Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is a critical digital marketing tactic to improve your website’s performance. CRO involves checking the traffic to your website, finding the reason why visitors are not converting to customers, and finally, getting them to complete a major goal of your website. Successful CRO strategies can increase your website’s effectiveness and encourage visitors to take a desired action on a webpage.
In this podcast, MOS President Rajeev Rajagopal explains what CRO is and how to measure it.
This is Monica Thomas the Search Marketing/SEO manager for medresponsive.com
Welcome to MedResponsive, a digital marketing and search engine optimization service for the healthcare sector. We are a Managed Outsource Solutions service. Our primary focus is healthcare or medical establishments. I’m Rajeev and today we will talk a little bit about conversion rate optimization, how to measure conversion rate optimization, to be more exact.
Conversion rate optimization is a digital marketing technique focused on helping your website or your businesses gain more customers by providing them with the right kind of tools on your website so that they do what you hope they would do – make a phone call, send an email, fill out a form or maybe chat with you. As a healthcare establishment or medical establishment you’re probably wondering why this is important. Well, you could provide all the information you want on your website and hope that people will come there, review the website and then call you. The problem with that is that you’re not the only website that’s out there on the web. There are hundreds and hundreds of websites. How do you potentially stand apart in the sense that you are absolutely the master at what you do? You could be a plastic surgeon, you could be a dentist. Are you the best? How do you let people know that? All that on a website where people have maybe 3, 4, 5 seconds when they land on the page that they landed on to make a decision whether they want to call u or not. That’s where some of the areas you look at on your website need more analysis.
Now how do you measure you conversion rate optimization? As I mentioned earlier, conversion rate optimization basically comes down to converting and how often and how quickly do you convert people who are visiting your website. That’s basically the gist of it. The main goal of the strategy is to enhance the end users’ or visitors’ digital experience and convert potential customers to a lead or patient or someone who wants to buy a medical device from your website. It works in many different ways. Sometimes it involves improving website designs, landing pages and many other areas of your website. There are various tools and analytics available for measuring conversion rate optimization. Today, as we discuss a little bit more on how to measure it, I will give you a few pointers. Of course, covering everything that’s available in this area will take a long time, so I will keep it short and get down to just a few points.
Implementing a CRO plan or conversion rate optimization plan for your website starts with analyzing your website. You know, people do AB testing which is basically testing two pages It could be your home page, you could have two different pages, and when people come there, they will see one page or another, and you could actually check to see which pages are more right and which pages get ranked better and how people convert from those pages, do they actually click in from that page to an inside page where you want them to, or do they call you right after that. It gives you an idea of which page works better. That allows you to make some adjustments that will improve the overall performance of that page or your website. How does conversion rate work, how is it calculated, obviously something that we all discuss quite heavily in our industry. A conversion takes place when a visitor on your website completes a major goal of your website to give you an example, purchasing a product registering on your website could be one, sending or filling out a form could be another, maybe you have a chat on your website where you have people waiting to talk to them. That could be one. Making an appointment. You could be a plastic surgeon, a dentist, a chiropractor or an anesthesiologist, a surgeon or any doctor, for you a patient calling your office and saying hey, I saw your website, I’d like to make an appointment, I’d like see the doctor. Well, that’s a goal. Goals can be determined depending on what either your selling or what your service is or what the final goal to you is.
Your overall website conversion rate is the number of website conversions divided by number of website visitors multiplied by 100. Simple. For e.g., the conversion rate for an ecommerce website is calculated by using the formula: number of orders divided by the number of website visitors multiplied by 100. A very simple scenario. Well, you could do it for the whole website, you could do it page by page, and really keep it to what works and what doesn’t work. There are several ways to measure website success. You know, on a microlevel, success measures or successful metrics available are many. For e.g., if you have a shopping cart, let’s say you’re selling medical devices or you’re selling TMJ equipment, you’re selling dental supplies, you’re selling nutritional supplements, or whatever it could be, the shopping cart abandonment rate, this basically is very much unique to an ecommerce website which might be focused on healthcare, where someone comes in, they look through your website, find something, they click on it, they add it to the shopping cart, but they do not buy. Now why don’t they buy, there could be many reasons. one, they got confused with the shopping cart. It’s a shopping cart issue. Two, once they got to the shopping cart, they realized, hey, I saw another place where they do not have shipping, here you have shipping and with shipping your price is higher than someone else. That shows your competition has the same product and it actually has a better price, so they are not going to buy from you. Another reason why they abandon a shopping cart might be they probably want to come back and look at it again or do more research or they didn’t have time. Whatever it may be, this allows you to understand how your shopping cart works.
If it’s a shopping cart issue then maybe you want to think about putting up another shopping cart or fixing the one that you have to make it easier for people. If it’s any other issue, well, this allows you to remarket to these people, because if somebody is already on the shopping cart and let’s hope they’ve already given you their information while they got into the shopping cart, you can remarket to these people and say hey, you have something that you have left in your shopping cart, would you come back and take a look at it or when the price goes down… I don’t know how many of you have shopped on Amazon and I would think quite a few of you have. And if you’ve shopped on Amazon, you’ll realize that they do remarketing. You leave something in the shopping cart and you will get an email saying that hey, the price just dropped or something else or you may be interested in something else.
Another way is to measure is page view per visit which is the number of pages that a visitor sees per visit. And this is something that may not be right for a commerce platform, but it could be very important for a media website. For e.g., you might a website that has information about, lets’ say plastic surgery. Someone has butt augmentation information or has information about liposuction, you have information about facial reconstruction, you have information about blepharoplasty, you have information about multiple things that are involved in the plastic surgery area or the cosmetic surgery area. People who come and when they go through the website — are they reading more and more pages and if they are, that’s a good thing. That is your focus. Your revenue might be dependent on how many people actually go through the website and see your advertisers – could be the physicians, could be someone else. Now that’s important, page per view per visit. So you have to understand that every time you go through and look at conversion rate optimization, you have to make sure the goals are set for your website. So one goal may not be something that’s applicable across the board.
Home page bounce rate – this basically refers to the number of visitors who arrive on your home page and immediately leave the website without seeing the page. Basically it should tell you that – your website – they couldn’t access your home page, they may have come there but didn’t like what they saw or they came there and it was too confusing for them, so you know, there are many reasons. And hey, the last thing, not to forget, it could be because they tried to access your website on a phone and your website is not optimized for a mobile device. That’s a use problem. I don’t need to tell you how to fix it, you know how to fix it. You want people to understand and find what they’re looking for when they come to your website. If that page has the right information, you’re good as gold. So let’s see if that’s something you can work on.
Well, there’s another thing which is a very simple thing. Sign a form – completion rate. Do you know how many people actually go fill out the form and do not click send because they’re still discussing or thinking or maybe they don’t feel as comfortable because they see something on your website. That’s another analytic you can look at. That’s very similar to shopping cart abandonment. So when you look at these small different areas, you should get a better feel for exactly what people are looking for on your website and whether your website is capturing the right people and when they come to your website, are they converting as you want them to convert?
When measuring CRO, it’s important to know which web pages you have to test in the first place. You should identify these pages and see what pages are top priority for your website — very critical. It may be a services page, it may be a top– investment page. For an ecommerce platform, it may be pages that actually have products which you have an excess supply of. It could be any of these, or it could be more, but you need to know what they are. Only if you know what they are, can you now focus on how to optimize they pages better for your viewers or for your visitors. Google analytics do allow you to find these pages, you know, find out which pages have the highest exit rate or percentage of visitors leaving your site from a certain page. This should not be confused with bounce rate. Therefore, people staying on your website after leaving a page will not be a part of the exit rate. A lot of information can be learnt by Googling and trying to find out information from websites. Or, read our website, we have more and more information on this. Finding the exit pages is not enough. You should also find out if the page is making you revenue. Now if you know that people are coming to a page and are leaving right away, and they are not interested about something that you have to sell, you also need to know if that is the page that is important — if that’s a revenue making page. Yeah, another page with a slightly lower exit rate that is bringing you more revenue, then that page is much more important to optimize. So when you pick a page, you really need to know what’s your return on investment. That means you have to consider page value or the average amount of money people spend after having visited a page. I mean, it could be money, it could be the number of people who called you, it could be the number of forms that got filled out, it could be the number of chats you got from that page — all of these are important.
A page that has lower visitors but higher number of people reaching out to you, basically it should tell you that that page is very valuable. Let’s say that page is not ranked high. That should tell that if you worked very hard on that page, get that page ranked high, your conversion would be even better. So you need to know what is important on a page. And in terms of conversion, once they reach the page, then you should see if the page is converting very high on a lower volume of people visiting the page, that page is optimized well. it needs just better rankings if it doesn’t have that. Now, on the other hand, if it’s a high volume page, but conversion is really low, well, it could be because people who are looking at your website and are coming to that page, are not really focused on that specific information on that page. They might be looking for something slightly different, but they are still finding you, which basically means that that the page needs to be optimized for the maximum keywords that are bringing traffic to that page. So basically when you look at that page, and if that page is properly optimized, properly laid out, and the people who come there find the information that they are looking for in Google or Yahoo or Bing, then the chances of them converting are higher. So that is important, so keep an eye out for those things. If you find a larger number of visitors to a particular page on your website convert, then the value of that page will increase. So if you have a larger number of visitors to a page, the value of the page will increase. So when you look at Google analytics, you can actually put your pages in an order by page value if you choose to do that. It gives you a better relevant data set and you can run through advanced filters that way. This is just a touch on Google analytics, and we can look at that later. I will definitely go through that at one time in the future, sometime in the future.
When you implement an effective CRO strategy for your website, one of the most important and effective steps to take is make sure that you note down every step of the process. You should know what changes you made, so you can figure out if those changes made sense, if they actually converted. Because sometimes you have to go back. When you do AB testing, you know which page works better. Well, maybe the page that has less value might need to be taken out and you need to go to that other page and keep that ongoing. But you may find that there are some instances in the lesser value page when conversion was higher. So how can you implement that on the second page? So there are things that you need to know and you need to pay good attention to while you try to optimize a page for your visitors so the conversions are higher.
Let’s hope that this gives you some idea of how to measure conversion rate optimization. And I am sure that there are more questions, and if you do have questions, please feel free to reach out to us at MedResponsive. You can find us on our website at www.medresponsive.com. Send us an email, give us a call and if we can help you, we’ll be more than happy to do so. Thank you for listening and we look forward to doing more of these podcasts that would help our listeners. Have a good day.