[VIDEO] Strategies on How To Convert More Web Visitors into Customers
Watch this webinar for an in-depth conversation on how you can dramatically improve your conversion rate led by Johann van Tonder, COO at AWA digital and co-author of ECommmerce Website Optimization.
In this webinar, you will learn:
- Fundamentals of website optimization, definitions and key terms.
- How people make buying decisions during a season of giving.
- What the best mechanisms are to uncover information about your visitors.
- How to dissect your visitor data and develop various tests.
- Use personalization to improve your conversion rate to it’s potential.
Q&A: (time stamp 36:15)
Q. In the use cases that you shared or reviewed, have you ever seen differences in buying behaviors between B2B and B2C customers?
A. Yeah, definitely so I spoke about B2C customers being very motivated during this time, there is time constraint, but they’re also buying on behalf of others. They buy gift for others and I spoke about the psychology around that and the dynamics that are introduced thats not there for B2B. B2B still has the long sales cycle and the same pressure is not there so you know from that perspective the two are very different.
Also with the end of the year coming for B2B, budgets have to be spent so there is a lot of decisions that have to be made on tools and services that companies want to use for the upcoming year so it is a different pressure.
Q. You mentioned offering discounts to increase conversion for email surveys and activations. Should there be a concern about devaluing your product or service by lowering the cost?
A. It depends on who your audience is, who you are targeting. Obviously using discounts or promotions as an acquisition play could definitely devalue your product or service but if you are targeting different people or different settings – people who have already engaged with your product would be better for promotions.
Promotions and discounts can do two things. It can devalue your brand so you have got to be aware of that. It can also erode your margins. It can be a short-sided maneuver if you spend ten dollars to acquire a customer that you are never going to sell to again then what does that mean to your business? I’ve seen businesses like that and worked with clients where when we started engaging with them, that was more or less the situation. There is got to be a plan behind this and you have to track this. There is got to be a strategy behind this and you have got to set up a cohort like the one I have shown in GA (Google Analytics). It is a good way of doing it and monitor the behavior and their performance of the users that you give discounts to over time. See if it is actually making sense in the long run. But it is a long-term view that you have got to take.
The other way to think about it, its marketing budget, its acquisition budget. It is the same as you spending $10, in this case, to acquire a customer. It is the same as spending $10 per click and you have somebody buy or hire that stacks up. It is a customer acquisition cost and you have got to treat it the same way.
Q. There are so many ways you can slice and dice who you want to target. What are your thoughts on prioritization? Who do you go after first? Or do you run campaigns simultaneously? When you think about the traffic that you received to your site, you talked a lot about segmentation and targeting, where do you begin?
A. I more or less answered this question in the presentation, but let me just recap it. I would look no further than the customer lifecycle model that I presented earlier. I think that is the place to start. Of course there are many more ways in which you can target your customers depending on your business model. It could be men/women if you are a fashion business. Whatever is relevant to your model. The starting point is to see where they are in the life cycle because they need to be treated differently in each phase of their life cycle. People have just entered your site, they need to see different messaging. And this applies to your marketing campaigns, applies to your emails, it applies to what they even see on site, then as they progress through that life cycle. So now they bought from you for the first time, they are a first-time buyer, they will then go into a different sequence. They should be seeing different things. So that would be your starting point. You can transform your business if you just do that, depending on where you are starting from.
Q. What about mobile surveys? Looking at some of the optimization projects that you have worked on, how does mobile play within that? Do you engage differently with mobile as compared to desktop, do have some color on that?
A. One of the interesting things, let us take it a step back and say that mobile for sure, you will have seen [mobile traffic] in your geo data is big. It is getting most of our clients. You must have seen mobile traffic starting to surpass desktop traffic now, only in terms of visitor numbers, in most cases, that revenue does not quite follow through yet. But you have got to pay attention to that and you have got to also think about the multi-device journey and what role mobile plays. I have done a great deal of research into mobile behavior doing usability testing remotely and doing academic studies in this area. And the behavior of mobile, well it goes without saying, it is very different. It is, for starters, very distracted. It is not uncommon to speak to people, when you do usability testing on mobile, to have somebody say “It’s 1AM in the morning” and they are feeding their child and they have got one hand on the phone. Or they are cooking dinner with one eye on the phone. Now that is not the environment within which a transaction happens. You have got to understand that behavior. But the other thing to remember is when you present overlays on the screens of the mobile, is that, since I think last year or the beginning of this year, I can’t remember when this rule came in, there is a penalty from Google for presenting too big an overlay on your mobile screen. Now you are safe with Qualaroo because that is built into it, that is baked into it. So the way in which Qualaroo presents the mobile screener, I have gone into this in great detail, you are not at risk of that penalty. But I cannot avouch for other tools. So that is something to keep in mind. But to get to your question, absolutely you should be using mobile in your analysis especially if it is a big piece of your business. If you are seeing that traffic [is] eclipsing the desktop like we have seen on many other sites.
Q. Great, yeah mobile is huge and we are seeing that trend as well. A couple of more questions and then for the ones that I was not able to get to, will lead for the follow-up blogpost. So Johann, you talked about cart abandonment so that is something you know obviously in super important when it comes to e-commerce but also for even SaaS [Software As A Service] businesses, you know not finishing up the shopping cart process. Should you always leave with a coupon code or some type of discount or are there any other ways to reel people back in?
A. If you can get away without a coupon code, then thats a good place to start. Coupon code is easy, that incentive, it does convert and you know people find it to be very successful. It is the kind of thing that I would test, you know what else do you have to offer, just the question whether it applies more to e-commerce or to SaaS is a more general question. I would say, it probably applies even more to SaaS, the only thing that doesn’t really apply is the holiday season. I would agree with you that the rush maybe is not as defined in SaaS as it is in e-commerce. But even so, in may of the SaaS businesses that we work with, we see that rush coming through. We see many SaaS businesses giving discounts around Black Friday. I have spoken to many users and clients of the SaaS businesses actually wait. So they delay their purchase to November expecting there to be a discount. So there is that dynamic as well, but then apart from the holiday peak, whether you get that peak in your business or not, you will know from you GA [Google Analytics] from last year if you look at the patterns. This concept of lifecycle marketing, and the concept of LTV [Lifetime Value of Customer] and getting more out of your customer, applies far more to SaaS I would argue than it does to e-commerce because the business model is very much about getting that recurring revenue, so you have got to be all over that.
Q. Great, okay one last question. For someone that has a small business, how to they deal with a large number of survey replies?
A. If you are a small business, chances are you won’t have a large number of survey replies. Let us be honest here, it is probably in the region of 1% of your users that respond to open text surveys. Closed text surveys might have a higher response rate, it depends on your customer base. I have worked with clients that have a very responsive customer bases and you see higher response rates. My answer would be, you have to plough through it. It is worth it. The insights that you get from looking at the survey responses, will pay for your time many times over. It will steer you in the right direction, it will point you to exactly what you need to do. Then it is up to you to make that intervention, to actually fix the problem that is being highlighted. Any time that you invest in getting to understand your visitors better, getting to understand your customers, and getting to understand where are the opportunities for improvements from your side, I would say that is time well spent. Especially as a small business, that is absolutely what you have to do.
I will tell you one quick story. I ran an e-commerce site for three years, as its CEO. On the weekends, I would do deliveries and my investor said to me, “You are crazy, you are a CEO that is not how you should be spending your time. You should be working on the business, not in the business.” And I said to them, “Hang on, that is exactly how I should be spending my time”. This is because by making deliveries to customers over the weekend, I get to meet my customers. I get to see who they are, where they live, what the circumstances are. I get to speak to them. I get to find out what it is that made them want to buy from me. More than that, I get to show them there is a real face behind the business. That is a secondary objective. Primarily it is about getting in touch with your customers and understanding what it is about. This is the core of marketing – knowing your target market, knowing their pain points, and how you can serve them better. If you can put your finger on that, you will grow your business. And so, I would say to a small business owner that is something you should prioritize.
If you have more questions for Johann, please submit your questions in the comments below and we’ll get back to you shortly.
Would you like a copy of Johann’s book, Ecommerce Website Optimization, email us: firstname.lastname@example.org.