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Posts Tagged ‘optimization’

Do Rotating Sliders Work? Optimizing the first 4 to 6 inches of your landing page

December 6th, 2016

Best practices on the internet are often just pooled ignorance. Rotating sliders (or banners) are considered one of these so-called “best practices” by many. It’s one thing if you’re using them for page views, but quite another when using them for a conversion-focused landing page.

In this video, Flint McGlaughlin, CEO, MarketingExperiments, discusses how Robert from TransUnion can optimize the first four to six inches of the company’s landing page, including how to use the space currently devoted to a rotating slider.


 

You might also like:
Ecommerce Optimization in 8 Minutes: How to increase the performance of your category pages with a clear value proposition
Homepage Optimization: 5 Marketing blind spots that inhibit conversion (and how you can correct them)
Homepage Optimization: Tips to ensure site banners maximize clickthrough and conversion

 

Ecommerce Optimization in 8 Minutes: How to increase the performance of your category pages with a clear value proposition

November 15th, 2016

A clear value proposition is at the heart of any business. But in the ecommerce space, where commodities are much more common, it’s incredibly difficult to compete and also be clear about the value your product brings to the market.

In this eight-minute video, Flint McGlaughlin optimizes a page submitted by Ruby of Armstrong Ceiling Solutions and talks mainly about how this page, and pages like it across the industry, can benefit from a clear, compelling value proposition.

You might also like:

Homepage Optimization: 5 Marketing blind spots that inhibit conversion (and how you can correct them)

Powerful Value Propositions: How to Optimize this Critical Marketing Element – and Lift Your Results

Customer Value: The 4 essential levels of value propositions

Value Proposition Development Training Course

Page Layout Research: What the “Where’s Waldo?” books can teach us about designing better pages

November 8th, 2016

What can “Where’s Waldo?”, the lovable children’s book series of the ‘90s, teach us about designing better page layouts?

A lot, it turns out.

In UX, we use different page layouts to help organize information and guide the users’ eye path. The “F” pattern, for instance, is commonly used for article heavy sites to guide the users’ eye path downward while supporting headline scanning. Reddit, Google News and Buzzfeed all use the “F” pattern layout.

F Pattern

“F” Pattern (Source)

One of the earliest layout patterns, and the one still most commonly used today, is the Gutenberg diagram. Originally conceived in the ‘50s by Edmond C. Arnold to help organize newspaper layouts, the Gutenberg diagram breaks the page down into quadrants and explains how the user interacts visually with each quadrant. In the diagram, the primary optical area is the upper left quadrant where the eye path naturally begins.

Read more…

The Best Conversion Rate optimizers do NOT make changes to webpages…

August 23rd, 2016

Editor’s Note: For anyone new to this blog, Adam Lapp has been MarketingExperiments’ head of optimization for around three years. He’s been optimizing web paths for much longer, though – somewhere in the ballpark of 10 years. I’ve personally worked with Adam for five years now, and he has, hands down, the most brilliant optimization mind I’ve ever seen.

So naturally, I was thrilled when he sent me a draft of this post for the blog. It’s been a while since Adam took some time out of his busy schedule to write for our blog, but his posts are full of real-world optimization wisdom that many of our readers have found invaluable in the past.

The casual tone of this post may be a little different from what you might be used to on this blog. That’s because I’ve left Adam’s personal writing style, for the most part, intact. This post is written by a true expert and I wanted it to be as directly from the source as possible.

I hope you enjoy. Here’s Adam…

Best,

Paul Cheney

Managing Editor

 

Best Conversion Rate optimizers_Adam

 

I remember I once I designed and ran four tests in a row — two product page tests and two homepage tests — for a Fortune 500 industrial supply company, and lost every time. The designs were solid – better navigation, easier to find buttons, improved copy and value proposition – but they all lost.

When I look back at it, these four tests lost because I was trying to optimize webpages.

So, what the heck am I talking about?

Well fortunately and unfortunately, the probability of a prospect converting begins increasing or decreasing long before they get your website.

Read more…

Customer-centric Marketing: How market research and listening to customers informs website optimization

June 8th, 2016

At the heart of every test or optimization effort should be an informed hypothesis. However, best practices can lead us astray. So where can marketers find inspiration for their next experiment?

The answer often lies with our customers.

This week, our sister company MarketingSherpa has a team of reporters at the Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition (IRCE) in Chicago, hosting the official Media Center of the ecommerce event.

Courtney Eckerle, Senior Managing Editor, MarketingSherpa, sat down with Matt Clark, Global Head of eCommerce and Digital Marketing, Newark element14, to discuss how marketers can watch and listen to their customers to discover pain points on their sites and in their purchase funnels.

 


Three steps to effective ecommerce sites

To start, Matt outlined three steps marketers should take to ensure their websites effectively serve customers:

  1. Make it easy to find.
  2. Make it compelling to convert.
  3. Make it easy to use.

Matt shared an analogy that highlights the particular importance of that last step:

“It should be like a hotel where when you walk in, you know the light switch is on your right-hand side, the remote is on the table. If it’s not like that, if it’s not that seamless to a customer, you’re going to lose some customers along the way.”

Read more…

Exploring Online Shopping Behavior: How website characteristics affect likelihood of purchase and basket value on ecommerce sites

May 26th, 2016

Traditionally, brick-and-mortar stores have displayed their products in their windows, enticing passers-by to come in and learn more, perhaps meet and talk with the owner and other shoppers, and, ultimately, fill their shopping baskets and purchase the goods.

Today’s digital stores (ecommerce websites) are striving to achieve the same goals as their brick-and-mortar counterpbrick-and-mortararts, with varying scopes of products ranging from unprecedented breadth (e.g., Amazon) to narrow specialization (e.g., your local cupcake bakery).

Though ecommerce stores come in a myriad of types, and specific factors influence how customers shop at different websites, they all share one thing in common: Store owners are always on the outlook for some generalizable principles and ideas to test in their specific conditions in hopes of maximizing revenue.

Which website characteristics increase the likelihood that a visitor will make a purchase? And, since shipping costs are a considerable expense, how do you increase the likelihood that a customer will spend more money per shopping session?

Let’s look at a recent study exploring the effects of website characteristics on online shopping behavior and basket value, and how those effects depend on product characteristics.

 

The study

In March 2016, professors Girish Mallapragada of Indiana University, Sandeep R. Chandukala of Singapore Management University and Qing Liu of University of Wisconsin published the results of a study exploring the effects of product and website characteristics on customer shopping behavior and basket value.

The authors analyzed the shopping behaviors of 2,000 consumers over one year, collected from the ComScore Web Behavior Panel. The data encompassed 773,262 browsing sessions and 9,662 purchase transactions at 385 online retailers across 43 product categories.

 

Method

The researchers scored all websites on product variety offered and on two types of functionality: navigation and communication.

Navigation functionality captured the extent to which a website facilitated browsing through content, site maps, layout and updates.

Communication functionality captured the extent to which a website offered communication features such as email, chat rooms and message boards.

They also scored the products on their hedonic and utilitarian characteristics using a previously developed scale.

Hedonic products (e.g., jewelry) would be rated highly on items like “fun,” “exciting” and “delightful.”

Utilitarian products (e.g., office supplies) would be rated highly on characteristics like “effective,” “functional” and “necessary.”

 

Results

Which factors predict likelihood of purchase?

In the browsing stage, the researchers found that the following factors are significantly related to purchase:

  • Previous purchase (previous customers are more likely to buy again)
  • Session duration and page views (more engagement leads to increased likelihood to purchase)
  • Broad scope of products (more variety leads to increased likelihood to purchase)
  • Communication functionality (more communication features lead to decreased likelihood to purchase)

 

Which factors predict higher basket value?

Among the customers who made a purchase, the researchers found that the following factors are significantly related to basket value:

  • Page views (more page views were associated with higher basket value)
  • Session duration (longer sessions were associated with lower basket value)
  • Broad scope of products (more variety associated with higher basket value)
  • Communication functionality (more features associated with lower basket value)
  • Navigational functionality (more features associated with higher basket value)

 

However, the effects of navigational and communication functionality depended on the characteristics of the products consumers were shopping for. Namely:

 

  • Communication functionality lowered basket value for utilitarian products, but not for hedonic products
  • Navigational functionality lowered basket value for hedonic products, but increased basket value for utilitarian products

 

The authors suggest that people buying utilitarian products might be looking for relevant information about the product on the page instead of communication functions, which might be perceived as clutter and add to friction. On the other hand, people buying hedonic products might be looking for self-affirmation through engaging in a dialogue with others and find communication features helpful.

 

Key takeaway

If you are selling utilitarian products, your page might benefit from rich navigational functionality, while if you are selling hedonic products, your page might benefit from rich communication functionality.

In both cases, you want to entice your customers to engage with your pages and check back often, which would ultimately lead to more purchases and higher basket value. Having a variety of products to choose from, and earning the loyalty of returning customers also helps increase the likelihood of purchase and basket value.

 

You might also like

Exploring the Effects of “What” (Product) and “Where” (Website) Characteristics on Online Shopping Behavior [Executive summary from the Journal of Marketing]

Ecommerce Chart: How a low conversion rate can be a good thing [From MarketingSherpa Chart]

B2B Marketing: Customer-focused site design for book ecommerce drives order volume up 211% in three years [From MarketingSherpa Case Study]

Ecommerce Marketing: Time spent on site boosted by 50% with transition from flash sale to retail for fashion site [From MarketingSherpa Case Study]