The bottom line is, testing is the only way to discover what works--and what doesn't--on your website, and it's the best way to start increasing your sales exponentially. And if you take the plunge and use just one of the following tests, you'll learn just how true this is, especially when you start seeing a dramatic improvement to your bottom line.
Offer just one product or service on your home page. Do you sell a number of products or services on your website? If so, I'd strongly recommend you test whether or not this is the best strategy for you. We've found that offering fewer products in one place with more copy describing those products always translates into higher sales.
It's all about focus. Instead of trying to please everyone who visits your site by offering a large range of products with minimal detail about each one, if you offer just one product--or one set of related products--you can really focus on one key set of benefits and answer all the possible questions and doubts your visitors might have about your product. And you don't have to stop selling your other products--you can always offer them to your customers from other web pages or by using follow-up offers.
Of course, the only way to find out for sure if this will work with your target audience is to test it! Design a sharp banner for your lead product, and put it on your home page. Then run the test for a week or two to see how it increases your sales.
Test #2:Add impact to your promotions with hover ads. I'm sure everyone's familiar with pop-ups: They're the small windows containing a special offer or other information that sometimes "pop up" when you visit a website. Love 'em or hate 'em, pop-ups have been a very useful, online marketing tool for years. However, because a percentage of internet users disliked them, Google, AOL, Netscape and others developed pop-up blocking software to combat them.
Of course, internet users should be able to choose whether or not they want to view pop-ups. However, much of this software automatically blocked pop-ups, meaning visitors to a site started missing out on valuable information that could benefit them.
But that was before we discovered a very impressive technology that actually lets you use ads that behave like pop-ups but that aren't pop-ups--so they don't get blocked. They're called hover ads, and they're well worth testing on your site.
In fact, when we tested adding a hover ad to our site, sales increased by 162 percent! These ads are effective because they put important information, such as your opt-in offer or a special limited-time promotion, right in front of your targeted visitors.
You can test placing your opt-in offer in your hover ad to see if that boosts subscription numbers. When we did this, 86 percent more people subscribed to our newsletter. You can also test how many more people click through to a special offer page on your site through a hover ad vs. through a regular link on your home page.
Test #3:Add credibility to your landing page--and enhance your visitors' trust in you. It's vital that your landing page establishes your credibility: It's through this process that your visitors come to trust you and feel comfortable enough to buy from you. There are several ways you can do this effectively and we'll talk about two of the quickest and easiest ones here. If you're not already using these techniques, revamp your copy and test it against what you're using now. You'll be surprised by the difference.
One of the best ways to establish your credibility is to include customer testimonials on your homepage or landing page. These should be excerpts from genuine e-mails or letters from customers expressing how your product or service helped solve the particular problem they faced. This last point is important: A customer testimonial that states how your product benefited them is much more effective than one that just says something like, "Your product is great!"
You can also enhance your credibility by adding a section to your website that outlines your credentials, experience and any background information that makes you qualified to solve your target audience's problem. Your aim should be to effectively convince readers that you are the best person to offer them a solution to their problem.
Test #4:Instill urgency--and convince visitors they need to buy now!
- Offer a limited-time price discount where visitors must buy before a certain date in order to qualify for the discount.
- Offer additional bonuses for free if visitors buy within a certain time frame.
- Offer only a limited quantity of your products or services.
- Offer a limited quantity bonus.
When testing your site, it's vital to test just one thing at a time so you know exactly which change influenced the results. A method of testing known as "split testing" does just that. It allows you to split your audience into two groups and test, for example, one headline with one group and another headline with the second group--both at exactly the same time.
It's an ideal testing strategy for any online business, but especially for newer websites with less traffic, as it provides an excellent method for generating accurate test results no matter your level of traffic. By trying different strategies out you have a big chance to improve the sales effectiveness of your site with one of these guaranteed ways to turn visitors into buyers. See what works for you.
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