Is your website copy generating as many conversions as it can for your business?
Wouldn’t it be great if there was a systematic way to test how effective your website copy performs?
The good news is, there is.
No matter what you want customers to do, a CRO process will increase the number of people who take your desired action. That way, you won’t miss out on converting as many people as possible.
To make sure your copy convinces website visitors to convert, follow the steps in this article to create your own conversion rate optimization process. You’ll learn how to determine whether or not your copy is working for you. And most importantly, how to fix it.
If you want to start dramatically increasing conversions with just a few tweaks to your website, keep reading.
You might wonder why an optimization process for copywriting is necessary for your business. After all, if your copy’s great, then it should convert anyway—right?
Well, good copy is one thing, sure, but there’s more to it. Let’s compare two scenarios to make this clearer.
Which of these options is the easiest way to increase conversions?
The first option sounds much more difficult, doesn’t it? It takes a lot of effort to reach out to unqualified customers. It’s even harder to get them to stay on your web page long enough to convert. There's little certainty of return.
The second option is much easier. It takes less effort to implement, and it’s less time-consuming. You’re also working with what you already have. It’s a much more reliable way of generating conversions.
That’s the benefit of having an optimized conversion rate process: it helps you get more out of your existing traffic.
And that’s where copywriting comes in. Your words should hook customers’ attention and make them stay on your website long enough to convert. A powerful CRO process will help you optimize your copy.
As you can see, implementing a CRO process isn't about using the latest tricks or hacks to increase on-page conversions. Rather, it’s about developing a strategy for optimizing your copy.
The customer experience on your website can be enhanced without spending extra time, money, or effort trying to increase traffic. So you don't have to come up with new strategies. Simply improve what's already there.
Keep reading to learn how to create a systematic process to test your copy and improve conversion rates.
Before you can start optimizing your conversion rates, define what a conversion means for you. What counts as a conversion varies depending on your goals.
For example, out of the number of website visitors, are you trying to increase the number of people who:
Your goals may be similar or different from this list of desired customer actions. Regardless, all these things can be conversions. For your CRO process, decide what conversions you specifically want to increase.
Different kinds of conversions have different requirements. For instance, getting more mailing list sign-ups is different from convincing more people to buy your product.
You’ll learn how to increase conversions for each of these outcomes, and more, later in this article. First, decide the customer behavior you want to increase.
Creating a strong CRO process also requires you to figure out your starting point. What is your business’ current conversion rate? Let’s do some basic math to figure it out.
Your website’s overall conversion rate is the number of conversions divided by the number of people who visit your website. Multiply that number by 100 to get a percentage.
For example, let’s say there are 10,000 visitors to your website each month. Combining the different kinds of conversions, such as sign-ups, opt-ins, and purchases, let’s say the number is 500.
After dividing the number of conversions from the number of site visitors and multiplying by 100, your website’s overall conversion rate is 5%. Easy, right?
But what if you wanted to measure something more specific? Perhaps mailing list subscribers? Dividing the number of mailing list subscribers by the number of website visitors isn't the right formula. The result won't be accurate.
Divide the number of subscribers by the number of visitors who saw the pages that offered an opt-in option. It makes no sense to factor in the number of pages that don't even allow customers to opt-in.
Counting the right number of web pages, let’s say that 5000 people visited them. Of those visitors, 500 of them converted. So, your conversion rate for mailing list subscribers is 10%.
This will give you a clear picture of your position. Moreover, what constitutes a "good" conversion rate can vary depending on the business, industry, and even country. At the end of the day, you're trying to increase this number.
This brings me to my next point...
Now that you know how to calculate your starting point, you can decide your goal conversion rate.
When you create a new goal, you need to be specific with your measures.
It’s not enough to say “I want to increase 500 conversions per month.” That’s not specific enough. First, for what? Your total website conversions? Your mailing list? Don’t forget that a CRO process increases conversions from the current amount of traffic you’re generating. It doesn’t account for attracting new unqualified leads.
Now let’s see what an appropriate goal looks like. A properly formatted goal reads like this: “I want to achieve X number of conversions for every Y number of visitors.”
Let's use the same numbers as above. If you want to increase total website conversions by another 500 per month, you need to achieve 1000 conversions for every 10,000 visitors, or 10%.
The more specific you are, the easier it is to plan the steps you need to take. When you create your goal conversion rates, make sure you include all these details.
Now that you’ve found all of your answers from the steps above, you can start crafting your own CRO process. A powerful CRO process includes gathering and analyzing data about your target audience and existing customers.
These findings will help you draw important conclusions about what makes your audience convert. You’ll also understand the kinds of changes you need to make to your web copy.
We’ll go over how to implement these changes later in the article. First, though, let’s begin with the most important step…
This may sound obvious, but before you begin changing your web page copy, it’s important to make sure you understand your customers deeply.
As a quick way of checking, try answering this question: what do your customers want? More than anything? This question will help you figure out their deepest desires and fears. You can use this information in your copy to compel them.
If you’re not able to answer yet, don’t worry. There are a lot of ways to find more information about your target audience.
After truly understanding their desires and fears, you’ll know exactly what you should address in your copy. You’ll be able to tap into the right emotions that’ll compel your audience to act.
Taking the steps to conduct proper audience research will help you stop guessing what customers really want. Instead, you’ll feel certain that you’re marketing to the right people in the right way.
Understand your audience by learning how to do proper audience research with the help of this article.
Another effective way of making sure your copy resonates with customers is by directly asking them yourself.
Try creating and sending polls or surveys to previous customers. Or, ask to interview them. In your questionnaires, ask them about your website. What points specifically convinced them to convert, and why?
Also, ask about their experience navigating through your website. Check whether they felt compelled to convert from your website’s structure. If it made them pause at all, ask them how you could improve it.
You can also offer an incentive to ensure a response, such as a discount on their next purchase.
Understanding what made your copy most effective will help you improve it. That way, you can replicate the copywriting on the rest of your web pages.
The key thing is not to change website copy based on instinct. Instead, use this data as evidence. Make sure it shows you whether or not the words on your web pages are as effective as they could be.
Once you’ve gathered their feedback, now you’ll know exactly what to test.
Another way to make sure you’re addressing your customers in the right way is using the right tone.
Your brand’s tone determines how your customers will interact with you. For example, do you want to sound serious, professional, quirky, or humorous?
How your copy should sound depends on what resonates with your customers.
Examine your audience's feedback from above if you're not sure how to address them. Look for similarities in their responses. For example, what tone of voice do they write in? How do they sound? What is their personality like?
Mimicking the way they speak will help you write copy that resonates with your audiences. They’ll feel like your brand truly understands who they are and what they want. That will increase the chances they convert.
Understanding your audience and addressing them effectively is a great way to start optimizing your website copy.
Now that you know what information you should include in your web copy, optimize it for conversions.
The last thing you want is to overwhelm your customers with text. Instead, format your landing pages and call to action appropriately. You should design your web pages in a way that makes conversion easy.
Headlines are the most important part of your web copy. It’s often the first, and last, thing people read to determine if they’ll continue or not.
If you don’t get your headlines right, customers won’t stay on the page long enough to convert.
To make sure you’re hooking in readers’ attention, your headlines need to be useful, urgent, unique, and ultra-specific.
For example, a generic headline such as “How to Build Muscle” won’t attract readers.
Instead, something specific, and actionable, like “6 Exercises You Can Do in 6 Minutes to Get a 6 Pack,” is much more attractive. The headline promises something your audience wants, in what time frame, and how, so readers are more likely to click on the link, and convert.
Make sure your headlines do these things.
Learn how to write powerful headlines that convert here.
Powerful CTAs that convert relate to customer benefits.
Remember what your customers want more than anything from the previous step? Refer back to it in your CTA. That’ll reinforce the message that they will achieve their goals after they convert.
Your CTAs should inspire readers to take your desired action. So make sure your copy entices them with the right kinds of encouragement.
Learn how to write stronger CTAs that convert here.
You might’ve expected this to be the first step for testing copy, but it’s necessary to lay out all the groundwork in the beginning.
Doing this work in advance helps you make sure you’re testing copy that will actually work. After all, it'd be a waste to compare versions of copy you’re not even sure customers resonate with.
Gathering all of the background information in the previous steps will give you the most effective copy to start with.
Now that you have all of your bases covered, it’s time to put your CRO to the test.
First, determine what you want to test. For example, headlines, colors, buttons, website design, calls-to-action, font, font size, placement, and more. Maybe you want to test your CTA.
You can even create more than two versions to test. After you’ve settled on the different versions, monitor them to see which one generates more conversions. There are A/B testing tools that help you keep track of these changes, such as Google Optimize, Hubspot, and Optimizely.
Whatever tool you use, you’ll be able to find out which web page version works best for your business. Optimizing your copy will help you achieve higher conversion rates.
If you want more immediate feedback, you can also gather users together to test out your website.
Study how users interact with your copy. Find out how they navigate your website. Is your sales funnel easy for them to follow? Are there any areas on your website that make them pause? If so, you know what you need to fix.
In real-time, you can see how effective your copy is based on user movements on your website. This immediate insight will help you create the best design and copy for your web pages.
Again, you can provide an incentive to encourage their participation.
Regardless, run as many tests as possible and gather enough useful data for your website. Whatever resonates with your audience best should be the published version on your website.
It’s natural to be impatient and want to overhaul your entire website in one go. Changing and testing too many things all at once, though, will make it difficult to keep track of your adjustments.
For example, imagine changing a landing page’s font, color, and CTA button size all at once. Your conversions may have increased, but do you know why? Which of these changes actually made visitors convert?
You won't be able to replicate your findings on your next landing page, i.e. systematically increase conversions by making informed tweaks to your site.
This defeats the purpose of creating a CRO process in the first place.
Concentrate instead on changing one thing at a time between different versions. On the landing page example, change the copy on each CTA button first. If you discover that one version converts more customers than the other, you'll know why.
Again, if you change too many elements at once, you won’t know why one version is more effective than the other. You’ll still be in the dark like you were before creating a CRO.
Creating a CRO process isn’t a race. If you want the best results, go slow and test one thing at a time. This will help you create a long-term and sustainable CRO process.
Even though this article primarily focuses on your website’s copy, the way it presents to visitors still matters.
Make sure your copy looks aesthetically pleasing through your website’s design. You can use wireframes to help you illustrate what the published web page will look like.
Wireframes help you block out where your text will go, including the headers, sub-headers, and body copy. You can also plan where images, videos, or other forms of media should go on the web page.
This will help you visualize how your copy will look to users.
Wireframes also help you consider the user’s experience. If the copy doesn’t fit well on the screen, customers will have a hard time reading it. At worst, they’ll click out of your web page.
With wireframes, you can test this out right away. You can lay out what’s supposed to be on the page in a visually appealing way.
You can also create multiple iterations of your web pages to see which version generates the most conversions.
There are a lot of different strategies you can use in your CRO process. Ultimately, though, you need to find what works for your business. That might take a little trial and error, but it’s definitely worth your while.
Starting out with the steps in this article will help you develop a strong foundation for your CRO process. Then, you can keep testing your copy to tweak and refine it over time.
Optimizing your conversion rates is a continuous process. Setting up a system is just the beginning. Industry practices are always transforming. That’s why you need to keep refining your web pages to see good results.
Constantly developing your CRO process will ultimately help you understand customer behaviors. You'll be able to adjust your website in a way that leads to maximum conversions.
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