Internet Marketing: Landing page optimization for beginners

Dustin Eichholt |
http://www.marketingexperiments.com/blog/research-topics/internet-marketing-for-beginners.html

C = 4m + 3v + 2(i-f) – 2a ©
Wherein:
C = Probability of conversion
m = Motivation of user (when)
v = Clarity of the value proposition (why)
i = Incentive to take action
f = Friction elements of process
a = Anxiety about entering information

By dealing with the heuristic piece by piece, you’re able to get in the mindset of your visitor/ potential customer and deal with the page as they would.

So far, some work I’ve done with the CIA includes analyzing motivation of visitors – are they getting what they’re expecting? Does it match what they’re looking for at that point in time?

Clarity of the value proposition is a very important part of any landing page. It’s important to not only state it clearly but ask yourself if the other elements support that value proposition. The customer wants to know not only why they want a product, but why they should get it from you.

Friction can be pretty straightforward– are you asking too much of your visitor? Is it difficult to navigate or are you asking them to enter a lengthy signup process? In addition to length, you must also ask yourself if there is any field or informational request that causes concern or anxiety. Do you explain that the visitor’s email address will not be used deceitfully?

You can think of all the elements of the conversion heuristic working together as a fulcrum or scale. Positive elements, such as matching visitor motivation and communication of value, are on one side of the scale. Negative elements, such as friction and anxiety, are on the other.

On a particular landing page, does the balance of the scale tip too much towards the negative or positive? If it’s tipped towards the negative elements, what steps can you take to tip it the other way? Would an incentive such as a free gift or free shipping help offset some of the friction you can’t get rid of?

All of these questions can be daunting. Writing, designing, and building a website is hard, a successful one even harder. However, at MarketingExperiments, we look at these questions as opportunities for testing. The team I’ve been working with in the labs is very good at looking for opportunities, even on already successful sites.


Dustin Eichholt |
http://www.marketingexperiments.com/blog/research-topics/internet-marketing-for-beginners.html

C = 4m + 3v + 2(i-f) – 2a ©
Wherein:
C = Probability of conversion
m = Motivation of user (when)
v = Clarity of the value proposition (why)
i = Incentive to take action
f = Friction elements of process
a = Anxiety about entering information

By dealing with the heuristic piece by piece, you’re able to get in the mindset of your visitor/ potential customer and deal with the page as they would.

So far, some work I’ve done with the CIA includes analyzing motivation of visitors – are they getting what they’re expecting? Does it match what they’re looking for at that point in time?

Clarity of the value proposition is a very important part of any landing page. It’s important to not only state it clearly but ask yourself if the other elements support that value proposition. The customer wants to know not only why they want a product, but why they should get it from you.

Friction can be pretty straightforward– are you asking too much of your visitor? Is it difficult to navigate or are you asking them to enter a lengthy signup process? In addition to length, you must also ask yourself if there is any field or informational request that causes concern or anxiety. Do you explain that the visitor’s email address will not be used deceitfully?

You can think of all the elements of the conversion heuristic working together as a fulcrum or scale. Positive elements, such as matching visitor motivation and communication of value, are on one side of the scale. Negative elements, such as friction and anxiety, are on the other.

On a particular landing page, does the balance of the scale tip too much towards the negative or positive? If it’s tipped towards the negative elements, what steps can you take to tip it the other way? Would an incentive such as a free gift or free shipping help offset some of the friction you can’t get rid of?

All of these questions can be daunting. Writing, designing, and building a website is hard, a successful one even harder. However, at MarketingExperiments, we look at these questions as opportunities for testing. The team I’ve been working with in the labs is very good at looking for opportunities, even on already successful sites.

The approach
By analyzing the factors that lead to conversion to create a scientific hypothesis and testing against that hypothesis – not leaving it up to speculation, but actually testing (real time, real environment) for a lift, we are able to…keep conducting ever more effective tests!

Or stop. But you would be shocked at what gains can be made when others would be satisfied with stopping.

The methods are not hard to begin to grasp either, there are articles and training programs available and it takes about a week or so of free time to begin to understand and apply the principles in your own business, including distractions (for me: workout breaks and Bloomberg on mute in the background). So is it worth it? Is it worth doubling your conversions?

So…now what?
OK, so you’re like me, you’re new to Internet marketing. You have some tools: Google Website Optimizer, Adobe Omniture Test&Target, Google Analytics, etc. So…now what? Based on what I’ve learned so far, here are some great first items, using your tools along with our conversion heuristic, to keep an eye on:

  • Motivation
    • This has to do with the channels of your customers
      • Where are they coming from?
        • Does your plan assume you are treating your PPC customers the same as those coming directly?
      • Do all visitors have the same motivation? Are they looking for the same thing?
    • It can make a big difference for a given landing page if you take a look at your traffic in segments of motivation based on the channels they come from
  • Friction
    • It has more to it than just length, also look at the difficulty of your page in the mind of the visitor
      • Of course you know how to navigate it, but does everyone?
    • Try some alternate layouts or put more focus on your objective call to action and test for a lift
    • Looking at past experiments and working with current partners, I’ve seen a lot of room for improvement in regards to friction – try to really spend some time thinking conceptually and pragmatically about how your visitor navigates the page
  • Clarity of the Value Statement
    • You might think you have the best product, newsletter, webinar, etc. but if you can’t articulate that – simply and concisely to your visitor– you’re doing yourself a disservice
      • You need to answer the “why?” that is in the mind of your visitor
        • Remember to talk – don’t sell
      • Try some different copy in your headline and/or sub-headline
      • If you have lengthy body copy but good points to get across
        • Bullet
        • Them

Full article here:
http://www.marketingexperiments.com/blog/research-topics/internet-marketing-for-beginners.html

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