Your content marketing strategy might be missing one important piece of the puzzle: conversion rate optimization.
Great content inspires action, after all, which comes in the form of conversions.
Sales are the end game, of course. As far as conversions go, they’re your final goal.
But they’re not everything.
Every click, view, share, download, form fill, and the like shows how well your content resonates with your target audience.
Through each interaction, your customers move through the buyer’s journey with your help, getting ever closer to completing their purchase.
Nothing is more important than that – and that’s why you need to measure and optimize your conversion rates.
Ready to make that happen? Just take a peek at this guide to learn all you need to know about conversion rate optimization.
What is Conversion Rate Optimization?
Conversion rate optimization is the process of increasing meaningful interactions with your brand’s content. The interactions measured should focus on leading your target audience through every stage of the buyer’s journey.
Ideally, you perform this step after letting your initial content marketing plan work its magic for several months. Then, repeat it quarterly or however often you review and revise your digital marketing strategy.
The process often looks something like this:
- You create content for your website, and then share it on social media as appropriate.
- Over time, your content generates clicks, views, shares, downloads, form fills, and other interactions.
- You continually keep track of the interactions to assess how well your target audience responds to each piece of content.
- Your research identifies content areas to better optimize to get more customers to perform the desired actions.
- You go back and improve the content to make it more helpful and engaging to increase the conversion rate.
Just like with your content marketing plan, stay open to the idea of adjusting your conversion rate optimization approach as you go.
You have to really dial in to what your customers need from your brand, and then deliver it to achieve all your marketing goals.
Types of Conversions to Measure
As you use your content distribution tools to release your works to the world, it’s time to tune in and see how well it all hits the mark.
In a perfect world, your customers will meaningfully interact with all your content as it currently sits.
More often than not, however, some things will resonate immediately while others need a bit of tweaking.
To measure what works – and see what doesn’t – keep an eye on all the ways you want your customers to interact with your brand. These can include:
- Website visits
- Account creation
- Button clicks
- Form fills
- Content shares
- Newsletter signups
In the final stage of the buyer’s journey, all these interactions add up to one thing: sales.
Hopefully, that’s not the end of the customer’s time with your company either. Their experience with your brand should inspire them to come back time and time again – and even send referrals your way.
How to Calculate Conversion Rates
If you want to improve upon your conversion rates, you must start with cold, hard facts. Otherwise, your conversion rate optimization efforts will fall flat.
You need to know how often your target audience completes each action, for starters. Use Google Analytics to get the figures for your website. For social media interactions, use the platform’s stats page.
Then, turn that figure into the actual conversion rate by dividing it by the total number of visitors to your site in that given time frame. Measuring social media likes and shares? Divide the number of interactions by the total number of post views instead.
Just as an example, let’s say that you want to measure the conversion rate for newsletter signups in a 30-day period. To do that, take the total number of newsletter signups in that month and divide it by how many website visitors you received.
If you had 30 signups and 600 visitors, your newsletter signup rate is 5%. It’s as simple as that.
Repeat this process for all your targeted conversions. Then, complete the calculations using the new data compiled every month.
As you make changes to your content, you should see your conversion rates increase if you’re on the right track.
Figure Out Why Your Content Fails to Convert
Once you identify what metrics you want to improve, you have to dig deep to figure out why the content is not inspiring your customers.
Be absolutely ruthless in assessing your content by:
- Thinking about what motivates your customers to complete the action
- Identifying what barriers might send them fleeing in the other direction
- Figuring out where to add compelling hooks that inspire them to act
There’s no perfect formula when it comes to conversion rate optimization.
You have to reflect on what makes your own target audience tick, and then create great content that exceeds their expectations in every way possible.
If they’re bored, confused, or downright irritated by your content, then you can kiss your chance at conversions goodbye.
Ways to Increase Conversion Rates for Your Marketing Program
If you feel like your website content already has what it takes, then it’s time to focus on the overall website browsing experience.
You can improve the experience by adding:
- Descriptive headers that break up the wall of text into scannable, easy-to-read sections
- Clear, concise, and inspirational calls-to-action that get your customers moving
- Interactive elements built to assist with the buyer’s journey while keeping boredom at bay
- Testimonials on every page that speak to the brilliance of your products, services, and brand as a whole
- Graphs, charts, and other images designed to keep visitors on the page and interacting with your content
On social media, experiment with the types of imagery, content, and calls-to-action you use for each post.
Don’t try to change things all at once either.
Use A/B testing to make small changes and measure their impact.
Build on your wins, too. Whenever you notice something that works, let that formula lead the way to success.
Over time, your conversion rate optimization efforts will help you achieve your major content marketing goals.
Even if you’re exceptionally lucky at every turn, you won’t achieve success instantly, however.
Expect to play the long game and keep refining your content until you have the winning formula.
If you get tired out along the way, just know that our team at WriterAccess is here to help.
You’re welcome to sign up for a free 14-day trial, too, making it easy to see what we’re all about. With that move, you’ll gain access to skilled content strategists, freelance writers, and other experts ready to lend a hand.