A Quick Preview of the Podcast:
- How to decide which icons to remove from your website that will increase conversions
- How to find the right terminology to encourage your prospects to buy
- How removing a product description can potentially increase your sales
To See These Tactics In Action:
To See The Transcript:
Tim: When we’re working on our businesses, it can be easy to get stuck doing the same things we’ve always done especially if we’ve been in business awhile. There are certain things that seem immutable I love that word. There’s always got to be whatever, right? You can’t go without whatever that thing is.
In the case of E-commerce, product descriptions seem immutable, but are they? Can an E-commerce store thrive when you’re going against the grain of what you’re “supposed to do?” Khalid Saleh wanted to find out for one of those clients and the answer resulted in a 15.3% increase in sales conversions and an 18% increase in average order value which is pretty nuts for a store of this size. So what got the results? You’ll have to listen.
I’m Tim Paige, the senior conversion educator here at LeadPages and this is ConversionCast.
All right. So I first wanna first talk about the results that you were able to get from this tactic. So can you tell us a little about the results you were able to get?
Khalid: So what we’ve done generated the 15.3% uplift in conversions and an 18% increase in the average order value.
Tim: That’s awesome, I love it. All right. Well we’re gonna get into what it was that you did to do this and some specifics of the site was. But before you do that, tell everybody who you are and what you do.
Khalid: So my name is Khalid Saleh. I’m the CEO Invesp. We are a specialized conversion optimization company, the 2nd or the 3rd that started in North America back in 2006.
Tim: Wow, nice, awesome, okay, so cool. Tell us a little bit about first off, the website that you did this test on. What do they sell? What’s the website all about?
Khalid: So this was an old website that was started back in 1999, they basically focused on selling college books, college text books. And the website is fairly established. However they were stuck in double… Well single digit conversion rates around 1.8% conversion rate.
And when we came in, we did some analyses trying to figure out who their target market is. We figured out okay so you’re selling to students, and we all have been there having to buy textbooks for our course. But also there’ s this other segment which is the parents of those students. Sometimes, you know “Hey give me your course syllabus and let me just order the books for you”.
Khalid: You know? So what we did, we did is we did a lot whole bunch of analyses for them, qualitative, quantitative research. And finally we noticed that not enough people are… lots of people are landing on the product pages but not enough people are clicking on that add to cart and finishing the whole checkout process.
So one of the things like you know? You take the page and what we’ve done is we’ve done quite a bit of qualitative research. We brought on a whole bunch of college kids, gave them the website. Looked at how they interacted with the page and it was really eye opening. One thing that we’ve noticed is that they have a standard product page that you see on every E-commerce website with the product description.
At that point in time if you remember 1999, there’s social media icons. They were just starting to kind of pick-up. And they just put them back, put them there, the Twitter and the Facebook and then a whole bunch of other social media icons. They also have some featured pricing because they were collecting prices from different bookstores.
So the first thing that popped at us, college students really did not care about the product description you know? They knew the ISBN for the number, for the books that they want to buy and they came looking for that book. They could not care less with the book description. So we told them, you know let’s get rid of that description.
And you should’ve seen the face of the CEO when he said “what?” You know everybody has a description. We’re like well people are not reading the description you know?
Khalid: So back and forth and we’re like were going to just test it out and you know those social media icons there? No one’s clicking on them. They’re really not very useful, and the way you’re displaying prices also is not very useful you know?
And it’s funny because they had that design for about 5 years prior to us coming in and convincing them persuading them to change it. So we launched a couple of these challengers, a couple of these designs against the original. Lo and behold, both designs actually beat the original. The winning variation had like I said a 15% AOV, 15% increase in AOV, 18% increase in conversion rates.
Tim: Wow, and so what was it? In the winning test, what got such a great result?
Khalid: I think the minute you remove the product description, we minimized it. We also allowed people if they want to see that product description they click on it but most people were not even clicking on it. Removing those social share icons, kind of, it was crowding the space and it was competing for the visitor attention and instead trying to say you know what? Here’s what’s most important for the visitors. They want to see the price. They want to be able to say okay, this is the right price, this is the right book for me. And allowing them to click right away and add that into their baskets. That’s what really did it for visitors.
Tim: Interesting and I think you’ve mentioned that you changed some of the phrasing around, adding it. You know, it was like add to cart and you changed it to was it basket or bag or something you changed?
Khalid: We changed it to your shopping bag actually.
Khalid: For some reason also that’s copy. And sometimes people don’t pay close attention to the copy and the words that they use. And we see quite a bit with many, many websites. But you know just trying to see okay, what are the words that most of your visitors are using. So we used that terminology. Regardless of what you might think, regardless of what your suppliers might think, use the terminology that your visitors would identify with and will work better for those visitors.
Tim: Yeah it’s all about them. It’s not about you or your ideas and no matter what or how many times we tested, almost every time we find that all the things that we thought were going to be true about what our market wanted were almost never true. You only find through data and interaction.
Khalid: I always tell people you are not your customers, regardless of what you might think. Your customers are a lot different than probably and that’s what the numbers are telling us. When most websites are converting on 2 or 3% you know most of your visitors are really not liking your website, with all due respect. So you need to get into their mind. Understand what they’re looking for. Give them what they’re looking for and gently persuade them to convert.
Tim: Absolutely and I just want to address one thing, I think it would be valuable to hear you talk about this. Is that I bet some people are thinking well you know on my store I’ve got product descriptions and maybe I should just get rid of them. But you’re not necessarily saying that removing the product description is the thing that’s gonna get everybody a result. But in this case it made sense. How does somebody decide what things they should, you know, maybe try removing? Whether you it’s product descriptions or on the sale. You know how do they figure out what’s going to work for them?
Khalid: So if you have like you know a hundred dollars extra? The best thing to do is to invite few of your typical visitors. You know offer them free lunch and watch them interact with your website. That will be the best hundred dollars you probably spend in your E-commerce venture because that will just reveal a lot.
The other option is just look at the heat map. If you install any heat map software, that will tell you where are the people looking, how far are they going. And if there are elements of the page that visitors aren’t clicking on, then those elements are candidates to be removed.
Now don’t remove them right away. You want to test. You want to really. You don’t just randomly remove things because you know you think that it may or may not work for your visitors but rather you test. You run A/B test, you know the original design versus a design where you remove some of the elements, what worked, what increased our conversion rates, what increased our average order value.
Tim: I love this. This is such a great case study and it shows a lot of what we talk about all the time on the show. So thanks for sharing this. Where can somebody find about more of your agency if you want to?
Khalid: They can visit Invesp, I-N-V-E-S-P, P as in Paul, invesp.com. They can follow our blog. We have about 25,000 subscribers to the blog. We’re also launching our fig pii software, figpii.com. That’s going to be a full all in one conversion optimization platform going to beta in the next couple of weeks. So grab yourself a free account.
Tim: Very cool. Thanks so much for coming on the show. I appreciate it.
Khalid: Awesome. Thank you for having me.