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Conversion Rate Optimization Best Practices

Simbar Dube

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Guides / CRO Guide / CRO Best Practices

The average conversion rate for an ecommerce website hovers around 2-3%. But that’s not the ceiling.

Some of the companies we work with have managed to go well over 9%, following our conversion optimization strategies.

To achieve such impressive results, it’s essential to implement best practices that target key areas of your site. This includes optimizing for mobile devices, which are increasingly the primary way customers interact with your store. A mobile-friendly design can significantly increase conversions by providing a seamless shopping experience.

Focusing on your product pages is crucial. Clear, high-quality images, detailed descriptions, and customer testimonials can build trust and persuade visitors to buy, thereby boosting your site’s conversion rate.

It’s also important to set clear conversion goals and continuously test and refine your strategies. By doing so, you can ensure you’re on the path to consistently increasing conversions. Remember, the right approach can turn the average into the exceptional, helping your site reach and exceed its full potential.

This article will look at the top CRO best practices that will help take your optimization efforts to the next level while helping you achieve more conversions.

1. Set The Right Expectations

Increasing conversion rates doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, effort, and patience.

Some marketers rush into setting up conversion optimization programs because they’ve heard success stories. But when they don’t see immediate results, they get disappointed and lose money.

It’s better to set realistic goals. In our experience working with many companies, we’ve found two important things:

  1. A good CRO program should aim for at least a 30% increase in conversions each year.

  2. A solid program should offer more than just increased conversions. It should also provide valuable insights and learning experiences that can be used across different marketing channels. This way, the benefits of the program are multiplied.

2. Allocate Sufficient Resources

Seven out of ten CRO programs fail due to insufficient resources project owners allocate. This has been a persistent challenge across various industries worldwide, even after a decade of observation.

It’s surprising that inadequate resource allocation remains prevalent, with some still hoping for success without the necessary support. However, simply flooding a project with resources for endless testing isn’t the solution.

Success lies in finding a balance between under-budgeting and excessive spending.

Before initiating a CRO program, it’s vital to assign sufficient resources to handle one to two split tests monthly. This might mean reprioritizing other projects, but it’s the only way to effectively increase conversion rates.

3. Understand Your Technical Needs

Before diving into your conversion rate optimization program, make sure you’re equipped to handle any technical issues that may arise.

Bugs can be a major obstacle to achieving high conversion rates. By resolving them promptly, you increase your chances of success.

Let’s say you’re all set to launch your optimization project but hit a roadblock because of technical issues. Why does this happen? Different platforms have their own limitations, and overlooking these can lead to plans that are either impossible to implement or overly complicated.

Prioritize understanding the technical landscape of your platform to avoid unnecessary setbacks and frustration. It’ll save you a lot of headaches in the long run.

4. Create a Conversion Roadmap

Launching random tests without a clear conversion rate optimization process won’t lead to meaningful improvements. Unfortunately, many companies fall into this trap, testing different pages without considering conversion rate optimization strategies.

To succeed, invest time upfront to understand your visitors and identify where your website is losing them. Determine which pages have the most potential for improvement and which should be untouched.

Prioritize key pages and create a conversion rate optimization roadmap that spans about six months. This roadmap should outline 8 to 15 tests, focusing on the pages that matter most for your business. This structured approach increases your chances of achieving significant results.

5. Re-Test a Winning Variation Against the Control

Over the past twenty years, we’ve conducted various tests, including A/B and multivariate tests, and found different ways to leverage our testing practices effectively.

One valuable practice is to validate your test results by pitting a winning design against the control in a head-to-head A/B test. This ensures that your results aren’t simply outliers and gives you confidence in the effectiveness of your changes.

By re-testing winning variations against the control, you can minimize the influence of external variables that may affect your test results, leading to more reliable and trustworthy outcomes.

6. Mobile Optimization Should Be a Priority

Mobile optimization should be a top priority for any e-commerce website. With the majority of users now accessing websites through mobile devices, ensuring a seamless and responsive mobile experience is crucial for increasing conversions.

Start by using website optimization techniques tailored for mobile users. This includes ensuring fast load times, easy navigation, and a user-friendly interface. Tools like Google Analytics can help you understand how mobile users interact with your site and identify areas for improvement.

Incorporating CRO tools into your strategy can also enhance your mobile optimization efforts. These tools allow you to conduct detailed CRO tests, helping you determine what changes will most effectively boost your site’s conversion rate. Focus on leveraging your existing traffic by making incremental improvements that lead to significant gains.

A robust CRO strategy that prioritizes mobile users will improve the user experience and drive higher conversion rates. By continuously testing and refining your mobile site, you can stay ahead of the competition and meet the evolving needs of your customers.

7. Optimize The Bottom Of The Funnel First

Regarding conversion optimization, focusing on the bottom of the funnel (BOFU) is a strategic move that can yield significant results. At this stage, visitors are close to purchasing, so optimizing here can directly convert visitors into paying customers.

Start by gathering data to understand user behavior at this critical point. Use tools like Google Analytics to track how users interact with checkout pages, product detail pages, and any final steps before completing a purchase. This data will help you identify any friction points that might be preventing conversions.

Once you clearly understand user behavior, you can begin to test ideas for improvements. Conduct A/B tests on elements such as call-to-action buttons, checkout processes, and form fields to see what encourages most conversions.

An effective optimization strategy at the bottom of the funnel should also include techniques to build trust and reduce hesitation. This might involve displaying customer testimonials, offering guarantees, or simplifying checkout.

By prioritizing BOFU optimization, you can maximize your existing traffic and significantly improve your site’s conversion rate. This focused approach ensures that your efforts are targeted where they can have the highest impact, ultimately leading to more conversions and higher revenue.

8. Utilize A/B Testing for Informed Decision-Making

Following simplifying your conversion funnel, the next step is embarking on A/B or split testing. This technique involves displaying two variations of a landing page to separate groups of users to identify which one yields better conversion rates. It’s essentially conducting an experiment to gain insights into user behavior and make data-driven decisions.

The process is crucial for enhancing conversion rate optimization. Imagine refining your website by leveraging actual feedback from users interacting with different versions of a web page. This is what makes A/B testing so powerful, as it serves as an invaluable tool in boosting conversions.

Remember that A/B testing should be a continuous practice rather than a singular event. Consistent experimentation via split tests confirms if various strategies are working effectively and keep your conversion funnel finely tuned. You can utilize these tests to assess multiple components on landing pages, such as CTAs — including buttons, forms, and images — which assists you in pinpointing optimal methods for addressing user pain points and amplifying conversions.

9. Enhance Visibility Through SEO

Shifting gears, let’s explore strategies to boost the number of visitors to your website. The pivotal role here is played by Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which has the power to increase your site’s visibility on search engines and, in turn, raise traffic levels with a knock-on effect on conversions.

To kick things off, strategically placing pertinent keywords within various elements of your web pages, like titles, headers, and meta descriptions, can clarify the intent of your content for search engines and thus help you climb up in rankings. Enriching user experience through engaging content that minimizes bounce rates and incorporates multimedia features will make your website more appealing and signal its quality to search engines.

On another technical front lies SEO practices such as producing an XML sitemap for better indexing by search engines or optimizing image files; these contribute significantly towards making content discoverable. Also imperative is ensuring mobile responsiveness for seamless access across devices alongside acquiring backlinks from reputable sources, which bolster credibility and are decisive ingredients in boosting search engine positioning.

Maintaining pace with evolving SEO trends remains crucial. Take voice optimization — adapting to this growing mode could secure continuity and progression in staying visible amongst results produced by the ever-changing algorithms of today’s powerful search platforms.

10. Monitoring and Measuring Success

Every step in the journey of conversion rate optimization should be measurable. Without proper tracking and assessment, it’s impossible to ascertain whether your efforts yield results or if you need to pivot your strategies. Let’s explore how success can be monitored and measured within the context of conversion rate optimization.

To begin with, determine your conversion goals, as these will differ from one company to another depending on their ultimate objectives – increasing sales figures or boosting newsletter subscriptions. Following goal setting, track your site’s conversion rates by dividing the number of successful conversions by the total number of visitors and then expressing this figure as a percentage for simpler interpretation.

Understanding that effective CRO requires ongoing effort is crucial. It isn’t simply a one-off task. It involves continuous evaluation and adjustments based on website performance data to ensure consistent improvement in conversion rates over time. To gauge the impact of your CRO initiatives accurately, consider various indicators, including changes in overall conversion rates along with metrics like average page visit duration and bounce rates.

11. Encouraging Action with Clear Calls to Action

We’ll next explore an essential element in enhancing your conversion rate: Calls to Action (CTAs). A CTAs effectiveness lies in its ability to smoothly navigate users through the stages of your conversion funnel toward taking prompt, decisive action.

Effective CTA strategy hinges on simplicity, including compelling action verbs, crafting a sense of urgency, and utilizing creativity that encourages visitors toward the desired action. Enhance visibility by incorporating contrasting colors and setting aside ample negative space around CTAs—this can significantly boost visitor engagement.

To increase their appeal, infuse CTAs with enticing language and offers such as free materials or other incentives. Harnessing the insights from A/B testing is invaluable. It aids in identifying superior configurations for elements like button placement or wording that drive user interactions forward.

Remember that impactful Calls to Action are fundamental for steering potential customers down your conversion funnel until they reach the endpoint—be it making a purchase or completing another targeted outcome.

12. Base Your CRO Tests On A Hypothesis

Effective CRO tests should always be grounded in a solid hypothesis. A hypothesis-driven approach ensures that your efforts are focused and based on insights rather than guesswork.

Start by thoroughly understanding your target audience. Gather data on your website visitors’ behavior, preferences, and pain points. Use this information to identify specific areas where improvements could encourage more conversions.

Next, develop a hypothesis that links a proposed change to a potential outcome. For example, if you notice that visitors are abandoning their shopping carts, your hypothesis might be: “Simplifying the checkout process will reduce cart abandonment rates and increase conversions.”

Once you have a hypothesis, incorporate it into your overall marketing strategy. Plan your CRO tests around it, ensuring that each test is designed to validate or refute your hypothesis. This approach not only provides clear direction but also allows for more meaningful analysis of the results.

You can systematically improve your website’s performance by basing your CRO tests on well-founded hypotheses. This methodical approach helps you make informed decisions, leading to more effective optimizations and better outcomes for your conversion goals.

Keeping the Momentum: Post-Conversion Strategies

To sustain the momentum after effectively transforming visitors into customers, it’s critical to employ efficient post-conversion tactics.

Communicating consistently and constructively with clients is essential as this helps preserve and enhance those relationships. Strategies worth considering include:

  • Prompt responses to client inquiries

  • Taking the initiative in providing updates and insights via multiple platforms

  • Exceeding client expectations by offering added value through free advice or sharing specialized knowledge

These approaches help build trust, loyalty, and customer satisfaction.

Maintaining contact with clients following a service or sale and fulfilling commitments made are key aspects of proving dependability and cementing stronger bonds with them. Utilizing tools like a thank-you page or popup once users complete a form can affirm their actions were recognized while also opening doors for additional interaction opportunities.


To sum up, the refinement of your conversion rate is a tactical endeavor requiring adjustments across multiple facets of your online footprint. This entails streamlining the conversion funnel and employing A/B testing, as well as boosting visibility with SEO tactics and fostering post-conversion customer relations—all pivotal moves for elevating your return on investment. It’s now time for you to apply these valuable insights and witness a significant uplift in your conversion rates!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a conversion funnel?

The conversion funnel represents the journey a user embarks upon from their first encounter with a website up to the moment of achieving a desired action, such as completing a purchase or registering an account. This tool is instrumental for companies in grasping and enhancing the customer’s path towards conversion.

What is A/B testing?

Split testing, or A/B testing as it’s commonly called, consists of showcasing two different versions of a web page to separate sets of users in order to ascertain which one achieves a superior conversion rate.

This process is instrumental in refining the website’s functionality for enhanced overall effectiveness.

How can SEO enhance site visibility?

Incorporating SEO techniques such as integrating keywords, crafting high-quality content, optimizing technical SEO aspects, and acquiring backlinks from reputable sites can substantially improve your website’s visibility and draw in an increased amount of traffic.

How can I measure the success of my CRO efforts?

To gauge the effectiveness of your conversion rate optimization (CRO) initiatives, it’s essential to establish conversion goals and ascertain your conversion rate. Continual examination and enhancement of website changes are necessary.

It’s vital to maintain constant vigilance and modification for sustained progress in CRO outcomes.

What is the role of CTAs in CRO?

CTAs are vital in navigating visitors along the conversion funnel and eliciting prompt action, making them key components for achieving website conversions as part of CRO efforts.