How to double your conversions before Black Friday and Christmas 2022

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This Black Friday and Christmas we want you to think about how you can optimise your website landing pages and product pages for conversions

Around these peak shopping periods most marketers focus on driving traffic to their sites without considering the impact their website is having on their sales.

The Conversion Rate Optimisation Process

In this article we outline the main process of Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO) in detail with ideas and examples you can start testing this peak sales season.

If you want to understand the basics of CRO, we have the perfect article here.

Step 1: Use analytics to identify what areas on your website to optimise

Use Google Analytics, and other analytical tools, to identify which area of the conversion funnel you want to prioritise optimising in preparation for Black Friday and Christmas.

Usually you want to prioritise the part of the conversion funnel that receives the highest amount of traffic, generates the highest number of conversions, or has the highest drop-off rate. Focusing on these pages will have a higher impact on the site’s conversion rate, and on the revenue of your business for these busy buying periods.

Here are the main areas of CRO focus for different websites depending on the website’s goal:

Goal: Purchasing a product/service

If the goal is to purchase a product/service on e-commerce sites, the main CRO areas to focus on in preparation for Black Friday and Christmas are usually category landing pages, product pages, and the checkout pages. Basically, the whole purchasing conversion funnel.

Optimising your e-commerce website is particularly important during the Christmas period as there will be more search demand thus more traffic on your categories and products. So ensuring these visitors convert will be a key component in maximising your revenue.

Use Google Analytics, or other analytics tools, to look at the drop-off rate of users when purchasing specific products. Where the drop-off rates are highest, first test whether the pages are working correctly, then consider optimising and a/b testing this part of the purchasing funnel.

During the Christmas period, you will likely do ads such as Google search ads, Google Shopping ads, social media ads and so on. These ads will likely bring users to your product pages so it’s important to prioritise your product pages and consider doing CRO on them. Look at how long people are spending on the product pages, which buttons they are pressing to buy, and how many visitors drop off the product page. This will help you know which part of the pages to focus on. Test some of the product pages (particularly the most popular ones) and if patterns start to emerge then consider scaling these changes to all the product pages to maximise their conversion rates.

During the Christmas period the Homepage is also important to consider doing CRO on, particularly if ads are taking users to the Homepage. Use analytics to look at where users click on your Homepage so you can identify which area to optimise. Homepages should have low bounce rates as the purpose of Homepages is to take visitors to the pages that would meet their needs (usually product pages). Anything more than a 40% bounce rate for the Homepage is not good and you should definitely consider optimising and a/b testing..

Goal: Submitting a Form

If the goal is submitting a form, such as for a service, the main CRO areas are usually the form landing pages, the landing pages before you fill in the form and the actual signup form.

For the actual sign up form, you could test the number of input fields, the position of the form on the page, the colour and size of the submit button, and so on.

Usually the least number of input fields, the more likely the site visitor is to convert as users want ease and convenience. Make the process of submitting a form as simple as possible.

Goal: Signing up

If the goal is signing up, such as to a newsletter, the main CRO areas are usually the sign up funnel, the sign up landing pages, and the sign up buttons and forms.

You can consider testing different locations for the sign up banner or form on the landing page. For the sign up button, you could test the colour, size and shape of the button, the text inside the button, the font size and font type of the button, and so on.

Goal: Clicking a Call-To-Action (CTA) button

If the goal is clicking a CTA button, such as downloading a pdf, adding to cart, or triggering a pop-up, the main CRO areas are the landing page of the button and the actual button.

For the actual CTA button, you could test the size, shape and, more importantl,y colour of the button as well as the text, font size, font decoration, and font type of the text in the button, the position of the button and so on.

For the Christmas period you can even consider testing different Christmas colours, or adding Christmas icons inside the CTA button. This will help the button stand out on the page.

Goal: Creating an account

If the goal is creating an account, the main CRO areas are the main landing pages, the CTA (Call-To-Action) button for creating the account, the page where an account is created, and the actual creating the account form.

For the CTA button to create the account you could test the colour, size, shape and what the button text says as well as the size, colour, and font type of the text, the position of the button, and so on.

For creating the account form, you could test the number of input fields in the form, the colour and size of the submit button, and even the background colour of the form.

Step 2: Create hypotheses

After you have identified what main area(s) you want to focus on and optimise first, it is best practice to create a hypothesis of what you believe to be true. This is what you will be testing.

Creating hypotheses help you test based on logic and data, and give the CRO process structure instead of just testing random areas. It is always best to start with big tests, such as a complete redesign of a page, and then focus on smaller incremental tests such as the colour of CTA (Call-To-Action) buttons.

For example, if you are trying to increase the number of visitors on the Homepage that click ‘Sign Up’:

- For a big test, your hypothesis could be that this new design of the page will increase the number of people clicking the ‘Sign Up’ button, and so you will be testing this new redesign of the page hoping it will increase the number of visitors that go straight to the sign up page.

- For small tests, your hypothesis could be that changing the colour or text of the sign up button will increase the number of visitors clicking the button. So, then you would test different colour variations of the button, or different texts of the button such as ‘Sign Up Now’, or ‘Join now’, or ‘Start today’, or ‘Start today, it’s free’ etc.

Step 3: Run a/b & multivariate tests

Once you have your hypothesis and know what you want to test, the next step is to actually test it. The most common way to do this is to run an a/b test. Some CRO experts also run multivariate tests.

What are a/b tests and multivariate tests?

a/b testing (also known as split testing) is showing 2 versions of a page (Version a & Version b) to live visitors on a website/app and testing which page has the highest conversion rate. 50% of the visitors will be shown Version a, and 50% of the visitors will be shown Version n of the page.

- Version a is the original page.

- Version b is the new page (ie. the one you would like to test to see if it has a higher conversion rate).

Multivariate testing is almost exactly the same as a/b testing but instead of only showing two versions of a page to live visitors, you show as many versions of a page as you’d lie.

For example, you can show visitors four different versions of a page, so 25% of visitors will be shown:

- Version a (original page, eg. yellow CTA).

- Version b (1st page variation, eg. blue CTA).

- Version c (2nd page variation, eg. green CTA).

- Version d (3rd page variation, eg. red CTA).

One thing we also want to mention at this point is that you should only test one variable at a time, otherwise you won’t know what change impacted the overall positive result.

To continue reading, head to the Honcho website here.

You'll learn:

1. Best tools for a/b testing

2. How to analyse results

3. Experiments you can carry out today!