How to improve your website conversion rates

Websites are an interesting thing. What works for one website doesn’t necessary work for the next.

There are untold stories of clients asking their web designer to simple “copy” one of their competitors who lead the market, believing that it will bring them the same good fortune.

When in fact a core understanding of Conversion Rate optimisation is what’s needed and often missing from many web designers.

Read on to find out some of the key elements that you should follow to help improve your website conversion rates.

Plan of action: The first thing you need for your website is a plan of action. As simple as it may sound, you’d be surprised at how many people have o real plan that defines a clear focus for their website.

You plan of action should not just focus on the pages that you want on your website, or where to place your logo or what colour to have your website.

Although these are very important things.

Instead, your plan should focus on the core goal for your website.

What is the purpose of your website? What do you want visitors to your website to do?

Think of it like this: if someone lands on your website, within 3 seconds is it clear to them who you are, what you do and what you want them to do next?

Your main goal for your website may be to get people to sign up and become a member, so you may have 2 buttons on your homepage one that says, “Sign Up now” and if you charge a second button that says “View pricing” – This immediately answers the questions:

What do you want me to do?

Where do I do it?

How much will it cost?

By having a clear focus this lets you know what your most important page elements are – known as call to actions – and what content should be on your pages / website homepage to reinforce and entice people to follow your main goal.

Sit down with your web designer to work out what your goal should be and always keep it at the forefront of your mind when testing and valuating design ideas.

Always be asking yourself “Where’s my main call to action? How easy is it too see? Is it clear? Is it consistent?”

Focus: It’s best to focus your homepage on your main call to actions such as the main action you want people to take when they visit your website.

A lot of businesses that go through the web design process want to list everything on their homepage – Who they are, what they do, their awards, contact forms, phone numbers, open hours, all the services they offer, all the ways to contact them, maps, photos of the team and whatever else they can think of.

The fact of the matter is – that you should have a focus – all those elements have their time and place but not necessary all on the homepage.

A nice simple homepage that explain who you are what you do and a call to action for the next step is a great start.

Further down your page you may want to showcase some of your products/services and again reinforce what it is that you want your visitor to do next with a call to action.

Some homepages offer latest news and other bits of information – One thing to keep in mind is that not all of your visitors will scroll down this far down your homepage, so its bets to keep it focused and concise and provide the key information/data required to get your website visitor know who you are and get them to the next step in your funnel.

Write for humans not Google: One of the things a lot of website owners do is write their content for Google instead of writing for humans.

The thinking behind it being that if they write and optimise their content for Google that it will rank them higher in Google.

This was true a few years ago, but Google has wised up to this and with the introduction of Rank Brain and on-page metrics it’s more important than ever that your website content is engaging, talks to your visitor and keeps them on your website for as long as possible.

When you write for Google you can often end up providing no value and saying the same thing 5 different ways – This provides no value to your visitor.

This will in turn cause your website visitors to leave your website, Google rank brain will see this and could even lower you in the Google rankings!

Do sprinkle in your keywords as necessary.

Keyword Research: Closely linked to planning, be sure to research your keywords properly. Don’t just look at the keywords your competitors are optimising around – do your own research with a tool such as Ahrefs and find the best keywords that work for you and your audience.

Really research your keywords. Sure, there are money keywords that get all the traffic but using a tool such as Ahrefs you can find all the associated keywords and reach a wider audience.

You may even find an opportunity for a niche keyword that your competitor doesn’t rank for.

If you are a web design company, for example, and base din Birmingham don’t just presume that web design birmingham is going to be your best keyword – Use that as you starting point for your SEO keyword research, but look for the other group of keywords related to it that may not offer much traffic on their own but as a group offer a decent volume of traffic.

Call to actions: These are the little buttons that take your visitor by the hand and guide them to the next stage.

Your call to actions will tie in heavily with your main aim for your website as they basically take your visitor by the hand and to the next stage in your funnel.

Think of your call to action as a polite directive, that guides your visitor in the right direction.

Your call to action is a key area to focus on to improve your website conversion rates.

The text that you use on your call to action can have a big impact on the outcome of your CTA effectiveness.

Use direct & specific language on your call to action buttons and test them often. A simple word change could give a 10-15% or more increase in conversions.

For some inspiration on CTA language to use, check out this handy guide: 25 Proven Call-to-Action Words to Maximize Conversions

Also remember to focus on the colour of your Call to action buttons. Use a contrasting colour to the rest of your website so that it stands out.

By testing different colours, you can see which buttons get the most attention, which distract, and which ones simply get lost amongst the rest of your site.

By keeping the above in mind: starting with a plan and core focus, writing for humans and testing your call to action colour & language you are sure to see your website conversions increasing.