By Matt Sullivan
On Wednesday afternoon, I had the pleasure of hosting our latest webinar "What Drives Conversions?" with Cece Kellie, Creative Director at Guidance -- CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE ARCHIVED VERSION!
Cece spoke at length about critical design features that help create an engaging customer experience, and I spoke toward the tools needed through the back end of your website. Using the hashtag #DriveConversions, we drove a spirited conversation on Twitter and had some awesome follow up feedback in the Q&A portion of the presentation.
Below, I took the time to share a few tweetable takeaways as well as transcribe the follow up questions posed during the Q&A.
From the Q&A
(Note: Transcription Is Paraphrased)
What's the importance of keeping everything above the fold?
Cece Kellie: There is no more fold -- it's gone away. Something I touched on in the webinar is that it's important to recognize the whole new behavioral paradigm out there with the advent of all the of new technologies that we play with, like iPads and Smart phones. People are not afraid of heights, they're not afraid to scroll, numbers back this up.
The way to make that work for you is to tell your right product story. It's about the content hierarchy and prioritization. Off that, you have to give your customer that view of your product line and experience -- really establish that mental model -- so they know what they can expect from your brand, the products and services you offer, and you continue telling that story down the page
I'll concede that, yes, it's important to get your big message across that does fit in that screen space without your customer not having to do anything. But they will scroll. Tell a product story and you will engage a customer and drive action.
What tools can you use to create an engaging experience for returning users?
Matt Sullivan: Personalization can be created through Customer Experience Management (CXM), which is possible through solutions, including Bridgeline's iAPPS platform. A/B testing is a great way to go.
How does site performance impact conversions?
Cece Kellie: At a very simple level, yes, site performance can affect conversion rates. If your site is taking a long time to load, like a nanosecond, people are going to click away -- they're going to become frustrated. People expect things instantaneously. Your website performance needs to be optimized, so when they arrive they are instantly greeted with products, services, and content, instead of the spinning wheel of death.
Matt Sullivan: Here are Bridgeline, we partner with an organization called Dyn Inc., which is really about DNS services that I refer to as the "plumbing on the internet."
Dyn has a blog post on their site about the effect of uptime and performance, especially around holiday shopping. According to the numbers, in 2010 there was a $212 million dollar spend over Thanksgiving weekend in eCommerce. They go into the performance metrics of site delivery - everything from that first connection to the final click -- and how much it impacts conversion rates. They reference one study that says that a single hour of downtime can cause upwards of $150,000 on a Black Friday or a Cyber Monday.
Thanks for checking out the webinar -- for the latest news on trends and critical Digital Marketing strategies, check out Bridgeline on Twitter.