Let’s start with some numbers:
- $92 billion: the amount of money Google made from AdWords in 2015 (Google)
- $65 billion: the amount of money businesses will spend on SEO in 2016 (eMarketer)
- $23.7 billion: the amount of money companies spent on social advertising in 2015 (eMarketer)
- $XX billion: the untold amount of money companies spend on email marketing, content marketing, social media (sorry, I couldn’t find stats)
What do all of these numbers have in common?
They’re all to do with driving traffic to your website.
Yes, companies spend billions and billions on PPC, SEO, social media, content marketing, email marketing, etc., in the hopes of driving traffic and eyeballs to their website.
Here’s another stat: companies spend $92 driving traffic to their website fore every $1 on converting that traffic (RedEye).
Let’s remember that a business website has two purposes:
1. to get traffic
2. to convert that traffic into leads, prospects, and/or sales
That’s it, that’s all.
So when companies are spending nearly ten times the money on driving traffic to their site compared to converting traffic, something is off.
Enter the importance of Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO).
What is CRO?
CRO is simply the practice of getting your website to convert more traffic into leads and sales.
How do you do that?
There’s no formula, but here’s some of the things that go into CRO and website optimization:
- Understanding your customers (really understanding them), and using surveys, research, and feedback to identify their problems, pain points, and issues that your product or service helps solve
- Using customer research to create customer “personas” that can be highlighted on website
- Making sure your website is about your customer, NOT your company
- Ensuring customers can answer these questions easily:
- What is this product or service? (make it crystal clear)
- Is it for me? (who is the product or service for)
- How is the product or service different? (compared to competitors)
- Who else is using it? (social proof, reduce perceived risk)
- What can I do? (e.g. start a free trial, download white paper, sign-up for demo)
- Understand that most of your users will probably arrive on your site on a page other than your homepage, and they should still be able to answer the five questions above
- Identifying and creating a conversion funnel that you’ll use to get users on the conversion path
- Implement user recording tools so you can watch users navigate your site and garner insight
- Dig deep into your analytics to see who’s converting, and who isn’t, identifying variables such as location, keywords, devices, demographics, and browsers
- Implement testing and conversion tools to test different messaging, headlines, pricing, form fields, offers, etc.
- Understand that a website is never “done”, but a continuous undertaking of testing and experimenting.
My point is CRO is crucial.
If you can double your website’s conversion rate, it has the same effect as doubling it’s traffic.
I doubt that’s something you can do with something like social media.
So invest in CRO, because your competitors will be.