Bummer! you just missed another one. Someone clicked on your ad, took a few seconds to look at your page… But then, his mouse started going slowly upwards… and left… and before you know it he hits the back button and he’s gone. Probably forever… This is why you need to master landing page optimization techniques. The more landing page optimization you practice, the less back buttons you’re going to see.
It takes only a few seconds for the landing page visitor to decide whether he or she is going to convert or add up to the grim statistic called “bounce rate”. This mere fact makes landing page optimization such a crucial process for every business aiming to increase online sales or lead generation.
In his 2005 book “Blink,” Malcolm Gladwell presents an idea from psychology and behavioral economics of a mental process called “blink”—an unconscious process that allows people to make decisions rapidly and automatically with relatively little information. On your landing pages “Blink” can work for you or against you—which is why some well-optimized pages get off-the-chart performance while others muddle along.
The main challenge when optimizing landing pages is that traditional web analytics tools offer very little insights to what users are doing on the landing page and what drives them to convert or leave. Conventionally, the best web analytics tools are designed to measure traffic between one page and the other, while stopping short of any analysis of what happens on the landing page itself. Web analytics reports are great if you want to measure traffic, but for measuring user experience you need something else… Here are 5 tips that marketing pros leverage for optimizing landing pages:
1. Mouse Move heatmap
One of the major breakthroughs in user experience analytics is the discovery that there is an 84% to 88% correlation between mouse moves and eye movement. Therefore, website mouse tracking offers an affordable alternative to costly eye tracking studies. In fact, mouse tracking can be one of the best ways to see what users are doing once they reach your landing page and is an invaluable tool in landing page optimization.
One of the best ways to optimize your lading page is to look at segmented mouse heatmaps. Examining the mouse movement tracking heatmaps for users who converted against heatmaps of users who did not convert can reveal powerful insights about the parts of the landing page that drive conversions and those that do not.
2. Mouse Movement Recordings
Bring the popcorn and sodas, you’re about to watch what your users are doing on your landing page. Mouse movement recordings allow you to optimize your landing page by watching visitors’ mouse movements step by step. This is one of the best tools for understanding user experience—almost like looking your visitors over the shoulder.
This is also one of the more simple types of analysis that you can do in order to optimize your landing page. No numbers, no reports, just putting yourself in your visitor’s shoes an trying to understand what makes them tick on your landing page.
3. Web Analytics Click Through Analysis
Here is a surprising fact—most of the clicks on your landing page are actually in places where there is no link… It’s not that you landing page visitors are not smart; it’s more about unclear user experience. Click heatmaps can show you whether users are finding your landing page unclear, or think that some of the images or graphics are clickable.
Another important landing page optimization tactic with click through analysis is to see whether users click on your call to action. If the call to action is under the fold or users just don’t notice it, a landing page redesign may be in order. Your click heatmaps are a great tool for fixing these users experience issues and optimize your landing page.
4. Landing Page Form Analytics
The form on your landing page is the moment of truth. All of the blood, sweat, work and tears, including tons of advertising dollars and web design effort went to this one crucial moment, which will determine whether you landing page will get another conversion or not.
You cannot complete a landing page optimization process without conducting a thorough form analysis. This tool tells you which fields generate the highest abandonment rate on your landing page form. You can see the statistics for the proportion of users who’ve decided to abandon the form after each step. In some cases, removing one field can do wonders for your landing page conversion rate.
Another benefit of Form Analytics for your landing page is the ability to spot form validation problems that are hard to find any other way. For example, some international visitors have postal codes with more digits than what your form permits. All in all, form Analytics is crucial for every landing page optimization project.
5. Traffic Sources Analysis
Not all traffic is created equal. With different advertising channels and keywords, it’s important to optimize your landing page to the different traffic sources. There are two ways that you can work on the optimization process:
First, see which traffic sources deliver the best value. If you can optimize your budget by moving some of the investment from channels with lower conversion to channels with higher conversion you immediately improve your ROI.
Second, conduct your landing page optimization by channel—examine your heatmaps, visitor recordings and form analytics to see whether you need to create additional landing pages for some channels. Just remember, “Blink” means that if your landing page didn’t resonate in the first few seconds, it probably never will.
Are You Ready to Optimize Your Landing Page?
Just a few seconds—and they’re gone. This is what makes landing page optimization such a crucial endeavor for online marketers. Mastery of landing page optimization is what makes marketing superheroes.
These five tools offer a great foundation for increasing your landing page conversion, sales and leads. Just remember, landing page optimization is an ongoing process, and if you don’t convert everybody, you always have room to improve.
The numbers are pretty clear – you either achieve 15% online revenue growth or you lose market share to the competition. eCommerce has great potential in 2013, but is your target high enough? Are you ready to make the investment to achieve it?
Download this infographic to learn why 2013 should be your best year, including:
- All of the latest eCommerce growth forecasts
- Which product categories are going wild
- What are the key advertising dates to grow your business
What are the best strategies for slashing your marketing budget? Can you analyze the data at your fingertips effectively to increase conversion rates? Which ClickTale features best match your website’s needs?
ClickTale is now offering a series of FREE live training sessions with our Customer Experience Consultants and Product Specialists that give you the tools and ideas to optimize your usage of ClickTale, including:
- Quick run-throughs introducing ClickTale’s value and capabilities
- Advanced training teaching you how to use the tool efficiently
Our value-packed series of webinars offers you the following sessions in the coming weeks:
Getting Started: ClickTale 101
Understand your customers’ online experience and improve the usability of your site to obtain better results. This webinar, designed for beginners, will be offered by experienced ClickTale Product Consultants and Account Managers on April 17, May 8 and June 5.
Sign up NOW for the May 8th webinar – Space is limited!
Examine websites in different industries and understand customer divisions and past mistakes, assessing what went wrong and how to implement changes that maximize benefits. Customer Experience Consultant Ora Levit looks at a range of websites and discusses how they have been improved, all in real time.
Improving Your Site Performance
Learn how to leverage current data to see what is really working on your website. By identifying bugs in real time and making changes while they are happening, Customer Experience Consultant Jessica Braman teaches you how to stop losing customers due to unidentified problems on your site.
Tracking and Optimizing Marketing Campaigns
If you’re spending too much on marketing campaigns, learn how to cut your marketing budget by identifying which elements of your campaigns give you the best ROI. Customer Experience Consultant Esther Shatz teaches you to use ClickTale to track how customers from different campaigns behave (and convert) on your site.
There is nothing worse for an online retailer than a high shopping cart abandonment rate. According to Monetate, 8.01% of visitors added items to their cart in Q4 2012, but only 1.42% actually checked out—suggesting that global cart abandonment rate is around 82%. Here are five strategies that you can use to reduce your cart abandonment and increase conversion rates.
You spend a fortune bringing visitors in; you see them engaging with your carefully curated products… But then, just as you are waiting for them to open their wallet, they leave. There is nothing more frustrating and annoying than a high shopping cart abandonment rate, seeing those engaged potential customers going away. Cart abandonment is here to stay, but there are some things that you can do to save some of those dollars:
1. Do the analysis
Shopping cart abandonment may not only be the fault of price comparison or indecisive shoppers. Some of it may be due to problems with user experience or even due to undetected website errors. Segmenting users who abandoned their shopping cart and looking at their visitor recordings and heatmaps can uncover many of these problems and potentially save users from going to the competition. For example, visitor recording can reveal that international users cannot check-out since they don’t have an US phone number.
2. Create a multi-step checkout process
In a multi-step checkout process, you capture a potential customer’s email address, which allows you to contact him or her by email if they choose to abandon their shopping cart. Only then, you ask for other details including shipping address and credit card information.
This has two main benefits for lowering shopping cart abandonment rate. This way if they do not complete the checkout process, you have an email you can reach-out to. Second, it is much less intimidating: instead of one long form, you have a short one at each stage.
3. Offer free shipping
In many cases, the additional cost of shipping comes as a surprise to many visitors during the check-out process. In an era when many online retailers offer free shipping, charging a few dollars extra for shipping may be a point of friction and drive customers to abandon their shopping cart. Therefore, try to experiment with free shipping and see whether the added revenue from lower abandonment rate overweighs pocketing shipping costs.
4. Have a great return policy—and make it explicit
When you can’t touch the merchandise, customers want to know that they’re not going to get stuck with a pair of shoes that don’t fit. You may not need to go as far as Zappos.com and offer 365 day free return on everything. However, even if you have a return policy already, making sure that it is explicit during the checkout process may make it easier for customers to spend the money.
5. Give lowest price guarantee
One of the things that can increase your shopping cart abandonment rate is if customers feel that they need to check out another website or two to make sure that got the best deal. A price match guarantee can give shoppers the assurance that they can check-out now and get the difference if they find lower prices anywhere online.
No silver bullet
There is no silver bullet to lower your shopping cart abandonment rate. Yet rigorous analysis that includes watching visitor recordings, analyzing heatmaps and incorporating other best practices can lower abandonment rate, earning your precious extra revenue. And in the competitive world of online retail, every fraction of a percent counts.
Mobile User Experience: Combining Mobile and Brick-and-Mortar Can Keep Your Customers from Browsing Away
When more than 60% of users use the in-store Wi-Fi to compare prices or to find deals and product reviews, the competition for shopping experience between mobile ecommerce and brick-and mortar intensifies. One way to reduce leakage to other mobile ecommerce sites is to develop a combined mobile and brick-and-mortar user experience.
As more and more brick-and-mortar retailers deploy Wi-Fi networks on premises, the ubiquity of mobile devices means that price comparison has become a lot easier. According to research by JiWire, more than 10 million people used in-store Wi-Fi network while shopping.
With a wealth of information at their fingertips, consumers are getting smarter about their shopping habits. The research shows that more than 60% of respondents used their smartphones while in a store to compare prices. Other common uses are to find product reviews, coupons or even to browse the store’s website.
Got a Store—Need a Mobile Website
If your conclusion from this research is that you should stop offering free Wi-Fi to your customers, you got this all wrong. If you don’t offer Wi-Fi, customers are just going to go online using their carrier’s network.
A better way to approach it is to offer a mobile site of your own with a QR code for easy access. The omnipresence of mobile devices means that brick-and-mortar stores do not only compete with other retailers in the neighborhood, but with all mobile ecommerce websites out there.
What if you were to develop a combined mobile and brick-and-mortar user experience? Your customers may be looking for price comparison and product reviews anyway before buying, so why wouldn’t you offer it to them yourself?
By promoting your mobile website in-store and making it easy to access using a QR code or an app, you can control your customers’ mobile experience. You can offer them product reviews and price comparisons with other competitors to convince them that they are getting the best deal.
Mobile User Experience Extended
Mobile can greatly enhance the physical shopping experience. The challenge is how to make the two shopping experiences work together rather than against each other. Retailers have found creative ways to keep their customers in stores for longer—IKEA offers restaurants, other stores open coffee stands and nearly all retailers place products strategically to make users spend more time between the aisles.
Brick and mortar retailers can’t stop the mobile revolution,so it’s time to get creative and join it.
Goodbye Clutter—Hello Increased Conversions: 4 Things You Can Learn from Facebook’s Newsfeed Makeover
“Goodbye Clutter.” The title that Facebook chose for their newsfeed makeover page says it all—the company is getting serious about user experience. While Facebook has made some changes in the past in order to accommodate more images and video, it seems that now they even took it one notch higher.
If you are into user experience, it’s great to be working for Facebook. Every day, hundreds of millions of highly engaged users spend hours on Facebook, making it one of the largest usability labs on earth. On top of this, Facebook has the money and experts to analyze the data and come up with powerful usability insights.
So, Facebook has done the research, got the insights and built their new look. What works for Facebook can also work for you! What can you learn from the Facebook newsfeed makeover that can increase conversion rates on your website?
1. Vibrant visuals bring your site to life
A picture is worth a thousand words… And Facebook decided to change their newsfeed to reflect that. Facebook has decided to put more emphasis on visuals and take some of the emphasis away from text with its new look. I guess that nearly all of us had the experience where our images got far more shares, likes and comments as compared to our status updates without images.
Therefore, we need to learn from the new Facebook user experience to get more images to our sites. Great visuals to add can range from product images to illustrations and eye catching infographics. Like in Facebook, images generate engagement and higher engagement leads to higher a conversion rate.
2. Videos are here—big time
If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine what 30 frames per second can do! Videos are now taking center stage and are more inviting and engaging than ever. The reason for this is probably that Facebook learned that videos leave people on the site for longer and get more feedback.
Do you have videos on your site? Do you have a plan for creating a video blog or video presentations for your products or services? Professional looking videos are now easier to produce than ever, so take this advice from Facebook and get more videos on your site.
3. Give people choice
Remember the guy from high school that’s constantly updating his feed and never stops? Now you don’t have to see his updates anymore. The days of one feed fits all are long gone and now you can choose which feed you want to see. Your choice can range from all friends, most recent, music, games and more.
Is your website one size fits all? A case study from Magazine.co.uk shows that making it easier for users to navigate to the magazine that they are looking for boosted overall magazine sales by 28%. Making sure that your visitors find it easy to navigate to the pages that they find interesting is likely to lower your bounce rate and increase the time users spend on your site.
4. Go mobile
One of the major changes in the new makeover is a cleaner look for mobile. Mobile is becoming a major source for traffic and should be on every site owner’s mind. Yet, mobile user experience is very different from the desktop one. Hand gestures instead of clicks mean that you need to optimize your site differently for mobile users, so follow the Facebook example and make sure that you are mobile friendly.
Do you like the new look?
Whether you like it or not, Facebook’s new look is here to stay. Nevertheless, Facebook is one of the largest usability labs in the world, so make sure that you take the best insights that led to the newsfeed makeover and apply them to your site.
Tweet your takeaways from the Facebook newsfeed makeover using #ClickTale
Web analytics are a major investment for any online website both in terms of tools and personnel. However, web analytics teams and tools face the challenge of actually showing their contribution to the top line in order to compete for budget. More specifically, the challenge is to take all of the advice and suggestions for improvement and show how much incremental revenue they contributed to the company.
Can web analytics experts just sit idle when organizations are scrutinizing every investment and CEOs are looking for higher ROI? How can web analytics increase accountability and turn its perception from a cost center to a revenue generating machine? Avinash Kaushik and Jesse Nichols suggest that it is time to start calculating the ROI, or as Nichols calls it, “Return on Analytics” (ROA).
It seems that everyone is jumping on the ROI bandwagon these days. Marketing is measured by Return on Ad Spend and new product features are measured on incremental sales. Internal tools are measured on the work (and cost) that they save to the organization.
According to Kaushik and Nichols, the challenge in Web Analytics is that it improves the ROI and performance of other teams which makes it hard to calculate its contribution directly. For example, if an analyst improved conversion rate by 50%, marketing can then say that ROI on ad spend is 50% higher and therefore more budget should be allocated to Marketing.
Kaushik and Nichols have a different suggestion. Their solution is to sum up the improvement over a period of time and divide it by the total investment in analytics.
For example, let’s imagine company is investing $30k in analytics and gets a return of $120k in monthly sales—or overall a 400% ROI. Now, they hire a web analytics expert that is able to take the same investment in marketing increase conversion rate and user experience and turn it in to $180k in revenue.
The challenge is that right now, the Marketing team actually claim credit for the improvement, while it is hard for the analytics team to be recognized for it. However, by calculating the ROA, the web analytics team can show their true worth.
Let’s assume that the company invests $5k per months in web analytics tools and services. So a monthly improvement of $60k in revenue and $5k in cost delivers an ROI of 1,200%. You don’t need to be a finance professor to know that is a great return.
To get the place they deserve in the organization’s totem pole, the analytics team need to be able to show indecisively the contribution that they are making to the organization’s top line. If they would like to justify the investment in more sophisticated tools they should compete with the other departments on ROI or ROA.
Filling long and exhausting forms and reading oceans of text in legalese may be part a lawyer’s typical day, yet it seems that visitors to law firms’ websites expect a different experience. New analysis shows that in order to generate leads online, law firms should avoid those habits that became synonymous with the trade.
A new post by John McDougall reviews how ClickTale can help law firms convert more of their website visitors through tracking user behavior and improving landing page conversion rates. McDougall is the CEO of McDougal Interactive, an expert in online marketing for law firms and the publisher of The Lead Review.
As the article points out, most law firms are way too focused on driving traffic and are not focusing enough on converting the traffic that they already have to leads. McDougall used ClickTale in order to track customers along their conversion funnel, see how far they scroll down, which links they click and how they interact with forms.
According to McDougall, form analytics is one of the most helpful features ClickTale offers. For law firms, lead generation is one of the most important goals for the website. Yet, according to McDougall, law firms use very long forms that typically have lower performance. Another important feature is the Scroll-Reach map that can teach you what portion of users actually see your call to action.
Even for law firms, data and knowledge are key to a higher conversion rate and better user experience. There is something in common for law and web analytics—good due diligence lets you win more cases and visitors.
A new report from eMarketer shows that online travel sales are growing rapidly in China, India and the rest of Southeast Asia. The research expects online travel sales in the region to grow from $79 billion in 2012 to $91 billion in 2013. The good news is that some of this surge in spending is likely to leak into international travel websites, hotels and destinations.
Growth in online travel is especially strong in India and China. eMarketer’s digital travel sales forecast from January 2013—which includes online, tablet and smartphone bookings—also expects the trend to continue all the way through 2016. Online travel sales in China will increase from about $33.3 billion in 2012 to nearly $50 billion by 2016—growth of 50%. India’s digital travel sales will nearly double from $9.61 billion to $18.65 billion during the same period.
This growth encompasses a great opportunity also for international travel sites, hotels and destinations. How can you know that your online customer experience is optimal for Asian travelers? Well, you can’t, not without tracking and measuring it first. When you analyze your website’s customer behavior and conversions, don’t forget to take a look at travelers browsing from Asia and see how they behave. This can be key for unlocking some further growth.
Nevertheless, there are some rules of thumb that work for every travel website. In a whitepaper titled “Best Practices for Online Travel,” ClickTale’s Customer Experience Experts give some advice about their user engagement analysis on online websites.
According to the analysis, there are 4 specific web elements that can improve user engagement on travel websites:
- Provide engaging details of the amenities or destination. Distinguish yourself from the competition by giving website visitors an in-depth description of what they are going to get. Remember that for many users, building expectations is part of the fun before a vacation.
- Remember that most users skim rather than read the text. Therefore, use bullets, bold text and images to let users get as much as they can in as little time possible.
- Reviews. Travelers are more likely to believe fellow travelers than believing you. Therefore design a program to facilitate reviews of past happy customers.
- Call to action. Grab users’ right when they make a decision. Make sure always to have a visible and compelling call to action. Once someone has made a decision, don’t let them look any further for the booking page… They may choose to check out the competition instead.
Asian travel is booming and it’s a great opportunity for you to buck on this trend. Make sure to analyze the user experience and engagement of travelers from Asia to optimize your website for them as well.
More and more websites are making A/B and multivariate testing a central element of their web optimization strategy. Every website should be applying an approach that we call the Online Optimization Cycle™ , involving web analytics, ClickTale and a testing solution.
How to Implement the Online Optimization Cycle™
- Start by analyzing site performance with your web analytics and digging deeper with ClickTale Heatmaps and Visitor Playback to reveal how customers behave inside your web pages. This will uncover what you should change.
- Next, you need to test these hypotheses through an A/B or multivariate test. Try two or more versions side-by-side and see which one your customers respond to best.
- Finally, you may have discovered your winner, but you don’t necessarily know why. You now need to run a post-test analysis with ClickTale to understand how the new version impacted on the way customers behave. This in turn provides inspiration for your next test. And so the cycle begins again.