Archive for April 28th, 2008

Holly Buchanan Increases Conversion during the King Conversion Conference- Part I of II

Web Sites that Sell Conference

For those of you who were fortunate enough to attend eBizITPA’s King Conversion: Web Sites that Sell conference a few weeks ago, on Thursday, April 17th, you can join me in attesting to the genuinely quality content presented by Holly Buchanan, Senior Persuasion Architect at Future Now Inc, based in New York City.

For those who were unable to attend, you missed out on an extraordinary event with a captivating, experienced speaker presenting effective information to help improve your website’s performance and your overall conversion rate.

Holly BuchananHolly focused on both B2B and B2C companies, providing simple suggestions for improvement of the overall effectiveness of the companies’ websites. In fact, many exhibitors at the event were so impressed with Holly’s presentations, that they were online updating their sites with these simple solutions live, as Holly suggested them.

Although it would not be possible to serve you with all of the same information presented to the conference attendees, we would like to provide you with some of the insight shared at this conference on how to increase your web site effectiveness. This is the first post of a two part series to provide you with this valuable information.

The conference began with the discussion of the current state of the online buying and selling process, as Holly pointed out that only 26% of consumers report satisfaction with a web shopping experience, and 97% of website visitors fall out of the sales funnel, resulting in lost sales.

The First Step: Know Your Visitors

The first aspect to consider when attempting to draw in visitors to your site, is to make it relevant. What questions do the visitors have that they need answered? Did they arrive at your site through search engines? What key terms were used to arrive at your site? All this and more data should be measured and analyzed to find out everything possible about your website visitors, and to improve their overall satisfaction with the functionality and effectiveness of the site.

Don’t Make Me Think!

Once you have found out exactly what your potential customers find relevant, you should apply it to improve the relevancy of your site- place the information individuals are looking for in an easy to find location on your site. If visitors don’t find what they are looking for, potential leads could be gone within one to three clicks.

You can not make your visitors think. If they have to dig through your site for something they’re looking for, they will most likely click the back button and search elsewhere. Every page of the site should take your visitor to another page of the site.

The About Us page is often a dead end. Ensure that it invites visitors to visit other pages of the site, subscribe to a mailing list, or take some step toward the ultimate goal of the visit.

Define an End Goal

You should design your site so that the visitor knows exactly where they should look, exactly where they should click, and what the call to action, or ultimate goal of the company, is. This ultimate goal of the company should be defined, and ranges from an online order, to the act of searching for a local location of the company or store. The goal depends on the nature of the company and its products and/or services.

Also, there should be intermediary goals, or points of conversion between the time when the visitor arrives at the site, and the ultimate goal. These intermediary goals will help guide your customer through your site, and further towards your ultimate goal.


Once the site has addressed and taken steps towards achieving the overall goals, you must persuade the invididual to take the desired action, and make it easy for them to do this. This means that the check out process must be as easy and effective as possible. Any opt-in forms should be short and painless. And errors should be non-existent. Anything that will increase frustration could drive individuals to give up and leave a process only partially completed.

Take a few minutes or even an hour to walk through these and similar processes to make sure they are as smooth and painless as possible for your visitors. This act alone could resolve small issues, increasing your conversion with little effort.

Online copy can also play a very prominent role in persuading your visitors to continue using the site. Copy should be organized into chunky, browsable sections. The majority of website visitors are “browsers;” they scan the web pages before deciding to read them in full. Smaller paragraph sizes will allow your readers to find the keywords they find most relevant more quickly, encouraging them to read on.

Four Types of Buyers

A very valuable, if not the most valuable, part of the presentation was the explanation of the four different personalities of the buyers. These include the Humanistic, Methodical, Competitive, and Spontaneous individuals. There are certain methods that would be most effective in capturing the attention, and potential business, of each of these individuals, all within the same paragraph.

Stay tuned for the second post of this two part series to discover the tactics that will allow you to address each of these personalities’ concerns within one or two paragraphs, as well as some suggestions for improving your web site effectiveness and conversion rates with a few simple changes.

Did You Attend? Share Your Experience

If you attended the King Conversion Conference on April 17th, we invite you to share your experience with the event in the comments section below.

Read Part II of this two part series.

eMarketing Special Interest Group

April 2008

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