When optimizing for conversion rate many marketers simply don’t know where to start. I can’t blame them, there are so many things to do when marketing online, conversion optimization just becomes one more thing on a long to do list.
But if your site has at least 25,000 unique visitors it’s usually time to start thinking of optimizing for the sale and the place to start is with three questions.
In this post were going to explore three simple, yet not so simple questions every web page must answer to convert more visitors into customers. The important distinction here is – every web page. This framework is not applicable on a global level, but rather a single page. Although you can easily repeat this framework across a series of page within you sales funnel.
These three questions can be used as a framework not only for conversion but for where to start with for increasing your online sales.
Where are you?
The moment a visitor arrives on a web page, any web page for that matter, there is a moment of disorientation. Just like walking into a house you’ve never been in, you need to get your bearings. You take in the area around you (I.e. the area above the fold) Looking for a feeling of comfort.
A series of questions goes through your prospects mind all at once:
- Am I in the right place from where I Just clicked?
- Is this where I expected to be?
Answering these questions and ultimately the main question – Where am I? – in a half a second is vital to keeping the prospects mind continuing forward. This is an important question to consider and start with when optimizing for sales and conversions, especially when considering an up stream click that comes from an advertisement or some other point, even within the same website and especially if your switching the goal of the page. And in most cases you are, even if you don’t think you are.
What can you do here?
The next sequence in the mind of the visitor after they have been reassured they are in the right place is – What can they do here?
Again this may seem obvious to you since you are so close to the product, but your visitors do not have the curse of knowledge that you have been stricken with in this situation. It is important to remove your self in your mind from everything you know and think like the prospect in this situation. There’s and old saying that goes: You can’t read the label from inside the jar. The question what can I do here from the website owner or designers perspective is like being inside the jar. The answer to this question is very obvious to them, too obvious that they don’t think abut it and thus never answer it for the prospect.
In order to reduce the cognitive load that goes on inside your prospects mind you need to address this next question.
Let’s consider for a moment a visitor who clicks from a home page to a category page or from a sales page to an order form or an up sell page.
There are vastly different things you can do on each of these pages, often times there is more than one thing you can do on these pages, in that case you need to clearly design for hirearchy taking into account the alignment of your selling process with your prospects buying process.
Each needs to be clear so as not to confuse the prospect and keep their momentum moving forward without slowing them down.
Why should you do it?
This is the big one. Why should your visitor do this above all other options including doing nothing at all? Online the visitor is only one click away from leaving at any point in time throughout your site. It is at is they only have one foot in your site or on your page and they haven’t put both feet in, that is until these three questions have been answered in this sequence.
You have to give them the reason why.
You can not expect them to know, since many time the decision has not yet been made in the prospects mind. Many marketers do not realize there are a series of whys that need answering not simply the reason why they should buy from you, but also the reason they should buy right now, and the reason they should buy this particular product.
Start with a single page on your site, it could be any page and answer these 3 questions. Write them out in order to really think them through, then step back and look at the page from the perspective of a prospect landing on the page.
Once you complete this exercise step away and return to what you wrote in an hour with fresh eyes, then think about what can you do to answer these questions more clearly. Both on the page and in the mind of your prospect. Before you know it you’ll have a few treatments and a soup.e of hypothesis to begin testing.
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