Conversion rate optimization is the art and science of making the most out of the site traffic you already have and driving more sales without spending an extra penny on user acquisition and advertising.
E-commerce matures and becomes more and more competitive every year. Store owners who are serious about their business need to quickly jump on new opportunities and embrace the latest tactics and technologies. Here is a list of four major CRO trends you should know about in 2017.
Google Optimize Tool makes CRO mainstream
In 2016 Google released a beta version of free yet powerful A/B testing tool. Babak Pahlavan, Google’s Senior Director of Product Management, Analytics Solutions and Measurement, describes this instrument as a smart fast-acting analytics – for everyone.
Google Optimize brings focus to your retailing business and provides a wide range of data. It will show you which site experiments worked effectively and drove sales, and which did not. Moreover, it will offer the solutions to help you engage more customers and get higher revenue. This technology offers a broad field for experimenting; and soon enough the culture of testing will become a new routine for all successful ecommerce merchants.
Conversion optimization is taken to a new level of credibility; it becomes crucially important for every profitable enterprise. Before diving into the ocean of new opportunities, make sure you are recording the correct information and understand the statistical models you are planning to use. Otherwise the decisions wouldn’t really be data-driven, no matter how advanced the tool is.
Full spectrum A/B testing
Split testing is not a secret for e-commerce merchants. Even startups and small businesses do “button testing”. Simple experiments with banners, text and various page elements can of course lead to better conversion. However, if you want to use A/B testing like a pro, you should concentrate on the three main aspects of every test:
- Innovation: each change you make should enhance customers’ experience. Make shoppers comfortable around your website – their appreciation will result in higher revenue.
- Iteration: smaller test that are easy to implement provide immediate commercial impact. They don’t cost much and you can quickly gather a scope of important data.
- Strategy: don’t be afraid of great transformations! Long-term tests will help you find the right value proposition and support your business growth aspirations.
Your goal as a business owner is to find a perfect blend of the listed test types. A series of thought-out small experiments might not bring the change but instead lead you to larger and bolder tests that will make the shift.
AI is a natural fit for conversion optimization
Ecommerce already has a significant advantage over the other types of business – thousands of high quality apps and extensions can be easily integrated into each other allowing to automate nearly every aspect of the selling process.
The next step for online retailers would be the adoption of AI systems, and it’s really not a bad thing. All conversion optimization strategies and decisions are based on testing and gathering statistical information. Tiny design changes, traffic allocation, and data analysis – these are the everyday tasks that machines can do. Save your precious time and allow your webstore to tweak itself based on machine learning.
The consolidation of marketing and tech is very powerful if human intellect is not neglected. The donkey work will be eliminated and marketers and optimizers would do what they do best: create.
Focus on customer experience, not just conversion optimization
Machine learning and data mining are very important for developing an effective marketing strategy: when you know who your clients are, you can offer them what they need. However, in the highly competitive world of modern ecommerce well-informed marketing is only a step towards a new customer-centric business approach.
Nowadays shoppers are not just buying products to ease their pain points. Clients are educating themselves before each purchase decision, they want to stay connected with a brand via whatever channel they fit in, and of course they demand an excellent service. This disarms the product battlefield and makes customer experience the corner stone of a lucrative business.
The only way to win and keep the customers in 2017 is to listen to the shoppers’ voice, respect their ideas and opinions. You should stay open-minded and research what buyers are saying about your webstore and about your competitors’ sites as well. You’ll be amazed by how many invaluable insights and bright ideas you could find.
Bridge the gap between customer demand and what brands are really delivering. The potential payoff is huge: the opportunity to establish deeper, more meaningful and profitable relationships with your clients.
2017 is the year of changes and challenges for ecommerce retailers. Merchants will have to step outside of their comfort zone: embrace new tools and technologies, experiment with their business, and more importantly, find a common language with their customers.
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