Search engine optimisation, often called simply SEO, gets a lot of attention when people talk about attracting business to a website. SEO involves optimising your website so that its pages show up in the search engines for certain keyword searches.
SEO, however, is not the only consideration when making sure your website works hard for you.
What about conversion rate optimisation (CRO)? This is equally, if not more important, because if you don't convert your visitors, it does not matter how many people land on your website.
CRO involves optimising your website to make more conversions. If your pages show up in the search engines and attract clicks, but no one is converting when they land on your pages, you need to focus on your optimisation - otherwise you are failing to get the results you need and your efforts (and any SEO marketing spend) are wasted.
Conversions can mean different things to different businesses. It could mean:
So you need to know what type of conversions you want to get first of all. After that, you can start to focus on optimising them.
Focus on getting the basics right first. That means your website should be:
It should also have various calls to action to tell your visitors what to do. If you don't make this clear, the chances are you will be missing out on potential sales.
Set up your website using the basic principles above, perhaps with the help of a professional web designer and copywriter.
Once you have one version of your site, create a different version of, for example, your home page. You can then use the two different versions to split test your site, with half the visitors seeing one version, and half the other version. After a few weeks, find out which has been the most successful. You can then create another page using what you have discovered and test it again.
Multivariate testing (MVT) is based on the same principle, but this tests a number of different elements on your website in various combinations. Again, it is often a good idea to use a professional designer experienced in testing to get the best results.
All this testing can provide you with insight into the amount of time people spend on the website, the bounce rate and the number of page views per visitor. But when you make changes based on what you have found out, remember that this is not the end.
This is an on-going process, and you should keep on tweaking until you find the ideal combination. Or perhaps just keep on testing continuously to optimise your site even further. You could also test your PPC ads in the same way, using different versions of ads along with different landing pages.
Don't just focus on SEO, and make sure you also focus on what people do when they land on your website. High traffic volumes are great, but high conversions are what you really want.
If you don’t have the time or expertise to carry out the testing and optimisation yourself, at CSI Media we can do this for you, so please feel free to get in touch.