Increasing the amount of traffic to your website isn’t the only way you can increase your revenue. Boosting your conversion rate can also provide a nice lift in revenue.
When you optimize for conversions, you have to go for big lifts. Small lifts don’t always hold true in the long run, which makes them ineffective. As long as you are shooting for gains of over 10%, you should see increases in revenue.
Here are 7 simple A/B tests that you ought to try:
Test #1: Buy Now vs. Free Trial
You already know free trials convert better than a single option forcing people to buy now. But do you know by how much?
GetResponse used to have just a Buy Now button on their homepage.
But when they added a Free Trial button to their homepage, their signup rate went up by 158.60%.
Granted, their revenue didn’t go up by 158.60% because some users cancel during the free trial period, but the overall revenue increase should still be well into the double digit percentages.
If you haven’t tried leveraging a free trial strategy, you should consider testing it as I’ve never seen it lose… assuming you are offering a good product or service.
Test #2: Credit Card vs. No Credit Card
All free trials are not equal. Some people require a credit card upfront to start the free trial while others do not. Totango just released an interesting study that showed the difference between asking for a credit card upfront versus asking for it later.
The results were huge! By dropping the credit card requirement, they were able to increase front-end signups by 500% and overall paid customers by 50%.
Although 50% isn’t as big as 500%, it’s still a big increase.
Test #3: Trust Symbols
We take them for granted, but trust symbols can help increase sales. The risk of testing a trust symbol on your site is small as it’s very rare that such symbols decrease conversion rates.
Blue Fountain Media wanted to increase the number of leads they were generating through their Request a Quote page.
So, they decided to test adding a VeriSign symbol to the page in hopes of increasing the number of people who felt more confident giving their personal information to them.
The end result was a 42% increase in sales. This just goes to show you the power of trust symbols.
Test #4: Adding a Live Chat
For every customer that buys from you, you’ll have at least 30 others who won’t. Their reasoning for not purchasing will vary a lot, and in most cases you won’t be able to find out unless you ask them.
You can do so by surveying your visitors, or you can just try to ask/help your visitors out right when they are on your site through live chat.
That one feature helped them increase their conversion rate by 31%.
But before you add live chat to your site, make sure you have someone available to be there so that you can answer your visitors’ questions. If you are unresponsive within the chat, and no one is ever there, it can actually decrease your conversion rates.
Test #5: Help People, Don’t Sell Them
Are you used to getting sold? Well, of course, you are… who isn’t? Because you are used to people trying to sell to you, your guard is up, and you’re ready to say “no” even before someone sells to you.
ActiveNetwork decided to change how they use emails to promote their product. They created a new email copy, using a supportive tone instead of a salesy one.
Just take a look at the difference. Here is a preview of the sales version:
And here is a preview of the supportive version:
The supportive tone of the email increased leads by 349%.
You don’t have to sell to people to make money. Sometimes the best way to get a customer is to simply help them by creating a friendly conversation with them. If they like what you have to say, they will end up converting.
Test #6: Removing Form Fields
When it comes to form fields, less is typically more. This means the fewer form fields you have, the more leads you will get.
I did a test on my personal site in which I removed a field from my lead generation form:
Removing one form field provided a lift in my conversion rate by 26%.
Now, this doesn’t mean you will always see a lift in your conversion rate by removing form fields because in some cases more form fields can boost your conversion rate… especially on credit card pages.
For example, asking for someone’s credit card and not inquiring about that person’s billing zip code may make the customer feel nervous. Or if you are selling a tangible product, people usually want to see the shipping address fields on the same page with their credit card information.
Test #7: Placement of Your Call-to-Action Buttons
A lot of people talk about the importance of text, or even color, of the call-to-action buttons, but very few people share data on the placement of their call-to-action buttons.
As you already know, location is everything in an offline business. The same goes with your call-to-action buttons and their placement on your website.
Kimberly Snyder recently did a test where she added the Buy Now button on top of her explainer video instead of beneath it.
Can you guess what the difference in conversion was? It was 38%. Through a quick scroll map test they found that people stop scrolling after they see the video because they are really engaged in watching it. This causes fewer people to see the Add to Cart button, which is why placing it above the video converted better.
A/B testing is something that you should constantly practice. Just like you don’t stop doing SEO, you don’t stop optimizing your site for conversions.
When you are reading blog posts like this one as well as others around the web about conversion optimization, be careful. If you just copy other successful tests others have run, you may end up losing a lot of revenue. Because every site has different visitors, you have to figure out what works for your site. First, you have to see if the test is applicable to your site, and then, you have to run it.
So, what do you think about A/B testing? If you need help figuring out what tests you should run on your site, start a thread on the Quick Sprout forum.