Since launching my video tutorials I have wanted to setup some tests to increase video conversion rate using a plugin like Simple Video Pro or Easy Web Video.
As part of my Google Webmaster Guidelines experiment I have integrated a few tracking points to track things like email sign ups, social actions, affiliate clicks, and downloads which I have setup as goals & events in Google Analytics.
I will be reporting on those metrics as part of that experiment but at the same time I want to optimise the conversion rate of the videos.
I have discussed and published a post on conversion rate optimisation before so if you’re not familiar with what it is then check it out.
The Problem With Video
I’m still getting used to producing videos at the moment. While they are great for teaching people it is often difficult to convert a viewer into a subscriber or affiliate sale.
This is because you have to rely on the user to take manual action. It isn’t like an image where they can just click through to a link.
Usually this involves typing a URL into the address bar that is shown in the video which leads to a really bad video conversion rate.
What I needed is a way to embed an e-mail sign up form and clickable elements into the video itself. That just isn’t possible with YouTube hosted videos.
I discovered a few solutions for this-
Wistia provide an advanced video player as well as hosting the videos for you. They allow you to place clickable banners into the videos and had some pretty nice analytics.
What really drew me to this service was you ask for a users e-mail address before they started the video. I thought that would be perfect on video 3 in a series for example BUT there’s a problem. It doesn’t integrate with Aweber or similar services; you can just export a raw list of the e-mails to manually import into Aweber.
It looked like the winner on the surface, but no e-mail integration was a killer.
Easy Video Player
Reading around online Easy Video Player had some fantastic feedback and did everything I wanted it to do.
That was until I clicked the Buy Now button and found out it was $127! Just for the player it was $127! On top of that I would have to move the videos over to Amazon S3 which would see even more costs.
Easy Video Player is certainly one of the most advanced players out there but there had to be something cheaper than that.
Easy Web Video
The Easy Web Video service also had the majority of the features I was after. You could easily integrate e-mail forms and add clickable buttons.
There were some other cool features like automatic trigger points where you could make things appear underneath the video at predetermined timings.
In fact the only reason I didn’t go with Easy Web Video is because I came across….
Simple Video Pro
Simple Video Pro is a wordpress plugin so offers direct integration into the site. It allows you to insert a clickable logo, clickable banner ads, clickable splash images, trigger point reveals, social media buttons and completely custom html.
In terms of customisation options and choices, Simple Video Pro is by far the best. The custom HTML section is especially useful and you can pretty much do anything you want. The only drawback is you can only add 1 of each item listed above. So you couldn’t have a clickable banner 2 minutes in and then again 8 minutes in etc.
What set this apart from the competition was the fact that I could use the videos I already had hosted through YouTube.
That is a huge benefit and huge cost saving as hosting them on Amazon S3 or similar service can be expensive.
Simple Video Pro allows me to pull any video in from YouTube and insert overlays on top. Perfect!
The Video Conversion Rate Case Study
After settling on Simple Video Pro as my new player of choice I needed to work out the best way to utilise it to increase video conversion rates.
It really does offer a lot of options and it’s easy to go crazy by adding social icons, banners and custom HTML but for the purpose of this test I decided to keep things simple.
My only goal was to increase the video conversion rate for my primary goals which are email subscribers, affiliate clicks and resources downloads.
I know from YouTube’s analytics that 60% of viewers watch the entire video. I decided at the end of the video I wanted to display some custom HTML.
This is what users currently see at the end of a video-
Just a bunch of related videos on YouTube, which is fantastic….. if your YouTube. Not so great for conversions.
I had a play with a few designs and finally settled on this-
So at the end of the video users get presented with the option to subscribe or find out more about things mentioned in the video. Pretty sweet huh?
I decided to setup a split test in Google Analytics (known as Content Experiments) to test the original page against the new page and see which one offers the best conversion.
The only difference between the pages is the video player. One of them uses the standard YouTube player and one of them use Simple Video Pro with the custom HTML display at the end of the video.
Other than that, the pages are identical.
I’m running this test across the entire Ultimate Guide To Tiered Link Building series right now.
The Results Are In!
After a bit of a delay, the results are finally in and they are very interesting indeed.
What I have learnt is going to change the way I do videos on the blog forever.
So let’s get into it-
|Player||Email Subscribe||Aff Click||Resource Downloads|
Here is how it looks in Google Analytics-
Was It Worth It?
Overall the new video player delivered a 37% increase to email subscriptions and a 153% increase in the number of affiliate clicks.
Not bad considering the HTML splash doesn’t pop up until the end of the video.
I have also used email subscription popups to try and improve subscriber conversion which added a 44% increase in email conversion.
So when you compare the results of both of those – I would say the video popup performs much better due to the extra affiliate click conversion it offers.
Are you making the most of your traffic?
Hold Up A Minute
When I set this experiment up I was just testing the water with a quick and simple split test.
While the custom html popup does increase video conversion rate substantially, there are a few things that I want to try to improve it further such as-
- Creating a better design for the custom HTML
- Using the ‘reveal’ function to make a banner pop under the video after x seconds
- Overlaying product banners within the video itself
- Taking users to a specific URL automatically when the video ends
As you can see there is certainly a lot more to explore with the plugin to improve conversion even more.
SimpleVideoPro has certainly helped me to increase engagement and boost conversion with my visitors.
Now I just need to leverage my video conversion rate further.