Why CRO is Critical to Your Website’s Success This Year

As we enter the second quarter of 2015, it is essential that we continue to evolve as digital marketers and actively seek new opportunities that will enable our digital experiences to be more successful.
How do we do this? First ask yourself these questions:

Are you tasked with making your website or mobile app more effective this year? Are you in charge of a redesign? Are your conversion rates staying the same or slowly decreasing? Is there an ‘agree to disagree’ mindset between your design and marketing team?

If you answered yes to any of the above, CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) can play a critical role in your success the rest of the year.

First, what is Conversion Rate Optimization? According to Wikipedia, "CRO is the method of creating an experience for a website or landing page visitor with the goal of increasing the percentage of visitors that convert into customers."

In other words, CRO is a growing digital marketing strategy that increases the percentage of visitors that convert on a website, landing page or mobile application through testing and personalization.  Here are the top three reasons CRO is critical to your digital success this year:

1. Enables Design Backed By Data

CRO enables a framework for making design decisions based on data. If you’re redesigning your site or mobile application it’s imperative to make adjustments based on not only what looks nice, but on what quantifiably improves your website. While an image heavy layout may be the design du jour, having a simple text layout may be what your customers want. You’ll never know unless you test them and review the KPI’s for each.
And, if your business depends on the engagement between your users and your site, like most media sites, listening to your audience is key to your success. Successful media companies like Upworthy and CNN have built their entire business on testing which design variations resonate most with their audience. 

2. Creates quantifiable improvements

There are many digital marketing tactics available to you today, but none of them physically force you to improve your marketing through rigorous testing and analysis like CRO does.

Companies that embrace CRO, whether in eCommerce, B2B, travel, lead generation or media, have seen amazing success. In one example Code.org, a non-profit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science, adopted CRO and a testing mindset to increase sign-ups on their website by 29% by changing their call to actions, generating nearly 8 million additional registrations.

3. Provides Powerful ROI

With the 2016 presidential elections officially under way, candidates are pouring resources into their websites. CRO has become a major asset of political marketing based on the simple fact that it provides significant, measurable ROI. The Obama Presidential campaign raised an additional $60M through CRO in 2008 and both presidential candidates adopted a CRO practice in 2012. With the 2016 presidential elections around the corner, CRO is poised to be a fundamental part of the digital strategy due to its ability to provide powerful ROI.

How will you embrace CRO and set your own company up for success in 2015?

This blog post  is presented by Mike Appezzato, Solutions Partners Manager at Optimizely.

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