How To Increase Your Website’s Leads

Feature image for 33 Ways to Increase Your Website's Leads guide

Websites aren’t cheap to create, yet, when 59% of the world’s population use the internet on a daily basis (as of Q1 2020); if you’re a business trying to be successful then you need to have one.

They’re not only expensive to build, but they’re also expensive to improve and market. Earning traffic via Google Ads and Facebook Ads isn’t cheap, and generating traffic via Google can take a while to do — plus, you need to create all the content necessary to rank at the top of Google anyway.

Costs are mounting. The website was five-or-six figures upfront (choose your currency, the statement remains the same) then there’s the monthly cost of hosting and development changes along the way. Add marketing on-top of that and very quickly you realise that the website needs to start generating leads fast or the business is in trouble.

If you’re the business owner of this website then you, understandably, start getting pretty demanding about when leads are going to start increasing.

If you’re the marketing manager in this situation, you’ve the pressure from your line-manager or the business owner to make leads rain pretty soon or you’re going to be looking at job listings again pretty soon.

A website getting no leads sucks — but there are lots of ways to increase leads if you know how.

Below, you’ll find more than a dozen ways to improve the conversion rate of your website, and many of them are easy to do once you’ve taken the first step — do your research.

Why Your Conversion Rate Is Low

Conversion rates can range quite widely from one type of website to the next. Service-based websites convert at one percentage and eCommerce stores convert at another.

Up-to-date conversion rate by industry numbers can be hard to find, but industry conversion rate studies over the years have found that financial service websites (like credit and lending businesses) convert slightly higher than travel sites do, which convert better than home improvement and legal sites do, and so on.

Your websites’ conversion rate might be low because that’s the average of your industry.

But that doesn’t mean that improvements can’t be made.

Your website’s conversion rate could be affected by other factors too, such as which device is used to visit your website, or which traffic channel the prospective customer used to get there, and even what age they are or which gender they identify as.

There are a lot of variables at play, but the reason your conversion rate is low is probably right there in front of you. You need to take a step back and reassess your website to see what that reason may be.

Reasons Your Conversion Rate Is Low

1. You’re Attracting The Wrong Type of Person

Tone of voice is everything. As is choosing the right thing to talk about in the first place.

If your website sells software to accountancy firms and all of your website’s blog posts are about marketing for startups, then there’s no correlation and the reader isn’t going to covert.

Instead, an accountancy software company should be writing about changes in the tax, how to attract more customers, and guidance on compliance.

The same could be said for cosmetics companies with hundreds of blog posts about yoga. Yes, there may be a connection between wanting to look good (using cosmetics) and feeling good (i.e, feeling really, really stretchy), but a reader is more likely to convert and purchase cosmetics from that website if the content is about the best skincare relevant to that browser.

This attraction of the wrong person starts at the very beginning from how you reach them in the first place.

2. You’re Using The Wrong Traffic Channel To Reach Them

If you’re using TikTok, a social network mostly used by males between the ages of 16 and 24, to sell anti-ageing cream to middle-aged women, then you’re going to attract the wrong type of person.

The traffic channels you use in your marketing mix need to match the internet and device usage habits of your target audience.

If you’re targeting women over the age of thirty to sell a new luxury wine subscription box, then your content and channels should be focused on that.

Your website’s content should be about wine knowledge.

For example, “How To Choose Meal Complimentary Wine”, “How To Choose the Right Wine Glass”, “How To Identify Flavours in Wine”, etc.

Your traffic channel should then be Organic Traffic (traffic earned via Google using Search Engine Optimisation) and any network which is used heavily by women over thirty.

For example, write content that ranks high for “Best Wine To Drink Without Food” and then condense that content into a short video for Instagram.

This way, you’re using the same content for the most sensible traffic channels for your target audience and you’re also given them an insight into why your business is more fun, interesting, and knowledgeable than your competition.

Infographic guide to wine

Image from winefolly.com

3. Your Website Doesn’t Have What People Want

This is common with websites which run ads, and in particular, Google Ads.

Imagine you’re browsing the internet looking for a new food processor. You click the ads at the top of your page which catch your eye and you visit the page. What you might expect to see is a selection of food processors to choose from, but you don’t. You see a page about “the latest blender technology” which makes “the smoothest smoothies you’ll ever taste” and does them “in record-beating time”. Trouble is, you’re not looking for a blender, you want a food processor.

The above happens thousands of times a day. Someone sees an advert for X and the page is selling Y. No wonder people exit immediately without converting.

Your marketing and advertising have to match what people are searching for. This starts with the content you create. It has to relate to what people are looking for or are curious about enough to look at it if it appears in their social media timeline.

You also need to make sure that your services or products match what people are looking for.

It’s not uncommon for new businesses to launch a new service or product, only to see it fail spectacularly. Why does this happen? Because they’re not selling what people want. They’re selling what they think people want, but never thought to check.

Your website not only needs to communicate what your business is selling well, your business also needs to sell what people want.

4. You’re Using The Wrong Offer for the Stage of the Sales Funnel

Salespeople don’t open a call by asking people to buy their expensive products. What they do is talk to the customer. They get to know them. They take note of the language they use and adjust their own language to match.

They learn about the customer’s problems and sympathise with them. Only once they feel that they’ve gotten to know the customer do they then start to pitch their offer, using their own language to convert them into a closed sale.

Your website should be the same.

Your website should speak or offer the right things at the right time.

When people land on your blog posts, for example, the pitch shouldn’t be “Buy My Expensive Software” it should be, “Here’s Something Related That’s Going To Help You”.

To continue that example, a business selling home furniture might have a blog post called “10 Clever Furniture Ideas for Small Living Rooms”. The most obvious thought here is, “_Well, I’ll list my furniture in the ideas and that’ll convert people to buy my products_”, and whilst it’s not entirely incorrect, there’s a better offer for people at this point in the sales process.

People researching furniture ideas for small living rooms aren’t at the end of the sales funnel. They’re very far away from choosing a new sofa system that folds easily.

Instead, they’re looking for simple tips like adding a mirror into a room to make it “feel” larger or painting the walls or ceiling certain colours to give the feeling that they’re longer or larger than they are.

The offer they should see in that blog post is for similar content on the website or some form of knowledge-enhancer, like a downloadable eBook all about buying furniture for small rooms (“10 Things To Know Before Buying Furniture for Small Rooms”).

This knowledge-enhancing offer not only helps the customer with their situation and turn them into a warmer lead, but they are also more inclined to trust your website and business’ expertise because you’ve been able to demonstrate it so clearly.

5. Your Website Looks Bad

Sorry.

Okay, I’m not that sorry. If your website looks bad then there’s only one way to say it.

Your website looks bad.

If I think that then the people you’re trying to convert think that too. Nobody wants to buy from a dusty shop that hasn’t been redecorated in thirty-years, so nobody is going to buy from your website if it looks outdated or just plain bad.

The standard of website design changes fast and if websites don’t change with the times then they quickly become outdated (even if it was designed in the last five years).

Even websites designed in the last twelve months can look bad too. It’s not exclusive to old websites.

Poorly designed websites are created every day and the most common pitfalls are:

  • The website isn’t mobile-friendly
  • The website uses colours which are hard to read
  • The website uses imagery that is low quality or has little relevance to the website’s services or products
  • Links don’t look like links
  • Buttons don’t look like buttons
  • Menus don’t include links to the pages are trying to get to
  • and on
  • and on

Badly designed websites are conversion blockers. Not just because they look ugly, but because they don’t look trustworthy.

6. Your Website Doesn’t Look Trustworthy

Earning trust is hard in person. Earning trust online is even harder (especially so for ugly websites).

If a website doesn’t appear trustworthy then people won’t trust it, meaning that your job of converting them is twice as hard as normal.

Sometimes a website can do well with conversions without the need to look trustworthy because the brand of the business is so well known that people don’t think twice about making a purchase, but if your business doesn’t have this level of trust already then your website needs to earn it by using the recommendations towards the bottom of this page.

7. Your Website Loads Too Slowly

The one thing that’s worse than a bad-looking website is a slow bad-looking website.

Everyone is on their mobile phone now when they’re browsing websites, and not everyone has a good connection either.

If a website or page is slow to load then people just close the window and move onto the next page, but from that moment on the prospective customer has a thought in their subconscious which says, “That website is slow, try and avoid it if you can”.

8. Your Website Is Stale

No website’s content should be set in stone. Content should evolve and improve over time.

Service pages may not change too much — because there’s only so many ways you can say “Buy my stuff because X” — but informational content should evolve and be improved over time so it continues to be useful and engaging for the people reading it.

There are several examples of content which should be improved or revised over time.

  • Buying guides may have relevant products today but they may be obsolete and unavailable tomorrow, so these should be constantly updated.
  • Blog posts about how to solve sinus infections should be regularly reviewed and improved with the latest approved medical advice.
  • Articles about risk mitigation may sound like they should be set in stone, but could videos be added to them to make them more in-depth and compelling to readers?

Websites with articles that have publishing dates more than a year old are going to look out-of-date to readers and, although the information may still be relevant today, they might assume the content is no longer relevant and they’ll return to Google to find a more recent alternative.

Instead of aiming to write new “fresh” content to please Google’s algorithm (this really isn’t a thing), time should be spent revising and improving your existing content instead.

How To Find Your Website’s Conversion Blockers

Using Analytics

How do I know which parts of my website are blocking conversions?

Your analytics is telling you everything you need to know.

Google Analytics is arguably the most used web analytics software tool, so I’ll be discussing it in the section, but the metrics should be consistent across most major analytical tools.

There are several metrics worth tracking to see how people interact on your website. These are:

  • Average Time on Page
  • Bounce Rate
  • Exit %
  • Pages per Session
  • Average Session Duration

These most basic behaviour metrics can highlight the satisfaction or dissatisfaction of page visitors.

Lessons can be taken from each one on what to improve, such as how in-depth the content is, whether there are insufficient “next step” options for them (i.e, a call-to-action, an internal link to related content, etc), or whether the content is too short or too long.

There are two great reports within Google Analytics which highlight the pathways people take through your website, as well as providing a visualisation of where people are dropping off from your sales funnel.

The first is Behaviour Flow. Behaviour Flow is a visualisation of how a website’s visitors flow through from one page to the next. It allows you to see which pages are the most likely next-step after visiting your website’s homepage or key landing pages.

For example, on the Exposure Ninja website, the majority of our traffic arriving on our homepage goes to our free marketing review page next.

The information in this report could highlight areas of potential improvement, such as making highly-visited pages easier to find via the main navigation menu (instead of it being buried in a drop-down list).

The report also shows which pages have large amounts of drop-off traffic. If you find pages that do have this problem you’ll then know to start optimising these pages first as retained traffic can be pushed towards your related content or calls-to-action.

The Funnel Visualisation report is the second report in Google Analytics which is great for understanding where your visitors are leaving your sales funnel before completion.

For example, if your lead capture form has multiple pages for people to enter information into; the Funnel Visualisation report can be set-up to track each page and highlight the percentage of visitors who are leaving at each step.

For instance, if your website offers a free mortgage consultation your form may ask for key information across multiple pages. The Funnel Visualisation may show you that people are happy to fill out the simple details in the first few pages (such as their name and contact details), but once they get to fields for entering their annual income amounts they may experience “form fatigue“, give up, and leave.

Without this information, you may never know which part of your form is turning people away.

Further Reading

Using Heatmapping

One of the best tools for tracking page engagement is heatmapping.

Heatmapping is a data visualisation tool which uses a colour spectrum from blue to red (cold to hot) to highlight areas of a page with high activity. This tracked activity could be the percentage of a page viewed or the number of clicks on a page’s links.

Heatmapping is available within Google Analytics, but it’s not very reliable. Instead, we recommend and use the heatmapping and behaviour-tracking tool, Hotjar*.

Hotjar’s explainer guide on heatmapping is great at explaining how their tool works, but some recent examples of how the tool has been useful to our clients and our website include:

  • Evidence that less than 25% of all traffic to the homepage scrolled past the halfway point, leaving the important content further down unseen. The page is set to be revised by moving the most important content to the top.
  • Evidence that visitors to an eCommerce website were mainly clicking on two links within the main menu. The main menu has been simplified to make these two links easier to find.
  • Evidence that visitors were reading the majority of a successful blog post, but not clicking on the call-to-action at the bottom of the page. The call-to-action has been introduced at various stages in the blog post and conversions have since increased.

Desktop versus Mobile

Analytics and heatmapping tools are also great for highlighting the large differences in visitor behaviour between desktop computers and mobile devices.

For example, the conversion rate of your landing pages could be high on desktop but low on mobile devices because the design wasn’t built with mobile visitors in mind. That means that the content is squashed into a small mobile browser window and makes much less sense.

Even worse, if your call-to-action is pushed further down the page on mobile devices and mobile visitors make up the majority of your traffic; your largest opportunity to earn new leads is being lost.

Without tracking in place, it’s impossible to know how different the experience is for the users of either device.

How To Increase Your Website’s Leads

Now you’re tracking your website’s visitors with more accuracy you’ll be able to know which are the right changes to make to increase your website’s conversion rate and earn more leads.

This section will include 33 ways to increase your website’s leads. Each one is graded by the following criteria:

  • Time To Complete (how many hours, days, or weeks this change would take to implement)
  • Dev Team Needed (is a website developer required to make the necessary changes?)
  • Effort Required (is this easy to do or hard and going to take a lot of effort?)
  • Cost (how much is this change going to cost to implement)

1. Add Heatmapping

Adding heatmapping to your website is one of the best ways to increase your website’s conversion rate as, without it, it’s very difficult to know what your website’s visitors like or dislike.

Hotjar* is our preferred tool for heatmapping (we use it for hundreds of clients at a very reasonable price), but there are several alternatives available, including:

Time To Complete: 1 Hour
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — ££££+

2. Add Click-tracking

As with heatmapping, click tracking is an essential part of conversion rate optimisation and increasing your websites’ leads.

Hotjar also has click-tracking built-in, as do most of the other tools linked above.

Time To Complete: 1 Hour
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — ££££+

3. Use the Behaviour Flow Report in Google Analytics

This report within Google’s free analytics tool is brilliant for highlighting where your website is losing traffic and requires no set-up as it’s built into the Google Analytics code your website will already be using.

Time To Complete: 1 Hour
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

4. Use the Funnel Visualisation Report in Google Analytics

The Funnel Visualisation report with Google Analytics requires some minor set-up. You will need to enter the steps of your funnel into your tracked goals for this report to work. This takes very little time to do.

The funnel will only start tracking from the day that you add the funnel to your conversion goal. This tool doesn’t work with data already recorded previously.

Time To Complete: 1 Hour
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

5. Speak to your Customers

The best way to know what is working and what is not is by talking to your customers directly.

This is often seen as a labour-intensive task, but it doesn’t need to be. You only need to speak to a small percentage of your customer base to learn a lot about their experience converting on your website.

The best way to do this is to email your customer list and ask whether any would accept a marketing call in return for a money-off voucher (or some other form of “payment”) to thank them for their time.

If you’re unsure which questions to ask, then boast.io has an incredible mixed list of customer-knowledge-accessing questions.

Be sure to front-end your call with questions about how the customer found your website, what their first impressions were, and how easy or difficult it was for them to find the services they wanted as these calls can go onto related (and interesting) tangents. By front-ending your questions, you gather the most relevant information first before the call takes a different course and the opportunity is lost.

Time To Complete: 1-5 Days
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: £££ (to cover the cost of “thank you” vouchers)

6. Add Live Chat to your Website

If you’re unable to call your customers then you can talk to them in other ways.

One of the best ways to do this is by using a Live Chat widget on your website. We use Tawk.to, a free-to-use Live Chat option that incurs a charge when certain tools within it are used, for our clients and our own website.

With a Live Chat tool, you can ask very specific questions to glean knowledge from your visitors, but it should also be used to record the most commonly asked questions by visitors. You can then review your website’s content to ensure the answer to these questions is included within your copy. This will help visitors to self-educate themselves and warm themselves up towards converting without your input.

Hotjar provides a similar service within their tool called “Feedback Polls” which pop-up with questions you may have for browsers. These can be set to ask specific questions you have for individual pages of your website by using the targeting settings within it.

Alternative live chat providers include:

Time To Complete: 2-3 Hours
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — ££££+

7. Speak to your Sales Team

If you have a sales team speak to them. They will know all of the most commonly asked questions and complaints from your customers. They are walking and talking encyclopedias of customer knowledge.

Ask your sales team — or if you are the sales team for your business do this yourself — to write down every question or complaint (if any) they hear from customers. This is now the basis of a Frequently Asked Questions page you can now add to your website.

Review each question and determine how the information for each could be communicated on your website. This will include additions to page copy but could include changes to the wording or tone used, the inclusion of informational images or videos, or the addition of internal links between pages where the information they need can be found.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

8. Review Your Sales Funnel’s Content

Your website is a funnel. People enter as prospects at one end and exit as customers at the other end. At least, that’s the way it’s supposed to work if your website is converting well.

The infographic below, by Lucidchart, demonstrates how the sales funnel of a website works well. The top of the funnel, or “TOFU” is the type of content people who are just becoming aware of your company are searching for.

Graphic showing funnel with content at the top, middle, and bottom

Image via lucidchart.com

People in the TOFU stage of service discovery have a problem that they need solving, but they don’t know how to fix it.

As an example, someone who is just starting out as a freelancer might have questions about whether they should be a Sole Trader, Limited Company, or Umbrella Company. This person needs help, so they search for the answer. This brings them to crunch.co.uk.

Crunch.co.uk is an accountancy firm which makes accountancy easier with the software they offer. Their “Sole trader vs limited company, or umbrella: what’s best for you?” ranks at the top of Google for this search.

The blog post covers the subject well and even includes a video to make the information easier to understand. Included within the blog post are several calls-to-action, including a link at the bottom to Crunch’s collection of free guides.

To download these guides, the visitor has to sign-up as a free member of their community. They do and download the guide.

After they’ve read the guide and made a decision on becoming either a Sole Trader, Limited Company, or Umbrella Company; who do you think they’ll consider first when choosing an accountant?

I expect that they’ll choose Crunch.

Crunch has earned their trust by putting their knowledge out there for people to find, highlighting their expertise and earning the prospects contact details in the process (when they signed up to download the free guide).

Each section of your sales funnel needs content. The front of the funnel needs informational content which provides solution-based content for the problems your customer is having.

The chance of conversion is low here, but the focus isn’t conversion, it’s brand awareness. After they know more about what your brand does they’ll then consider the brand again when they’re closer to making their commercial decisions.

As we move through the funnel, the content changes, as can the choice of media. A downloadable guide, like in Crunch example, may be more beneficial than a blog post.

Further down, the content changes further until the prospect reaches the end of the funnel. This is where your conversion pages (such as your service pages) will need to be conversion factories, generating lead after lead.

Graphic showing different types of search intent in a sales funnel

Image via getstat.com

Time To Complete: Weeks or Months
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: ££

9. Improve Your Website’s Readability

When adding to and improving the content for your website’s sales funnel, ensure that it’s easy to read and understand.

Text sizes that are too small and hard-to-read font choices can make content useless to readers.

Colour choices are important too — and there are regulations and ratings for web accessibility. If the colour of the font and background are poorly chosen then they may be hard for people to read, especially for those with visual impairments.

There are several “rules” for choosing fonts, colours, and font-sizes you can follow:

  • Avoid tacky fonts
  • Avoid script fonts
  • Choose only a few fonts
  • Use only a few colours
  • Use a contrast checker when choosing colours
  • Use plenty of white space
  • Use a suitable line-height
  • Set fonts at a 14px size minimum

The University of Sussex in the UK has a good colour palette selection you can choose from to get you started.

Screenshot of the Accessibility Contrast Checker

Screenshot from sussex.ac.uk

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: Probably
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £

10. Highlight Your Unique Selling Points (USPs)

If your customers can’t see your unique selling points then they can’t possibly know about them.

eCommerce websites are the most consistent with using USPs on the pages. They mostly use USP bars which run across the top of the website so that they’re not missed, as seen in the Missguided example beneath, but they’re also great at weaving them into product page copy too.

Screenshot of Missguided's Unique Selling Points bar

Screenshot via missguided.co.uk

If there’s something that your business offers which makes you unique or distinct enough from your competition, your website should be highly vocal about them.

The unique selling points of your website may not be about what your delivery options are, or how great your customer service is, or that you offer a “Shop Now, Pay Later” option; but you need to isolate what makes your business different to your competition and highlight those differences to your customers.

If your business offers free returns and your competitor doesn’t, highlight that.

If your business uses better quality and organic food sources and your competitors don’t, make that your USP.

If your products have a lifetime guarantee and your competitors don’t, point that point.

But before doing so, start by going back and speaking to your customers to find out what they really care about and whether your choice of unique selling points are effective at persuading them to choose your business.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free

11. Use High-quality Photography and Images

I can say with some confidence that nobody would buy the £5,300 watch in the screenshot above if the product photos were grainy, out of focus, and zoomed too far out.

If the photos you use on your service pages are low quality, people will assume your business is low quality.

For example, if your website is for an accountancy firm and you’re using the stock image below, it’s probable that your business is going to look quite amateur.

Example of a poor quality stock photo

On the other hand, the following image (which is a stock image, but proves the point because there isn’t an accountant sitting next to me I can take a photo of right now) is a much better quality photo and shows a confident woman looking at graphs and holding a calculator.

Example of a good stock photo

There may be some cost involved in hiring someone to take professional photos for your website, but your website is the first point of contact for your prospective customers. It must give the best impression possible.

Even if you have to pay your friend’s cousin who does some photography on the side, rather than a professional photographer; the quality is likely to be much higher and more personable than any stock photography you might use.

Your website is a glossy brochure advertising your website. Make sure the images match that.

Additionally, where possible, use multiple photos or images to convey information to people.

People are far more likely to scan images and learn quicker about something than they would by reading five-hundred words of copy (which is ironic given the length of this page), so use them within your pages to summarise your offering.

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 4 Weeks (to find a photographer then edit and upload them)
Dev Team Needed: Probably
Effort Required: Medium — High
Cost: £££ — ££££

12. Add Explainer Videos

Videos are brilliant. You’ll see that I’ve used some on this page to help explain some of the points made and given further details that I couldn’t include here (because this page is already quite long).

Videos summarise content quickly and often have better explanations than the copy does (unless it’s written by an Exposure Ninja copywriter, that is).

For example, CHAS, a UK contractor health and safety assessment scheme, use videos on their pages to summarise and explain their service. They make it easy for people to understand the benefits of being a CHAS member.

Screenshot of the CHAS website

Screenshot via chas.co.uk

Freitag, a fashionable company which makes hard-wearing messenger bags from upcycled lorry tarpaulin, use videos to showcase their products. They certainly cost more than videos you’ll find on most sites, but they’re so fun and memorable that you’re bound to show the people seated around you, which increases Freitag’s word-of-mouth reach.

Brainstorm ideas on how you can use video to explain your services or products. Try to write ten serious ones and ten humorous ones. Then pick the one that best embodies your brand’s tone-of-voice.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Probably
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: ££ — ££££

13. Include Testimonials

People trust other people more than they trust the seller.

If I tell you that our free digital marketing review is the best marketing review in the world, you’d probably have some doubts — but if I show you the following testimonials you’ll probably reconsider.

Although those testimonials repeat much of what the free marketing review page communicates (that it’s free, informative, and filled with useful suggestions), those reviews feel more credible because they’re not coming from the seller themselves.

If a new pizzeria opens up in your neighbourhood and a leaflet comes through your door saying, “The Best Pizzas in all of Chicago”, you’ll probably ignore it as the same boastful advertising speak which every business uses.

On the other hand, if your best friend, Bethany, told you that the pizzas she and her friends ordered from the same pizzeria last night were “out of this world”, you’d probably pay attention and get pizza tonight.

Estate agents rely heavily on their reputation to attract people to their business. Because of that, most work hard on highlighting the quality of their work through the use of testimonials.

Purplebricks, a UK estate agent, places their reviews throughout the site, highlighting the quantity and quality of their testimonials. They are placed at the top of the page so they can’t be missed, using the well-known review website brand logos to assure readers that the reviews are genuine and trustworthy.

Screenshot of the Purple Bricks website about the fold

Screenshot of Purple Bricks' testimonials

Screenshot from purplebricks.co.uk

Where possible, reviews and testimonials should feature a photo of the person leaving the review as this helps increase the trustworthiness of the review.

YesMasters, an estate agent training course by successful real estate agent Kevin Ward, uses photos alongside their reviews as proof that the praise being highlighted is genuine and by a real person you could search for and find (if you really felt like you needed to).

Screenshot of the Yesmasters' testimonials

Screenshot from yesmasters.com

Review platforms like Trustpilot, Reviews.io, and Feefo don’t have photos built into their platform, so where possible, ask your best customers for a review of your business and a profile photo you can use on your website.

Video testimonials are even more valuable.

As an example, the following video testimonial is by Russell Smith, one of our longest clients and is frequently cited as a convincing factor for our newest clients choosing our agency.

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Week
Dev Team Needed: Probably
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £££

14. Include Social Media Proof

Trust can be built with social media too — and we’re not just talking about a bad showing the number of followers your business has on Instagram either (although that helps too).

When people say nice things about your business on social media, use this to your advantage.

As social media are public platforms, you should be able to use and embed this praise on your website in contextually relevant ways.

Notion, an all-in-one notes and project management tool, uses social proof on several pages of its website to convince browsers to try the free tool.

Screenshot of the social proof from notion.so

Screenshot from notion.so

These testimonials by real people can be trusted more than sales copy, especially in cases where the people posting has a high-profile in your industry or is verified by the social network used.

If you think that your business isn’t glamorous enough for people to post about on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram; give your current customers a reason to do so.

Use an incentive to encourage your customers to post about your business, whether this is a free month of your service or a free gift; these posts can then be embedded on your website alongside your services.

Sometimes you don’t have to offer anything at all. All you have to do is ask people to review your business in your post-sale emails and a small enough percentage of them will anyway.

It’s important to distinguish between offering people a gift for posting a regular update about your business and offering a gift in return for a review on sites like Google My Business, Trustpilot, et al. Offering a gift for a review on these sites is against their Terms of Service.

Further Reading

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Unlikely
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — £££

15. Add Trust Signals

Trust signals, like testimonials and social proof, are simple and effective ways of increasing business trust.

There are several different options available:

  • Badges of official associations your business is a part of
  • Badges for legal requirements or regulations
  • Logos of well-known businesses you serve
  • Logos of news outlets and publishers your business has been covered by
  • Website security badges
  • Payment security badges
  • Badges of certifications you or your business has earned
  • Badges or logos for awards won

Badges of Official Associations

Screenshot showing the badge of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland

Badges of Legal Requirements or Regulations

Screenshot of a Solicitors Regulation Authority badge on a website

Screenshot of UK legal badges on a website

Logos of Businesses You Serve or Supply

Screenshot of a website using business logos to earn trust

Logos of News Outlets or Publishers

Example of news outlet logos on a website

Website Security

Example of a security badge on a website

Payment Security

Example of payment projection logos

Badges of Awards Won or Shortlisted For

Screenshot of a website with awards won highlighted

Example of badges for awards won on a website

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Week
Dev Team Needed: Slightly
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — £££

16. Appear on Review Websites

Customers shop around before they make a purchase. They want to make sure they’re getting the best quality service or product for their money. They don’t want to be scammed and they don’t want to re-buy something in twelve months because whatever they bought originally was ineffective or broke.

When they’re shopping around they’re looking for reviews. If they’re buying new headphones then they’ll be looking for reviews of the “best headphones under £100” or for a review of a specific set of headphones they have in mind. It’s the same for services.

People search for the name of the business supplying the service and add “review” to the end of their search query. You’ve probably done it yourself.

Rather than review sites like Trustpilot or Feefo, these people are looking for in-depth reviews by people.

For example, a shopper searches for “google pixelbook go review” and finds a review by a journalist about the Google Pixelbook Go. The review includes personal opinion and real photos of the product, rather than sales copy and stock product photos on most eCommerce product pages. There are even graphs comparing the battery life against similar products too.

A graph showing the battery life of different laptops

The shopper learns far more about how well the product works in real-life situations. They read the pros and cons and feel like they can make a better-informed decision about whether they’re going to buy it or not.

Shoppers are doing this for your business too. They’re searching for reviews of the services or products you sell, so make sure they’re there.

Websites will review your business without you needing to ask them; however, there’s no harm in speaking with the businesses in question to make sure that your business is considered for review and that your services or products are made available to them to review.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £££

17. Appear on Related Websites

If your business is selling software to HR departments then it’s important that your business and software are featured on websites about HR.

Whatever your business is selling, your business, services, or products need to be featured on websites which relate to your business and industry.
As an example, if your business rentable exhibition stands then it’s important that your business is featured on trade websites as it’s here that trade fairs are advertised and promoted.

When the owner of a construction company is reading a blog post about “Why Construction Businesses Should Attend the 2020 Trade Fair”, your exhibition stand business needs to be mentioned in the section dedicated to “Marketing Essentials You Need”.

The same can be said for travel agents. Your business should be mentioned on all kinds of travel websites, whether as a “Trusted Travel Agent” in a “Travel Resources” section or as the provider of background information in a “The Best Places to Stay in Puglia” article.

Think about the types of websites your customer is visiting prior to landing on your website and brainstorm the types of information you could provide to websites directly or indirectly related to your industry.

Time To Complete: 1 — 4 Weeks
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £££

18. Highlight Your Business’ Postal Address

Your business may not have a walk-in location so adding a postal address to your website may not seem like the most necessary thing to include, but seeing an address can trigger a subconscious thought in the mind which says, “this business has a real-looking address so they must be legit”.

Your address may not be glamorous, but even this small element can lead to a conversion rate increase, even if it’s buried in the footer or on your contact page. It’s that little bit of reassurance that can make the difference between prospect and customer.

Time To Complete: 1 Hour
Dev Team Needed: Possibly
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

19. Add a Trackable Phone Number

This conversion rate improvement tip could be just “Add a Phone Number” and it’d be a great tip for many businesses, but adding a trackable number can make a big difference to your website’s conversion rate.

Adding a phone number to your website’s header provides both prospects and customers with the subconscious reassurance that they can reach you when necessary, which alleviates any pressure they may feel that they’re “on their own” when it comes to making the purchase or when they need support post-sale.

The advantage of making the phone number is that it provides you with more data on how your prospects and customers are finding you.

MediaHawk, who we currently use for call tracking for client websites, not only tells you how people are getting to your website, it also connects to the most common Customer Relationship Management software choices so that you can see the entire sales journey from lead capture to sale and post-sale nurturing.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: Possibly
Effort Required: Low
Cost: ££ — £££

20. Review Your Call-to-action’s Language

Poor word choice in your website’s calls-to-action can be the deal-breaker for conversions. Your offering may be great, but the way you describe it may not appeal or be obvious to your prospects.

One of the most common examples we see in our free marketing and website review is the use of “Get in Touch” as a call-to-action.

People may “Get in Touch” with you, but they’d be far more likely to do so if your call-to-action was “Get my FREE Consultation Call” instead.

The call-back that prospects get after filling in the form is the same, but the way it’s being sold differs entirely.

“Get my FREE Consultation” sounds like you’re getting something for nothing. It sounds like, if you went to another website, maybe you’d have to pay for a consultation.

Note: LiveCall.io is a fantastic tool for adding call-back functionality to your website. It simply asks for the prospects number then it calls your number and connects you instantly, rather than the typical process of you checking your form submissions once a day and calling the numbers you’ve gathered the following day.

Sign up” isn’t an appealing use of language either. If I want to try your software then, unless there’s a button which says “Live Demo“, I’m going to have to sign-up anyway.

Start a Free Trial” is more appealing. It explains that your software tool can be tested briefly and that it won’t cost me anything to do so.

Unlike “Sign up” which puts me off slightly because I’m already dreading the thought of filling out forms and having to type in my bank details.

Both processes after pressing the call-to-action may be identical, but my subconscious mind makes me feel like there’s more “work” required with signing up than there is with claiming a free trial.

A common source of poor language usage in calls-to-action is the Curse of Knowledge.

The Curse of Knowledge, or “Curse of Expertise” is a perceived assumption that the person reading your content has the same level of knowledge that you do.

In 1990, a Stanford University graduate, called Elizabeth Newton, created an experiment which perfectly exemplifies how the Curse of Knowledge works.

Two people would sit across from each other, one designated as the “tapper” and the other as the “listener”.

The tapper was asked to think of a popular song and tap it on the table for the listener to hear and recognise.

Of the 120 songs tapped out, only three songs were guessed correctly by the listener. That’s a success rate of only 2.5%.

Your website can’t rely upon tapping a song that your prospects will recognise. You must use their language and make your service or product and your USPs immediately understandable without the need for industry language or long explanations.

Review your call-to-actions and reconsider whether they are attractive (“get in touch” vs. “free consultation“) and use simple language.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

21. Review Your Call-to-action’s Offering

Sign up” versus “Free Trial“. “Get in Touch” versus “Free Consultation“.

Both of these examples show how positioning and language are key to making your calls-to-action effective, but what’s also important is that what you’re offering is compelling and alluring too.

If your website has a simple “Get in Touch” contact form on the home page and your direct competitor has a different form which offers a “Free Home Visit and Quote“, which of these two offers do you think your prospective customer is going to choose?

High-converting websites offer attractive things. They can be free home visits or free consultations, but they can also be free file downloads which help the customer self-educate about the products or services they may need.

For example, someone interested in adding a conservatory to their home won’t yet be aware of their number of things they’ll have to consider before adding one to their home. What they need is guidance.

Their first question may be, “Do you need planning permission for a conservatory?“.

As of writing, the first URL to rank in the UK is for Everest, a leading installation company in the UK.

This page is well put together and explains a lot about the legal requirements prior to the construction of a conservatory. It’s extensive, and notice how they’ve already improved their conversion rate by using a “call free” phone number at the top of the page and a “Get a Free Quote” button on the right which follows you as you scroll down.

Screenshot from the Everest website

Screenshot via everest.co.uk

The free quote button is unmissable, but perhaps not the best call-to-action for this page.

Somebody searching about whether planning permission is required to build a conservatory probably doesn’t have a complete idea of the conservatory they want yet. They’re more likely to have just started to think about it and this is the beginning of their buying journey.

The free quote call-to-action may work for some, but a softer and more likely to convert call-to-action on this page would be a downloadable PDF guide called “Everything You Ever Needed To Know About Building a Conservatory” or similar.

This offering is far softer, requires very little to earn (perhaps only a name and an email address), yet provides the business with an opportunity to not only gather contact details for follow-up calls later on, but an opportunity to highlight their expertise and track record of installing not only conservatories, but also windows, doors, garage doors, driveways, and other home products.

Matching the perfect offering, in this case, a downloadable, to the right content presented the perfect opportunity to send effectively an entire brochure to the prospective client which will even include calls-to-action of its own!

Review your website’s highest traffic pages and consider which stage your prospective customer is at in their buyer journey and then tailor your offering to what would help them move to the next stage, even if that is just a free call, at-home visit, or free product sample.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Probably
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £££

22. Offer Content Upgrades / Downloadables

This is a continuation of the last point.

Your high performing blog posts and guides need next-step calls-to-action.

If you operate a law firm and your “What Are My Rights to Property after Separation?” blog post earns most of your traffic, that blog post should have a content upgrade of downloadable of some form.

A content upgrade on the subject of post-separate property rights might not sound exciting, but to those going through a separation it may be the perfect helping hand they need to do divorce research in private.

For example, many of the people searching for information about family law and divorces are doing so in private. They don’t want people calling them up straight away. What they need is information and an easy and near secretive way to access it.

A PDF on family law would aid this person a lot. Rather than spending hours on a website and potentially getting caught doing so (if searching in private), this person can instead read the PDF on their phone (or even on their Kindle) in private and without someone looking over their shoulder. They can open the file whenever they have the time to do so and they can carry on from where they left off, unlike with a website where it can sometimes be difficult to resume reading from where you left off.

Content upgrades or downloadables are low-commitment calls-to-action that help the user to the next stage of their buying journey.

Some examples we’ve used and seen around the web include:

  • Checklists (anything from packing lists for travel websites to checklists on blog post optimisation)
  • Whitepapers
  • Worksheets
  • eBooks
  • Templates
  • Spreadsheets
  • Tools

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Unlikely
Effort Required: Low — Medium
Cost: Free

23. Use Opt-in Forms

Having free downloadables on your website is great for earning visitor trust, but offering them through a “Download Now” button alone is an opportunity lost to earn their contact details for following-up with later on.

Instead, use opt-in forms where people provide their contact information in return for the downloadable you’re offering. You can then follow-up with an email series or newsletter which continues to educate your prospects about the services or products your business offers.

However, there is one very important caveat.

Following the introduction of GDPR — a legal scheme to prevent individuals, businesses, and organisations from misusing personal information — you’re not permitted to automatically sign people up to your email list when they fill out opt-in forms. Instead, you must ask for specific permission to do so.

Further Reading

Forms are also much better converters than the email address at the top or in the footer of your website, or on the contact page.

Forms used throughout a website present repeat opportunities for your prospective customers to get in touch with you, and they’re even more likely to do so if the language and offering are both strong.

Example of good simple form on the Acorn Stairlifts website

Screenshot from acornstairlifts.co.uk

Example of a simple form above the fold on the Payzone website

Screenshot from payzone.co.uk

Using Hotjar’s form analytics you can track and review where people are dropping off from your form. You can then improve or remove the questions and fields at each stage of your form funnel so that the dropoff rate (the percentage of people who leave a form without completing it) reduces.

Screenshot of Hotjar's Funnel Analytics feature

Screenshot from hotjar.com

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Week
Dev Team Needed: Yes
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free — £££

24. Use Pop-ups and/or Slide-ins

Pop-ups interrupt the flow of a page. When someone is least expecting it, they pop-up (hence the name) and take over the screen. They’re impossible to miss.

People hate them.

But they work.

They’re incredibly effective at encouraging people to get in touch, download something, or just to sign-up to a mailing list.

You may choose to not use one so that your website isn’t seen as “annoying” for using them, but if your main objective is to increase your leads or sales then there aren’t many better ways you can immediately double or triple leads overnight by adding one to your site.

It’s possible to implement them so that they’re not annoying.

You could only use them for “exit intent”. This means that a pop-up will appear when people go to close the window.

As the person is already leaving, you’re not interrupting their reading experience, so they’re less likely to be annoyed by a pop-up appearing. It might just convince them to stay.

Pop-ups can also be activated by reading percentage. This means that a pop-up will appear based on the percentage of a page or post a person has read.

For example, if someone is reading a blog post and gets as far as 75% of the way through it; it’s highly likely that they’re committed to the piece and are likely to be interested in reading more of what you have to offer.

If someone is reading a blog post about how to open a business bank account, a reading percentage pop-up offering a “How To Open a Business Account in 20 Minutes” PDF is going to appeal to them a lot. That person is probably going to be really thankful that the guide was highlighted to them.

Example of a pop-up on the sumo.com website

Screenshot from sumo.com

Slide-ins are a different style of pop-up, but they slide into the page, from the bottom or either side of the page, typically large enough that they catch your attention, but small enough that they don’t disturb the reading experience too much.

Screenshot of a slide-in pop-up on benzinga.com

Screenshot from benzinga.com

There is no perfect pop-up solution for a website. The pop-up for one page of a site may not work on a blog post on the same site.

For that reason, we recommend tailoring your pop-ups and slide-ins to the content and intent of the reader.

For example, someone researching for a professional to install a wood decking for their home and lands on a “Decking Installation and Repair Services” service page may be interested in a downloadable brochure of previous installations.

On the other hand, someone researching for “how to wake up earlier in the morning” might be interested in a downloadable “25 Tips for Falling Asleep Naturally” PDF.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: Unlikely
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

25. Use Thank You Pages

Just because someone has requested their free “Bullet Journal Template” or “15 Free LUTs for Color Grading Videos” doesn’t mean that the funnel is closed. There are additional things you can do here to increase your conversions.

When people give you their contact details in return for whatever freebie you’re offering, thank them for doing so, then ask them to do something else.

Whilst they wait for their freebie, ask them to join your mailing list (if they haven’t already).

Ask them to follow your YouTube channel (you should follow ours, it’s awesome).

Ask them to follow you on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Ask them to tell other people about the thing you’ve just given them by posting about how great the thing is on Facebook and Twitter.

Screenshot of a word-of-mouth social sharing button on the NSPCC website

Screenshot from nspcc.org.uk

We’re currently employing this strategy too.

When people request our free website and marketing review they are offered the opportunity to download our entire collection of best-selling digital marketing books in return for posting about their free review.

Asking people to follow your social accounts or share posts about your website will help to increase referral traffic, which is going to increase your leads.

Think of your thank you page as the extension of your sales funnel rather than the end of it.

Time To Complete: 1 Day
Dev Team Needed: Unlikely
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

26. Use Upsells

You can increase your website’s leads by offering more to someone before they’ve fully converted.

This is a tactic that the lead-generating landing page software company Clickfunnels is built upon.

Clickfunnels use up-sells, down-sells, and cross-sells to turn each person who enters the sales funnels of their product’s pages into leads.

An upsell for one funnel for a free book promotion may be a discounted price for additional books in the series or accompanying material, such as checklists and templates.

The down-sell for the same promotion may be express next-day delivery.

A cross-sell for the same funnel may be tickets to a live webinar or in-person seminar being held later in the month.

These sales add-ons can help to turn a lukewarm lead into a minor investor (downsell) who will then receive your mailing list for the next two weeks and then decides to purchase your offering after all.

This turns a lost or “low value” lead into a regular lead rather than them leaving your funnel altogether, like most sales funnels.

Anyone up-sold or cross-sold at this point should also be the subject of high attention.

If someone was eager enough to buy a product they weren’t initially interested in, it’s quite possible that they’d be interested in even more products or services at a later date.

The trick is knowing the point at which to stop offering these up-sells, down-sells, and cross-sells.

The last thing you want to do is have offer-after-offer appear which can then give the impression that the funnel is some kind of bottomless scam where there’s always “something” you can buy.

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Week
Dev Team Needed: Possibly
Effort Required: Low — Medium
Cost: Free — £££ (cost of your add-on items)

27. Improve Your Post-sales Handling

How you handle your leads after you earn them is more important than earning them in the first place.

If a lead you convert has a terrible experience then word is going to get around that your services or products should be avoided.

According to one study by Coca-Cola of its customers:

  • A customer with a satisfactory customer service experience will tell 5 others
  • A customer with a negative experience will tell 9 or 10 others
  • 12% of cases would tell more than 20 others
  • 30% of the dissatisfied customers would stop buying Coca-cola altogether

Coca-cola has a lot of favourable brand trust, earned over their 130+ year history.

If their customers are having such a bad time with a bottle of coke that they’re vowing to never buy from them again and then telling their friends about it, your brand needs to be ten times more careful.

How you handle your leads after you’ve earned them is going to influence your lead acquisition later on.

The better the experience your leads have, the more word gets around that your business is worth checking out.

You need to nurture your lead, earn their loyalty, and enable them to advocate for your business.

Graphic showing the many layers of a sales funnel

Image via x-cart.com

Sometimes all it takes to encourage advocacy is just asking.

Do you want your current leads to advocate for you? Email them and ask them if they wouldn’t mind sharing your latest promotion. They can say no. They can delete the email and move on. But if they’ve had a great experience with you, one of them will.

There are lots of ways you can reward your advocates.

You could offer them an extension to their subscription of your service or software. You could even upgrade them to a VIP experience of it.

You could even offer Amazon gift cards to anyone who’s particular proficient at referring people.

Graphic showing the hierarchy pyramid of advocate needs

Image from influitive.com

According to JitBit, who created the fantastic infographic beneath, “Word-of-Mouth generates over 2x the sales of paid advertising”.

Paid advertising can be expensive. How much of your paid advertising budget would you spend on rewarding your brand advocates if you could 2x your sales?

Harry Dry, founder of marketingexamples.com, has a great example of how one US-based removals company used small gifts and word-of-mouth to increase their referral sales by sending their existing customers a freebie.

Max, an entrepreneur running one branch of the removals company in question (Skinny Wimp Moving), sent a thank you card to 100 of their past customers which contained a handwritten letter, a lottery ticket, and five business cards.

The result was an increase in referral sales of 140%, equally an additional $5,200 a month in revenue.

All they said in their note was a simple “thank you” and a “hope you’re enjoying your new home”, yet the note and the lottery card struck a chord.

It was quirky and cute enough that, when those customers were asked in the future if they knew a removal company, “Skinny Wimp Moving” was the first name on their lips.

What can your business offer your existing and past customers? As you can see above, you don’t need to offer a lot. You just need to make an impact.

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: No
Effort Required: Low — Medium
Cost: Free — Medium

28. Use Email Marketing

Once someone has left your website it’s very hard to get them to return again.

And it’s not just hard. It’s expensive too.

You could use remarketing ads on Facebook or Google’s ad networks to remind people of your offer, but you’re going to need a large enough advertising budget to do so.

If you have someone’s email address, however, you could get in touch with them as often or as many times as you need, all for the cost of the email marketing platform you use.

Imagine there are two people. Person One visits your website, reads your content, then leaves never to return again.

Person Two, on the other hand, reads your content, sees your email course and signs up.

Person Two then receives an email from you every other day in which you inform and impress them with your knowledge.

Two weeks later, when Person Two decides that they’re finally going to buy the product or service they need, they return to your website to do so. Why? Because you’ve constantly put your business at the front of their mind, whether they’ve read every email or not.

Seeing your brand in their inbox, even if they haven’t read every email, will subconsciously remind of the original content they read and the experience they had.

Perry Marshall, an American marketing giant, offers an email course called “The 30 Day Street MBA” on this website.

I signed up to it about two weeks ago, and because of a heavy schedule, I’ve only read the occasional email — but when I think about marketing training whose name is the first one I think of?

That’s right. It’s Perry’s.

Email marketing, or your mailing list, is an extension of your website. Even though your target customer isn’t reading it on your website, it’s still your content, it’s still your sales funnel.

Email is part of the conveyor belt of your business’ sales funnel, moving them from the earliest stage at the top of your funnel (TOFU) to the middle (MOFU) and closer to the eventual sale.

Graphic showing funnel with content at the top, middle, and bottom

Image via lucidchart.com

What could your business offer as an incentive to join your mailing list?

Is there a useful freebie you could offer on your website?

Would people join a regular newsletter about your industry curated by you?

Could you offer a course via email like Perry Marshall’s “30 Day Street MBA”?

Pat Flynn, a master of email marketing, has a great YouTube playlist on creating your first email list, which you can see here.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month (writing and implementation time)
Dev Team Needed: None
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free — £££

29. Try Split Testing

No web page is ever truly perfect. No page ever converts at 100%.

But, we can constantly improve pages so that we can get them as close to perfect as possible.

One way to do this is split testing or “A/B testing“.

Split testing is a competition between two pages with different designs. Traffic is sent to both and the page which converts the highest number of people is the winner.

Graphic showing the different between an A and B page

Image via quicksprout.com

The differences between the pages can be minor or major. One page may have a different heading to the other. Another page may have an entirely different layout and colour scheme to their competition.

Depending on the type of page, you could change:

  • The heading (short and specific or long and emotional?)
  • Image sizes (small, large, or multiple image choices?)
  • Calls-to-action (“Get in touch” vs. “Signup” vs. “Register Now”)
  • The number of fields in forms
  • Colours (Bright red or a subtle yellow?)
  • Page layouts (single column vs. multi-column layouts)
  • Content length (long vs. short pages)
  • Using videos instead of images
  • Navigation bar (include or remove to avoid the distraction?)
  • Social proof (include testimonial profile photos or association/security/review badges?)

Split tests don’t only need to be between two pages. Depending on the quantity of traffic your website earns, you may be able to run multiple page tests at the same time.

Graphic showing the different between multiple a/b test pages

Graphic via optinmonster.com

Jakob Linowski, the absolute genius behind the website GoodUI.org, regularly shares examples of active and completed A/B tests run by big businesses, like Netflix, Airbnb, and Amazon on his website.

Screenshot showing an A/B test discovered on netflix.com

Image via goodui.org

What could you test on your most important landing pages that could increase the number of leads you earn?

Time To Complete: 1 Day — 1 Week
Dev Team Needed: Possibly
Effort Required: Low
Cost: Free

30. Try Multivariate Testing

If there are lots of things you want to change about your pages then you could try a multivariate test.

In a multivariate test you may have one page where the heading and images are different to the control page (the original unchanged page) and another page which has shorter copy, but more photos and a bigger “Register for the Webinar” button.

The image beneath, by webtrends-optimize.com, shows an example of the magnitude of changes which can be tested for multiple pages at a time (when there is enough traffic to do so).

Screenshot showing an A/B test discovered on netflix.com

Image via goodui.org

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Possibly
Effort Required: Medium
Cost: Free

31. Improve Your Pages’ Loading Times

In 2009, Akamai Technologies completed a study which found that four out of ten people will leave a website without making a purchase if the website doesn’t load in under three seconds.

Internet access is (generally) a lot faster today than it was in 2009, so you’d think that websites would load much faster too, but that’s not the case.

Every year, websites get “heavier”. I.e, they need lots of code to load.

As new coding languages are introduced or become the standard, the code required to run them increases.

Graphic showing how websites are increasingly larger in size

Graphic from httparchive.org

If your website is “heavy” and takes a long time to load, people won’t stay long enough to see that your call-to-action is — especially if your landing page is a very long sales letter with a call-to-action at the very bottom.

Several case studies have shown that the faster a page loads, the higher the conversion rate is, including in this example from a mPulse Mobile study.

Graphic showing higher conversion rates for faster websites

Graphic via cloudflare.com

There’s no one single solution for solving slow loading times as every website is different, each built using a different choice of coding language.

The following infographic, however, lists many speed improvements which should apply to a large number of websites, including your own.

Depending on your website’s platform, you may be able to download plugins which solve some of these issues, but keep in mind that adding more plugins could exacerbate the situation rather than solve it as each plugin adds more code that needs to be run.

Infographic explaining how to speed up your website

Graphic via techwyse.com

We particularly love this solution for increasing your website’s leads as it requires no change to your call-to-action, your content, your offering, or your pricing.

As an additional bonus, page speed is included within Google’s algorithm as a ranking factor, so making your website faster should help your website to rank at the top of Google too.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Yes
Effort Required: High
Cost: £££ — ££££

32. Make Your Website Mobile-friendly by Default

As of July 2020, mobile traffic makes up 50.13% of all internet traffic.

50.13%. That’s five out of every ten people.

If your website is not optimised to cater to those five people, they’re not going to stay on your page.

That’s 50% of your possible new business gone, in almost an instant.

Graphic showing mobile usage overtaking desktop

Image via statcounter.com

Google has a great set of principles for mobile web design which covers many of the most common design errors which can block lead generation.

One of the most important design errors, or “conversion blockers” as we prefer to call them, is when a website isn’t mobile-friendly at all, let alone not well optimised for conversions, and it looks like a website that’s been zoomed out 1000x.

Graphic showing the difference between between a mobile and non-mobile friendly website

Image via quicksprout.com

Most downloadable website themes are built today to be “responsive“, adapting to the size of the screen rather than having a one-size-fits-all approach to mobile-friendly design.

The problem is, that most of these designs are built by designers and not by conversion rate optimisation experts.

Many designers will have conversion rate optimisation as part of their skillset, but it’s rare that a downloadable theme from marketplaces like Envato will be designed to your audience’s preferences.

Your design needs to suit what your audience wants and how they behave when they use a mobile device.

This can be accomplished, but only through design adaptations implemented by a freelance developer or a website developer within your company (if you have one).

If you are using a stock theme, then review your design in both desktop and mobile views to see how different the conversion experience is between them.

If there are major differences which could be blocking conversions, enlist a developer as soon as possible to correct them so that you’re no longer losing leads.

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Yes
Effort Required: Medium — High
Cost: £££ — ££££

33. Improve Your Website’s Design

If your website is already mobile-friendly, great. That’s a great foundation to build from.

But is your design, on desktop or mobile, block conversions?

One common mistake is that a website offers the exact same content to both types of browser.

Someone on their desktop is seeing a lot of information all at one time. They’re getting a complete and clear picture of what a page is about and what is being offered.

On a mobile device, a browser only sees the content that’s visible at that time. If the most important message of a page isn’t immediately visible when the page loads then that message is lost.

It doesn’t matter if the message is only one or two scrolls further down the page; if the visitor loads a page and it’s not immediately obvious what the page is about or what it’s selling, that visitor may leave immediately.

Desktop pages aren’t exempt from this same problem.

VWO, an A/B testing software company, has a case study which showcases how a shorter homepage increased sign-ups by 13%.

Image showing the different length in copy between two pages.

Image via unbounce.com

For this website, getting straight to the point on the homepage is exactly what prospective leads needed to see. They didn’t need to read a long page to know that they were eager to try the client’s app design courses.

But that’s not the case for every website — which is why you need to do your research and A/B test to see what your leads prefer.

Conversion Rate Experts, working for Moz, famously helped to increase sales by 52% by increasing the length of Moz’s landing page.

There are many other design recommendations for increasing conversion rates, including:

  • Only offer a small number of options at a time (monitor your Attention Ratio)
  • Using a small colour palette of only a few colours
  • Use colours which fire psychological triggers
  • Use colours that contrast
  • Use font colours which are readable and pass WCAG guidelines (use a checker)
  • Set font-sizes at a minimum of 14px
  • Set the line height of text high enough so that text is easily readable
  • Use plenty of white space
  • Use human faces to add humanity and personality to your brand
  • Don’t break from design norms (i.e, product photos are always on the left of a product page, swapping it breaks people’s subconscious expectations)
  • Don’t use carousels or sliders (they distracting and hardly ever useful)
  • Use videos to help explain complicated subjects
  • Put your call-to-action on the left of the screen, not the right (according to a Nielson Norman Group study)
  • Use content formatting — such as consistent headings, sub-headings, bulleted lists, bold, and italics — to make the copy easier to scan and read

When reviewing your design, consider testing it using a “5 Second Test“.

“Five-second testing is a form of usability testing that allows you to measure how well a design quickly communicates a message.

A five-second test is run by showing an image to a participant for just five seconds, after which the participant answers questions based on their memory and impression of the design.” (Usability Hub).

Time To Complete: 1 Week — 1 Month
Dev Team Needed: Yes
Effort Required: Medium — High
Cost: £££ — ££££

In Summary

Your conversion rate could be low because:

1. You’re attracting the wrong type of person
2. You’re using the wrong traffic channel to reach them
3. Your website doesn’t have what people want
4. You’re using the wrong offer for the stage of the sales funnel the prospect is in
5. Your website just looks bad
6. Your website doesn’t look trustworthy
7. Your website loads too slowly
8. Your website is stale

You can find out why your website isn’t converting by:

1. Using analytics software
2. Using heatmapping software

You can increase your conversion rate by doing one or more of the following:

1. Adding heatmapping to your website
2. Adding click tracking
3. Using Google Analytics’ behaviour tracking software
4. Using Google Analytics’ funnel visualisation tool
5. Speaking to your customers directly
6. Adding live chat software to your site
7. Speaking to your sales team
8. Reviewing each stage of your sales funnel
9. Improving your website’s readability
10. Highlight your business’ unique selling points
11. Using high-quality images
12. Adding explainer videos
13. Include testimonials and reviews
14. Include social media proof
15. Adding trust signals
16. Appearing on review websites
17. Appearing on related websites
18. Highlighting your business’ address
19. Adding a trackable phone number
20. Reviewing your call-to-action’s language
21. Reviewing your call-to-action’s offering
22. Offer content upgrades and downloadables
23. Use opt-in forms
24. Use pop-ups and slide-ins
25. Use thank you pages
26. Use upsells
27. Improve your post-sales handling and nurturing
28. Use email marketing
29. Try split testing your pages
30. Try multivariate testing
31. Improve your page’s loading times
32. Make your website mobile-friendly
33. Improve your website’s design

*Some links within this article are affiliate links which Exposure Ninja receives a fee for promoting (these links are not sponsored). Exposure Ninja only promotes services we already use within our marketing stack

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