Top Conversion Rate Optimization Best Practices (Podcast)

Posted on: 20-06-2022 by WEB-ROI

 

Podcast Transcription

Denise B

Welcome back, listeners. This is our second episode in this format. We’re so happy you joined us after that first one.

Caleb S

Yeah, thanks for joining us, guys.

Denise B

In our first episode, we talked about our ROI pyramid which is going through different marketing strategies and when you should be investing in each one, the types of returns, and how to get the best return from those, and it was quick— we went through all the levels very fast, but that very first level, that base of that pyramid is the conversion rate optimized website.

Caleb S

That’s right, so base of the pyramid, obviously means that it’s important, so why is it so important?

Why do we always say that it needs to start with the conversion rate optimized website or, you know, why might it be more difficult without one?

Denise B

Because before we start investing in marketing and before we do all this marketing activity, it doesn’t make sense to bring all that traffic to your website if it’s not going to do what you want it to do and so we’ve dedicated this second episode of our podcast on how to have a converting website because it’s that important. It has to come before marketing.

Caleb S

Yeah, I agree. I think it’s foundational. We always talk about how if somebody’s looking for a business nowadays, the first thing they do is Google that business. You can find the business if you click on their link, and you end up on their website.

The website needs to look good or needs to function. It needs to do what it says to do, ’cause if it can’t then you essentially just lost that lead. You’ve lost that sale right away all.

Denise B

Yeah, it’s your first impression on the digital world.

Caleb S

That’s right, yeah, I guess you could almost think about it like if your website is sort of the curb appeal for your home, except for your business. So, you know, your website needs to have that curb appeal. It needs to look good. It needs to function properly too. It needs to, in order for you to make that sale.

Same way as if you were selling a house or anything else. Anything that needs to look good to be sold.

Denise B

Totally, so let’s chat about what you need to have or what some common elements of a converting website have in a campaign so that you can check: does your website have it or are there improvements which may need to be made? What does that look like?

Caleb S

Definitely.

Denise B

So, let’s start with contact information. It seems so basic. Of course you need to have your contact information on your website. That’s what you want people to do, assuming you want people to contact you if they land on your website. They need to know how, and there are certain places that I think most users will navigate to on a website and expect to find that contact information there.

Would you agree?

Caleb S

I definitely think so. I mean, it happens to me all the time when I’m visiting a website, and if I need to reach out to somebody. Or, let’s say, if I’ve ordered something online and something has gone wrong. The first thing we always do is think: how do we contact that business? Is there a way for us to reach out to them? Is there a phone number that I can call them on to find out how to communicate with them?

If I need service— where I’m actually in need of service now, looking for a mechanic or my furnace has stopped working and it’s minus 10 degrees outside— I’ve got to call someone because I need to get a hold of them right away. So, if I’m looking for an HVAC company, I end up on their website and I can’t find a phone number to call them because I need this service right away, I’m going to move on and find somebody else who has a phone number.

Denise B

So, especially if you’re in emergency services, your phone number needs to be front and center, and above that fold. We say above the fold. It means before you start scrolling down, whether that be on mobile or on your desktop when you initially land on a website.

If you offer emergency services, your phone number has to be there absolutely. There are other ways people can contact you, of course, ’cause maybe you don’t want phone calls. Maybe you don’t want a flood of phone calls coming in and you prefer an email or form.

Caleb, you mentioned the chat feature. Whatever it is you want them to do. Maybe you even want them to make a purchase, and you don’t really want them to contact you at all. However, when somebody lands on your website it has to be very clear what the action that you want them to take is.

So, assuming the action you want them to take is to contact you, then somewhere in the header, and typically it will be in the top right you would want to have that basic contact information whether that be your phone number and like a ‘contact us’ button that pulls up that as a form, or— we don’t advise it, but you could have your email up there. This is generally something you want somewhere in the top, and usually in the top right is where you want to have your contact info.

Caleb S

Yeah, and exactly to your point, I think all of us are kind of almost expecting it to be there. That’s the place where you expect to see the contact us button, or a phone number, and then similarly on mobile.

Obviously, a mobile website looks a little bit different than on desktop, so it may not be in the top right. In that case, maybe have it right along the bottom and it stays along the bottom if you’re scrolling through the site, making sure that you just always have some way of allowing your customers and your clients to find how to contact you or again, determine what are they going to do on the website. What is the desired action they would take, and how can we make that as easy for them as possible?

I think that kind of sums up the whole idea of conversion rate optimization that we really just want to make it as simple as possible for the user to get the information they need and to complete the action that is desired.

Denise B

I also think it’s really important that all websites have a contact us page so that, even if you’re not entirely sure where the information is throughout the site, there’s a page dedicated to your contact information which you can then easily find on the site and that contact information page needs to have whatever you want your users to know. So, your phone number, a form to contact you, and your address is a big one.

If you have a storefront that you want people to go to, you gotta give them your address, ideally with a map. Something that we like to do too is, on the footer, so at the very bottom of the website, you’re going to want to have your address there as well as your phone number, and the reason that is also a great tip is because now you have your address, which is your local area, on every single page of your website.

Caleb S

On the SEO side, do everything you can for your website to make sure that Google is also able to see your website, look at your website, and figure out who you are and where you are. And so, including information like your phone number, like your address is important on the SEO side, which is all part of the conversion because Google is always looking for consistent NAP. That’s your name, address, and phone number.

Now, we’ll get more into detail about this in another podcast where we talk specifically about SEO but making sure that you’ve got the same phone number, the same business name, and the same address listed everywhere online is really important and so include it in places like on that contact us page, and Denise like you mentioned, adding it to the footer. It’s a great way to make it very easy for Google to see it and ensure that you’ve got the right information there consistently.

Denise B

Yeah, and then on top of contact information, we talked about call to actions or a CTA, but what is it?

What is it you’re trying to get people to do? So, if it’s a purchase, maybe your CTA is “buy now” or “shop online”, even “shop our products”, different things like that. You could have “request a quote”, “request service” or different CTAs that way. CTA placements can be really important as well. You don’t want to just have scrolling and scrolling of information without a button indicating what you want the person or your potential client to do.

So, let’s talk about CTA placements and, well, where those should be.

So, a rule of thumb, you know, should never be more than two to three scrolls without seeing one. Yet, they should stand out. They should be a contrasting colour; they should be different from the background of your website as it should look noticeable.

Caleb S

Noticeable, yes, I agree.

And, I think, especially in talking about websites as a whole right now, we often have this idea, and a lot of businesses do as well, that you want this gorgeous website that’s super sleek and almost hyper-modern, and we’ve run into issues like this ourselves where we try to set up a website like that and then we realize that people landing on the website actually don’t know what to do or where to find what to do because you almost can’t see it.

So, being sure that CTAs are so very clear so that people can’t miss them is really important because that’s how you’re actually going to drive those leads. That’s how those leads are going to get into contact with you or complete a purchase or whatever that desired action is.

Denise B

I love that point, and for that example, I always like to reference the Apple website.

So, Apple. Their branding, right? Like everybody knows who Apple is, they don’t need to explain who they are. Their websites are gorgeous, they move, they have all these unique, different things that flow but you’ll still always find the blue CTA of “buy” or “compare” phones. So even Apple does it and they don’t even need to because the users would poke their way around and figure out how to get that iPhone.

It’s still just having that clear indicator there, and so there’s certain areas of the site, and there’s a flow of the site that needs to make sense. So, as there’s natural reading patterns— we read left to right, and so when I talked about having that contact information in the top right, it’s because your eyes tend to linger where it finishes. You typically read in a “Z” pattern, and you’ll go left to right, down diagonally to the bottom left, and then over to the bottom right. So, we make sure there is this kind of hotspot of information, so you’ll have your logo up at the top left and you’ll have your contact information in the top right. People will skim down through the middle, through that diagonal, and then you’re going to have some hotspots on the footer as well or at the bottom of the page.

Caleb S

Absolutely.

Now I think another button that we often refer to internally, that we haven’t said yet, are our funnels that we use. We use funnels, and Denise you mentioned, you know, “above the fold” earlier and again, that not needing to scroll to see this sort of information.

We like to include what we call funnels on websites, and so funnels are essentially another button that is placed there, and we like to do, ideally four as a goal. They are the most common services, or you know, the top products or top categories for whatever that business is offering. And the reason that we like to include those there is again simplicity.

People hit the website they’re landing on— let’s say they’re landing on Apple’s website. They’re likely going there for an iPhone or an iPad. And, so now Apple, I don’t believe has funnels like that on their current site, but if they were to, they would likely pick something like, you know the iPhone, the iPad, then a MacBook and something else because they know that people who are landing on the website are looking for that specifically.

So, Denise, what do we really try to do with funnels or what other insights can you add into why we find so much success with using funnels on websites?

Denise B

Well, just like you said, funnels should represent your— usually your highest revenue-making product or service. But also, what are you trying to push? What are you trying to sell at that time?

So, if you are a patio furniture company and you want to have umbrellas because that’s a big push for you, you should have an umbrella funnel. And it’s a beautiful umbrella, with the word “umbrella” and with the “shop now”— you know, or “shop” button right on there. The other one next to it could be patio covers ’cause maybe that’s in. Patio furniture and patio accessories, let’s say.

Then when somebody lands on your site, they clearly see your top products and it funnels them right to that page as opposed to trying to have you navigate through a menu. And you can make menus simple. You can try and do the best you can, but as you get more and more products and services, your menu tends to get more cluttered. There’s nothing you can do about it, right?

Caleb S

Absolutely, yup.

Denise B

You have to have everything on your menu. So, keeping the funnels as your clear top sellers or your top products, or your top services, just gives users an easier way to navigate their way to that page.

Caleb S

Yeah.

Denise B

And so that’s kind of a talk about the flow of the site and then, you know, that’s funnels and CTAs.

But then, of course, there’s other components that make up the site. Images can be a big one. Images are… how people relate, right? I mean, people scroll. We know people aren’t reading through the content. Content’s there for a completely different reason, which we’ll talk to about when we get to our SEO podcast, but images are what make people emotionally connected to your brand or product.

So having the right images is extremely important and it doesn’t come down to just having high quality images, because nobody wants them to be pixely or stretched, or just poor quality ‘cause it’s not going to relate to anybody, but I think it’s so, so important to make sure your images reflect the type of work you want to do.

Caleb S

Yeah, exactly.

Denise B

I know we had a client who was a landscaper— IS a landscaper, and all they wanted was bigger jobs. Big projects, full backyards, and the pictures that they sent us were like zoomed in pictures of interlock. And sure, the interlock looked great, but it’s this interlock patio. And so, when I land on this website, and I just see just interlock walkways or paths…

Caleb S

Exactly.

Well, why would you think that they’ll do a whole backyard for you because it looks like they’re just doing that walkway, that path.

Denise B

A path— or stairs. And sure, they’re great stairs, but it’s not connecting to me. I don’t see the whole picture. I don’t see the entire backyard that makes me go “I want that”. It’s so important that you’re picking images that relate to the types of work you want.

Caleb S

Absolutely, and I think to your point, you know, it’s different for every business. Different businesses are going to require different images.

So, if we’re talking about somebody like a landscaper or somebody who really does build or renovate, who does this gorgeous stuff, we want to make sure that we’re representing that work correctly.

So, we want to make sure that you are seeing the beautiful work, that you can see the quality craftsmanship and at the same time, visitors who are landing on this site and seeing those sorts of images are going: “Oh man, you know, I want my house to look like that. These guys understand. They get the look that I want. I really gotta reach out to them ’cause I know they’re gonna understand what I’m going for”.

And, that’s such a huge portion. I mean, different businesses, like I said, will require different sorts of images, and some businesses might look for images more along the lifestyle side, where you’re seeing, you know, a happy family doing something together and that is what they want to resonate with their audience.

If you’re a business-to-business type of enterprise instead of, you know a B2C, then those types of lifestyle images aren’t gonna fly. Those don’t work very well in a B2B environment, so maybe you need to be a little bit more technical with their sorts of images.

But all that to say images are still just as important regardless of the industry. It’s just that making sure you’re selecting the correct images and using them appropriately is really going to help with the user experience of your website.

Denise B

For sure, targeting your images to your audience and, you nailed it. I’m so happy you said that.

So, you know, if you are lucky enough to be in a visual industry, meaning you create a product or service that’s beautiful, that’s the best right? Because then you can display your work. That’s all you want.

And no hate to our HVAC friends, but like, nobody wants to stare at a picture of a furnace in the basement, so it’s hard to make that look nice. It’s hard to get somebody to emotionally connect to that furnace or that AC unit and go, “oh, I want that”. No.

And that’s where maybe you have to tie in more of the lifestyle. So, do you see a family happily in front of a fireplace? Enjoying the warmth of a fireplace? Try and pull in more lifestyle images ’cause that’s gonna relate and just have them associate with, you know, a home comfort more than just a product image if that’s all you had throughout your site. So having a variety and having that emotional attachment.

Caleb S

Exactly.

And then you know, something that we mentioned last week, sorry— in the last podcast, was understanding your audience. And that’s a huge portion of understanding what sorts of images you want to have there, right? Do you want them to aspire to be like the people they’re seeing on your website? Do you want them to want what they’re seeing on your website?

Understanding that audience is going to help you select the correct images or take the correct images and get those uploaded. So again, all factors that are just really important as you are planning out the entire strategy, holistically.

Denise B

Okay so, the other huge component of a website that nobody likes to do, or even talk about, is the content. There has to be words on your website. We know nobody wants the words there. You know— it’s looking cluttered, and I totally get that. But from an SEO perspective, there needs to be some sort of content on there.

You also have to explain to those who want to read the details and read through everything. It’s important to have some information in the form of words there.

So, I want to talk about having proper content on your website.

Caleb S

For sure.

It’s actually kind of funny, because just now we mentioned everybody looking at images and most of the time we skip right past the content and we just, you know, we’re just looking at the images.

But that’s not to say that content is not incredibly important, ’cause it really is. And we’re gonna get into this now, and yes, images are important, but I would say content is equally, if not more important because that really is what Google is diving deep into, the content. So as much as we say people skip right past the images— or sorry— skip past the content, just to see the images, content is still very, very important. I don’t want that comment to be lost.

Denise B

No, your images are usually what grabs your attention first, right? You see this beautiful thing. And now and then there are some people who do read word by word. They want to. Like that is a highly detailed person.

They want to read all the content, but for those of you people who are just skimming, which I would say is the majority of people, it’s important for—of course you need content for Google, but you’re writing your content for your users. You do not want to write content that’s just stuffed with keywords, or that’s clearly just written for the search engines, because it comes off as very unnatural.

Caleb S

Yeah, I agree.

Denise B

So, you want to write your content keeping your users in mind first and that’s what Google wants you to do. Google wants you to produce content that the users are looking for and that they can understand.

So, the key being that they can understand. You don’t want to write content that’s so advanced that no one can make sense of it. And the usual way this happens is through industry jargon and acronyms, and we are guilty of it. I think in this podcast we’ve probably already said four different acronyms.

Caleb S

Definitely.

Denise B

But when you’re writing your web content, if you can try and write it more in layman’s terms or how your consumers would speak, it’ll help them understand better.

And I have a great example of this. We received a bunch of content back from another landscaper, actually, a few years ago. And throughout the content, they kept mentioning hardscaping and soft scaping. And we had to go back and say, “no one is going to know what this means”. And if you do know what this means, props to you. ’cause I did not.

But you know, we have to speak in terms of retaining walls and interlock and then planting, and different, more common terms as opposed to this hardscaping, soft scaping term— terminology that isn’t just as common, I guess.

Caleb S

Absolutely.

And I agree with that ’cause especially in industries where things can get a little bit more technical— you know, we use examples of HVAC all the time, similarly, with landscapers and those sorts of things— oftentimes, especially if you’re reading content that’s about to go up on your own website, you’re scrutinizing that and being like OK, is this correct? Is this what I want to go up? Does it sound like me?

And oftentimes business owners can get lost in their own understanding of their industry and again to the point you just made there, Denise, we often use those acronyms in the marketing industry that a lot of people don’t know and we just kind of use it as second nature. It’s just part of our own vocabulary now.

And so, business owners do the exact same thing and oftentimes they will want content written that would be written for them and it is important to remember that, you know, the content is not being written for the businessperson, particularly as we mentioned. It’s being written for the user. So, making sure that it’s understandable for the user, making sure that it’s something that that they can associate with, or it’s using terms that they might understand so that they can compare to things they have around their space, or that they’ve experienced in their own lives. Just so that that connection is made in a much quicker and more efficient way.

Because without it, again, if you land on an HVAC site, you’re trying to find somebody who can help with emergencies, and they’re listing off every part of an HVAC system, you’re gonna be like “listen, this is not what I’m looking for. I’m looking for somebody who can help me get my air conditioner working because it’s way too hot in this house right now”.

That’s really what you care about. So, make sure that type of verbiage is being used across the site so that when someone lands on it they go, “these are the ones to help me”.

Denise B

The one exception I could see to this is if you are maybe in B2B or in a really niche, niche area, where having really common, basic content will actually work in a disadvantage for you ’cause you want to try and show your expertise and that you’re very familiar with that industry or that niche.

So, I know with some more technical businesses, or you know, especially in the B2B, you may need to have more industry language, I guess.

So, just knowing who your audience is ’cause if you’re working with maintenance managers who know all the parts of different things very well and you’re not talking to an average consumer, then of course you’re going to want to include that type of technical piece or content in your language.

Caleb S

Absolutely.

And I think, I mean, it’s echoed through everything we’ve said today— but again— know your audience, right?

If you know your audience and you understand what they’re looking for and you can write that way, and provide images that way, they’re just going to be able to click onto you immediately.

Denise B

Sure.

So, let’s talk about another component for websites that we have. We have images, we have your content; how beneficial would it be to have case studies or even reviews? Real client experiences on their website?

Caleb S

So, for me personally, and you know, we see this all the time with websites everywhere— it’s so incredibly important and helpful. And the reason for that is it’s just social proof.

You’ve got reviews and testimonials of people saying, “Hey, I had a great time with these people”, “They did exactly what I needed”, “I got exactly what I needed from them”, “This is the business to work with”.

Users love seeing that on websites and then on the case study side, it’s actual proof of concept. It’s proof of what it is that you’re capable of doing and what you’re capable of producing.

So, if you can provide those sorts of things to your users immediately, they’re going to say, “Okay, you know what, other people have had great experiences. I can see the quality of work that they do. This is something that I’m looking for”. They can dive right in.

And again, you’re proving to your audience and anybody who’s visiting your website that you are the expert. You are the person who is good at what you do. You make beautiful things. You sell great things. Anything along those lines. You can really use both case studies and testimonials or reviews or anything like that to really bolster this idea that you are the company that your users want to work with.

Denise B

Yeah.

I think people are just looking for— it’s word of mouth gone digital, so people are looking for people like them and how their experiences were. And I don’t think I buy anything without reading reviews anymore.

Caleb S

I agree.

Denise B

But I love it and I go even further now. I look for reviews that relate to my situation and as soon as I find one that’s like “oh, that’s me”, I am sold.

Caleb S

You’re in, yeah?

Denise B

On the spot.

I was looking at barbecue covers. Like, patio covers for your barbeque, and going through all the different reviews and then somebody talked about the area that I was in and the type of storms, the ice, rain, and everything that I had. It was just the fact that they mentioned my location too and I was like “this is perfect! If it works for them, it’s going to work for me”. And I bought it.

Then the only way to get that kind of variety is just to have as many of them as possible. So having those reviews, having those case studies, having testimonials, having people talk about their experiences so that other people can try and identify with them, is so important.

Caleb S

I agree.

Ideally put it all together. Take images of the jobs that you’ve done or take images of whatever you’re doing, get that as part of a case study, get somebody’s testimonial added to the case study that’s talking about what a great job you did and provide a little bit of a description about the job that you were working on or whatever it was.

It’s just going to go so far, both for Google and for the user experience, and the people who are looking— exactly like you said— the people who are looking for people like them, who’ve gone through something similar, and that’s who they want helping them at this point.

Denise B

Yeah, and if you’re product focused, have product-specific reviews, right?

Caleb S

Totally.

Denise B

I love when I can see the furniture in somebody else’s house. If not, the Photoshop backlit, beautiful professional images. I want to see what it actually looks like in somebody’s home, right?

Caleb S

Yeah, exactly.

Denise B

So having those real-life photos helps so much.

[ad]

Denise B

Okay, so we talked about, you know, what can help your website or the pieces that you need to have on your website to help convert and some of the placements and different tips in there.

Let’s talk about the technical side now.

So again, knowing who our audience is, we’re going to keep it light. We’re not going to dive into all the nitty gritty technical components here.

But there’s some key factors that I think are really important when you are building a website and some of the tech that you need to consider— one of them being speed.

Nobody likes to sit on a slow site. You may have great marketing. You may have the best ads, the best SEO or search engine optimization that’s bringing you up to the first page— though it’s likely if your website’s really slow, you won’t— But anyway, say we have really great marketing. It’s getting people to your website and then it doesn’t load, or it takes forever to load. People are going to bounce.

Caleb S

Absolutely correct.

They’re going to take off and they’re gonna go somewhere else that actually has a website that loads.

I think it was in 2018. Again, my psychological side is coming out. But in 2018 a study was actually done on people who are landing on websites and how they are functioning on the website. What they found is that people aren’t willing to wait longer than six seconds for a website to load for them to be able to interact with it. Otherwise, they’re going to navigate off. And this is in 2018, so that’s four years ago.

I remember thinking to myself: if I had to wait for six seconds, I not only would have left already, but I would be frustrated that I had to wait those extra 3 seconds because 6 seconds for me is too long.

Now, I understand that some people have more patience than I do.

Denise B

No way I’d wait six seconds. There is no way. Now, as of 2021, it’s less than two. That’s the expectation; less than two seconds!

Caleb S

Yeah, so if your site is not fast and anything happens that lapses or that time goes beyond two seconds, people are just gonna hit that back button or they’re gonna hit the little X and they’re going to go find somebody else who’s website loads, and who they can get the correct information from.

Denise B

Yeah, we’re impatient creatures.

Caleb S

Very much.

Denise B

So speed. And then I think it goes without saying now, our mobile devices are prevalent. The majority of internet users or website users now are mobile. It’s been creeping its way up, but it’s well over half and has been for the last while now.

So, it goes without saying, your site needs to be mobile friendly. I’m not saying you need to have a mobile site. Gone are the days where you’d have m.webroi.ca… you’d have a completely different site for your mobile — no, no, no.

You need to have a fully responsive website so that it is adaptable. We have 1000 different screen sizes for phones. You have tablets. You have laptops of all different sizes and monitors.

You just need a fully responsive website that will adapt to whatever screen size you’re using but keeping in mind it should be the most friendly for mobile users and mobile users, just being a more narrow, condensed version.

Caleb S

Absolutely.

And again, something else that is often difficult, especially for business owners, is to really scrutinize it that way, because if it’s your website and you’re super proud of it, you’re jumping on a desktop— you want to see it on a big screen.

You want to see how beautiful this big website is. But again, to Denise’s point, keep in mind, when you’re looking on a monitor or on your laptop screen or whatever actual large or larger device that you’re on, the screen is typically square if it’s an older device or the screen is wider than it is tall.

So, the screen is set up with certain dimensions that way. Now flip over to your phone. Suddenly your phone is taller than it is wide, so the actual layout of the entire website needs to completely change ’cause it can’t fit into the mold that we’ve created on the desktop site.

So, we really have to break it down. Or, as Denise mentioned, when we create websites, we make sure that it’s…very easy— I don’t know how to describe it properly, but it’s easy for it to move and shift depending on—

Denise B

Adapt.

Caleb S

Adapt— digitally adapt, yeah, so that it can fit any screen size.

So, you know, if I do go from my large monitor to my laptop then it’ll change slightly. It’ll still look the exact same, but it’ll adapt so that it functions correctly on that screen.

Then if I shift from my laptop to my phone, it still needs to function correctly on my phone. I still need to be able to click on the call-to-action buttons. I still need to be able to scroll through even though scrolling is now a swipe instead of a physical scroll on a mouse pad or something along those lines.

All of these functions need to be able to work properly, and again, if they don’t, we’re in the same situation that if somebody lands on your website on their phone and it doesn’t work for them, they’re going to take off, and they’re going to find somebody else whose website actually works properly.

Denise B

Yeah, and I think again, you have to know who your users are. So, if you’re a B2B and you’re typically going after people who will be searching for your services from their office or from their desktop then yeah, okay, having the desktop is great and maybe your desktop traffic will be higher, but we know that most people come from their mobile phones.

And so, you have a beautifully designed website on desktop that’s not going to work on mobile. You can’t have the beautiful video playing in the background or huge images, right? That just no longer fits on your smaller screen. So, recognizing too that you’re going to have to change your design and forfeit some of your design features to make it more mobile-friendly.

Also, you need your phones to load faster. So have a more simple design. Get rid of popups and different things that could be fine on a desktop but will just annoy users on mobile. You have to think through that design, yeah?

Caleb S

Yeah, totally.

Denise B

Alright, our other tech component to talk about today is web accessibility. It’s been a big one in the last couple of years and similar to, you know, if you’ve had a brick and mortar or a storefront, making your store accessible to anybody with a disability. I guess if you were having a physical storefront, having anybody enter your store and shop around regardless of their disability.

That has now moved to the website. It’s moved online for years and years and years. It’s just that living in Canada or even in Ontario, different legislations came out in 2021. And so, it’s just one of these ramp-up things about making your website accessible to anybody regardless of their abilities or disabilities.

Caleb S

That’s right.

And I mean, there’s so many different facets of it. Whether it’s the actual visual aspect or, you know, there’s auditory aspects of it. There is so much to actually dive into that it might not be easy for somebody to actually be able to manage all the individual little aspects of getting a website that is—

Denise B

I hear another podcast coming on! It’s just web accessibility.

Caleb S

There you go. That is full of this one because it really is a lot of work, and again, as you mentioned, in Ontario, if you do have a business of a certain size and your website is not fully accessible, you could be liable for fines or some legal action because it is required now by law for you to have an accessible website— again, for businesses of certain sizes.

But this is something that is not going to go away. This is incredibly important. Not to mention, if you think about the actual number of individuals who are disabled or have different abilities, you want to make sure that you are making your website available to them because they’re also still leads.

They’re still people who may purchase from you or need to purchase from you, and you don’t want to be alienating them or push them away because your website can’t adapt or match their needs. It’s really important that you’re able to do that.

Denise B

And this was fascinating when I was first doing research into it and just learning about things you may not even think of. Even just different colours, having colour gradients, being able to change the colour because maybe not everybody can identify all the colours on your website and so your CTA button that you made a certain colour isn’t actually standing out like you thought it would.

You know, you can have different components that can be flashing, or different high movement things, can be really triggering if somebody is seizure-prone or different things.

So, thus, from the front end, being able to change your visuals, even something like magnifying, so being able to zoom in and out, can change different things. It just makes your website, exactly like you said, accessible to more people.

And why wouldn’t you want that? There is the whole technical coding side of it too, like you need to have your site coded properly and have all different tags, but like we’re not going to dive into that, but it is just a whole beast on its own.

I don’t have a crystal ball that, you know, looks into what Google thinks, but having an accessible website just means that more people can use it and they’ll stay on your website longer. Which is what Google likes. So, Google has not come out and said accessibility and your rankings are directly impacted yet, but looking down the future… I mean it just makes sense.

You want your website to be accessible to all users, which is what Google wants. They want you to stay on your website longer, which is what Google wants. It just wants your content, everything you’re able to go through, to be so much easier so I have no doubt too that the more accessible you make your website, you’re not doing any harm to your SEO. I’ll put it that way.

Caleb S

Exactly.

And I agree. I think this is a really important aspect and topic that often gets pushed to the side because when people think about, you know, needing accessibility or needing to make sure they have an accessible website… I mean, it’s for individuals who, you know, maybe just need to navigate the website using only their voice

That may be a specific case, but it goes as simple as, you know, an elderly person trying to navigate a website, and the text is just too small for them. So, giving them the ability to increase the size of the text so they can read the website and they can interact with the website much more easily is another aspect of it. That is just as important.

And again, as people age, as the population ages, there’s hundreds of thousands of potential leads. People might need to see things a little bit larger on their screen in order to be able to work with you and something as simple as giving them that functionality… is that a lead for you already?

Denise B

Oh yeah.

If I can go to a website where I’m able to go through the content and see it as I should or to my ability, that’s going to stand out way ahead of your competition who doesn’t. So, there’s a huge opportunity there too.

Caleb S

Yeah, for sure.

Denise B

Okay, so let’s say you did some of this stuff. You know, you took notes during our podcast, you did some changes, and now you’re thinking: “Okay, how do I know if it’s working?” or “what do I do for all of this?”, “So this is all great, but how could we do better? What’s the next step?”

So, I want to talk about some testing and some different tests that you can do to your website to see how well it’s converting or if it could be doing better.

Let’s start with heat mapping. So, a heat mapping tool, for those who don’t know, is a visual graphic that can trace users’ behaviour on your website. So, usually through your maps, it will track your mouse movement and then produce this graphic that shows the high traffic areas in different colours. It’s like hot zones, so if you think of like a…oh, what is that like? A..? Help me out here— the heat when you see a body…the infrared is it?

Caleb S

Oh, yeah!

Denise B

Right? Where you see your hottest areas, or like the bright red and then when it gets cooler?

Yeah, so you can pretty much get a picture that even just looks like that where it’ll show like in the bright red where people hovered their mouse the longest, where their mouse movement was, all the way to where, you know, nobody really clicked.

Caleb S

Yes, yeah.

Denise B

How could this information be helpful? What can you do with the heat map?

Caleb S

Well, there’s a lot that you can do with it because of how you define it there. You know, with this heat map, you’re actually seeing where people are thinking or where their mouse is going to expect to click.

So, let’s say for example using what we talked about much earlier on in the in our discussion about contact info and we place a phone number on the website. We said, “okay, you know what, we’re going to make it look kind of fancy. We’re going to put the phone number kind of midway down the page and people can call it once they get to that point”.

Well, we’re likely going to see people’s mice move from the top left of the screen over to the top right because they’re looking for a contact us button or they’re looking for a phone number or something. And if it’s not there and it doesn’t register a click, then we’re going to see their mouse going elsewhere continuing to look for this and kind of move along the page to find that sort of information.

So, I believe there are so many things that we can glean from these heatmaps. It’s telling us again, like we keep saying, know your audience. It gives us more information and allows us to learn about our audience and learn about the way that they look. Where did they move? How they navigate with the website, and we want to make sure that we are making it easy for them by using that.

Denise B

Yeah, and I think sometimes too, when you look at your website or you look at designs, you kind of become numb to it. Like yeah, of course it makes sense to you because you’ve seen it for so long, and so sometimes we’ll put heat mapping on and then you see this high traffic area that’s on that page. For example, a lot of people think there should be a clickable button, like dates, a picture or something that people think they should click and go to something else. Then you put heat mapping on and you go “oh, so obviously like this is a heavy traffic area or a high traffic area”.

So, let’s make this a button here. Let’s make this image clickable. Maybe it looks like it should be clickable and therefore it brings you to another important page that maybe has some more information.

Or the difference. Maybe you have this coupon or something that is clickable, but it doesn’t look like it, so nobody actually knows that they should be clicking on it, they’re just scrolling right past it. Okay, how do we make this coupon stand out more? How do we make it look like a button? How do we get people to understand this is a clickable thing, that they can get? So, there’s so much analysis you can get from heat mapping.

Caleb S

Just things again, you can glean from it: if we’ve got something that looks like a button people are trying to click on it and it’s not there, you know they’re moving around. We can see that they’re moving away from it because it’s not, and it should be. We also recognize that we might be frustrating our users now because they’re getting to the website, they’re seeing something they want to click on, and they’re trying to click. They’re probably trying a few times and it’s not going anywhere. Well, now you’re frustrating your potential customer or your potential lead, and that could at the end of the day hurt a little bit or even, you know, risk losing a possible lead.

So those sorts of things are why these kinds of tests are so important, and you know there’s another one that we do as well called split testing. Or, you know, we often refer to A/B testing, and again, similar sort of situation. The goal is to know our audience better to find out as much as we can from them. I guess kind of the way you can think about it is we’re almost using the audience or the users on this website as test subjects. They’re the ones who are actually putting in the work, and we’re learning from their behaviors, and so you know, split testing or A/B testing kind of is as well.

Denise B

Yeah, so how does split testing work?

You should have the original so you’re looking at something you want to test up against each other. It can be an image. It can be a button; it could be the colour of the button or it could be the text. But let’s use an example of a call-to-action button.

So, you have this big blue call to action button. When you have a split test, you have the original, which would be the blue button and you put it up against a variant which, for example, is a green button.

A scary word these days for the last two years. But we’re gonna go with it anyway.

So, you have the variant, and when users visit your website, they’ll be shown version one or two. They’ll either be shown the original blue or the variant of green. And then you have to let this test run long enough so that you get a good enough sample size. You’ll start to see if one is converting more than the other. Button colours have a whole different psychology around them, some people relate to different colours, but let’s say that there is a clear winner of one button over the other. Then you can say, “okay, I think we should make this change” or try a different test, right?

We have an example because it actually happened on our own website. So we have our website and we decided we will go with a race car theme. So, ‘Win the Race Online’ is our tagline and we had this landing page with a big banner. The CTA button on the banner— I’m trying to remember exactly what it was here… so, the original CTA button on the banner, we wanted people to contact us, and we had the text being “start your engines”. And here we thought you know we were being all cute and funny because it’s a race-themed page where you start your engines as in you start with us. We thought people would get it, it’s cute.

No one clicked on it. Nobody. And we should know better! We should know to not try. We should be more direct and to the point, but you know, we wanted to try this with our own sites. We thought, you know, it’s a fun thing, we can try to be a little bit more markety.

Caleb S

And that’s a good example of how oftentimes people who are in the business get so absorbed in the business. We sometimes miss the reality behind it, and this is a good example of that, and we were able to step out. We had to.

Denise B

Yeah, we preach this to our clients all the time and then it comes to us (WEB ROI), we went with our little ‘punny’ saying and no, it didn’t work. So, then we changed our “start your engines” CTA with just the good old “get in touch”.

So, we ran the split test for a while. We ran “start your engines” versus “get in touch”, so when someone comes to that landing page, they see one of two versions and we let it run and we got to see what produces better results. “Get in touch” got twice as many clicks as “start your engines”.

Frankly, I think people didn’t know what it meant. They didn’t know what we wanted them to do, and so it was a pretty clear indication to us to say, “okay, let’s swap that button out”. We put it back to “get in touch” and we now get more people contacting us, which is what our end goal was, and we had the data to support it.

Caleb S

So again, just so incredibly important and then particularly, you know as a business, it’s also just interesting to find out; how does your audience actually respond best?

Split testing, as Denise said, you know, it’s not just on buttons like this, it’s not just changing the colour of buttons or changing the text of a button. It could be anything, right?

There are different aspects that we could be testing out; for example, when coming back to funnels, you could try a different image on the funnel itself. If one does better than the other, that will be a clear indication. On a website, there are so many different areas like that which allows you to glean more information from your audience. It allows you to understand the way that your audience works best so that, in turn, you can shift some of your processes in your strategy to meet them where they are and just increase the likelihood of making a sale or working with those people.

Denise B

You can even test the action of a click so you can have different paths. So, say somebody clicks on a button and takes them to one page. You can test if it took them to an entirely different page and see which one would work better.

So yes, I think, the more data that you can have, the more you can use it to your advantage. Just continuously improve, because that is the whole point. It’s never just to put it up there and it’s done, right?

You can always be improving. You can always be getting better. You can always have more conversions or just continuously testing to see what will get you the most converting website.

Caleb S

Absolutely. I agree.

And you know, to think about this discussion as a whole, we’re talking about conversion rate optimized websites, and I think what I’m hearing from you right now is that that’s not a one-time thing. You don’t only do that when you’re building the website. This needs to be an ongoing process.

Denise B

Yeah, I mean there’s a lot of core things when you’re doing the structure to set it up, but then why not strive for better? Why not strive for more? And that’s where you can continuously use this stuff and stay on top of what you need to be doing. Things like accessibility and those legislations that come out and you know, the different updates and algorithm updates and how that affects our website, I think is really important to stay on top of.

Caleb S

I agree, completely.

Denise B

Alright, well, I think we’ve covered everything for a converting website.

Caleb S

I think so. I mean, there’s definitely more we could have gone into more detail with, but we got to keep it fun.

Denise B

We’re trying to keep it general. You know, we’re open to suggestions, so if you ever check us out on social or our website, we’re always open to new topics. But we’ll just continue on our way, focusing on some of our key services or some of our key marketing strategies that we feel get people the best return on investment. Because that’s what we’re here to do, and that’s what we’re here to share, so we’ll continue on this path.

Caleb S

That’s right, yeah.

Thank you everyone for listening, we appreciate it. We look forward to doing another one of these soon and thanks again.

Denise B

Thanks guys.

Sign me up for tips, tricks, and updates.

Name(Required)
Hidden
Do not send automated emails
For HubSpot
Agency Owner
ready to see results?

The prize is a high-traffic website that generates quality leads.

With a high-traffic website designed to convert quality leads into paying customers you can shift your focus to other areas of your business (or reclaim some much-needed personal time).

Stop driving in circles. Choose digital marketing services guaranteed to get you to the finish line. With an award-winning website design company like WEB ROI at your side, it won't take long to achieve your goals.

Get Your FREE Guide Now
WEB ROI logo
high traffic website in Canada