In this edition of #ThrowbackThursday, I'm jumping back 4 years to August 9, 2011 to my topic of conversion rate optimization.
What's A Conversion?
A "conversion" refers to some type of customer interaction that results in the capture of the customer's identity, usually their email address. E-commerce sites also measure conversions according to the number of online sales they have.
Measuring conversions on an e-commerce site is pretty easy because you either have a sale, or you don't. Measuring conversions on a non e-commerce site requires some creative online marketing to convince people to give you their personal information.
Here are some ways you can measure a conversion on a non e-commerce website:
- Get them to sign up for your email newsletter
- Give them a reason to ask a question through the Contact Us form
- Hold an event that they need to register for
- Offer a discount that they can only receive via email
- Post a comment on your blog
- Give them a reason to create a wish list
Once you have someone's email address you can send them your monthly newsletter to keep them updated on new products, current events, or promotions. It's those monthly emails that will keep people engaged and interested in your product.
There's no guarantee that website visitors will take any of the actions listed above, especially the first one. People are weary of giving out their email address just to get another solicitation newsletter.
Email marketing is one of the best ways to continually engage customers and promote sales growth. The bigger you build your list the more potential you have for sales growth. The key is getting more people to convert, and that's what "conversion rate optimization" is all about.
Improving Conversion Rate Optimization
Your website is at the core of all your conversions. You won't have any conversions if your visitors don't like the site. On the other hand, your website could be perfect and yet you still don't have conversions.
Website usability plays an important role in convincing people to convert. The smallest details on your website could change the whole usability of the site. Background colors, lines, even products shot on colorful background will change how people use the site.
While those visual aspects may make or break your website, another conversion optimization requirement for you to consider is what type of message your website will deliver. That message should be aligned with your overall goals of the website.
Some goals include:
- Getting people to sign up for your list
- Selling more jewelry
- Getting more publicity
- Building long term relationships
Each of those goals would have a different written message that you need to convey on your website. You'll have to tweak the message over and over again until you have a satisfactory level of conversions.
Measuring the Success of Goals
If your goal is to build your email list, then it will be pretty easy to measure that success. You could probably measure publicity and long term relationships by the number of social media engagements that are initiated after sending one of your newsletters.
If you track your in-store sales carefully you should be able to measure the benefit of the emails when you send them every month. You could also ask your customers what brought them into the store that day. However, these verbal questions are a poor method of measurement.
Another thing to consider is the number of times you have to communicate with a customer, or have them visit the store before they make a purchase. This is especially true for engagement ring sales which usually take a few store visits.
Unfortunately, there's no real solution to accurately tracking customer activity without an e-commerce site. The best idea for now is to work with your marketing or website agency to figure out what you could measure and what those measured results will actually mean to you.