Are you frustrated because not enough of your visitors convert to customers? Are you struggling to increase your homepage conversion? Have you tried every trick in the book? Is your web conversion rate still unimpressive? Well, don’t give up just yet.
One of the major challenges faced by small businesses on the Web is getting their website traffic to convert, especially from their homepage. And there is no way you can generate sales when you’re not getting those visitors to click-through. Furthermore, you can’t tell how your website is doing if you don’t have traffic that converts, to measure.
The whole topic of homepage conversion can fit neatly under the heading of conversion rate optimization or CRO, which is a term you need to become very familiar with if you are going to solve your homepage conversion problems. Gabriel Shaoolian, a contributor to the Forbes blog says that, “CRO is the process of making improvements to your website in order to increase the rate at which site visitors take a desired action, such as completing a purchase or filling out a contact form. Conversion optimization can include anything from changing the color of a button, to changing the message on a landing page, to redesigning the hierarchy of a homepage to better match the way a user approaches information-gathering.
In this article, we’ll explore six of the best ways you can increase traffic to your website and improve your homepage conversion rate. Let’s get started!
Focus On One Call to Action (CTA)
How easy is it for a visitor to find your Call To Action? Can they quickly determine what your website wants them to do?
CTAs play a critical role in homepage conversion. A great CTA can generate an impressive conversion rate. On the other hand, a mediocre CTA can increase your website’s bounce rate; The speed and frequency with which website visitors ‘bounce’ out or leave your homepage.
It’s imperative that visitors to your website understand immediately what you want them to do. Don’t leave it up to them to figure out. Do you want them to sign up for a free trial? Attend a Webinar or sign up for a Newsletter? Download a White Paper or eBook? Whatever it is, make sure that you tell them in no-uncertain-terms and make it crystal clear how to do it!
Here’s 31 Call-to-Action Examples You Can’t Help But Click, with visual homepage examples from some of the best known companies out there. This list is provided by Brittany Leaning, of HubSpot:
It’s not advisable to ask your visitors to do multiple things at once, or to force them to choose from a variety of options, on your homepage. Multiple CTAs will confuse your visitor or overwhelm them which, could very well cause them to leave your homepage all together. Conversely, a single CTA will help focus your visitor’s attention on the exact action you want them to take.
Having said all of that, don’t hesitate to offer your website visitor a number of different ways they can accomplish the same call to action. Put it at the top of the page, middle of the page, in the sidebar, in the footer.
Write Compelling Headlines
Headlines are one of the essential elements of your homepage conversion strategy. In fact, without a persuasive headline, even the most comprehensive content will go unread. You need to learn how to write irresistible headlines.
One of the most effective strategies is to write several different headlines. The more the better. Once you have a bunch of headlines written, 10 – 20, evaluate them all side-by-side and choose the one you think will generate the most web-traffic.
In her post, 9 Steps to Write Your Ultimate Home Page Headline, Joanna Wiebe who is a copywriter and a conversion rate optimization consultant, says that, “you should write your headline last.” You should also:
- STOP THINKING ABOUT COPYWRITING AS “WRITING”.
- WRITE A HEADLINE FOR THE 20 to 35% OF YOUR TRAFFIC THAT IS MOST LIKELY TO BE HAPPY WITH YOUR PRODUCT.
- DESCRIBE YOUR MOST HIGHLY DESIRED & UNIQUE FEATURE OR BENEFIT.
- WRITE AT LEAST 25 HEADLINE OPTIONS – AND DON’T DELETE AS YOU GO.
- DELETE THE OBVIOUS JUNK.
- EXPERIMENT IN THE CONTEXT OF THE PAGE.
- A/B TEST TO FIND A WINNING HEADLINE.
- USE SEO KEYWORDS LIKE A PRO.
On-page SEO = Homepage Conversion
Many small business owners think search engine optimization (SEO) is no longer effective when it comes to driving website traffic and getting better homepage conversion. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. It is absolutely the case that SEO is much more challenging than it used to be, requiring increased attention and technique, in order to do it correctly.
Optimizing your website homepage for search is still an effective strategy. Furthermore, optimizing for on-page SEO is quite easy and can help improve your organic traffic. Here are some questions to guide you through this process:
Are you maximizing the use of image alt text?
The alt text on an image should match the main search term that you have chosen for your home page.
Are you capitalizing on your homepage meta descriptions?
As stated earlier, it takes more than putting metadata (title, description and keywords) into the code of your website, to get SEO results these days. Even though Google doesn’t consider metadata a key ranking factor any longer, it’s still important to make sure that you’ve included it.
Also, your meta description is what will show up when someone searches for you and finds your organic listing. Think about it, this should be your first call to action!
What about creating links to other relevant content on your website?
- One of the ranking factors that Google does look at is intra and inter-site links. Be sure that you’ve created links in your homepage content. This also serves the purpose of naturally leading your website visitor to the conclusion that you are trying to accomplish with your CTA.
Link Your Homepage To Relevant High Conversion Websites
If your website is a featured link on a high-traffic site in your industry, it can immediately benefit from all the exposure that major site receives. Your traffic numbers can explode within no time at all. But, how do you get to link your site to such high-traffic websites?
The strategy is easy. Just follow these simple steps:
- Perform a Google search for the keywords people normally use to find your website. Identify the best performing competitive websites in in the list of search results on the SERP (search engine results page).
- Use a tool like the Alexa Toolbar to find out what those other websites are linking to, who is linking to them, and how much traffic they are getting.
- Look for the contact information of these other linking websites, provided that they are relevant to your business as well.
- Make contact with the linking websites and ask them for a link to your website.
- Before you make contact, be sure you have the site’s correct URL, as well as the URL of the specific page on which you want your link to appear. You should also have the name of the site owner, a brief description of the site’s content, and the date you last visited the site.
- Then, you can write a personal email to the website’s owner, requesting a link. Make sure your request is brief, comprehensive and professional. Namely, include some positive sentiments about their website, your personal details, your website details, an explanation of how a link to your site would benefit them, as well as instructions to get back to you to get things rolling.
Use Eye-Catching Photos
Eye-catching photos can increase your website traffic dramatically. They can make your homepage more visually appealing so visitors stay on your site longer. With attractive photos, your content will also be more shareable on social media. When you combine your title with a strong image, you raise its chances of generating traffic and clicks.
Consider Guest Blogging
Another brilliant way to increase traffic to your homepage is by putting a guest post on another reputable website. In your guest post you would most certainly put a link back to your homepage, either in the contents of the post itself or in the ‘about the author’ section at the end of the post.
Being a guest blogger “is the lifeblood of my digital businesses,” Says Neal Patel, CEO of QuickSprout. He goes on to say, “there is no telling the benefits you’ll get if you leverage guest blogging strategically. There are two things that you need to get right when it comes to guest blogging. The first is finding websites that are suited to your niche and accept guest posts.
You can find such websites by searching for them on Google.”
If you want to find blogs in your industry that are accepting guest posts, use the following search queries to see more specific results:
Name of your niche + “write for us”
Name of your niche + “submit guest post”
Name of your niche “ “sites that accept guest posts”
Write guest article + ‘name of your niche” + blog
Guest blog by + “name of writer” (e.g., guest post by “Neal Patel”).
To discover many more excellent websites that accept guest contributions, Peter Sandeen mentioned the 140+ Best Sites to Guest Post, in his recent post.
If you ask any business owner what they would like most in the world, their answer would probably be “more and better customers.” One of the best ways to ensure that you accomplish this goal is to ensure that you are driving more traffic to your website and getting it to convert. I hope that you will use the six methods listed above to get more of your homepage traffic to convert to customers.