Everyday people visit your site. Some arrive accidentally, some are researching for a product or service similar to yours, some saw your ad and were intrigued enough to click on it. Still others heard about your services from a friend.
There are many different type of visitors. Some wander, flipping between pages. Some focus on features and pricing or testimonials, while others will jump to the signup form right away to settle their account and try your service, test your software or purchase your products.
Your job is to take care of all of them.
No one should get lost or feel confused. They should be encouraged to stay on your site and get familiar with your brand. After all, the success of your online business depends on whether you can convince your visitors to take specific actions.
Of course, there is no magic recipe, formula or remedy that could be applied once and turn passive visitors into active clients. It’s all about testing, learning and improving the user experience. It’s never a one-time shot. It’s an endless process.
What we learned through our own testing is that making your site more “human” can make the difference. Here’s our story.
Is humanization the new optimization?
We do a lot of A/B testing here at Positionly. Recently we’ve decided to do a major redesign of our home page. We ran many different tests with many different hypothesis. We learned a lot about conversion rate optimization.
Before I get to the specifics, take a look at the major changes that we’ve implemented.
As you can see, we’ve added more human elements to our landing page. Really, it’s nothing new in web design and conversion optimization. Some say that humanization is the new optimization. We wanted to test if that was also the case this time.
Here is a closer look at the human elements that we’ve added:
Images show people. Testimonials list people’s names, title and business—and their image as well.
In our case it all paid off. The overall engagement increased for more than 12%.
Also, more people visited our Features (improvement for more than 20%) and Plans (improvement for almost 50%) sections.
We were satisfied with the results, but we’ve learned much more than just the simple fact that adding human elements to landing page improves conversion rates. Below I gathered the most important and valuable lessons that we’ve learned from our landing page experiments.
Things that we’ve learned
Does your website really reflect the nature of your business?
Before you nod your head, please go back to the idea that made you start your business in the first place. Now try to answer that question again.
Positionly was brought to life to make it easy for non-technical people—who know nothing or very little about SEO—to optimize websites and grow their businesses. Our software provides professional tools, yet thanks to the plain design and simple interface, it is suitable also for startups, small businesses and freelancers that do SEO on their own.
We knew what our aim was from the very beginning. The thing is, people who visited Positionly weren’t able to tell it immediately. Our website didn’t communicate it.
The new design and the humanization factor could help us emphasize that Positionly is a tool also for non-SEO professionals. We wanted to make sure that people who stumbled upon our site knew immediately what Positionly is all about. Also, we wanted to emphasize the core strengths that differentiate us from our competitors.
That’s what landing pages should do.
Along with a whole new design, we’ve changed the copy.
Now anyone who lands on our homepage knows at a glance what the tool does and who it is for. No misleading information. No time wasted. No wandering. No wondering. No guessing. Just pure transparency.
Takeaway: Whatever online business you run, make sure you’ve built a proper landing page. Both the copy and the design should clearly communicate the essence of your business and… nothing more. Too much information may blur the picture of what you do and who you are. Visitors should get it at a glance.
Save additional info for other sections. Your home page is about making a good first impression, and by good I mean approachable. Don’t make your visitors feel overwhelmed. Use only the elements (copy, graphics, video, etc.) that are absolutely necessary. Your message should be communicated in a concise, straightforward and intelligible way.
Keep them on your site.
As it was mentioned before, there are many different types of visitors. Some of them may be not ready to try your service or purchase your product yet. It doesn’t mean that you should leave them without any guidance.
Your job is to figure it out how to make them stay on your site and engage with your brand. It’s good to have many visitors, but it’s even better to have active users instead.
Thanks to the new design, we improved the number of visitors who searched for more information about Positionly (they dived from the homepage into Features and Pricing sections, as you could see on the screens above), but we didn’t stop there.
We wanted to make sure that even those visitors who are not ready to try our software yet will be able to actually take any action. We’ve added the “Learn more” button as an alternative to the “Get Started Now” call-to-action.
We made both CTA’s readable, appealing, but different enough to make sure they won’t compete for people’s attention. “Learn more” was meant to keep hesitant visitors on our website but not to distract the others from giving Positionly a try.
It was a bull’s eye! Just take a look at the stats. The improvement was huge – more than 200%!
Takeaway: Let your visitors choose what action they are ready to take. Offer them additional information and guidance. Don’t focus only on those who are familiar with your brand. There are many different types of conversions. Set different goals for different visitors.
It’s very good if you answer questions and dispel doubts before they even come to your visitors’ minds. If you provide such an experience, they will be more likely to return to your site and finally purchase what you offer them.
Never stop improving.
When you run a test and get great results, you usually stop because you’re so satisfied with the outcome. That’s what most people do.
OK, I get it. You tested a hypothesis. It turned out to be true. You’re excited that you’ve just found a way to improve the conversion rates and you think it couldn’t get any better. Except, it could.
We were more than happy that our “Learn More” experiment was successful, but we kept on testing and improving. And guess what, we found a way to improve the improvement.
We changed a copy on the CTA button. Now, instead of “Learn More”, our visitors could “Discover More.” We could see that new version noted improvement for more than 45%.
Takeaway: Improving the conversion rates doesn’t always require major changes, writing a totally new copy or doing complete redesigns. Sometimes a tiny change may have a great impact. A/B tests are about seeking for new solutions, gathering feedback and designing better improvements.
The most important thing about CRO is keeping in mind that it’s a never-ending and creative process.
Before you run any tests, you should thoroughly consider what hypothesis you want to check. You can try many different hypothesis at the same time or even run multivariate tests. Just make sure that one test doesn’t affect the others, so you’re able to tell exactly what variables caused specific result in each test.
If you’re not familiar with A/B testing, never been optimizing your conversion rates or simply need some inspiration to come up with new hypothesis and design new A/B tests, it’s always a good idea visit those sites:
- for CRO and A/B testing knowledge
- CrazyEgg blog – Well, you obviously know this one already! Guys from CrazyEgg do a great job with serving a solid portion of valuable posts about conversion rate optimization. Each post and thesis is backed up with many clear examples.
- Unbounce blog – This is another great source of knowledge. You can find there many quick tips on how to optimize conversion rates and what mistakes to avoid.
- Optimizely blog – As Optimizely is one of the best known A/B testing tools, you can be sure that they serve great insights about the latest A/B testing trends.
- for marketing knowledge
- Quicksprout and Kissmetrics blog – Neil Patel is one of the best known online marketers. His blogs are full of deep marketing and entrepreneurship insights. Whatever new drift come up in the online marketing, you can be sure you can read about it on Neil’s blogs.
- Hubspot blog – Hubspot is a well known marketing software. Its blog is anything but boring. You can find there very informative posts written in an accessible and easy way.
- for design knowledge and inspiration
- Land-book – It’s an awesome gallery of well designed landing pages. Guys from Land-book search the web to find the best web design trends. If you’re looking for an inspiration, this is a really good address.
- Sidebar – This one is a compilation of the best articles about design. It’s full of profound articles that anyone who wants to be up-to-date with the latest design trends should read.
- UXMyths – UX Myths collects the most frequent user experience misconceptions and explains why they don’t hold true.
I hope that our story and those little tips that I just gave you will help you in any way. I know that our experiences may be different from yours, but if there’s something that you can apply to your business to improve your conversion rates, we’ll be more than happy!
If you have any comments to our story, want to give us your feedback and suggestions or simply would like to discuss CRO tactics, write your thoughts in the comment section below.
Also, don’t forget to read other CrazyEgg’s deep insights about conversion rate optimization.