If you have heard anything from me in the past you may have noticed that I’m a HUGE fan of the rule of one when talking about a website that converts. It is the first thing I work on with my clients, and it is my favorite idea (that I didn’t come up with) that I spout to my friends.
Wanna know why?
Because it works.
When we talk about creating a website that sells, a website that converts, and works for you while you sleep. You have to get clear on what success and what conversion means to you, in your business. If you aren’t clear on the goal, then how will you assess if your website is successfully converting?
It all starts with a goal. Not just a goal. The be-all, end-all goal of your entire website. This may be tough if you’re multi-passionate and have a wide variety of products or services. And it may also be tough if you don’t sell anything at all (yet).
I have heard from many people on this very topic. And do you know what I typically hear?
No. No. No.
Those are admirable goals for your website, sure. But let me ask you one thing?
If your goal is to be a resource to your audience… does that sell your service? Sure, in a roundabout way we all need to increase our credibility and share our knowledge so that potential clients understand our level of expertise. But. In a very direct way. Being a resource does not directly equate to money in the bank.
The same goes for being visible or getting your product “out there”. I’d ask: out where? And: to whom?
Furthermore, if your primary goal is to be a resource – how will your readers know where to go next or what to do? No one likes to feel lost. In life, and online, it’s best to give a bit more direction than that.
Since we’ve all got goals to chase, and we know that air doesn’t buy groceries, there’s a reality ew have to face. The point of having a website that converts is that your reader converts to a specific goal that helps your business grow.
Before I answer that, I want to know about your business goals. I’m sure they’re not just “make sales” or “write blogs”. Because you’re here, and we’re the same type of person, I have a strong feeling that your goals are a bit more concrete than that. Do they look more like:
Yep. that sounds more like it. We’re definitely on the same page now. Did you write down your very specific business goals?
Now ask yourself, what action does a reader have to take to get you one step closer to your goal? That action is the conversion. A website that converts does not happen without a reader taking action.
Let’s look at the mailing list, for example. That’s easy! They have to give you their email address. Great. If growing your mailing list is your number one business goal, then it should be the primary goal of your website as well.
This means putting opt-ins everywhere you can think so that at some point or another, they have no choice but to give you that email! (Ok, they always have a choice, but you know what I mean).
Now making a certain amount in a month is a bit harder. This one may look a little different on your website, but the thing that kicks off the sales process on quite a few websites is a lead capture form. This is a form that captures a lead’s contact information, interest, and assesses whether or not they’re a good fit for your business.
If that is the case for you- your primary goal for your website is: get your reader to fill out a lead capture form. Of course, it isn’t guaranteed revenue, toward your goal. But, if your website can do all of the work beforehand to get your reader to the point that they’re willing to hand over that information, it’s sure doing its job!
If the above examples don’t apply to you, that’s okay. There are three questions to consider:
A conversion is designed by you but driven by your reader. If they don’t take action, they haven’t converted. It is a choice.
They choose to give you that email address, to fill out your lead capture form, or to buy your product.
That is a conversion. And a reader who has made that choice on their own is ready and willing to hear more from your business, and work with you in the future.
I’m a big fan of Google Analytics (who isn’t?). Did you know that you can actually set up goals in Google Analytics? That’s right. You can track how many people convert on your site!
In Google Analytics you can do this by adding a new goal. Go to Admin – Goals and click +Goal. Make the name something you’ll remember. Also to note: You can’t delete a goal, you can only deactivate it.
Your goal can be about a reader getting to a certain page, staying on your site for a certain amount of time, how many pages they visit before leaving, or an event (like clicking a link, downloading something, or watching a video).
What should your goal be? It should be whatever you can use to track that one main goal we spoke about earlier! For example: if your one main goal is to add subscribers, I’d track how many readers make it to your thank you page!
If that seems a little too techy for you, that’s okay! I get it. You can do this old school with a pen and paper too. I hope that you do have Google Analytics or some sort of analytics tool on your site (Squarespace has one built-in). Simply track how many people have converted, whatever that means for you, in a given month. Divide that number by the number of total visitors to your site. There you have it, your conversion rate.
Don’t know what that number means? On average, a website converts at about 2%. If you’re below that, don’t fear. Take a look at my blog all about websites that covert for things that you can implement today to help.
If you’re above that, awesome!! You’re doing great. I’d start to assess who is converting at this point. Are they your target audience? Or do you have a bunch of people on your mailing list that doesn’t make a lot of sense because you offered an iPad as an opt-in last month? (Don’t sweat it, I get it).
As much as it is important (and really convenient) to have a high rate of conversion, you want to be sure you have the right people converting as well!
It’s time to dig into those numbers and see what you can learn!