3 Things Conversion Optimizers Should Be Doing from Christina Inge

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Ten years ago, a lot of the things that conversion rate optimizers do now were shots in the dark. If an idea failed, nobody knew why; and if it succeeded, it would be really hard to replicate.

Christina Inge, experienced digital marketer who also teaches at Boston University, says, now through the tools available, you see what approach is working and what’s resonating with your market.

In an episode of Landing Page Optimization, Christina shared tips anyone involved in CRO should be doing :

1. Listen to your customers

Voice of the customer is critical because marketers’ vision of their product is never exactly the same as the customers’ vision. And at the end of the day, it’s what the customers think that really matters.

SiteTuners CEO Tim Ash agrees that whatever people think about your brand is your brand, and not what you want it to be in your ivory tower.

2. Look at your business holistically

If you think of marketing as one thing, sales as another thing, and your app experience as yet another thing, then you’re leaving money on the table.

Christina says that not having enough traffic to your site does not necessarily translate to not having enough data. Sometimes there’s data in other places; you just have to work with other departments.

For example, you need the sales department to give you lead quality data, so you know which version of your AB test was the real success. Without this data, you’ll only see which version got a higher form fill rate, but not which version actually had more leads that turned into customers.

Also, sometimes, lack of data is your data. If you have an app that’s getting 4,000 to 5,000 people a week who sign up for the app but take no actions, that is a data point telling you that once people get into the app, they’re confused and they’re dropping off. Maybe it’s not what they were expecting or there are user experience (UX) issues with it.

So, you have to go outside of your discipline and work cross-functionally with the UX people who can do a test and wring some information out of sitting down with 5 people.

There will be times when you’ll need to think outside of conversion optimization because the information that you need might live somewhere else.

3. Know what to test

Christina says throwing every piece of spaghetti against the wall can work really well if there’s a lot of energy and passion behind it. Often, however, it becomes a vague hunt for nothing in particular.

In testing, success should be defined – when you’re testing, you’re testing against something. Goals should be set as to what’s a good conversion rate and what you want to see all the way down to customer lifetime value (CLV).

Tim adds that testing is just part of your arsenal, so don’t focus completely on it. It’s a mistake to measure your conversion prowess using your testing velocity. It’s pointless to be increasing the number of tests you do a month if you don’t have an intake process for ideas about what’s broken in your site, you’re not identifying the where biggest potential pay offs are, and you’re not quantifying the financial impact.

webmaster-radio-1.jpgTim and Christina also talk about ways not to do CRO properly and how to get a seat at your company’s grown-up table. Listen to their conversation online or download the “How Not To Do CRO With Christina Inge” podcast from WebmasterRadio.fm.

First Air Date: June 10, 2014