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Clicking Me Softly: A Five-Day Crash Course in Conversion (Day 5)

by Oli Gardner  |  
February 25, 2011

In this article, you'll learn...

  • How to optimize and test every page for conversion
  • Testing methodologies and what to look for when testing conversion rates

In days one through four of our crash course on conversion, we covered the economics of conversion, why homepages aren’t the best way to get results, and how to effectively use landing pages and calls to action to boost conversion. Our final installment covers page optimization and testing.

Day 5: Optimization and Testing—Every Page Can Convert Better

Once you start walking down Conversion Avenue, you'll probably find that it's a one way street—there's no turning around, and the traffic flows much better in a single direction.

Optimizing your landing pages can become an addictive pursuit of the perfectly converting page. Like unicorns and fairies, such a page doesn't actually exist; and though there is no magical pixie dust to sprinkle over your website, there are processes and techniques you can use to make the most of your conversion opportunities.

The best part? No matter what your page is for, it can always convert better.

The most obvious business reason to start a testing and optimization process is the economics: Do it right, and you'll get a higher return on your marketing spend. A no-brainer.

Here are two other reasons for testing:

  • You can solve boardroom arguments. We've all been there—sitting around the boardroom table discussing a page on the website, or if you're advanced, a landing page. Opinion goes back and forth about the main headline, what color the button should be, or, horror of all design horrors, the dreaded request to make the logo bigger.

    It's time to realize that internal democracy, experience, and the HIPPO's (Highest Paid Person's Opinion) really don't matter. Having a disagreement about a concept? Then test it.
  • The customer is still always right. If you are serious about conversion optimization, lesson No. 1 is to listen to your users. It's a beautiful thing to turn the power over to your user base for conflict resolution. Say no to archaic subjective opinion! Say yes to learning something about your customers!

    It's true that you still need the expertise of your team to create a new version of the page to test; instead of debating who's right ahead of time, however, run an experiment and discuss the results. You'll learn which message or design works best for the people who truly pay your salary.

Got an Idea? Test It, Start an Experiment

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Oli Gardner is a co-founder of—The DIY Landing Page Platform. He writes about conversion-centered design, landing pages, and marketing theory. Reach him via email at and Twitter @unbounce.

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