You can judge a website by how appealing it is, the amount of traffic it brings in, or the quality of its content, but what really matters to business owners is how many conversions the site generates. Making a good website can be challenging enough and that's just a matter of technical know how. Creating a site that gets consumers to buy products, register for newsletters, donate to a cause or something similar, requires marketers to get into the minds of their target audience. However, this is actually a little simpler than it sounds. Here are 10 easy ways to improve website conversions

  1. Create Value
    One way business owners can improve the conversion rate on their site is to write more compelling copy for the pages. Having descriptive page may not be enough to get the desired result from the consumer. By Showing the value created by a product or service, a page can convince someone to take action. For example, products like CFL light bulbs are better marketed as a way to save money on energy costs than as a way to save the environment. It's often easier for people to see the value is saving a few bucks on their bills than the environmental benefits. Thinking of different ways to state the value can help a site's conversion rate.
  2. Track your visitors flow
    Marketers are better equipped to create an effective campaign when they know more about their audience's behavior. One way to do this is by learning how customer flow through a particular site. Marketers should be checking to see which pages brought in the most viewers, which ones held visitor's attention the longest; and which pages caused people to leave the site. Knowing this information can tell website owners where to change content to maximize its effect.
  3. A/B test and retest
    It may not be nuclear science, but marketing can be a kind of science. Every time a customer interacts with a site, it's like a little experiment. The product being sold, the marketing plan and the website design are the variables and whether or not the customer converts is the result. A/B tests are a way for business owners to experiment with their campaigns to see which gets the better result. It's also valuable to retest page versions. What may have been the better method in January may not still be the best method in April.
  4. Change your headlines
    Though it's the short and quickly skimmed by the reader, headlines are extremely important for SEO and conversions. And since there's no one perfect headline for a page, website owners should experiment with different headlines to see how it affects conversions. Using different verbs or changing the focus of the title are just a couple a ways a headline can be diversified. There are a lot of ways to make better headlines to test.
  5. Clear call to actions
    Thoguh it may seem obvious to the website owners, the purpose of a particular page or how to take a particular action may not be clear to the visitor. A clear call to action such as a bright button that says "Click here to schedule an appointment" on a page with information about a business or a popup that reminds customers of a discount code can make it easier to get consumers to convert by showing them exactly what to do.
  6. Simplify your marketing message
    A side effect of the information age is that people seem to have shorter attention spans. Even though a website gives a marketer limitless space to write a message, display images, or show a video, marketer's can't expect consumers to get through a complicated pitch before they're convinced to act. Simplify your message so it can be quickly read and understood by the audience. Instead of "14 reasons you should buy this product" reduce the list to under seven items.
  7. Shorten Forms
    Forms are a great way to get information from clients and to qualify the leads that come into a site, but they can also be tedious. Trying to get too much information from potential clients can be a turn off for privacy reasons or if people aren't willing to wade through the form. The same can be true for retail sites. A certain amount of information is needed to verify the account used and to get shipping information, but if it takes too long, people may abandon their cart if it takes multiple pages of forms in order to buy an item.
  8. Get the Right Traffic
    There are a lot of people online and not every person that clicks on a website is equally likely to convert. It's important for website owners to get the right traffic to their site when they use pay per click ads to bring new customers to their site. Getting the right traffic comes down to knowing your ideal customer and knowing how to target them through effective ads. One way to find out which ads bring in the right kind of traffic is to track the conversions from each ad separately.
  9. Remove Tisk
    People have been shopping online for decades now, but it's still risky to try a new business or brand a customer finds on the internet. By knowing the risks that may prevent customers from acting, marketers can create campaigns that proactively remove some of those risks. For example, including a free return process, money-back guarantee, or free shipping can remove risks that could have led to buyer hesitation.
  10. Shorten the Conversion Process
    The most important thing for website owners to do is to make the conversion process as short as it possibly can. Business owners can test this for themselves by visiting the website and seeing how many steps or how long it takes to convert from the time the visitor arrives. If there are a large number of steps, if key features have to be searched for, or if the conversion happens on a different page than where the audience landed, then there are places where the process can be trimmed. Making it quicker and easier to convert always improves the conversion rate.

Just like the old saying involving horses and water, a marketer can bring a potential customer to a site, but they have to convince the consumer that they want to act on the offer in front of them. The ten tips mentioned above will help marketers improve their conversion rate by creating an inviting environment that makes customers want to buy.

For more advice that can improve your revenue from internet marketing, read this article with 8 easy ways to improve your ROI on PPC cmapaign.

Published on: Mar 23, 2015
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.