In Part 1: What Is Conversion Optimization?, we learned that optimizing for conversions is a crucial part of increasing both sales and the lifetime value of your customers. Any brand selling online should be including conversion rate optimization in their strategy to be on the path to profitable growth. A key first step is understanding data to improve conversions on your site.

As with most decisions in our data-driven digital world, effective conversion rate optimization starts with data gathering. In part two of our six-part Optimizing for Conversions to Create Lifetime Value video series, Margo Andros, Founder at LTV Approach and Brandon Howell, Website Optimization Service Lead at ROI Revolution reveal key insights behind the crucial data-gathering step of conversion rate optimization and understanding the data to improve conversions.

Optimizing for Conversions to Create Lifetime Value, Part 2: Understanding Conversion Rate Optimization Data

What does CRO look like in the digital realm? How do you execute this strategy? What does the road map look like?

Before you even get to the strategy piece of it, there’s a huge step you need to tackle first: getting the data. Get as much qualitative and quantitative data as you possibly can in order to make the right decisions.

For quantitative data, think of analytics platforms. Hopefully, you’re using Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics, or whatever your preferred flavor for website analytics is. These tools allow you to look at data like funnel reports, abandonment data, usage stats, and more.

Other tools like heat mapping and session reporting software on your site can help you see what users are doing and how they’re interacting with your site. You can see what they’re clicking, where they’re clicking, where they’re not clicking, where they’re mistakenly clicking, what sort of actions precede people using the site, and more. If you’re not using one of those tools, I would highly suggest doing so.

For qualitative data, survey data is a good place to go. If you are able to run surveys on your site, consider asking users what prompted them to buy after they make a purchase or why they are leaving your site when they’re about to exit. There’s also user testing where you have an individual run through the site who provides feedback in real-time about the experience. There are also myriad ways to do best practice checks like heuristic analysis frameworks to see how your site stacks up against industry best practices.

Before you even get into the strategy piece, there’s a key data gathering element to inform that strategy.  We use all of these avenues to build strategies for our clients. Once you have all this data, you can take two directions with it: best practice-based optimizations or testing-based optimizations.