Two Must-Haves for True Website Optimization
Posted By Mark Simpson On January 16, 2013 @ 5:57 AM In Targeting, Websites | 2 Comments
Brands that regard their websites as a primary revenue source have three distinct priorities: give customers an optimal experience, create loyalty and convert potentially passive browsers into active buyers.
It’s not a coincidence that experience and loyalty precede sales in this short priority list; the relationship between exceptional customer experiences and revenue growth is fairly direct. The better your website speaks to your visitors, the more loyal they will become and the more sales you will generate.
The good news is that customers can (and should) be very active in the optimization process. Through their clicks, page views, bounces, reviews and purchases, our online customers are offering us helpful feedback about their online experiences, in real time.
So what can you do with all this data?
Using A/B and multivariate testing  to discover your problem areas is a great first step. In fact, if you’re running an ecommerce site without testing in place, you’re probably losing valuable conversions and dollars as you read this.
No matter where you begin, whether it’s with shopping cart funnels, homepage bounce rates, search or call-to-actions, testing different variations of elements encountered along the path to purchase — and deciding which ones produce the highest conversions — will begin to paint a picture of what your visitors want and need. With this type of information at your disposal, you can begin to tweak your site accordingly.
But be warned, multivariate testing on an ad-hoc basis simply does not generate the conversion increases that are needed to really optimize the site for your visitors. So test early, test often, test always.
With all the means of creating targeted web experiences for each individual customer, there is no reason your website shouldn’t speak directly to individual customer needs, wants and interests. The opportunity to increase their loyalty, individual conversion rates and even number of purchases at checkout is limitless.
Personalization has evolved far beyond what it once was: product recommendations. Every specific piece of information you can gain about your customer — from search information to online behavior and purchases — can be used to create a unique visitor persona profile. Which means that your approach to personalization can be as simple (using one or two collected insights) or complex (a detailed formula based on multiple insights) as you want it to be:
Just remember that no matter what you think customers want or how you think they should interact with your site, they will ultimately engage with you exactly the way they want. Don’t fight it. Work with your customers, and let them optimize your site for you.
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://blogs.imediaconnection.com/files/2013/01/maxsegment-2.jpeg
 multivariate testing: http://www.maxymiser.com/solutions/multivariate-testing
 Personalization: http://www.maxymiser.com/solutions/personalization-2
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