If you’re a full time SEO then it is likely you track a huge range of metrics on your site.
Most people tend to focus on where they rank, the amount of traffic they are getting and how much money they are making.
SEO’s are usually very busy people managing lots of sites so it’s logical to focus on the core metrics.
But there is another much more important metric you need to focus on which could be costing hundreds/thousands in commissions every day.
Conversion Rate Explained
The conversion rate is the percentage of people that visit your site compared the amount of people that complete a specific goal.
A Goal can be anything from a newsletter signup to clicking your affiliate link.
For example if 100 people a day visit your page and only 1 of them finds and clicks your affiliate link you have a 1% click through conversion rate.
There is a case study at the end of this article that shows you how I increased the overall revenue of a site by 20% just by changing the colour of a button.
Why Is This Important?
Well let’s assume you have a 1% click through conversion rate which earns you £10 per day. 99% of the traffic goes to waste which leaves an awful lot of money on the table.
If you could increase it to just 2% you could double the amount of money you earn instantly with the same amount of traffic.
Let’s face it, getting a website ranked in Google is hard work so once you have a steady flow of traffic you need to maximize the earnings per visitor as much as possible.
Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO)
This will vary depending how you push people through your affiliate link. Some people just use straight text links while others will use price comparison tables, buttons or banners.
We can setup tests to measure how effective your affiliate link placement is and then test it against other variations to see which gets the better response from your traffic.
It sounds complicated but here is how it works, let’s assume you have a blue buy now button-
- Create a red version of the button
- Show half of your traffic the red button and the other half the blue button
- Measure which one gets the highest click through rate
- Take the winning button and setup another test to improve conversion further
You can literally test anything from link placement to the colour of the link. Even testing the headline of the page can reduce bounce rate and improve click through rate.
I would recommend you start by optimising your affiliate links though.
Conversion Rate Optimisation Case Study
The best way for me to illustrate this is with one of my own conversion rate optimisation tests.
I have a website and the sole purpose is to get the user to click on a banner with my affiliate link.
The original banner had a 41.5% click through rate and looked like this (I have removed the text)-
I then create 4 variations of the banner which looked like this-
I setup a split test for all of the banners which would rotate them evenly to my visitors. With 5 banners in the test they were each shown 20% of the time.
I use Google Website Optimizer for most of my conversion rate experiments which is free and easy to use.
I let the test run for a week to collect enough data to make a decision on. You might need to run your own tests for longer depending on traffic volume.
The results are actually quite interesting-
As you can see the original banner had a 41.46% click through rate and was actually the worst performing banner out of all of them.
The best performing banner was the Combination 2 which had a massive 52.25% click through rate. That is a massive improvement to the overall click through rate of the page.
In total I ran 7880 visitors through this test, if they were all shown the original banner I would have gotten 3,267 clicks to my affiliate link.
If I had shown them all Combination 2 then I would have gotten 4,117 clicks to my affiliate link.
That’s an extra 850 clicks to earn potential commission from with the same amount of traffic. Just from changing the colour of a button!
So this test simple test achieved-
- An Improved click through rate to 52.25% from 41.46%
- That is a 20% improvement over the original
- An extra 850 affiliate link clicks
I hope you can see why you should be paying more attention to how many people actually click on your affiliate link once on your site.
We work hard to get traffic to our pages but many of us don’t pay the same care and attention to converting that traffic into cold hard cash.
How much money is your site leaving on the table every single day?