Disclosure: I originally wrote this article for Search Engine Watch.
One of the easiest ways to gain credibility with any business partner is to establish quick wins using conversion rate optimization. In terms of business impact, conversion optimization is a grand slam because you effectively reduce cost per action, increase revenue per action, and satisfy more visitors to your website.
As is often the problem, web analysts and marketers tend to inherit a lot of excess baggage, so choosing to focus on only one or two sore spots on a website is hard to do.
Consider these top five places to start:
1. Paid Search Landing Pages
Looking for big impact right away? Optimize those paid search landing pages and start counting the money you save on search marketing immediately. Vary your value proposition, urgency, pricing, product mix, and form length.
2. Internal Search Results Pages
Search inquiries made on your website often yield the best (and cheapest) way to determine indicators to voice of customer information. These are committed visitors that probably aren’t finding what they want intuitively.
Inspect your server logs if you have to, but find out where your on-site navigation fails to satisfy. Look at pages with no results, top queries that should be satisfied through navigation, and perhaps synonyms you didn’t consider when writing creative. Increases in conversion optimization from visits to internal search pages are usually quick wins.
3. Help Sections
Areas on a website dedicated to helping people are most often frequented by loyal customers that want to solve problems on their own, rather than cost you money by calling support numbers, or emailing support staff. Help them help you (and other customers) by doing a better job of help documents, support downloads, and public service messages.
4. Product and/or Service Recommendations
The art of the upsell is best exhibited by ecommerce giants such as Apple, Amazon, GoDaddy, and Dell. If you are able to measure cart abandonment on your site, you’re ready to start testing product and service recommendations to increase your average revenue per order (I love ARPO).
5. Top Entry Pages
Entry pages to your site (excluding home pages and landing pages) are a bit harder to optimize, because referred traffic through search or other websites isn’t always continuous or predictable, but this is traffic to your site that is (usually) free. Measure common pathways from entry pages to determine how content can be changed to reduce bounce rate and you may just improve your search rankings at the same time.
Not making the list is “talk to your sales people,” because they often have invaluable insights into top questions prospects ask that may not be answered on your site that could warrant testing.
Disappointed that your top starting point didn’t make the list? Let me know by leaving a comment below.