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10 Digital Marketing Mistakes that Kill Conversions

Whether you’re selling physical products, building an email list, or encouraging people to sign up for your free trial, conversions matter.

But could you be unwittingly making common mistakes that affect your conversion rates? Here are 10 mistakes you can easily avoid to send conversions soaring.

  1. Having a Slow Website

Having a slow website is one of the single biggest mistakes you can make when you want to increase conversions.

Quite simply, a slow website kills conversions. And it’s obvious why: No one wants to hang around on a site that takes ages to load when there are so many other websites that load quickly.

Read this post on Kissmetrics if you want some more hard data on page loading times. Among other stats, it includes the claim that a one-second delay can lead to a 7% drop in conversions.

  1. It’s Too Complicated

Simpler web pages often provide a better user experience. So while you may be tempted to add lots of fancy features that look cool, if they are slowing your site down or just getting in the way, get rid of them.

Instead, keep the architecture and design simple. Each page should have a logical structure, and the navigation should be simple enough that the user can find what they want to with ease.

  1. Forgetting to Proofread

It’s unlikely that the odd spelling mistake is going to have a drastic impact on conversions if any impact at all. But if your site is littered with errors, it’s going to have an effect on the user.

It’s hard to trust websites that are full of errors. Too many mistakes look untrustworthy. It looks like you have put up the content in a rush and couldn’t be bothered to read it through.

Clear content that is well written and contains no errors provides a better user experience. Try out a few of these tools to proofread your copy before going live.

You put effort into the design of your site so that users know you’re serious, so do the same with your content.

  1. Providing Too Many Options

There are some pages on your site that will naturally have lots of options. The home page is one of them.

But when it comes to pages where you want a conversion, you should be very much focused on that goal. And that means reducing the options on the page.

This is most commonly seen on pricing pages where you present your products. If you have 10 different options, all very similar, the user is going to be unsure, leading to decision fatigue—and lower conversions.

That’s why so many companies only have three or four products. It allows them to clearly explain the differences, and it’s easier for users to make a decision.

Even on your home page, keep it focused. Don’t include details of all of your products, and instead guide the user in the right direction and give them some help to get where they need to go.

  1. Sending Targets to the Wrong Page

If you have a specific conversion for your users, you want to make sure you do everything you can to encourage them to make that conversion.

Which do you think is better: Sending them to a home page and letting them find it for themselves, or sending them to a dedicated landing page?

There is no point sending paid traffic to a home page. If you are advertising and paying for clicks, make each click count. Send the user to a dedicated landing page, one that only has one option on it.

Not a page that they can explore to find out more about you, but a page that you can optimize for conversions. Don’t let them disappear and never see them again.

  1. Using Too Many Links

A good landing page will have just one way out: The call to action.

It won’t have any links to other pages on your site, apart from perhaps the privacy policy. The reason for this is because you only want the user to do one thing: Convert. Any other links provide the user with a way out, and even if they have every intention of converting later, chances are they won’t. So get rid of links and have just one way to leave the page: Through the CTA.

  1. Not Using Descriptive CTA Copy

The CTA is the moment when you encourage the user to make a decision, which could be to sign up to your list, book their place on your webinar, or give your free trial a go. The language you use here is crucial.

Let’s say you want them to click on a button to download your new white paper and get on your list. The default copy on many websites is “Submit.”. But that doesn’t tell the user anything. It’s unclear what happens next.

The CTA is a moment of friction. The user might remain unsure about your offer and need convincing. If they don’t know what happens when they click that button, they might not click it at all. So use more descriptive copy, something like “Download your white paper.”

At the same time, give them confidence that they are making the right decision. Right next to the CTA, remind them that:

  • you will never share their email address.
  • they have 30 days to try out your product for free.
  • you have a 60-day guarantee.
  • if they miss the webinar, you’ll send them the link so they can watch it again.

All of this reduces uncertainty and encourages them to convert.

  1. Not Paying Attention to Message Match

You’ve probably clicked on AdWords ads before, tempted by something in the copy, only to arrive on the website and not see any sign of the very thing that tempted you.

Or you’ve clicked on an ad because a specific product was mentioned, only to find a whole selection of different products on the page.

Message match involves ensuring that the message on the landing page is the same as the ad, both in terms of the copy and the design, otherwise, it creates friction because the user doesn’t know immediately whether they are in the right place.

Solve this by using a similar headline on your landing page as on your ad. It doesn’t have to be exactly the same, but it can be. And use a similar design if you are sending visitors from a Facebook or banner ad. Just make sure the transition is smooth and let the target know they’re in the right place.

  1. Asking for Too Much

When you ask users for information such as their email address, name, etc, be careful about how much you ask them for. The more info they have to fill in, the more work there is to do, and this might reduce your conversions.

If the aim is to get people onto your email list, often an email address is all you need. So don’t make it too much work for them. Ask for the minimum and nothing more.

This is not set in stone. If you need to know their job role, ask for it. If you need their address, ask for it. This might even generate more qualified leads. And of course, if you’re not sure, you need to test. Which leads us to the final mistake …

  1. Not Testing

Any decision you make to increase conversions is flawed unless you test. The whole idea of conversion rate optimization is to increase your conversions by making specific changes over time. You have to know how well each element is performing, which means experimenting and trying out new things until you know your landing page, ad, etc, is optimized.

From the amount of information you gather in your sign-up form to the headline, the images, the CTA copy, the CTA position, and more, test everything.

Work out what works and what doesn’t. You may be surprised.