This is an old post that mostly holds true today, so I updated a few spots and deliver it again for you.
One of the most common problems I find when working with smaller businesses diving into Adwords or SEO for the first time is basic conversion rate optimization (CRO) concepts. Why aren’t people calling or buying my product when I first turn on an Adwords campaign or get started?
I have had many cases where I warn someone ahead of time that their site is not really set up to succeed. Beyond the obvious things like not being mobile friendly, there are a number of basics many don’t put in to place before they start drawing visitors to their site that can lead to failure. This post is meant to address some of the more basic and obvious ones that I still see people struggle with.
The fundamental thing to always keep in mind is to ask yourself if a visitor comes to my site, is it easy for them to do what I want them to do. Be brutally honest with yourself. Investing in tweaks to make this happen can lead to huge gains in conversion, yet I often see people think their users don’t mind making that extra click or pinching the screen. Users do mind and you lose a lot of them by making them jump through hurdles or do extra actions to get to what you want them to do. Remove as many hurdles as you can.
In the summer of 2018, with the updated mobile first algorithm, if you aren’t mobile friendly, you aren’t trying. Even basic site builder tools are mobile friendly these days, but you better check and be sure if you haven’t updated your site in a few years.
This is an absolute must now, though I still see people turning on Adwords campaigns with an old site that isn’t mobile-friendly and seeing everyone bounce when they visit. If the user has to pinch around on the screen to try to read or understand your content, you are likely going to lose them.
Touch to Call Phone Numbers
If your primary goal is to get your users to call you, you need to make that as easy as possible. Don’t make them click around until they get to some contact page, put your phone number in a big and obvious way on every page and for mobile users, format the number so if they touch it, it initiates the call. This seems basic, but I see people miss this all the time and wonder why they aren’t getting phone calls. In general, I suggest giving users another option as well, such as a scheduling tool or contact form, as many don’t love to make actual phone calls these days, but certainly make sure they don’t have to do much work to make that call.
Content Being On Topic: There’s a Page For That
This is another one I see quite regularly. Especially with Adwords advertisers, as SEO doesn’t really allow for off topic visitors to visit a page. However, with SEO, I am always telling business owners that they need to create a page for any product or service that is important to them. Your page topic and headline should address what the searcher is looking for. You will have far more success with specific pages that address searchers needs than sending everyone to a generic home page.
Someone looking to address a leaky toilet is far more likely to call or hire a plumber if they land on a page that shows them that your regularly deal with leaky toilets, than on a generic page just telling them about your business. This has been proven time and time again and the investment in the extra pages will pay off over time. If a service is important enough for you to advertise for it specifically, you should be willing to invest in creating a page for it. Searchers like to see the concept or words that they actually searched for show up in the ads that they see and in the pages that they land on.
Clear and Obvious Call To Action On Every Page
Whatever your conversion method may be, from a purchase button to a phone call or download, you need to make it clear and obvious on the page. If it isn’t clear, it won’t work. If people have to hunt for the phone number or conversion button at the bottom of the page or worse yet, on a different page, it won’t work. Make it as easy as you can for them to buy from you. It is that simple.
Easy Formatting of Forms
Just like with the touch to call idea for phone calls, forms should be as easy as you can make them. If a form calls for a phone number, automatically set it up to trigger the phone number format so the user doesn’t have to use the full keyboard. Ask for as little information as you need to get the first purchase accomplished, and make the format so easy that people don’t have to struggle to fill out your form. I have abandoned forms many times when they became difficult to fill out and I have worked with people who said: “People should know that” or “we need that information” about information or hurdles they requested that they didn’t’ really need, and then saw vast improvement once they eased the process. Simplify things as much as possible and that can just mean making formatting choices so that a form ie easier to fill out.
Signs of Trust
It also helps to show users why they would choose you or trust you on each page. If you can show some reviews or symbols of qualification such as your BBB rating or industry accomplishments, this will help a user feel better about clicking that button or making that call. Try to build these into each page in a way that subtly eases their fears, but does not prevent them from the general message of your product offerings.
When you are building or tweaking your site, keep all of these in mind and it will lead to much more success in turning your visitors into clients, patients, customers. etc. Give us a call if you need help getting poeple to visit your site, or converting them once they are there.