— Last updated on August 16, 2021 —
If your website is not converting people to contact you or buy from you, then it’s time to optimize your conversion funnel.
In case you want more info, check an article on a complete breakdown of conversion funnel.
In this blog post, I will talk about how you, as a business owner, can improve conversion rates by optimizing a conversion funnel.
There are some common things that are easy to optimize, so I will cover topics such as improving the product page and increasing average order value, which are two of the most important aspects for any eCommerce store owner looking to increase sales quickly.
It all starts and ends with experience and core needs of your customers and that applies to optimizing the conversion funnel.
Personally I have noticed that the most reliable way to improving sales is with Clarity Blueprint because it relies on a holistic view of the entire customer journey.
But even just reading and applying things from this article will give you a massive value.
The customer journey is not a linear and customers don’t behave in a linear manner.
In fact, customers are more likely to start shopping at any point in the process and research as they go along.
The nonlinear ecommerce customer journey is about understanding your customers’ habits so you can create an experience that matches their needs – from awareness to conversion.
Optimize Conversion Funnel: What It Is and What It’s Not
Optimization of conversion funnel means to make sure that the visitors who are coming on your website, they get what they want.
They should be able to find their way through all the pages in a very short time so that they can buy from you or not.
If it takes them too long then there will be no conversions at all. So we need to optimize our site for this purpose.
There are many things which needs to be done like making navigation easy, having clear call-to-action buttons etc.
How to design a better experience for your customers
Designing a better ecommerce conversion funnel means improving the product page and increasing average order value, which are two of the most important aspects for any ecommerce store owner looking to increase sales quickly.
Three most important goals for any eCommerce store owners looking to increase sales quickly:
- Improve product page design – This is where potential customers make up their mind about whether or not they will buy your products.
The quality of images on the website can impact how likely a visitor is to convert into a buyer so it’s crucial to invest time in setting them up right with attractive imagery and clear calls-to-action (CTAs).
When you’re optimizing your ecommerce conversion funnel, remember that creativity goes both ways; if more people are clicking through from Google search results than home pages then use those top results to your advantage.
- Increase average order value with incentives and promotions – eCommerce conversion funnel optimization is not about one step, but rather a process of continuous improvement that you should be focusing on all the time.
One way to increase conversions and ROI (return on investment) is by figuring out what would make customers purchase more often or buy other products in addition to what they came for at an ecommerce site.
- Make website navigation easy so customers can find what they’re looking for quickly – eCommerce store owners need to focus their ecommerce conversion efforts on ensuring visitors have good customer experience throughout the entire journey from awareness to conversion.
This includes the ecommerce site design that needs to be clear and easy to navigate, but also things like search functionality or how customers get around if they can’t find what they’re looking for on your website.
A case study of how one company improved their customer journey by redesigning their website
This case study shows us how one company redesigned its website to improve its conversion rate, I won’t name it because we’ve signed an NDA, but after making the changes, the number of orders increased by over 52%.
The following factors played a major role while doing a website redesign:
- Product Page Optimization – Your product page must contain relevant information regarding the product. You must provide detailed description of the product along with specifications. Also include pictures of the product. Make sure that these details match exactly with the product being sold.
- Call To Action – CTAs help drive traffic to your website. They tell the reader what action to take next. CTA’s work best when placed near the end of the content section.
- Clear Navigation – Navigational elements within the web page should be clearly visible and accessible. Users will only spend few seconds scanning the webpage before deciding whether to continue reading further. So ensure that there are no unnecessary distractions which may distract readers from accessing important navigational links.
- Content Quality – The quality of text written on the landing pages plays a vital role in determining the success of any business. Ensure that it contains high-quality writing and does not sound too salesy.
These four things were inter-connected and in this case content quality was the main driving factor behind increasing conversions.
In addition, the new layout helped users scan the page faster as well as made it easier for them to locate necessary information.
In conclusion, optimizing the user experience is essential for improving conversion rates. It helps in creating better experiences for both buyers and sellers alike.
What It’s Not
The ecommerce conversion funnel is NOT just one step; there are many aspects to take into consideration in order to optimize conversions on an eCommerce website.
Your focus should always be on increasing customer engagement rates while also making shopping as easy as possible by reducing friction in the buying process.
The customer journey is not linear
Ecommerce conversion funnel optimization should be an ongoing process, because your customers and their experience aren’t linear.
In the ecommerce space, it’s vital to focus on more than just conversions.
You also need to ensure that your visitors convert into buyers and then make repeat purchases.
We have to understand our customer’s habits and needs, which means that the conversion process is a series of steps.
These are all part of a customer journey – one which is not linear but circular instead.
In order for this cycle to work, you have the optimize your ecommerce conversion funnel in the following ways:
- Improve product page design
- Increase average order value with incentives and promotions
- Make website navigation easy so customers can find what they’re looking for quickly
- Offer personalized shopping experience based on past purchase history; if customers buy from specific categories or brands, offer them similar options through site search or recommendations
- Create an ecommerce conversion funnel that matches customer needs from awareness to conversion, and all steps in between.
What this means for your ecommerce site
This means that you need to think about your customers and their needs first rather than your own.
eCommerce conversion funnel optimization should be an ongoing process and we need to focus on more than just conversions; ecommerce store owners should also be concerned with making sure their visitors convert into buyers and then make repeat purchases in order for the customer cycle to work.
How To Optimize Your Conversion Funnel
The eCommerce conversion funnel is not just one step, but rather a process of continuous improvement that you should be focusing on all the time.
One way to increase conversions and ROI (return on investment) is by figuring out what would make customers purchase more often or buy other products in addition to what they came for at an ecommerce site.
Linear conversion models of the customer journey are dated and not suitable to eCommerce conversion funnel optimization.
Instead, ecommerce site owners need to focus on improving customer engagement rates while also making it as easy as possible for customers to shop with you by reducing friction in the shopping process.
Focus on the complexity and diversity of each customer’s experience
Think how complex customer journey is for each of your customers and their experience with eCommerce conversion funnel optimization.
Each customer has different needs and expectations, which means that optimizing your ecommerce site for one specific group will not be enough to optimize the ecommerce conversion funnel for everyone.
How psychographics and personas influence buying decisions
Psychographics and personas should be a core part of conversion funnel optimization because they can help you more effectively understand customer’s needs, attitudes, motivations, usage patterns and behavior.
Identifying your target market is important so that you know which psychographic or persona to focus on in order to maximize profit potential.
Know and empathize with your customers
It’s not enough just to know your customers, ecommerce conversion funnel optimization also requires empathy.
Understanding the needs and perspectives of each customer is essential in order to create a positive customer experience.
Understanding how psychographics and personas affect buying decisions
Psychographics may be more important than demographics when it comes to understanding who your target market is as they provide insight into what motivates people to buy something or why someone might refuse an offer.
A persona can help you understand which motivations are most common for people within that particular demographic group so that you can better predict their customer behavior with some degree of accuracy.
Organize and prioritize your marketing efforts and business goals
As a business owner, you have to make decisions on what marketing efforts will be best for your company.
If you are just starting out and need more customers than it might not serve your purposes as well if the goal is branding or lead generation because those types of campaigns require an investment up front that can take time before reaping returns in terms of brand awareness.
So how do we prioritize these goals?
Well first thing’s first: start with understanding where our strengths lie—what does this company excel at doing?
What makes us different from any other competitor in our field choosing which investments would help achieve these specific goals while also strengthening current areas?
What is a “trigger” for your customer to have that buying decision?
Set your conversion goals – You can even use Google Analytics to analyze user behavior and customer touchpoint.
By setting up goals, you can monitor things such as page views, time spent on specific pages, bounce rate, etc.
This type of analysis allows you to identify patterns and make adjustments accordingly.
The goal here isn’t necessarily to optimize every aspect of your business; rather, it’s to improve overall efficiency so that you spend less money while still achieving similar levels of revenue.
Obsess having loyal customers and building a community – You have to spend money, of course but the most important expenditure you can make is in building a loyal customer base and developing an active community for your business.
As true as this may be, many businesses are unaware that they should devote financial resources into these areas because marketing costs too much or social media doesn’t offer enough return on investment opportunities yet – but it will.
Your marketing team and marketing activities must align to increase Customer Lifetime value and always think about the buying journey of a customer – The only way for your company to succeed in the long term is by always thinking about how each step of a potential customer buying journey plays out.
Your entire strategy as it relates to allocating resources, initiatives, and campaigns should take into account what matters most: maximizing Customer Lifetime Value (CLV).
This means that every thought process related to allocation has been informed by CLV considerations first; from selecting new markets or territories based on their expected revenue contributions at different stages of the customer’s life cycle through negotiations with advertisers over pricing models tailored toward building loyalty among individual consumers.
Entire process of digital marketing consists of micro conversions and smart decisions – Digital marketing is a long and arduous process that starts with an enticing ad, then evolves to the ultimate goal of acquiring new customers.
These are achieved through micro conversions which happen at different points in time throughout this endeavor; such as someone clicking on your video or signing up for your newsletter when they see it one day because you wisely decided to promote those things instead of just throwing ads out there all willy-nilly.
User behavior, purchase process and user experience should be the top priority for your eCommerce business – In the world of eCommerce, customer experience is king.
By understanding your audience and creating a seamless user-experience on their journey to purchase, you will be able to foster brand loyalty in ways that may not have been possible before.
Understanding which aspects are most important for online shoppers by leveraging analytics can help drive stronger engagement with new or existing visitors as well as create an advantage over competitors who do not take these factors into account.
5 Stages to Optimizing the Ecommerce Conversion Funnel
There are five stages to optimizing your conversion funnel from customer’s perspective.
The reason I am addressing this from consumer’s point-of-view is because everything starts and ends with them, right?
So if you can optimize their experience at each stage of the process, then you will be able to improve conversions overall.
1. The discovery stage
The discovery stage or awareness stage is the part of our conversion funnel that allows for visitors to become aware of who we are, what we offer, and how by visiting us they can solve their problem.
It has a higher volume of potential leads than any other part of the funnel.
To improve conversion rates in your eCommerce funnel, consider the discovery stage from a different perspective.
There are many ways to find you, like through social media, ads, and more. You can get more insight into referral sources, and their affect on conversion rate at later stages of the funnel by using this stage.
Some ways to optimize your eCommerce conversion funnel at this stage include surveying visitors on how they found your site. Notice the trends? Which of your marketing efforts is making a noticeable difference in conversion rates?
Visitor feedback is useful for learning how things are working, what they aren’t and how to make it work better in the future.
You should engage with different groups across channels to get a sense of who your audience is.
Understand the customer’s journey: there is no ‘right way’ to reach your customers.
You can use data such as quantitative and qualitative to see how people find you.
How can you understand how customers experience your conversion funnel (and thereby alter the design to incorporate better user experience)?
One way is to place a survey on an important page in the customer journey.
The data you get will give you a glimpse into your store’s appeal to different types of users, and can also help you discover popular referral sources.
Pro tip: Content Marketing plays a huge role in discovery stage. It has been proven to be effective in attracting and acquiring customers online. It’s the best way for your company to create awareness, generate leads, drive traffic back to their website and build credibility as an industry leader all through organic search engine optimization (SEO) rather than spending money on paid ads.
Content marketing helps companies avoid relying heavily on budgeting expenditures from year to time when they need more exposure or want something fresh out of everything else you’re doing.
Plus, I have noticed when you have a solid content marketing strategy, it helps with eCommerce conversion rate…a lot!
2. The interest stage
Prospective customers are in the interest stage of your conversion funnel when they have not yet committed to become a customer.
You may optimize this stage by presenting social proof on your site and maximizing their contact with you, such as through social media pages and website browsing.
Ensure a seamless navigation from page to page: is it easy for the user to get from one web page to another? If they hit a problem like website bugs, an un-loadable web browser, or broken items, then they’re more likely to drop out of the funnel before converting.
It’s important to make sure your product categories are reflective of searcher intent and include filters for visitors who may be trying to find a specific type or brand. Is there anything about the search engine that you can improve?
Maybe by adding video reviews, case studies, how-tos, or blog content related to products they’re looking at that will bring them one step closer in their conversion process.
By creating valuable content with videos reviews, case studies/how-tos on topics relating back directly with what people are searching within your website (i.e., building trust), it is easier for someone navigating through different pages while deciding which site best matches their needs!
Some examples of Interest stage are:
- eCommerce site visitors have not yet converted to buyers and are browsing the website.
- website visitors might be considering a purchase, but need more information before they buy.
- people are looking for ways to engage with your business on social media or blogs.
Pro tip: When building content that will convert at this stage of the conversion funnel, consider: questions prospective customers may have about the product, how potential purchasers can find out if what they’re buying is right for them (think customer reviews), or why something should be bought in place of other options which come up during online searches.
3. The intent stage
In the intent stage or consideration stage, your visitors are ready to purchase and show many signs of doing so: they might add items to their shopping cart or wishlist with the intent to review them later.
Here are a few ways to improve the intent stage of your conversion funnel.
Abandoning cart messages – You can reduce shopping cart abandonment by adding personalized information about abandoned items in an email sent directly after they decide not to buy.
Product recency messaging – You can encourage people who have added products to the cart but haven’t completed the purchase, you can retarget (via Facebook or Instagram) them with the same product to complete the purchase.
Add value to existing purchases – Make sure you offer additional benefits when users return to your site after making a previous purchase. This could mean offering discounts, free shipping, or even gift cards.
Ask yourself… What elements do potential customers find compelling in the add-to-cart experience? What’s standing in their way? Now that you know what’s holding your current and future customer base back, take steps to offer better incentives for them to buy.
Pro tip: To increase conversion rates and improve ecommerce sales, analyze visitor behavior with session recordings (you can use tool like HotJar to do that). Identify any content that might cause a customer to exit your site prematurely.
4. The purchase stage
At the final purchase stage, your visitors move from being a visitor to a customer.
Make the most of this moment by adding an enticing offer or using abandoned cart emails to get them through the checkout process without any difficulties.
To optimize conversion, here are a few ways to make use the specifics of potential buyers’ current interests:
At this point of conversion funnel, offer a unique promo to each visitor – Get creative with your offers as there’s only one significant obstacle left: getting them through checkout.
To increase sales, offer your customers a variety of payment methods – Optimize your conversion funnel by making it easy for shoppers to checkout and paying through multiple platforms will only increase the number of transactions you’ll see.
In many ways, the checkout process is one of the most important parts of an online conversion.
It’s what allows your visitors to take their newfound knowledge and purchasing power with them, without having to worry about forgetting something or leaving items behind in a store they may not return to soon enough.
Knowing this key piece can be crucial for any eCommerce site owner looking into improving conversions rates by creating more engaging storefronts that are easier on people’s wallets (and time).
5. The engagement stage
The engagement stage is the time when you have the chance to convert a single customer into an advocate for your brand.
But in real life, visitors may engage with you at any point of their funnel experience.
The best way to ensure they are happy and will continue spending money on you? Building strong relationships before AND after converting!
Here’re some ideas:
- Make it easy to follow and engage with visitors on social media – Offer valuable, relevant content that builds trust and authority, as well as cultivates a relationship with your visitors by sharing samples or trials only for their followers.
- It’s never too late to build a customer base by getting visitors to your email lists – Get prospective and existing customers on the right side of marketing by getting them involved with content related to products or services they’re interested in, as well as sending out offers for related items that you think will be most beneficial to their interests. Think of one email address as a one new potential long-term customer. Never underestimate the power of email list.
- If you’re in the business of providing solutions for customers, then it’s time to start creating valuable content – Whether that means giving your audience a how-to guide on using your product or an informative video about what goes into making one, think creatively so as not to bore them with stock photos and dry facts. Building trust is important too – if they don’t know who you are yet, share testimonials from satisfied customers; show off some customer reviews via social media channels like Facebook and Twitter.
Some additional ideas for engagement stage are:
- Share related content that builds trust and authority with your visitors.
- Give helpful information on how to use your product like a customer would need it.
- Show what goes into making one of your eCommerce products, so people will know more about the process behind them. This can be done through videos or images.
Pro tip: After an order, don’t stop engaging with your customers – keep in contact to make sure they’re satisfied! Send them surveys to find out what worked best for you and use that knowledge when asking them what doesn’t work.
Extra stage: Analyze your conversion funnel
Tracking metrics and traffic is possible with the help of a program like Google Analytics aka GA.
While you compare the performance of your funnel to its data from traditional analytic tools, you can use GA events or event track to measure it.
Not all web analysts are created equal, but if one has a holistic view of their customer journey on multiple platforms then they will have a good sense of what really matters for marketers in terms of traditional website analytic insights.
It is not surprising that the customer journey is more than just a linear one. You can’t package real-life purchasing behavior into a neat little package.
Quantitative data, while useful at times, has its limitations and can pull us away from understanding each person’s unique experience as they make their way through the buying process.
If you have qualitative data, you can better understand visitors’ behavior when shopping and how they interact with your site.
This insight allows for improved interaction between customer and business that positively impacts their unique journey.
Questions About Optimizing Conversion Funnel
What are some top strategies for conversion rate optimization?
The top strategies for CRO depend on the type of business you’re in.
For example, if your company sells products online, then it’s important to focus on increasing conversions from product pages or landing page.
If your company offers services like consulting, then you’ll want to optimize for lead generation by focusing on calls to action that encourage people to contact you.
But here are just a few top conversion rate optimization things to focus on:
- Use A/B testing to optimize landing pages – this means creating two versions of each page and seeing which version converts better. This can be done using Google Analytics’ “split test” feature. You should also use multiple variations of any call-to-action buttons so that visitors don’t get confused when they land on different pages.
- Make sure all forms have clear instructions – make sure there aren’t too many steps involved before someone completes an order form or fills out a survey. Also, include helpful information such as shipping addresses and phone numbers at the bottom of every page.
- Add relevant content – add links to other articles related to what you sell. People who visit your website often tend to stay longer because they find useful information.
- Offer free samples – offering freebies helps build trust with potential customers. It shows them that you care enough to give away something valuable without expecting anything back.
- Optimize checkout flow – make sure everything flows smoothly throughout the process. Include checkboxes where possible. And always provide a way for people to cancel orders.
- Create personalized emails – send email campaigns only to those who fit into your target audience. Don’t blast everyone with generic messages; instead, personalize each message based on their interests.
- Track user behavior – track how users interact with your site. Are they clicking through to specific pages? Do they fill out surveys? How long do they spend browsing? These insights will help you create more effective marketing materials.
What are the top trends nowadays for conversion rate optimization on websites?
The answer to this question depends a lot of factors. The biggest trend I have noticed nowadays is the option for hyper-personalized experience.
In addition to having access to data collected from previous visits, now we can have the ability to collect even more detailed information about our clients.
We can know exactly what kind of person they are, what they’ve searched for previously, etc. All these details allow us to deliver highly targeted ads and offer much more tailored experiences than ever before.
What’s the best use of personalization on an eCommerce site?
Personalized content is great for increasing engagement and converting more customers.
It also helps build trust among users who feel valued and appreciated. But don’t get carried away with this tactic. If done poorly, it could actually hurt your bottom line.
Here are three ways to avoid sending too much spammy email to your audience:
- Avoid using automated systems to send bulk messages. They may be effective, but they often generate negative responses.
- Focus on quality over quantity.
- Include relevant links in your subject lines so recipients can easily unsubscribe if necessary.
- Use A/B testing to see which version performs better.
What is a realistic conversion rate for a new website?
I’ve seen many numbers thrown around regarding conversion rates. Some say 1%, others claim 5%.
Here are my thoughts on these figures: If we’re talking about a brand-new website or one that hasn’t been optimized yet, I’d expect an average conversion rate of 2%-3%.
That number should increase if the site gets traction and starts getting traffic.
For example, let’s assume that a company receives 100 visits per day. At 3% conversion rate, they would receive 30 leads. At 6% conversion rate, they will receive 60 leads.
That being said, I wouldn’t set any expectations higher than 7-8% unless you have a proven track record.
You’ll need to test out various marketing tactics until you find what works best for your particular situation.
How do you measure success? I think measuring success comes down to two main factors:
- How does the business perform financially? Is it highly profitable?
- What kind of ROI did you achieve from each campaign?
For me, the first metric is always going to trump the second.
However, both metrics can help us determine whether our efforts were worth it.
Let’s take a look at how we might go about tracking performance:
How do you know when something has worked well? You can start by looking at which campaigns performed better than expected.
This gives you insight into what types of visitors convert better than other groups. Then, you can focus on improving those areas.
Another way to gauge success is to see where conversions occur within your funnel. Are people buying right after landing on your homepage? Or are they clicking through multiple pages before making a purchase?
You can then compare these results against previous data points. Did you notice a spike in conversions during certain times of year? Perhaps you noticed spikes in purchases following holidays like Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
These trends give you valuable information as to why some days/weeks work better than others.
What are main pain points experienced by customers during their trip through the marketing funnel?
This question isn’t just important because it reveals insights into customer behavior; it’s also helpful when trying to figure out what needs improvement.
Let’s use Amazon as an example. The ecommerce giant knows exactly what products its shoppers want most. So, it focuses its resources on creating more inventory for them. In turn, this increases sales.
The same principle applies to websites.
When you understand what problems potential buyers face along the path to purchasing, you can create solutions that address those issues.
So, now that you’ve learned all there is to know about converting prospects, here are three things you must keep in mind while doing so:
- Do not be afraid to experiment with different approaches – If you don’t try new methods, you won’t learn anything.
- Don’t forget to analyze your data and checkout flow – It may seem obvious but many companies overlook this step. Without proper analysis, you cannot make informed decisions regarding future strategies.
How to reduce cart abandonment rate?
There are several reasons why someone would abandon his shopping cart. Some common causes include:
- Lack of time
- Not enough money left over in budget
- Too much effort required to complete order
- Unclear shipping costs and delivery dates
If you’re able to identify one of these situations from your potential shopper, you should be able to improve conversion rates.
You can add a “frequently bought together” section to the cart, offer discounts when customers buy certain items in bulk or create a customer rewards program with points for every dollar spent.
What are some ways to boost conversions of my ecommerce store?
Visitors are human beings with emotions just like us.
They get frustrated when they have trouble finding products or navigating through them since their time and convenience matter too.
Not only does this frustrate people but also customers may feel anxious doing business from sites where there’s no trust in security measures hence leading to losses due to shopping cart abandonment rates being so high these days-even as much as 75% .
Just by making it easier for a customer to find exactly what they want is the easiest way to get a boost in conversion rate.
Here are a couple of additional ideas to consider:
- Show the benefits of your product or service – don’t be afraid to brag about it!
- Don’t forget to add social proof – testimonials, reviews, etc.
- Have content upgrades (when you create an article, offer extra video or eBook)
- Keep in mind how much time someone will spend on your site before deciding where to place CTAs (above the fold)
- Add credibility with an expert endorsement or awards won
- Test, optimize and improve your cart abandonment emails
- Have a piece of content that is a perfect go-to for your ideal and real customer
- Include a video of yourself talking about your business if possible!
The way a visitor moves through your website can determine whether they purchase items from you, and if that process isn’t optimized then it could be costing you money every day without knowing about it!
To truly optimize your campaign for success, I recommend making sure each step in the product site experience is as effective as possible by having clear calls-to-action on all pages with relevant content – no matter where visitors are coming from at any given time.
Your customers are unique so treat them like people and you will be rewarded for it.
If you are ever in doubt what to do to optimize you conversion funnel, always stop and ask yourself “Does this provide a slick experience for my customer?”
That’s all, I hope you will apply some of the things from this article, now let’s go and provide our customers a pleasant conversion funnel optimized experience.