If you’re struggling to get sales, you probably do not need more traffic. Instead, you need to work on improving your conversion rates. Not only will this have more of a long-term, compounding effect on sales, but it will cost you next to nothing.
Research from Eisenberg Holdings found that the average company spends a meagre $1 to convert website visitors, but spend $92 get visitors to bring people to their website. Naturally, many businesses will keep struggling to close sales.
If you want to boost sales on your website, you no longer have to be in the lurch. The following five tips have been proven by research to be powerful for boosting sales:
1. Optimize Your Website for Lower Attention Spans
We’re becoming more impatient than ever, and this has serious implications for your business. A recent Microsoft study of 2,112 people found that our attention span has declined to eight seconds from the 12 seconds that it was in the year 2000. In fact, research shows that a one second delay in site load time will cost you 7 percent in conversions. Another study that monitored real user activity on the website 33 major retailers found that improving the speed of a site from eight to two seconds boosted conversion rate by 74 percent.
You need to cater to this impatience. Here are some tips:
- Work on making your website faster. Get a better, faster web host. Get a faster website theme. Disable all unnecessary plugins and add-ons, and make sure your site code is clean.
- Limit the number of checkout pages and form fields required to complete a transaction. Research shows that reducing form fields can boost conversions by up to 160 percent.
2. Work on Your Trust Signals. People Only Buy When They Trust You
If users don’t trust you, every other recommendation in this article could be implemented and it wouldn’t make much of a difference.
A major factor that determines whether people will buy from you is trust. In fact, with the increase in hacks, database leaks and ransomware infections, it is more important than ever to prove to people that they can trust you. A particular study found that 48 percent of people won’t buy from a website that does not have security trust seals, and a Forrester study found that a whopping 75 percent of people have abandoned an online purchase due to security concerns.
There are different ways to boost trust on your website, but it all starts by prioritizing security and letting users know that you take their security seriously.
Here are some tips:
- Use a reliable security trust seal to assure people of their security. The more trusted the seal you use is, the better. A study shows the Norton, McAfee and Truste/BBB security seals to be more recognized.
- Make sure your trust seal is displayed prominently where people can see it. Avoid keeping it just in the footer; instead, making it prominent enough for people who want to buy from you to see it without having to scroll.
- Enable the SSL security protocol. A lot more people will buy from you simply because you use HTTPS and they can see the secure green padlock in their browser whenever they visit your site. A study conducted by Central Reservation Service found that enabling SSL can boost sales by up to 30 percent.
3. Start a Blog and Strategically Leverage It
In today’s content marketing age, many businesses do not have a blog — and this is costing them sales and leads. However, blogging as a sales strategy shouldn’t be discounted.
This infographic shows that businesses that blog generate 67 percent more leads than businesses that do not blog, and that 61 percent of U.S. customers have bought something based on a blog post.
Blogging to boost sales is a strategy I advocate (I even helped contribute to a guide that helps people start blogging), but there is a right and wrong way to do it. Simply “starting a blog” isn’t going to result in a sales boost. Doing the following, however, will:
- Ensure that your blog is relevant to your products and offers. The key to success from blogging lies in attracting the right audience.
- Make sure your blog directs people to your products and offers. Many people make the mistake of running their blogs in a vacuum — there’s simply no link or connection to their products, and it is costing them sales.
- Decide on and stick to a consistent blogging content schedule. In terms of frequency, more is better. According to the 2016 Blogger Research Survey by Orbit Media, bloggers who publish more frequently (daily or more) consistently report strong results more often than those who publish less frequently.
4. Leverage Authority (Social Proof) to Boost Sales
One of the biggest social proof factors you can use to boost sales is that of authority. In fact, having an authority figure endorse you is so powerful that a simple social media endorsement of the T-FAL Actifry by Oprah Winfrey was estimated to be worth $153 million.
Authority social proof works really well because we are hardwired to obey authority. This was proven by the famous Milgram experiments — a series of experiments conducted in the 1960s. The experiment found that a whopping 60 percent of people will obey authority even if it meant their actions caused harm to other people.
This powerful principle can be used to boost sales on your website. Get an authority figure to endorse your products. The more powerful the authority figure the better. It is also important that this authority figure be relevant to your audience — or at least be someone your audience can relate to.
5. Use the Sensory Adaptation Theory to Make Key Elements Stand Out
In psychology, “sensory adaptation is a change over time in the responsiveness of the sensory system to a constant stimulus.” In layman’s terms, sensory adaption explains your eventually becoming less responsive to something you were highly responsive to initially; for example, you wear your clothes and feel them, but after a few minutes of wearing them you no longer feel your clothes. You hear a noise around you and find it extremely irritating, but after hours or days of hearing that same noise your brain kinds of tune it out. This is sensory adaptation in action.
Sensory adaptation theory can be used to give your business a sales boost; the key lies in ensuring that key items on your sales page is noticeably different (and highlighted!) compared to other elements on your page. If your page uses the green color scheme, avoid using a green button. Avoid using any color remotely similar to the color of your sales page general color scheme for your call to actions.
Over to You
What do you think of these techniques to increase website sales? Which one has been most successful for your company? Is there a trick we haven’t listed? Tell us about it in the comments.