Home > Uncategorized > What’s the Best Way to Improve Conversions?

What’s the Best Way to Improve Conversions?

What’s the Best Way to Improve Conversions? eMarketer, October 29, 2009

I can’t say it any better than eMarketer — it’s through testing and analysis.  

According to an Econsultancy study, companies considered “A/B testing as the most valuable way to improve conversion, with more than one-half of companies saying it was highly valuable and another 42% saying it was quite valuable”, while agency-side respondents considered cart abandonment analysis as the  most valuable way to increase conversions. 

I agree with both.  While you can probably drive your biggest, immediate impact by determining why shoppers are abandoning your shopping cart (assuming you make immediate fixes), you should also test. 

Where do they drop off?  And why?  Are they surprised at the shipping costs, which aren’t revealed until the second page in the cart?  Is it a legal disclaimer that’s causing folks to abandon your cart?  Do you have too many steps in the process? 

You won’t know until you investigate.  And you won’t know what (and which change) works best, unless you test it.   Look at your web analytics to determine where the highest drop off points are.  Launch a shopping cart abandonment survey to get more insights (real customer feedback).  And if you’re making changes, test them to determine what will get you the highest conversion rate. 

I’ve run shopping cart abandonment surveys in the past, which uncovered issues we didn’t know existed (thanks to shoppers).   We also provided the “abandonner” with the option to be contacted by our customer service team, which was then able to reach out, provide immediate support (while the site issue was being addressed) and close the sale over the phone.   Of course we also ran tests to determine which changes would yield highest conversion rates.

And to quote Bryan Eisenberg in Always Be Testing:
“It verges on insanity to look at the success of a company such as Amazon.com and still hold out hope that avoiding testing will produce the results that are well within your grasp… Through testing, you empower customers to collectively decide what works best for them… Intelligent testing removes opinion, guesswork, and faulty assumption from the marketing equation. It gives you truly meaningful results upon which you can act.”

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