50 per completed question if you have participants answered 2–10 questions (10 is the limit). You should have your results within 24 hours.

Have you ever used Google Consumer Survey’s to improve your conversion rates? What did you ask, and did you find the data helpful? Let us know your story and your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Using Google Consumer Surveys for Conversion Optimization

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82% of Marketers Aren’t Testing Effectively – Here’s Why

As conversion optimization becomes more of a priority in more and more companies, we’re seeing a lot of statistics on how marketers perform their tests, the tools they use and, most importantly, the tests they run.

These statistics are extremely important because they give us a window into what marketers are doing and how we can improve ourselves and our marketing strategies.

New research from Adobe uncovers two critical issues:

  • More than 8 out of 10 (82%) marketers say knowing how to test effectively is “somewhat” or “very” challenging.
  • Even more important (and distressing), nearly half (42%) say analyzing the A/B test results is the hardest part of conversion optimization.

Here’s the problem with that: Many marketing strategies and entire business plans are built on the results of testing and can, at times, completely alter products or services. This is why I chose to take a deeper look into these two stats, find the pain points and offer a few different ways to solve these issues.

Why analyzing tests is so hard

As with anything new, if you’re just beginning to test, it takes time to build a strategy. The most dominant strategy used today is the behavioral targeting strategy, or what many call the “testing elements” strategy.

In this strategy, one landing page is duplicated and gets a few small changes made to it. The most common changes are a different colored call-to-action button (green vs. red), a different title to the page, swapped locations of elements or a different main image.

The structure and the build of the original page remains the same, except for one change.

In the behavioral targeting methodology, we use the data we get on our users to personalize our landing pages—information such as the browser they come from, their geographic location, the time they came to the site and many other factors.

Below is a great visual by Visual Web Optimizer that shows the process of behavioral targeting.

Behavioral targeting

The issue with behavioral targeting (or testing individual elements) is that, once the test is completed and a winner has been declared, it’s difficult to understand the results.

For instance, if I change my main image on a landing page from a smiling woman to a cute puppy and the puppy variation wins, what do the results mean? Should I change my main site image to a puppy image? What have I learned from the test? And what do I test next?

By testing elements and not actual strategies, marketers find it extremely hard to learn from their tests and, more importantly, to scale them.

Unlocking Purchasing Habits

The key to scale, analyze and understand your tests is to test strategies, not elements, or as we describe it at Conversioner, test emotional triggers. Similar to any of your marketing efforts, conversion optimization needs a clear strategy and a plan for scaling based on your audience, not your product.

The idea of testing strategies comes from understanding why your customers want to buy your product or service. We’re not looking for the physical reason; we’re looking for the emotional reason.

People don’t buy products or services because of their features or their price. We buy them because of what they make us feel about ourselves. We see better versions of ourselves with these services/products, and that’s what motivates our purchasing habits.

Once you understand better what users receive from your product emotionally, you will be able to use different designs and elements to trigger these emotions and increase conversion on your landing page.

Testing Strategies

Emotional conversion optimization is based on testing strategies and concepts, focusing on why people buy products and not why they should.

So how does it look in actual practice?

Instead of two duplicated landing pages with one element altered for testing, each landing page represents a completely different strategy—with a different build, colors, images and messaging. The focus on these pages is not the elements. It’s what we want users to feel by landing on our landing page.

In the world of 2-second bounce rates, it’s important to understand that you have less than 3 seconds to convince your visitor that your product or service is the right one for them.

Once you’ve figured out what you want to make your users feel when they arrive on your landing page, you need to make sure they can feel this in less than 3 seconds.

There are two important elements you need to take into consideration to make sure of this:

  1. Our brains process Images 60,000 times quicker than text, meaning the image you show has a huge impact on your audience’s feelings and understanding of your product.
  2. Colors convey different emotions and can be used in many ways to direct users in the right way. You can find more information on the meanings of color here.

Let’s look at 2 case studies to see the difference between testing elements and testing strategies.

Case Study #1

In this case study, we’re taking a look at a presentation company. Their product allows you to build customizable presentations in a fast and easy way for any purpose. They had two immediate goals:

  1. Increase signups – get more people to sign up to their product
  2. Increase new presentations – get more people to complete the funnel and create presentations (not just sign up)

We started out by running our emotional trigger research and finding two main emotional triggers. Then we started building the pages:

  1. One page was built for a more tech savvy persona who prepares so many presentations, they’re starting to look alike and sound boring. The idea was to make sure they feel this product will be much easier than other presentation softwares but, more importantly, their presentations will stand out from their peers and be different.
  2. The second page spoke to a less tech savvy audience who has a hard time creating presentations. These are usually people who don’t create many presentations and find it extremely painful to create one. The landing page’s main goal was to make these people feel comforted and that they’re in good hands.

Variation 1:

Variation 1

Variation 2:

Variation 2

As you can see, each landing page is completely different from the other in design, color and, most importantly, in strategy.

The 10-day test run had 60,000 sessions. The results were a 316% increase in signups for variation 1 and 114.36% increase in new presentations.

Once the test was finished, we then moved on to testing different signup processes and a few other flow elements, but we didn’t do this until we finalized our strategy and realized what we want people to feel, which in this case, was special and different from their peers.

Case study #2

This case study was one of the first we ran for an e-card company. As is common, the company had a few common obstacles:

  • They have many competitors.
  • They’re the most expensive in their industry.
  • There’s no one-time payment, only yearly or monthly subscriptions.
  • Their product is a download product, meaning people have to download it to their computer before they can start using it.

This was their original landing page:

Original - Control

During our research, we worked on finding out what people want to feel from using this product. Finishing the research we mapped out two types of emotional triggers:

  1. Self image – These are people who want to have the best party, have their friends over and make sure they have the time of their lives. They mainly want to feel good about their decisions, plans and executions.
  2. Social image – These people want their friends and relatives to talk about the amazing event they had, the amazing host, the gorgeous invitation they sent and the perfect party in general.

To convey these feelings, we created two different landing pages:

Variation 1:

Variation 1

Variation 2:

Variation 2

Variation 1 won and increased immediate revenue by 65% and, even more interesting, it increased the yearly signups dramatically. What did this mean? People were not only purchasing a subscription, many of them were now committing to a yearly subscription rather than a monthly one.

One thing that is important about emotional targeting is that you don’t need to go to the end of the funnel to make an impact. The common scenario for companies that want to increase their revenue is working on their checkout process first. But with emotional targeting, it’s a good idea to start at the top of the funnel and make your way down.

A simple landing page can change not only the amount of downloads and signups but also the actual revenue without touching the checkout process yet.

The emotional targeting funnel results

The common conversion optimization funnel looks like the image below. You run a test and the results impact the top part of the funnel and then each part of the lower funnel grows a little accordingly.

Optimization funnel

With emotional targeting you can still start at the top of the funnel and yet the results are different. This is the funnel from our second case study. Downloads, for example, grew by 12% as opposed to the 65% in the revenue. This impact was received from a landing page test, not a checkout test.

Emotional targeting funnel

Figuring Out Emotional Triggers

In order to understand why your customers want to buy your product and what they want to feel from using your product or service it, it’s important to understand why people actually make decisions in life and what those decisions are based on.

Believe it or not, our decision-making as humans is mostly irrational. Although we like to think of ourselves as completely rational people who make our decisions according to hard facts and data, we’re far from it.

We don’t know what we want in life. We have no idea what’s good for us and what isn’t. So we typically make decisions according to our surroundings. Meaning we make decisions by the way things are presented to us.

The decision on which car to buy, what insurance to choose, what laptop to get and how to split our checkings account with our partner comes from our surroundings and of what we compare it to.

The way you present your landing page, call to action, messaging and colors have a huge impact on your user’s decision-making and, if you want to help people choose your product, there are certain cognitive biases, or triggers, you should take into consideration.

Cognitive biases are tendencies to think in certain ways. They’re basically unconscious thinking patterns or triggers in our brains that help us make decisions. I’ve summed up a few cognitive biases to give you examples. Used right, they can help you convert people quicker and understand what customers are looking for emotionally in your product or service.

4 common cognitive biases

Anchoring

This is one of the most famous marketing tactics. We’ve all experienced it, often unawares.

Anchoring is the tendency to rely on the first piece of information we received when making a decision. For example, the initial price offered as a salary is used to for the rest of the negotiations. Once an anchor is set, all options are considered while compared to the anchor.

Steve Jobs himself used this tactic to sell the iPad when it came out. He told people that the iPad should cost $999 and then proceeded to talk about the iPad while the price was on the screen behind him.

Then he came out with a dramatic announcement that the iPad will only cost $499.

Now compared to $999 that’s cheap. But is it? It only sounded cheap in comparison to the value Jobs had given it.

A few ways to use anchoring to your advantage:

  • On pricing pages – This is a common use. Create one pricing plan much higher than the rest, then present it first so people have the anchor of a higher price and are pleasantly surprised by the “reasonable” price of the others.
  • Limitations - This one is extremely interesting. By limiting something not by time but by number, you can get more people to take an action. For example, you only allow people to invite up to 5 friends. Before the anchor people might have invited only 2, but now that the anchor is placed, the average goes up.

Endowment effect

The endowment effect (one of my personal favorites) is a state of mind in which a consumer’s valuation of an object (any object) increases once they’ve taken ownership of it.

Meaning, once I have something, even for a brief moment I consider it as my own and will not easily part with it (that’s why we have so much old stuff in our houses that we can’t get rid of).

There are many ways and tips for using the endowment effect to its full extent increase conversion. Several ways include:

  • Free trials - The idea is simple. Once a customer has used the product for enough time, customized it and gotten used to it, they won’t let a small thing like a payment get in the way of keeping it. In the 1950s there were door-to-door salespeople who would offer vacuums and other appliances for trials periods, assuring people that they could give them back for no charge at the end of the trial. These were a huge hit. Nine out of 10 (yes, a full 90%) did not give the product back.
  • Exit pops – These are great way to catch your user’s eye before they leave the landing page and tell them that they’re about to lose all their information. Similar to the emotional targeting method, you need to think about how you want people to feel while seeing this pop up.

Decoy effect

This is a great bias for unlocking pricing page success. In general it means that when we’re presented with more than two options, we tend to choose the first option. Weirdly, it looks better even though it might not be.

Many companies use the decoy effect to direct their visitors to a specific pricing plan and increase sales. The basics of this bias is that people look for an easy way to make a decision, one that doesn’t require thinking or analyzing.

(Further tips for using the decoy effect.)

Hyperbolic discounting

This trigger is great for inbound marketing. Hyperbolic discounting is the tendency of people to prefer more immediate rewards that are worth less than larger rewards that are further away.

For example, people would prefer to get less discount on a service right now than to work harder to get a larger discount in the future.

A great way to use this is by offering several coupons and rewards to your customers for inviting their friends, writing reviews and spreading the word. Here are a few proven ways to use hyperbolic discounting for your inbound marketing.

Bottom line

As your conversion optimization tests take a larger part of your marketing effort, it is important to be able to keep these tests scaling and growing.

In order to be testing effectively you should start start focusing on your prospects’ emotional needs. By continuously researching your audience and identifying their emotional needs, you will be able to learn from your tests, understand them and know what to test next.

The post 82% of Marketers Aren’t Testing Effectively – Here’s Why appeared first on The Daily Egg.

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82% of Marketers Aren’t Testing Effectively – Here’s Why