As we enter the new year companies around the globe begin to set out their plans for 2014. After the increase in exposure of conversion optimisation in 2013 many companies will be adding it to their plans for the coming year.
In this post I want to highlight a couple of areas of conversion rate optimisation that I think will be popular or emerge to the mainstream this year, they are:
1. Attention Ratio Analysis
2. Loss vs Gain
3. Cost To Value Analysis
4. Segment Analysis
5. VOU (Voice Of User) Analysis
Attention Ratio Analysis
This technique is one that has been around for some time but has never really reached the mainstream audience. It involves working out the ratio of interactive elements on a page against the number of Calls To Action (CTAs).
The ideal ratio can vary slightly depending on the purpose of the page, a good example is that a PPC landing page should have a ratio of 1:1 or as close to it as possible. Many eCommerce stores have pages with ratios of 100:3, this highlights an unbalanced page. Where possible a page should only have 1 CTA, although I know many situations where 2 or 3 are required. If you have more than 3 CTAs on a single page then you most likely need to work on your website structure.
I would advise that if you have a ratio above 10:1 then your page requires optimisation.
Loss vs Gain
This technique is one that has been around for a long time. In many niches you can improve conversion rates by focussing on the gains the visitor will achieve if they convert on your website. However in other niches conversion rates can be improved by focussing on the losses the visitor will suffer if they do not convert.
It is a good idea to test a ‘Loss’ version of your page vs a ‘Gain’ version to get a better understanding of what is the key motivator for your websites visitors. It is often stated that losses are twice as powerful as gains when attempting to persuade a visitor to convert.
Cost To Value Analysis
Cost to Value Analysis has been around for a couple of years now and is growing in importance every year. It is the process of analysing whether the perceived cost of the conversion is outweighed by the perceived value to be achieved by converting.
This means that if you sell your product/service for a small fee, say $5, then you need to ensure that the perceived value of your product/service is that of one worth more than $5.
One of the most commonly seen examples of this in practice is listing the RRP (Recommend Retail Price) next to the price offered. If the RRP is $10 and you are offering it at $5 then you are offering clear value. It should be noted that value is not always monetary. Many products available online offer value by solving a problem being faced by the visitor, if you can highlight how the product can solve their problem then you are offering value, if that value is perceived to be higher than the cost of the product then you will have yourself on the way to a conversion.
Cost to Value Analysis is a great tool to keep in your arsenal.
This is very much old hat these days although the number of possible segments is increasing all the time as new touchpoints are introduced and as Internet behaviour matures.
In simple terms no two visits are the same, they could be in seperate countries, speak different languages, be on different browsers, be mobile or desktop or many, many more. This means that you need to segment your analytics data to get an understanding of the problems that are facing certain segments of your visitors.
By breaking your visitors into segments you can avoid making sweeping generalisations about your visitors that leads you to making poor decisions when it comes to making changes to your site.
So, you can look at your visitors who are using mobile devices and determine if they are converting at a level similar to your desktop traffic, if not, why not?
If you have not been segmenting your data for analysis then you should start doing so today, it could be your best decision of 2014.
VOU (Voice Of User) Analysis could become the most effective conversion rate optimisation process in 2014.
VOU Analysis is the process of getting feedback from real visitors on your website, whilst they are on your website. With generic analytics there is a great deal of guess work that has to be added in manually by the analyst. This is because your standard analytics packages are unable to tell you what the user was thinking whilst on your site, what were they hoping to achieve? What are they looking for?
With VOU Analysis you set up several points of contact with your visitors across your website. These could take the form of feedback boxes, live chat boxes or surveys. These can be passively offered to visitors as they browse the site or they can be popped up based on triggers in your journey.
For example, you may have a visitor that has been on the shopping cart page for 3 minutes, this visitor may be confused by something? Looking for something? Unhappy about something? You can take all the guess work out by popping up a live chat box with an operator asking if they can help. The live chat operator can assist in completing the purchase and the web analyst can analyse the chat to discover why the visitor stopped in their journey and implement changes to the website to prevent it happening to other visitors if possible.
These are a handful of areas that I believe are to be important in 2014.
Time To Comment:
What processes/reports/tools do you think will be big in 2014? Can you see anything on the horizon that could come to prominence in 2014? Also, feel free to share your thoughts on my areas above and whether you agree that they will be important in 2014 in the comment section below.