Conversion Rate Optimization: Secrets as Revealed by 54 Industry Experts

Posted By: Adnan Afzal : 0 Comments

Conversion rate optimization remains one of the most underutilized areas of ecommerce realm when it comes to increasing revenues for online businesses. In fact, 53% of businesses allocate less than 5% of their total marketing budget to the process of conversion optimization, according to Adobe 2013 Digital Marketing Optimization Survey Results. All this compelled us at Technorian to take opinions from 54 of the industry’s top experts on how to increase conversion rate for online businesses and here’s what they have to advise on this.

Neil Patel

Tim Soulo

Sarah Arrow

Jeff Sauer

Khawar Zaman

Freddie Chatt

Sam Hurley

Zac Johnson

Evan Carmichael

Nicholas Scalice

Fili Wiese

David Leonhardt

Dorie Clark

Chris Makara

Allan Pollett

Maria Dykstra

Donna Merrill

Laura O’Donnell

Pauline Cabrera

Sharyn Sheldon

Jonathan Lupo

Matthew Woodward

John Lincoln

Nellie Akalp

Tiffany DaSilva

Lisa Raehsler

Brad Geddes

Eyal Reich

Ian Rhodes

Evan Prokop

Nicole Purvy

A.J. Ghergich

Andrew Shotland

Jordan Kasteler

Joanna Wiebe

Jakob Marovt

Rick Ramos

Adam Hutchinson

Jamie Knop

Dave Schneider


James Norquay

Adam Steele

Douglas Karr

Thayne Lewis

Steve Wiideman

Alan Bleiweiss

Sean Smith

Kelli Cooper

Jon Tromans

Andrea Beltrami

Felix Tarcomnicu

Mike Ramsey

Susan Dolan

1: Neil Patel
“One simple way to increase your ecommerce conversion rate is to have a two step checkout process. Typically if you ask for someone’s name and email first, you can then market to them if they don’t complete the checkout process. This is a simple tactic that works well… a lot of ecommerce companies tend to ignore it, or if they leverage it, they forget to follow up with the customers who don’t complete the purchase via email.”

2: Tim Soulo
“The best way of conversion rate optimization is to get highly targeted traffic to your store.I mean if your website pops in Google for a keyword “DVD player Sony” – these people won’t necessarily end up buying.

But if your site ranks for a much more specific keyword like “DVD Player DVP-SR510H buy in Singapore” – these people are highly likely to buy from you.

So, just focus on “conversion oriented” search keywords and your website conversion rate will be good.”

3: Sarah Arrow
“I recommend in investing in great visuals for improving your conversion optimization rate. The prospective customer has to be able to visualize using the product, and if you have gorgeous visuals and video, you help the customer break the buying barrier. Research indicates products on a white background work better than a busy background. Investing in great visuals is beneficial for both sales and website conversion.”

4: Jeff Sauer
“Increase conversion rate of your website by considering where you fit in the world of Product, Price and Promotion Strategy. Great products at a reasonable price don’t have conversion rate problems when promoted properly. So, if your eCommerce website has a conversion issue, it is usually due to one of these problems. You can lower price and increase conversion rate, but it may come at the expense of profit. It is hard to change your product in the short term, but the product will have the biggest overall impact on satisfaction and long term success.

With promotion, it is all about the traffic you bring into your site, focusing only on those ready to buy instead of trying to convert the masses. For paid search, your conversion rate is often based on the promotion strategy and keywords you choose. Targeting specific, product oriented keywords will increase your conversion rate over broad category targeting. Solving for two out of three of these will help you significantly with conversion rate optimization. Solving for all three of these is nearly impossible. Solving for only one of these will leave you out of business.”

5: Khawar Zaman
“Mobile commerce is going to be the next big thing in a matter of few years, as mobile retail revenues in the U.S are projected to go beyond $150 billion benchmark by 2020. So, the businesses ready to leverage on ecommerce optimized setups have a better chance to outpace their contemporaries.

One of the reasons why conversion rate optimization on mobile devices is low is because customers find it difficult to type in their credit card details on a small screen. But companies like and allow customers to scan in their credit card details within seconds, enabling them to complete checkout much faster and easier. This one thing alone can improve your conversion optimization significantly.”

6: Freddie Chatt
“Fundamentally, to increase conversion rate, you need to make it easier for the visitor to make a purchase on your site, so the first part of call would be to find the problem points on your site. Split your site into different areas, for example:

Product Pages
Category Pages
Brand Pages (if you have them)
Checkout Pages
Then identify where visitors are dropping out most and look to improve it. Start running AB tests on aspects where you think it could be improved; here are some ideas of tests to run:

Size of Add to Bag button
Removing distractions from checkout process
Larger product images (on product pages or category pages)
Offering free returns
Increasing (or decreasing) shipping methods
Showcasing a clear returns policy
Run a range of tests and implement the winners. By running regular tests, you’ll consistently be improving your conversion rate optimization.”

7: Sam Hurley
“There are many facets to optimizing your ecommerce conversion rate and each website must be optimized to counter its unique problems.

A good starting point for your conversion rate optimisation is your checkout process. How is anybody going to buy from your site if they can’t even see the ‘buy’ button? Make your CTAs (call-to-actions) highly visible, action orientated with highly descriptive text. Color them in unison across your pages.

For example, if you have green buy buttons, stick with that color throughout your website. This makes it as easy as possible for your visitors to distinguish purchase-focused CTAs. Next, conduct a usability test through your entire checkout process, from product search to purchase.

Ask 50 – 100 people to use your website and buy something. Set up a ‘fake’ payment page, which doesn’t actually take payment. It will be best if you can watch and listen to their buying process. Ask them to talk you through it. This will uncover some key issues with the buyer journey, which you can then work to iron out.”

8: Zac Johnson
“One of the best ways to improve in your conversion rate optimization is to have an explainer video on your site that tells your audience why your site or service is for them. If you ever take a look at the top selling products on ClickBank, you will notice that nearly all of them are using explainer videos on their landing page. Extremely long sales pages worked well in the past, now it’s all about the sales video. Make it engaging, interactive and of course ending with a call to action for your target audience. Be sure to check out my how to create killer explainer videos article for how to create one for your site.”

9: Evan Carmichael
“Storytell. It’s one of the most powerful tools you can use to improve conversion rate. Tell me why you started your business. Tell me how you are using your products. Tell me what your customers are gaining from working with you. Let me feel your pride and emotion. If I don’t feel something on an emotional level when I visit your website, then I’m just going to compare on price and then you lose. Storytell more for improving conversion rate optimization.”

10: Nicholas Scalice
“One of the best ways to improve conversion rate is to install heatmap and recording software, so that you can analyze the ways your visitors are using your site. This is often overlooked if you’re only using traditional analytics software such as Google Adwords. My favorite heatmap and recording app at the moment is Hotjar. You can install a very small snippet of code, and they’ll begin recording site visits. You can then see how your visitors are moving around on your pages, where they might be getting stuck, dropping off, and where they’re focusing their attention. This will help you a lot with conversion rate optimization.”

11: Fili Wiese
“Driving eCommerce conversion rate is all about living up and exceeding user expectation. Great on-page SEO is the basic foundation for managing user expectation. It starts with greatly optimized snippets, titles and descriptions providing just the right amount of information if needed. It doesn’t stop there, however. Providing uber fast, responsive sites accessible across devices are all part of good SEO and essential for improving in conversion rate optimization. That is why no online business can go without periodical SEO auditing.”

12: David Leonhardt
“To me, one of the best ways to improve conversion rate optimization is with some form of testimonial right on the page. Sure, anybody can have testimonials on a testimonials page for those who want to look for them. But the key is to have them right on the page where somebody is considering the purchase. So you will see on my ghostwriter page, there are five testimonials from satisfied customers. You will notice that it also links to a testimonials page for the truly uncertain shopper.

The concept of testimonials on the sales page is something that sales letter writers generally do very well. But eCommerce websites usually lack this pretty basic element.

It would be even better if I got head shots or even video testimonials to go with the written testimonials, because those would be even more “real” to visitors and shoppers…but I am not there yet. On an eCommerce site, a video of a customer holding or using the product would be even better!”

13: Dorie Clark
“The simplest thing I did to better my eCommerce conversion rate optimization was to start split testing (i.e. running a head-to-head comparison to test which variables lead to more conversions, whether it’s wording, color, text size, etc.). I did this with the free tool SumoMe (affiliate link) and it enabled me to dramatically increase the percentage of visitors to my website that joined my email list and therefore ultimately become customers.”

14: Chris Makara
“The best way to increase eCommerce conversion rate is to always be testing. At a minimum, you should be testing at least 2 things to help increase conversions. Ultimately, you are looking to drive more sales. Therefore, focus on testing/implementing items that can help push your visitors to buy. Some examples of things to test are:

Adding trust factors to the cart (testimonials, seals, etc)
Testing free shipping versus shipping and extra cost
Show a regular price crossed out with a “sale” price listed
Test the use of an exit intent overlay with a discount for visitors leaving the cart without purchasing
Sure, some things won’t necessarily pan out. But you won’t know until you try. Just be sure to track what you are testing as well as the results.”

15: Allan Pollett:
“The funny thing is that conversion rate optimization is less about tricks and is more about simplicity and consistency. I always love the Landsend example. They have one of the highest conversion rates of any web site at about 14% conversion. Considering the average is around 2% conversion, it is an amazing number.

Their success lies in keeping the navigation and shopping cart simple, few steps and familiar standards of layout are used. Also, their messaging is consistent. If you visit a page offering 50% sale, then the check out reinforces that you will receive a 50% sale price.

Their landing pages target specific terms and the messaging remains the same from one page to the next. When visitors aren’t confused, they are more likely to buy. It is really that simple.”

16: Maria Dykstra:
“5 secrets of conversion rate optimization:

Think beyond demographics: Know whether customers are in a purchase, research, or just browsing mode. Use different landing pages with messages tailored to each customer group.
Limit the choice: Too many choices do not mean better conversion. Consumers are paralyzed by decisions. Organize products in a 3×3 matrix and keep the number of choices under control.
Add Social Proof and Reviews – Conversions driven by organic traffic typically beat paid traffic conversions. Similarly, people will buy more products recommended by their friends. Incorporate friend referrals into your process and seek product reviews.
Study your bottleneck in your process – Use tools, such as Inspectlet, to understand and remove extra steps in the shopping process.
Learn from abandoned carts – People who did not complete purchase know where your process is broken. Create regular surveys and follow up with them to understand inefficiencies.”

17: Donna Merrill:
“Add a blog to your ecommerce site. It’s the best way to encourage engagement and repeat visits. It also gives you a “non-sales-pitch” URL link to promote via social media. People don’t like to be told to buy stuff, but they love getting new information about topics they love.

Once they get to your blog, they will see your “store” which should be prominently displayed along with your blog roll. Best yet if you can introduce a specific product from your store within the context of your article. This is what we call “native adverts” and if you don’t know what I mean, just listens to some old radio shows from the ’20s.

It goes something like this… “Hey George (as in George Burns of “The Burns and Allen Show”), Can you help me trim the bushes this morning?” Answer from George: “I’ll be right there, Gracie. First, though, I’m finishing this delicious cup of Maxwell House coffee. I can’t imagine starting my day with anything other than a piping hot cup of the best tasting, most aromatic coffee in the world. Just put the clippers by the door.”

18: Laura O’Donnell:
“First things first, include product testimonials. If customers can relate to a problem many have been having in a testimonial, but they read that problem went away after purchasing your product? Boom. Expect your conversion optimization to go up. Including relatable content increases engagement; people want to feel a connection. When they can relate, they trust you more. The more they trust your site and products, the higher your conversion.

Another great way to improve your ecommerce conversion rate is through the usage of popup notifications. Popups that appear on sites while you’re reading can be pretty annoying, but you can’t deny the fact that they can increase conversion rate for your site. For new visitors, consider welcoming them to your site and if they sign up to receive updates on offers via email, they’ll save 20% off their first purchase. The offer you’re making is enticing – who doesn’t want to save money? Plus, through this method you can rack up a list of qualified leads

One last way to spruce up your conversion rate optimization is by providing a search bar on your site. If the product a user is looking for isn’t available on first click and there is no way for them to search for said product, they’ll simply bounce away. You want to make the process of searching for information as easy and user-friendly as possible.”

19: Pauline Cabrera:
“There are many ways you can increase your eCommerce conversion rate, but my most favorite ones? Use attractive images and make them as detailed as possible. Another one is offer some discount when they order two or more.”

20: Sharyn Sheldon
“Here’s how I work on increasing my eCommerce conversion rate:

Focusing just on the product pages, the first thing to do is get an understanding of who your target market is. Who will be landing on your product pages and where will they be coming from? Are they people who will already know your products and will be in a buying mindset? Or will they more likely be people who don’t know you, but want to know the types of products you’re selling. Or are they perhaps people who don’t know you AND don’t know what you sell, they might just be curious or have a specific problem.

All of those types of questions help you determine what information and details to put on your product pages and in what order. For example, for those people who already know you and your products, you might only need images and details about the product. For those who don’t know you, you might want to give a little information about yourself and why you’re different first.

Finally, you need to test different elements to see which versions actually convert best. The results could surprise you! If you have the technology option, you may even be able to create different versions for different audiences. For example, previous customers who are arriving at your pages from an email could see a page that shows details about the product first. As an alternate, you could create a product page for people arriving from search engines that explains who you are and the benefits of your product.

There are so many factors involved in conversion rate optimization for any page, and eCommerce ones are no different. Understand your market first and where they’re coming from. Then test, test, test.”

21: Jonathan Lupo
“Improving website conversion rate is obviously important to retailers, isn’t purely about incorporating best practices, and requires a solid understanding of all dimensions of current customer behavior, sentiment, frustrations, and bottlenecks found along the journey to the cart.

This investigation should be both qualitative and quantitative, looking at points of abandonment, then designing targeted qualitative studies to understand “why is this happening?

Retailers often take a purely Engineering approach to solving conversion optimization issues, which may help, but may also overlook issues related to supporting the information agendas of customers, in addition to their expectations about what a shopping experience should feel like from the Brand.”

22: Matthew Woodward
“One of the biggest mistakes I see with ecommerce is on the product pages themselves.

The primary purpose of a product page is to have the user add the product to their basket. So, it’s always strange to see the presence of social sharing buttons on product pages that in no way, shape or form help the user to arrive to the primary goal.

Equally when social sharing buttons are present, such a small percentage of people use them that they only serve as negative distractions.

When was the last time you personally clicked a Facebook or Twitter button on a product page immediately before buying?”

23: John Lincoln
“Conversion rate optimization is a matter of looking at the quality of your traffic, your landing page and your checkout process. Each of these elements must be analyzed to improve your ecommerce conversion rate. Match the expectations of the users to that of the landing page and make sure your value proposition and your call to action are compelling.

Try to hit an emotional chord with the user and do your best to have some element of urgency. Never forget about mobile, as that is the primary type of traffic for most sites today. Make sure to use the 5 second rule, so that the user immediately knows where they are on the page and what to do on the page, and give them clear and easy to tap targets, so that they can accomplish their goals quickly.

When it comes to your checkout process, it’s a great idea to offer third-party logins, so that they can check out with just a few clicks of a button.

Each website is different, so make sure to do competitive analysis inside of your industry and outside of your industry. Also, you can learn a lot by surveying your users and asking them where they were frustrated the most with the checkout process and the entire conversion process.

Never underestimate the value of your page’s color scheme as well as the images that you use on the page, it’s always a good idea to be split testing those.

Finally, one of the most valuable things you can do to increase conversion rate; it’s going to be Google analytics, look at your mobile device report and filter it by the location of the traffic you were trying to convert. This can give you great Insight on pages that you can improve from a mobile device perspective.”

24: Nellie Akalp
“My suggestion for conversion rate optimization is to expand and perfect your forms of communication. Don’t just rely on an email, contact form or phone number. Give prospective clients endless ways to contact you, so you can ensure they will reach out via a form that works for them. Add chat to your site, open up to Facebook messaging, add more call lines. Opening more communication channels will let site visitors know you and your team are available and ready to provide stellar customer service!”

25: Tiffany DaSilva
“Ecommerce conversion rate has been climbing in the past year. Monetate’s Ecommerce Quarterly report found that conversion rates were hovering around 4.3% for desktop; however, mobile is still trailing behind at 1.53%.

To combat this, break down your mobile experience using a visitor behavior analysis tool. If you don’t have one, then look at every step users have to take on your site to purchase something and look for obstacles that may be getting in their way. Obstacles can be distracting messages, confusing call to actions, broken links on the site or areas that take users time to get through.

One of the areas of conversion optimization I tend to focus on is the shopping cart process starting with the first form someone has to fill out. I tend to measure how long it takes to fill out the form, success rate and the percentage of drop off. Success Rate would be the most important metrics; however, I would use these metrics as a baseline for any optimization I do.

I look for four areas of improvement on a form:

Hidden Fields: Are there areas of the form that can be missed or accidentally skipped over?
Confusing Fields: Are there areas of the form that I don’t know how to fill out or would take a bit of time to get right? (ie: A birth-date field that has to be filled out DD/MM/YY)
Abandoned Fields: Are there areas that take so long to fill out I would probably leave? (ie: Address or Credit Card fields that aren’t properly labeled could have this affect.)
Error Fields: What happens when I input the wrong information? Are error messages helpful or harmful to the user experience?
Then I would look to simplify the form where I can, by removing fields, pre-populating information I know, auto-completing information as the user fills it out or providing number pads and drop downs to make information more accessible and easier to input. Again, I would use the time it takes to fill out the form, percentage of drop off and success rate as measurements to understand if I’m on the track with my changes.”

26: Lisa Raehsler
“One of the first steps to increasing an ecommerce conversion rate is to eliminate wasteful spend in your PPC account on poor performing keywords. Look for keywords that are not relevant and therefore not converting, remove them from the account. Look for low converting keywords and develop strategies to approach action on each; for example ‘keep but reduce bid” or “keep but change match type”.

Use a proactive approach to develop negative keyword strategies. Review query reports for irrelevant keywords that are triggering ads and causing wasted click spend. Use themes from those words and use keyword planner tools to generate additional keywords you may have missed.

Reducing wasted spend allows for budgets to be laser focused on what does convert and generates higher returns for advertisers.”

27: Brad Geddes
“One of the best ways of conversion optimization is to attract the correct type of traffic to the site. By testing ads, different benefit messages, shipping options, and so forth in the ad; you can attract different types of traffic and learn the messages that will increase your conversion rates by ensuring you’re receiving the type of traffic that will convert on your site.”

28: Eyal Reich
“There are a few guidelines you need to follow to make sure your conversion rate optimization is up to par.

You need to show you care about your customers, that your web-store is a safe place to shop, and that you are trustworthy. To do so, you need to have a clear and straightforward returning policy, display a phone number, and offer a live chat. As a small to medium size business owner, service is everything; provide personal assistance and offer the added value that the big players don’t offer.

Make sure your product pages display high quality images and reviews from verified buyers, as this will add trust to your store.

Don’t forget to add on-site promotions, coupons, free shipping, etc., which gives your visitors the incentives to buy and become paying customers.

Last but not least, don’t force your potential customers to sign in when they are in your checkout page, allow them to checkout as guests.”

29: Ian Rhodes
“Clarity: Answer the most valuable questions your customers will be asking. What’s the total price I’ll be paying? Is it in-stock? How much will delivery be? When will I receive it? Is this definitely the latest model? Are their color, size or other variations? Is the image shown the actual product I’ll receive? Can I trust you?

Create a checklist of common questions and scour product pages where you’re seeing low conversion rates and ensure the answers to these questions are clearly visible, making sure your conversion rate optimization pays off.”

30: Evan Prokop
“In general, the key to increasing ecommerce conversion rate is to eliminate or reduce any potential friction points that may deter visitors from converting. Long load times, broken links, confusing directions and needlessly long forms are just a few unfortunate website elements that can be absolute conversion killers. A great place to start is with your shopping cart pages, but smart digital marketers should take a critical eye to every aspect of the visitor experience they are offering on their site, from entrance to purchase.”

31: Nicole Purvy
“To improve conversion optimization on an ecommerce site, remember that colors matter. People associate green with “go”, so make your shop or add to cart buttons green. Also, remember to include a call-to-action on every page. Finally, your copy shouldn’t target everyone who visits your site, just your avatar, or ideal customer. Focus on resonating with your avatar, and converting them into sales, and watch your conversion rate go up.”

32: A.J. Ghergich
Subscribe to ConversionXl’s blog. I have no affiliation with them, I just love their content.
Join the Ecommerce Fuel community to share questions and insights with other owners. (I am a member & have been on their podcasts)
Start simple A/B split testing on your product pages and your checkout pages. I would suggest Optimizely.
Make sure you have a shopping cart abandonment email program going like Rejoiner.

33: Andrew Shotland
Make things move like go up and down or float around if they are on sale
When you want someone to buy something, you could have a giant “Buy Now” button that looks like a Diner sign
You could offer round the clock tracking of orders
You could write things in neon letters
You could make a Kids Corner section
Every time you buy an item you get a code that when you enter it in the search bar, does something cool to the website

34: Jordan Kasteler
“There’s nothing better than A/B Testing for conversion optimization. The key is that you are testing a marketing funnel and not just a page on a site. While a page may perform better (e.g. a product conversion), is it lowering your average order size? These are things to consider.

In my Contrarian Guide to Marketing post, on, I illustrated specifically how “Testing pages, especially in priority order, is great, but don’t let pages overshadow the conversion path. A winning A/B test page may lead to a poor conversion funnel. Be sure to test conversion paths, as well as page conversions.”

35: Joanna Wiebe
“Listen to your visitors and customers – interview them at length, survey them, eavesdrop (politely) on their conversations, and watch what they do on your site. Respect everything they say and do. No matter what you end up doing as a CRO strategy (or even just a tactic), if you start by listening to your customers more than you listen to your boss, your coworkers or yourself, you’ll be in top shape to increase your website conversion rate.”

36: Jakob Marovt
“Customization and personalization are major keys when it comes to conversion rate optimization. This means that you have to fight a lot for my first purchase at your store and collect as much useful data about me as possible (payment details, my preferences, shipping details). Then bring me offers that are relevant to me in the 2nd and 3rd purchase and make it as easy as possible for me to make the purchase and get used to the experience. Hopefully, the experience will be so good that whenever I’m going to think about a similar purchase in the future, I’ll naturally think of your store.”

37: Rick Ramos
“I think the biggest issue people have with their eCommerce website’s conversion optimization is they fall into the trap of selling features rather than selling the benefits. Sell what the product can do for someone’s life rather than a feature list. Apple didn’t sell the first iPod by talking about its 5GB hard drive; they sold the benefit “1,000 songs in your pocket.”

38: Adam Hutchinson
“Social proof is fundamental to any type of website conversion; customers trust other customers. In eCommerce, this often translates into reviews. Based on my past experience in online retail, reviews increase a product page’s conversion rate by up to 40%. Believe it or not, thirty 3-star reviews will increase conversions faster than one 5-star review. Since a customer can’t touch, feel, and hold the product while they’re shopping, they want to know how others were satisfied. Reviews increase trust, and trust increases conversions.”

39: Jamie Knop
“My number 1 tip for increasing ecommerce website conversion apart from having a clear call to action on product listings would be to make the checkout process as simple as possible. Being presented with a large list of fields to fill out is off-putting to visitors and could lead to people leaving. Limit the amount of information people need to enter by allowing previous customers to save data to their account. Amazon do this well by allowing people to check out with 1 click of a button.”

40: Dave Schneider
There are many ways to improve your conversion rate optimization. A few things to consider are:

Improve the quality of your pictures, since people buy with their eyes
Suggest additional, related products to users during the checkout flow
Minimize the number of fields that the user is required to fill out to check out
Put your best selling items at the top

41: San
“To improve your conversion rate optimization, one needs to follow logical steps. First, you need to list high traffic driven pages with high bounce rate and less conversion rate.

Then, install user’s behavior analysis tool like Crazy egg. Once, you start generating data, create a hypothesis for A/B or Split testing. Start testing using A/B testing tools like Optimizely, Visual website optimizer.

Track the AB testing result. Once you get statistically significant data, put in place the findings. Repeat the same process for other important pages.”

42: James Norquay
“Speeding up the website with good load times will increase conversion rate. Offering free postage on items will also increase conversion. Offering guarantees will also do so. Many other factors will also come into play, you just need to test and keep testing; guarantees such as free 60 day returns on items (as an example) also work well.”

43: Adam Steele
“Trust: I am a link builder, and the way we do things is we get more trusted folks (trusted by Google) to link to us. It’s the same thing here, except you’re reaching out for more than a link, you want a shout out, or product endorsement. If you aren’t a big retailer, then don’t bother reaching out to the BIG influencers out there. They are going to expect too much.

Jump on Insta and research folks with audiences in the 100k range, who are relevant to your niche. Create a list of 100 people. Try and do something unique. If it’s their birthday, send them a treat. Do the unexpected and unique and you will win big. And when they decide to send your site some traffic, you won’t need any fancy CRO, because you will already have the trust of the influencer.”

44: Douglas Karr
There are a lot of dependencies to just say any one thing that can serve solely for conversion rate optimization, but I’d recommend a very clear add to cart button and a checkout process with the fewest steps possible. Requiring visitors to register, too many fields, complex layouts, or having pages with multiple calls-to-action all reduce conversion rates.

45: Thayne Lewis
“To improve your website conversion, it usually makes the most sense to start in the data. For most websites, there is a critical path that people follow to conversion. For eCommerce, it typically looks something like this.

Use your web analytics data to find pages in your conversion funnel that have higher than expected drop-off. Go to those pages and look for potential visitor pain points and generate a list of ideas to improve the experience. A good heat map tool can give you clues as to where visitors might be getting confused or stuck. Also, if you look around, there are some inexpensive focus group tools/services that can help you get real user feedback.

Take your list of ideas and prioritize them based on which ones have the most potential. Use as much data as you can to help you in prioritization. Next, start A/B testing.

A/B Testing is where you conduct controlled experiments on your website. For example, if you had evidence that people depend a lot on reviews to make a purchase decision, but your product page doesn’t make it easy to access those reviews, you could set up an A/B test to learn the best way to display reviews. The test would divide visitors into groups and show each group a different version of the page, then you can compare conversion rates for each group to know which is best. It would look something like this.

Test Group Description % Traffic
A (Control group) Page as it exists today 25%
B Reviews on right side of page 25%
C Reviews on Left side of page 25%
D Reviews below product image 25%
It’s important that you keep a control group, so you have a benchmark against which to compare performance. You can use a testing tool to take care of the traffic split for you and report the results.

One of the biggest problems that people new to testing run into is the temptation to throw all your best ideas into one “mega experience” and shoot for the moon. Consider the following two test scenarios and their results.

Scenario 1: Mega experience

Test Group Description % Traffic Conversion Rate Lift %
A (Control group) Page as it exists today 50% 5.4% …
B Reviews on left, bigger cart button, new product images, new product headline 50% 5.89% 8.07%
Scenario 2: Variables isolated

Test Group Description % Traffic Conversion Rate Lift %
A (Control group) Page as it exists today 20% 5.4%
B Reviews on left 20% 6.49% 19.08%
C Bigger cart button 20% 5.99% 9.91%
D New product images 20% 5.43% -0.37%
E New product headline 20% 4.33% -20.55%
Scenario 1 looks great with a nice 8% lift in conversion. Nice win, right? However, if you take a look at Scenario 2, you will see the that moving the reviews to the left has a nice 19% lift, but that lift is being totally canceled out by the headline change which is actually hurting your conversion. Which of these tests would you have rather run?

Another great thing about isolating the variables as shown in Scenario 2 is that you learn something about visitor preferences that can guide future designs. In this example, you learned that the placement of the reviews has a big impact, so you may want to follow up with further testing to see if you can find an even better way to display reviews. You also learned that headline can have a big impact and can take some lessons about what not to do with headlines in the future. Similarly, you learned that the product image change didn’t really influence the visitors one way or the other, so you may want to rethink that expensive project you have queued to take new photos of your entire product line.”

46: Steve Wiideman
“Improving conversion rate optimization for an e-commerce website involves creating helpful content around specific products at the category level, with the hope that they won’t need to click into the product page, and then invoking selling principles such as urgency, trust, and scarcity on product detail pages.

If a user has to think or spend time completing pre-purchase form fields, we’ve failed. Once the purchase is complete, ask as many questions as you need to.

We shared a video on our Usability & Conversion Strategy page that shows how we tripled conversion rates at the product level using a delayed countdown timer; it’s worth testing if your product typically has a longer buying cycle.”

47: Alan Bleiweiss
“People looking to make a purchase go through a multi-step process. Primary points in that process include “I’m thinking about buying, just not sure, so let me explore”; “I’m looking to buy, just not sure who or where to buy from”; “I’m looking to buy, and have narrowed down some likely sources, just not sure what the exact thing is that I want or need”; and “I want to buy today”.

Crafting content and user experience where that effort supports and speaks to each of those is foundational to strong conversion rates.

Page Titles & Meta descriptions that match each of those is invaluable because that’s what searchers find in search engines when they start on the journey or when they go to each next step in the decision process.

If click-through rates in organic results are low for key decision point specific pages on your site, look at why that is and refine those. Then do the same for on-site experience. Quality, relevance, authority and trust (four of my five super-signals of SEO & marketing, with “uniqueness” being the fifth) all need to be considered.”

48: Sean Smith
“Constantly test different colors for your call to actions in an a/b test environment. I remember Google tested over 50 shades of blue before they found the best converting blue for their organic search results. Keep testing until you find the best that works for you.”

49: Kelli Cooper
“I would say one of the most important tips for conversion rate optimization on your site has nothing to do with any ‘practical’ tip like flashier copy. All of that certainly has its place, of course. Rather, I would suggest making sure your blog is an authentic representation of who you are.

When we are able to be ourselves, we attract people to us who strongly resonate with our message, outlook, advice etc… And when we are primarily drawing those sorts of people to us, that resonance alone is enough to make them want to buy your product. All that other ‘stuff’ we do, doesn’t matter as much because it isn’t about trying to ‘convince’ anyone of anything.”

50: Jon Tromans
“Coming from a content background, I would recommend spending some time on your product descriptions. Writing in the voice of your customer and describing your products in detail will really help to increase your conversion rate.

Don’t just rely on reviews for customer testimonials. Include Tweets and other types of mentions within your product description to help get that sale.

Also look at developing a number of in-depth customer personas, so that when you create new product titles and descriptions, your customer is foremost in your mind.”

51: Andrea Beltrami
“Conversations lead to connections and connections lead to conversions.

Plain and simple!

Meaning, that first you need to create a conversation with your potential customers. You need to talk WITH them and not at them, you need to ask questions and more importantly, listen to what they tell you. Next, you need to connect with them on deeper levels, get to know their real struggles and pain points and provide free solutions for them. THEN, and only then, once they trust you, know you, and love you; will they be ready and willing to open their wallets and invest in your products, programs, or services.

The burden is yours as a business to owner. You need to earn your spot in someone’s life and spending. You have to earn their trust and loyalty. The good news is, once you do, provided you continue to treat them like the gem they are, you will have a loyal customer and brand ambassador for life.

Even if they outgrown your offerings, they will continue referring their friends, colleagues and loved ones to you.

So, get out there and get the conversations started!”

52: Felix Tarcomnicu
“To improve conversion rate optimization for any site, including an ecommerce, you have to understand what your users are doing on your site. Study their behavior using Google Analytics or a similar tool and run many A/B tests.

The blog is also important for an ecommerce site. It can be a great funnel to generate leads. For example, you can write a detailed review about the products you are selling and increase the chances for the reader to buy your product.”

53: Mike Ramsey
“Never underestimate the power of great photography and lots of it when it comes to conversion rate optimization. Adding 5+ solid product pictures that can be zoomed in on, all from different angles, will allow customers to really make an informed decision on the product and can fix things poor conversion rates faster than many other things.”

54: Susan Dolan
“Create the best and unique shareable content with a clear call to action!”

What’s your success secret?

Though this pretty much sums up every important aspect of conversion rate optimization by industry pros, but there’s always room for more. So, feel free to share with us your success secret in the comment section below; what worked out the best for you and what didn’t? Share your personal experiences, observations and apprehensions with us on this.