We’ve always thought that great research uncovers secret behaviors.
What we (Crazy Egg and Nonfiction Research together) uncovered in this study is that marketers are secretly skipping over a simple practice that — in 15 minutes a week — could answer a lot of the challenges that keep them up at night.
It’s a perspective that every digital marketer ought to consider.
Gunny Scarfo & Ben Ziedler
Co-Founders, Nonfiction Research
There’s no shortage of advice on how to improve your website.
Everyone’s got a hack.
Everyone’s got a guy.
In the past few years, that advice has become more plentiful and less valuable.
Customer Acquisition Costs are on the rise and there’s no ceiling in sight.
Rising costs are compounded by the increase in competition for the attention of the people we have built our products and services for.
And all of this is exacerbated by macroeconomic uncertainty.
The High-Value Tactic You’re Ignoring
Often forgotten and left behind in all the advice shared by experts is Conversion Rate Optimization or CRO.
An unsexy term for improving the efficiency and productivity of your website — specifically, for improving how your website achieves its goals.
CRO is a clinical term.
Which is problematic because we’re tempted by the inspiring. The more enticing the name of the category (Instagram! Pinterest!), the more vigorous the pursuit of the tactic.
Enticing names don’t mean better performance, though.
The unsexiest of channels have always been the steadiest, the most evergreen, the most adaptable, and the highest performing (I’m looking at you too, email).
CRO is successful because it better aligns with your priorities.
According to an eMarketer study of marketing technology priorities:
• 65% want to increase marketing ROI.
• 57% want to improve marketing efficiency.
• 39% want to both attribute revenue to marketing and improve decision making.
CRO helps with all of those points.
CRO is successful because it complements whatever you do.
Sending email campaigns?
CRO helps you focus on the navigational behavior of people who click on your emails and visit your site.
Running Facebook or LinkedIn Ads?
CRO helps you identify whether your ads and your landing pages are in sync.
Have a rich content marketing strategy?
CRO helps you understand which posts are referring people further and further down your funnel.
Paid advertising, email, social media — all are tactics for seeking attention.
CRO is different. CRO is about paying attention.
CRO is the linchpin. It’s aligned. It makes intuitive sense.
So why are companies allocating only 1.7% of their budgets to it?
We Don’t Always Do What We Should
A research experiment on awareness (what’s good for us) vs action (what we choose to do) uncovered a strange phenomenon called the paradox of happiness.
In a nutshell, though we know and can recite very clearly what will bring us steady, consistent, long-term health and happiness (exercising vs watching TV, making dinner vs ordering takeout), when push comes to shove we still settle for short-term, fleeting, unsustainable indulgences.
An excerpt from the research:
Researchers surveyed 300 people about what they thought of different activities: some passive like listening to music or watching movies, others more active such as making art or meditating.
Participants were asked to rate how enjoyable, effortful and daunting they considered each of the activities to be – and also how often they engaged in each of them in a typical week.
The researchers also asked participants to say which of the activities were most and least conducive to lasting happiness.
Participants clearly identified more effortful activities as being more associated with lasting happiness – things like going for a run or cooking – but admitted that they spent more time on passive, relaxation-based activities, like watching TV.
(Natalie Clarkson, Virgin, @nataliejosh)
We’ve been hearing that exercise is good for us for at least 3,000 years — but that doesn’t make it any easier to get started.
CRO today is like exercise for your business.
It’s like getting 8 hours of sleep. It’s like eating your vegetables (without Ranch dressing or Raclette). It’s good for you and it’ll make your business healthier and longer-lasting.
CRO is like exercise because we know it’s good for us, and most of us still aren’t doing it.
After 1350+ conversations, we identified the problem.
As an industry, we’ve spent an exceptional amount of time teaching people how to do CRO. Which is great.
However, we haven’t convinced people why they should be doing CRO.
When it comes to CRO, we’ve been focused on “how.”
People are still trying to make their way through the “why.”
What 1350+ Experts Have to Say About CRO
We learned quite a bit, and we want to share what we’ve learned with you.
If you are a person doing work on the front lines:
We believe the research will help you realize you’re not alone in your challenges (and fears and distractions) when it comes to the high ROI opportunities you have in front of you.
Many of you will realize that you’ve already got a running start on anywhere from 50-60% of your peer group!
If you are a person marketing or selling to people doing work on the front lines:
We believe this research will help you view your positioning, product, and customer experience through a new lens; to create a new and different level of empathy for the people you’re trying to serve.
Ready to dive in? Get your free copy today!
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