Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO): Let’s Talk About It

A forever discussed topic in ecommerce is conversion rate optimization. More recently, this has become of greater importance as the efficiency of ads has gone down, so the pressure to perform on page goes up.

Let’s actually take a step back on this. 4–5 years ago, you might have invested in optimizing conversion on your site, but let’s be honest, Facebook’s ad system was so good, that all the juice that you could ever need was available by optimizing ads, and driving cheap, highly targeted groups of people to your site.

Then, even if you had a ton of friction on your site, you still made money hand over fist, so you just kept growing and pumping money through ads.

However, once apple announced their privacy changes, and ads became dramatically less efficient, every e-commerce site started to look at other places to regain overall efficiency in their customer acquisition.

As they looked, they must have not realized that the best place to go is your on-site conversion rate.

So now there is a rich ecosystem of both technology tools, and agencies who can help you optimize the performance of your website once a consumer lands on it. Here are a few of the best practices that are often discussed:

1. Make the Website Fast

One of the biggest places to get fast gains and reduce the bounce rate of the site is simply making the site load quickly and the consumer can immediately start to engage in the shopping experience. I have seen studies that show a 40% drop in conversion when you go from 1 to 3 sec page load time — that’s a big deal.

2. Prioritize Easily Accessible Product Information

People get bored and navigate away when they cannot find the information they need to understand the product quickly. This is most common in products where ingredients are important, like food and bev, or make-up. Make sure it’s prominent and easy to find, as consumers are making decisions about what to put on/in their body

3. Reviews and Trusted 3rd Party Opinion

Made most popular by Amazon with their reviews and ratings. People feel like they can trust the product more if there is either 3rd party opinion (like, Wirecutter) or reviews from actual customers that they can read to understand key pros and cons.

4. Unique Content Based Shopping Experience

One of the new ways to think about conversion rate optimization is where you land the consumer once you show the ad. Most conversion rate optimization lands them on your site or on a generic landing page on the site. A newer approach we’ve pioneered at FERMÀT is to have a full shopping experience (a microsite) optimized for every piece of content. By doing this you provide more continuity from the content the consumer was engaging in, and can get higher conversion than a generic landing page.

What are some approaches you’ve seen help improve conversion rate?