An effective digital marketing mix can be used to accomplish several goals. Some of these goals include ranking for keywords, increasing brand awareness and building their social media following. Often the result many businesses are hoping to achieve is to use these strategies to drive more sales through their website.
CRO – Conversion Rate Optimization
In order to properly understand CRO, we need to define a few key terms.
A conversion takes place when a site visitor completes a desirable action. Depending on your industry this may include purchasing a product, filling out an online form, or calling your business.
Quick Tip make sure you monitor these conversions using Google Analytics.
A simple formula: Conversions/Site Visitors X 100 and expressed as a percentage. For example, if you had 17 conversions from 1,000 visitors you have a conversion rate of 1.7%.
Now that we understand the basics, we can focus on what areas of CRO will have the greatest impact on your sales.
1. Make a Good First Impression
Let the potential customer know what you do! That first impression should clearly demonstrate the service and value that you bring to the table
Forget the marketing fluff and focus on the facts. For example, if you are an accounting firm focusing on forensic audits consider saying “Forensic Account Solutions for Enterprise Businesses” instead of “Helping Industry Leaders with Financial Peace of Mind”. A simple and clear headline will inspire more confidence.
2. Create an Easy Conversion Point
What should they do next? Once a visitor is convinced to convert their next logical step is to search for a conversion point. Don’t rely on them to search high and low; if they are unable to find a conversion point quickly, they are likely to exit without taking any action.
A good rule of thumb is to include one to two conversion points immediately below or directly beside your main heading. A safe rule is to make sure you include a minimum of one conversion point within your main navigation. This point can be as simple as a contact page. However, be careful not to overdo it. Too many conversion points will create confusion.
3. Take the Call
If you are a business that values prospective clients calling you, give them the option. Most users are conditioned to look for a phone number in the top right corner of a page.
With CRO we never want to swim upstream, so go ahead and follow the norm by putting your phone number where it can be found. Consider using a call tracking solution so you can measure call conversions effectively.
4. Leverage Digital Ads
What happens if you are unable to make changes to your website? If this is the case for you there are other options. For paid ads through platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn consider using ads with Lead Generation forms.
These ads do not require users to leave the platform and visit your site to convert. For other forms of ads such as Google Ads it is worthwhile to build a landing page. This can be done on an external platform with a subdomain setup.
Search and/or Shopping Ads
With any product/service there is a purchasing funnel that your prospective clients will follow. The fastest way to influence sales is by focusing at the bottom of that funnel. Searches in this category are actively looking to make a purchase. The limiting factor with a bottom of funnel approach is cost. When users are ready to buy, a click typically comes at a premium.
1. Control your Keywords
In order to maximize bottom of the funnel (BOFU) activity, we need to identify keywords that represent a clear buying signal. For example, a car dealership may not want to bid on the term “Ford” but could be interested in the term “Used Ford F150 for Sale”.
2. Set up your Shopping Feed
For sites selling hard goods, shopping ads can be highly effective. You may recognize these ads as the ones featuring both product images and pricing. This tactic can be highly effective for online retailers but keep an eye on your prices and make sure you have great images. These two factors have a dramatic impact on click-through rates.
3. Optimize for Conversions
There are many ways to run an account. When the primary focus is on increasing sales, your campaign optimizations needs to be focused on conversions. Click through rates (CTR)) and cost per click (CPC). Both are important metrics to monitor but Conversions and cost per acquisition (CPA) are key.
Know Your Numbers
Increasing sales through digital marketing is easy. However, increasing those sales profitably is the real challenge. In order to have a successful digital marketing campaign set you must know your numbers inside and out.
1. Consider your Closing Rate
For every lead, call, inquiry you receive, how many become an actual customer? This is a good time to be honest with yourself. Overestimating your ability to close prospects will negatively impact campaign performance. Be sure to account for all prospects and not just the best ones.
2. How Much is Your Customer Worth?
What is a customer worth? To explore this concept, we use average customer value (ACV) and lifetime value (LTV).
For some businesses you will be focusing on an initial sale and one-time revenue. For others, you need to know the lifetime value of your customers.
For e-commerce sites, you want to track actual revenue sold. For everyone else, we need to assume revenue initially. For ACV the math is simple. Divide revenue by total customers and we have it.
For LTV we need to know how often a client orders and how often they order. For example, in the retail space selling a pair of jeans could result in $50 per month in additional orders for the next 6 months. In the B2B space, a software solution may come with a 3-year agreement in which case we want to calculate the full value.
3. Know your Profit Margins
How much do you make off every sale? To drive more profitable sales, we need to know how much we make off each sale. This will allow you to set a target CPA, thanks to a few quick equations!
Now that we have our numbers it is important to do some reverse engineering. Starting with our profit, let’s say our customer has a LTV of $4,000.00 and our profit margin is 50% this means we make $2,000.00 per sale. How much of that profit are you willing to give up for a sale? If that number is 15% you can spend $300 to acquire a client. If your closing rate is 33% you know that you can spend $100 per lead.
That’s it! We now have a target CPA of $100 per lead. So long as your closing rate, LTV, and profit margin numbers are accurate we know that leads within this range will create profitable sales.
Bringing it all Together
Digital marketing is a highly measurable form of advertising. For companies looking for scalable solutions, look no further. Keep your campaigns metric driven and do not stray from your goals. Always use a platform to measure effectiveness. Google Analytics is the most common central hub for website measurement. Track your goals and trust the data. Do not be afraid to test and experiment with small portions of your budget. That the data you collect will allow you to make accurate decisions and increase your sales with digital marketing.