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How to Convert Visitors to Your Website

written by: johnsinit•edited by: Laura Jean Karr•updated: 6/27/2011

Want to keep the traffic that comes through online and up your page views by converting website visitors? Find out how to do just that here with a few simple steps.

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    How To Convert Visitors?

    After putting an effort in to bring visitors to your website, you might want your visitors to "convert". This means that you want them to take desired actions such as placing an order, signing up for your newsletter, visit to a particular webpage or just sending in an inquiry. This process is usually known as conversion but is also called optimization or improvement rate.

    Previous experiences with website design and knowledge of your target market can help you understand how to increase your conversion rates but this alone does not substitute for a scientific approach. Let's take a closer look at how online marketers need to understand the common conversion rate improvement parameters and at the roadmap for successful and result oriented websites.

    Offsite Elements

    You need to be aware of various factors that can affect the conversion rates when visitors land on your website. Some factors can even come into play way before your visitor arrives. Items such as the way you position your brand, showing how you understand your marketplace, showing how you understand your customers, your sites unique selling proposition and the mediums you use to bring traffic to your website are critical factors in determining the conversion rate.

    Onsite Elements

    Once a visitor arrives on your website tdue to marketing efforts, the salesmanship of your website will play a main role in converting them into a customer. All potential customers that come to your website can be categorized into the following groups:

    Group A: People who came to your site to buy specifically what you are selling

    Group B: People researching or exploring products who might come back later.

    Group C: People who might buy if they get convinced that what you have is what they need.

    Your website should be designed and structured to cater to all three of these groups in order to achieve maximum conversion. Most websites are created to target Group A only. This leaves a huge number of potential customers, which could have been converted into actual customers leaving to look at other sites.

    While structuring your website for conversion you might want to consider the following methodologies:

    Discover objectives

    What do you want your website to achieve for you? Do you want to sell online and hence want your website to sell more or do you want it to signup subscribers for your e-mail newsletter. Whatever the objective of your site is, it should be clear and translated in the design and structure of the website respectively.

    Draw the perfect website structure

    A tested approach for the perfect website structure is as follows:

    a. Brainstorm

    Always be thinking about content ideas. What should go into the website and what should not. Analyze your competitors; make comparative analysis of all competitive websites.

    b. Sitemap

    Arrange the finalized content outline into a logical sitemap where content of similar nature should be grouped together. For example, if you are selling gadgets online, all certain types of a gadget should come under this category.

    Create scenarios and personas

    Think about situations and reasons why people would buy from you. Segment various stages of customer buying processes. Look over how other websites have targeted certain groups such as students, professionals and businesses.

    Website communication

    The content you place on your website affects the visitor's behavior significantly. Equally important are the product images. Make sure you provide good quality images and also multiple viewing options to give your customer the experience closest to buying from a store front.

    Website conversion stragties are relative to your type ans style of site. Keep in mind that what works for one website might not work for another. The best strategy is to keep testing what works for your website and what does not and make changes accordingly. Also, working to improve your overall conversion rates will boost revenue without spending extra money on your marketing.

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