You’ve been doing a great with your small business SEO strategy–traffic is up; keywords are ranking well; engagement is growing with social media and content efforts. But, something isn’t right. For all that effort, your online business isn’t growing as planned. You need to focus on conversion, conversion, conversion!

Conversion Defined–A conversion occurs when someone takes a desired action on your website. This isn’t always just a sale–it also includes things like signing up for a newsletter, downloading a white paper, registering for an event, or simply viewing more pages of your website.


1. Track Conversions

Tracking web goals through analytics is the single most important thing you can do. Yes, you know that online sales of widget x are up 6% this month so your site must be working well. Right? Not really. Without conversion tracking you only get a part of the picture.  For example, you might not know that 80% of your customers bail on step 2 of the conversion goal. Wouldn’t you love for the rest of those people to hit ‘submit’ or ‘buy’?!

The free Google Analytics tool is robust enough for most small business owners. An article from KissMetrics clearly explains the process setting up goals on your site. With the data of what works and what doesn’t, you can adjust the conversion funnel accordingly which may have a huge impact on your success rate.

2. Differentiate Yourself

Just like traditional marketing, you must differentiate yourself from competitors. Clearly explain how your product/service can improve their lives. Perhaps you use all organic products, provide free shipping, 24 hour support, or video tutorials. Something your competitors don’t do. This will encourage them to complete action while on your site. It has the added benefit of improving recall and loyalty when in need of your offerings again.

Tip: Focus benefit language around how you can help your customer NOT how great you are. Just like in real life, you get a much better response when you focus on others instead of yourself!

3. Provide a Clear Call to Action

Having a clear call to action (CTA) is the best way to improve your conversion rate. This basic marketing function is often overlooked. Tell them what you want them to do–order, register, read more, etc–writing great web copy is easier than you think. The CTA will likely vary from page-to-page on your site and it should be be relevant. A blog may ask you to ‘subscribe’ and shopping cart to ‘place order’.

4. Easy to Complete Call to Action

Once you have your CTA in place, make it is as easy as possible for someone to complete the conversion. If you want people to download a whitepaper, you could have the download start as soon as they click a link. Or, if you are trying to get your visitors to sign up for your newsletter, you can try auto-populating the contact form so all they have to do is click a button to join your mailing list. Ask for as little information as possible.

5. Clear Navigation

In most cases, clean site design improves conversion just by being intuitive and easy to use. None of us like clicking around a site to find the free e-book they were promised in recent search results. Hey, I can always go elsewhere!

Having a clearly defined goal, telling your customers what to do next, and tracking it all with analytics, will help you improve your conversion rate. More web traffic doesn’t help if you can’t ‘close the deal’ (convert). Go for the low hanging fruit!

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