Why do visitors come to your website?
If you want to have a decent website conversion rate or drive a lot of phone calls and visits to your business, then it’s crucial to be able to answer that question. If you can’t, then you don’t know what information to include on your website—or how.
It’s not enough to guess at what they are looking for or how they might go about finding it. While you may have a way of organizing information that makes sense to you, your customers may think differently.
Why Does Website Conversion Rate Matter?
Your website conversion rate is a direct indicator of its performance.
Conversion rate can be calculated differently depending on your industry and website, but it generally boils down to this formula:
If you don’t sell anything online, you can measure conversion rate by the number of phone calls you receive or contact inquiries submitted.
Generally, a low conversion rate or a high bounce rate (people who leave without converting) on your website are two indicators that your online visitors may not be getting what they need from you online. There are, however, exceptions to this rule that can cause confusion:
- Different method of conversion: Your call-to-action led the user to a phone number. They called, got the answers they needed and then converted
- Message mismatch: Your user wasn’t looking for the topic you presented. You didn’t do anything wrong, but they were given your page in answer to their query by mistake.
- Reading content for a period of time: If a user sits on your website for a while, they could just be reading what you have to say, but the inactivity would be marked as a bounce.
So with all those potential red herrings, how can you find out what customers want and what they’re really doing on your site? Spend time watching what your website visitors are doing on your website!
Heatmaps and visitor recordings are two easy ways to do this.
A heatmap is a great way to see where your online customers are directing their attention. Heatmaps show you where visitors are clicking, or aren’t clicking, and how far down they are scrolling on your website pages.
This is an example of a great heatmap. Users are convinced by the value of what this web page is offering, and they know exactly where to click:
Too many clicks scattered around the page can indicate confusion or frustration:
Sometimes scattered clicks are good. For example, if your ecommerce website has different links that go to jewelry, clothes and tools sections, you might see clicks equally scattered around the page.
However, if your page has one goal—for example, submitting a form—and yet your heatmap looks like the one shown above, revise your page to make sure people know exactly what the page is asking them to do.
No clicks can indicate one of two things:
- Your visitors aren’t finding what they’re looking for
- They are finding just what they need, but they are reading without taking action
In the second case, you’d want to pair your heatmap observations with visitor recordings to get a better sense of how your visitors are behaving.
Visitor recordings are another great tool that reveal how your customers are behaving on your website. Recordings can show you visitor mouse movements, number of pageviews and even if they seem to be going in circles.Source: The Bump
Heatmap and Visitor Recording Tools
Most people use Google Analytics + either Hotjar or Crazy Egg for heatmaps and visitor tracking. Below is a quick summary of each platform.
The goal of Hotjar is to take the guesswork out of conversion rate optimization. With this tool, you can see which parts of your website are receiving the most interaction, watch recordings of your visitors’ actual interactions with your site and track their mouse movements and clicks. You can even ask your visitors questions to get helpful feedback through Hotjar Forms.
- Free trial
- Free for students and casual users
- Starts at $29/month for startups
- Visitor Surveys
- Scroll Map Tool
Crazyegg advertises itself as “a pair of x-ray glasses that lets you see exactly what people are doing on your website.” The goal is to help you understand why your visitors aren’t converting so you can change the correct elements on your webpage.
- Free 30-day trial
- Starts at $109/year
- Scroll Map Tool
- Overlay Tool (lets you see which links are converting more than others)
- Confetti Tool (lets you see where people are coming from who visit your site and where they end up clicking)
Google Analytics is a powerful analytics and tracking tool, considered essential by nearly all digital marketers. With Google Analytics, you can track how your ad campaigns are doing, how people are arriving at your webpage through organic search and how your landing pages are performing. Customer insights platform Kissmetrics has a helpful guide on how to use some of the most powerful features in Google Analytics.
- Ecommerce tracking
- Goal tracking (contact forms submitted, calls, etc.)
- AdWords performance
- Organic search terms analysis
- Location and demographics tracking
Find Out What Your Customers Are Looking For, and Give It to Them
Spending time watching your visitors interact with your website can show you how to improve your pages. When you can see where information is confusing, or more information is needed, you know exactly what changes to make to help your customers find what they need to convert.
The best part? You can watch more recordings and heatmaps after you make changes to see the impact and whether any more changes are needed!
As the saying goes, “The customer is always right.” So, why not give them what they are looking for if you can see exactly what it is? You’ll see your website conversion rate and engagement skyrocket as a result.
Want to dig deeper? Learn why you should be tracking micro-conversions on your website. If you want a more holistic overview of tracking that includes SEO and PPC, check out our post on tracking your overall digital marketing efforts.