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I’ve found that the results many CRO or digital marketing agencies present to their clients are “fluff metrics.”
They’ll run A/B tests on a client’s landing page or home page that result in 5-15% increases in engagement or conversions. And everyone is excited.
Over and over again, they’ll show successful test results showing 2%, 5%, maybe 10% boosts in performance. And you’d naturally assume if you ran enough of these tests with terrific results, that your conversion rates should be doubling or more. And obviously, there should be a significant impact on revenue, right?
Then why is it that all too often, these changes barely impact revenue?
In this piece, I’ll cover three big reasons why your CRO efforts might not be directly impacting revenue and what to do instead.
1. The Things You’re Testing Are Too Superficial
One of the most common CRO mistakes I see is companies focusing on the small stuff. Things like adding an extra call to action on landing page, testing different button colors, moving buttons from one side of the screen to the other, etc.
In my experience, these tests focus on superficial changes that don’t reflect where prospects are really dropping off.
Common drop-off points include things like putting in payment info or scheduling a call. And if you manage a 5% increase in completing these tasks, you’re much more likely to see a similar jump in prospects successfully moving through the entire sales funnel.
The most important question to ask when considering what tests are worthwhile: other than the landing page, where in the funnel are you seeing the highest drop-off?
I recommend starting there.
One important exception: if you’re running an ecommerce store with a relatively simple checkout experience and high volume sales, then small changes can add up fast, no matter how superficial.
- Locate your most common drop-off posts (where prospects are exiting the funnel) and prioritize your optimization efforts there.
2. You’re Only Testing the Top-of-the-Funnel
CRO experts often forget that there’s a whole funnel to convert.
It’s easy to stick with running A/B tests on things that bring new leads into the funnel, but this isn’t where you’ll see the highest value.
The further down the funnel you go, the more prospects you’ll be able to impact that have the highest purchase intent.
If you run tests on a landing page, you’ll only impact leads that come into the site via that landing page. If you work on optimizing checkout, however, you’ll be impacting everyone in the funnel.
I’m not saying you should ignore landing page tests or any other CRO effects at the top of the funnel. But, in general, the lower down the funnel you are, the higher the value. Many businesses make the mistake of only focusing on landing pages and the top of the funnel.
- Tests lower in the funnel will have a greater impact on your revenue.
3. Something Is Broken In Your Sales Funnel
When was the last time you walked through your sales funnel?
When we run audits for prospective clients, we’re never surprised to find something is broken in their lead or checkout flow. This is especially true since we tend to work with companies with complex sales funnels.
We’ve discovered issues like login issues for returning customers — things you’d be shocked slip through the cracks. But they do, all the time, at big companies, small companies — all across the board.
I try to go through our client’s sales funnels at least a couple of times a week to look for issues, as well as things to optimize. If you walk through it often enough on different devices, using different starting points, etc, you’ll find places of possible friction, new opportunities for upsells or nurturing, and more.
- Run through your sales funnel frequently. No tests are going to work well if something is broken.
Want to Know If Your CRO Is Working? Trace It Down the Funnel
The key takeaway here is to follow the changes or tests you make all the way down the funnel. I try to trace changes directly to either an increase in revenue or a decrease in customer acquisition costs (CAC).
- Optimizing a custom gift company’s mobile experience played a significant role in a 4% increase in conversion rates and 30% increase in average order value which led to an 8% increase in holiday season revenue.
- Optimizing a PLG company’s landing pages increased conversion rates from .5% to over 3.5% which led to 17K more paid user signups per month.
Because of this, when I’m presenting the result of changes my team made to a client’s funnel or tests we ran, I’m not showing them vanity metrics. I’m showing them exactly how our CRO work at Opascope has helped their business make more money or run more efficiently.
If you’re ready to find new growth opportunities throughout your funnel, we’d love to chat and see if we’re a good fit. Book an intro call with us today to get started.
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