In our fast-paced world, everyone wants instant results. We want our food prepared faster, we want to communicate with people instantly, and we often get impatient when it takes longer than five seconds for a website to load. The same can be said for those who want to increase the number of sales generated from their website. But as Beverly Sills said, “There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”
Luckily, there are a few ways you can optimize your website to help generate more sales (almost) instantly. At Profitworks, we’ve learned a thing or two about conversion optimization and A/B testing, and we’ve uncovered a number of tactics to increase conversion. We found that as with most digital marketing methods, it can often take a little time to see results. However, you can implement these 10 tips on your website today and simply sit back and watch as they go to work for you.
1. Keep Your Home Page Simple, and Don’t Overwhelm Your Audience
This may be surprising to some of you, as many people assume you’re better off offering as many products as possible on your homepage to give your visitors a range of options. Entrepreneur, however, suggests that offering fewer products on your page with more text describing a specific topic will actually increase overall sales. This works because it allows your company to focus in on one or two specific products and answer any possible questions visitors may have.
Once great example of a simple, yet effective home page comes from Electronic Arts. Though they offer thousands of gaming titles, you’ll often only find a few recent titles mentioned on their home page. Also, take note that above their fold, they often only present only a couple of calls to action.
Electronic Arts simple home page increases sales
2. Add Videos to Your Key Conversion Pages
Mashable claims that adding videos to some of your top landing pages can result in an increase in conversions averaging at 86 percent! Our brains process visual information about 60,000 times faster than text, which means that any visitors to your site absorb information in videos better than they would by reading text. Learning about your product or service will be much more effective through video than text.
A great example of adding a video to your home page can be found at Ditto Residential. Not only is their home page very appealing, but their large, high-resolution video is sure to draw in any visitor.
Ditto Residential landing page video increases sales
3. Create Ways to Capture Email Addresses
Email marketing is still a very viable method of digital marketing and produces one of the top ROI across all marketing methods. However, you can’t do any email marketing without email addresses, right? By creating methods to capture a visitor’s email address, you create an opportunity to invite them back to your website through email marketing campaigns.
Forbes suggests that one of the top ways to capture email is to offer them something of value, such as a digital download, that won’t cost your company. A great example of this can be found on the Profitworks website. They offer a free website review in exchange for some information, such as an email address and your first and last name.
Profitworks email capture
4. Build Trust with Testimonials, Associations, and Case Studies
Many companies already understand the importance of social proof, but if you don’t currently have a way to promote customer trust on your website, then you’re missing out on its rewards. Things such as testimonials, images of your staff, and case studies about your products or services can go a long way to convince a visitor to choose you.
Marketingdonut also suggests that you get as much accreditation as possible to help boost your online reputation, especially if face-to-face contact with your customers is limited or even non-existent. You can check out this list of testimonials from Westmount Signs to understand how they should be implemented.
Westmount Signs testimonials build trust
5. Create Content That Targets Key Market Segments
Creating quality content is a surefire way to increase both traffic and conversions to your website, but you should also spend some time targeting different market segments. Writing content specific to certain market segments helps you to draw in different customers, and it gives you the opportunity to express your expertise in their industry. It’s a win-win! For an example, check out IBM’s site, where they offer full landing pages to a number of different industries.
IBM targeted landing pages
6. Incorporate Upselling
How often does a sales person at a store try to upsell you a product? If they’re doing what their superior asked them to do, then your answer would be 100 percent of the time. If people can upsell inside of a business, is there as reason you can’t upsell online as well? Shopify suggests that upselling is actually 20 times more effective than cross-selling online, even though we see the latter more often.
Dollar Shave Club does an excellent job of upselling on their blades page, as they draw you in with the promise of each blade being only a dollar, only to reveal more expensive, premium options.
Dollar Shave Club upselling strategy
7. Clearly Explain Your Value Proposition on Your Landing Pages
A value proposition is simply a sentence or two that promotes the value of your products or services. Conversionxl suggests that any good value proposition should have these three qualities:
It should explain how your product solves a customer’s problems.
It should describe what specific benefits your product will deliver.
It should explain why they should purchase from you instead of a competitor.
Check out this example from Trello that gets straight to the point.
Trello value proposition on landing page
8. Install Live Chat
Live chat tools are a fantastic way to generate ecommerce sales, but they can also be used to address any questions visitors to your site may have. They’re also more likely to be used than a contact form because they generate an immediate response. Almost every type of business website can benefit from this tool, even those who don’t do sales through their site. For a double bonus, you can also use this live chat tool to gather email addresses.
A great example of live chat done well comes from SnapEngage. Not only do they have chat available directly on the site, but you’ll also receive a chat notification whenever you enter a page with a 404 error.
SnapEngage live chat increases sales
9. Address Objections
One great way to improve the quality of your website is to address any objections or questions that may not be directly answered through the content already available. As suggested by the Harvard Business Review, it’s more important to focus on keeping up with your customers, not your competitors.
Take the time to go through your site and make a list of any hesitations you believe visitors may have based on the information already available. Critically evaluate your site in this step—don’t just assume that the visitor will be able to find the answers. You want to ensure everything is easily accessible. Once you’ve done this, provide a solution to the problems you uncovered. Not only will this increase conversions across your site, but it will also make it more user-friendly.
One of the best ways to do this is to answer some frequently asked questions, like ConvertKit has done on this page.
10. Perform A/B testing
With all of the above suggested tips for increasing sales across your website, the one thing that is most important is to A/B test all of these changes. Every business is unique, which means that their customers are unique, and certain things will work for some businesses that won’t work for others. By A/B testing, you can be sure to find out what works best for your website. Here are a few tests you can perform across your site right now:
Changing up the text in your call to action buttons is a classic but easy test to run. Don’t be surprised if this simple change results in a two to three percent increase in conversions.
Test different headlines at the top of your traffic-heavy landing pages. I’ve had pages leap from a one percent conversion rate to a 4.5 percent conversion rate just by testing out different headlines.
If you have any stock images across your site, try replacing them with more candid photos of your business or employees.
For your contact page, test using fewer fields in your contact form. This generally produces a positive result.