Anytime you build a website or landing page, you do so with your customers in mind. You put yourself in their shoes and think, “If I was shopping for my product or service, what would make me take that next step?”
However, what we believe to be true of our buyers isn’t always fact, and at the end of the day, we’re simply making assumptions. To our credit, some of these assumptions are spot-on. But, there are some assumptions we make that are very false and very detrimental to our conversion rates.
Below are the top 7 assumptions that almost everyone makes that kill conversion rates. If your lead generation efforts have been lackluster lately, identifying and remedying these deadly assumptions will prove critical to future success.
#1 Your Site Is “Good Enough”
When you convince yourself that your site is “good enough,” you’re also making the following four assumptions: (1) users can clearly articulate their needs (2), users will ultimately figure it out, (3) users don’t know the difference, and (4) it looks pretty, and it will get the job done.
All of these assumptions are wrong because although your users are smart and savvy, they aren’t mind-readers. They don’t sit in your marketing meetings or your brainstorming sessions, so they don’t have the internal knowledge of your site that you do and they may not know what their needs are. Because of this, It’s crucial to evaluate your site from the standpoint of an unassuming consumer who has no knowledge of your product or service.
A great example of this is a common Contact Us form faux-pas we recently encountered with a client. Their landing page included a very straight-forward “contact us” form that asked the question “How can we help you?”
Although it’s a question many businesses include on a Contact Us form, we discovered through our work with this client that it’s actually really detrimental to conversion rates because it assumes the user can articulate their needs. It essentially puts the responsibility of getting help on the user’s shoulders by requiring them to answer an open-ended question. If they’re not sure how you can help them, does that mean you can’t help them? No, not at all.
So, for this client, we tested a different approach and gave the user explicit directions and options. Instead of “How can we help you?” we used the verbiage “Use the form below to inquire about pricing, request a quote, schedule a demo or find out more about our solutions.”
With this change, we saw a 47 percent increase in submissions. This tells us that users, although both savvy and smart, still need guidance on how to operate a page that they didn’t help create. You can’t assume that because your site looks good that a user will figure it out, because they may not. You should constantly be re-evaluating and reformulating how to make their experience better.
#2 You’re The First Stop
The user has a light bulb go off. They realize that they want to sign up for a certain service and you think they are coming to your site first when, in actuality, they’re doing their homework, they’re reading reviews, they’re doing their research. They’ve most likely checked out your competitors and they may have even used a similar product in the past.
The more knowledge that they have when they come to your site for the first time, the more imperative your answers become to what they’re seeking. If you don’t give them the answers they want, they have other options and they will go to them.
#3 Time Isn’t Valuable
Now, most people would never dare say that someone’s time isn’t valuable, but some websites seem to treat it like it isn’t.
That’s because you’re slowing your users down with a clunky website, unclear value, unclear messaging, an overcomplicated process, and disorganization. The more time that they spend trying to figure this out, the more frustrated they become and the higher the bounce rate becomes on your site.
When you put the user experience at the core, that leads to increased efficiency, which leads to boosted conversion rates, signup rates, and ultimately affects your bottom line.
#4 Gravity Is Working In Your Favor
This is one of my favorite assumptions. It’s that gravity is working in your favor. An inverted funnel is how we visualize the path to conversion. It’s a funnel we fall in along the way.
Users fall-out in a very small percentage, but the problem with this is they’re flying through. Some are staying, some are not…and that means that gravity is not working in our favor.
You need to understand that the process is a series of micro yes’s and that every time somebody chooses to move to the next piece of content, to look at the next image, to click through or fill out the next form field, it’s a yes in their brain.
#5 A User Converts or They Don’t
We often think of it as either a user converts or they don’t convert option, but what’s missing from that?
We have the worst case, someone arrives on your site and doesn’t convert. We have the best case, they arrive on your site and they do convert. And right there in the middle, we have a common case called a false lead. So somebody is just entering in BS information to get to the next step to see what’s behind the seat, to access that gated content.
Nothing is more aggravating. They didn’t know how the vendor would use the contact information and they weren’t comfortable sharing the contact information with the vendor. Right there is some anxiety and anxiety happens when the perceived value is less than the perceived cost.
What’s happening here is the cost factor is raising the anxiety and, therefore, they’re giving false information just to get what they want versus trusting you and giving you the information that you’re actually looking for to be able to follow up with that lead.
#6 Your Have To Force The User’s Hand
The fact is, you’re off balance. Cost force value is driving those false leads and what we have to do is tip the scale. You have to make value weightier than the cost.
Why should they stick with you when they can go somewhere else and get it for half price? The website doesn’t properly communicate that. You’re just relying on your brand, but users are smart and users are savvy and users are penny pinchers. So they’re going to try and find the cheaper alternative unless you’re establishing why the monetary value is not as important.
#7 Motivation Is Consistent
Motivation is not consistent. This ties back into understanding that the process of conversion is a series of micro yes’s and that every time somebody chooses to move to the next step of the process, it’s a yes in their brain.
When you identify these seven deadly assumptions in your processes and work to address them, you will begin to see great results.
This topic was recently covered at Elite’s Client Summit 2018. Click here to watch this talk, along with several others from the industry’s top experts.