Your actions and preparations during the unsettling times of COVID-19 will set you apart when the globe bounces back. People are generally on edge while staying and working at home for the foreseeable future. Your COVID-19 messaging needs to reflect this. With CRO, you can understand your customers interactions and adapt your website to suit their ever-changing needs.
Research to meet your customers’ expectations
Understanding customer behaviour is more important than ever as we head further into uncharted territory. The changes in online customer behaviour in recent weeks have been unprecedented. Use quantitative and qualitative research methods to discover meaningful insights.
Quantitative analysis should be focused around page flow and conversion funnels. Look to understand how the customer journey has changed over the course of the pandemic so far and how that compares to before. Consider if there are opportunities to improve this new journey to make it as fluid as possible to a conversion.
On the qualitative side, research methods such as on-site surveying will help you understand whether your customers are getting everything they need from their visit. Keep your surveys friendly and concise to maximise actionable verbatim.
Use the data you collect to help you focus on instilling confidence. Offer the right and relevant information and go beyond to help your customers. Be empathetic and prioritise your user experience to build a loyal customer base.
Make faster changes with A/B testing software
At the heart of CRO is A/B testing. Having an A/B testing platform enabled on your website not only allows you to test hypotheses, but also simply serve alternative content to your customers. Without the need to go through development or CMS teams. You are not only speeding up the process of surfacing ongoing COVID-19 updates to your customers, it is likely to be faster and more cost-effective too.
Also, the changes made through an A/B testing platform are not restricted by CMS limitations. For example, adding messaging or Call to Actions (CTAs) outside of the CMS schema is possible -- or even fully redesigning a page and deploying it during a certain timeframe.
On-top of all of this, whilst the COVID-19 pandemic is serious, it is also temporary. You will be able to easily switch off content changes with CRO when the pandemic is over, providing you with a turnkey solution to revert back.
Adapt your wider site and conversion funnels
A number of companies are putting up single pages surrounding how COVID-19 is affecting their business to help reassure their customers. However, many have not taken steps to ensure content across their entire site is in line with today’s new way of life.
It is important to consider whether there are conversion paths that are less or no longer relevant. For example, instead of driving customers in-store, should they be converting online? Instead of booking an in-store appointment, should they book an over-the-phone consultation?
Amending messaging across your site to cater for these changes is essential for a seamless conversion funnel, especially with your CTAs. For example, instead of ‘Find a Store’, should it now read ‘Buy Online’ or ‘Where to Buy’?
When making changes, consider cognitive biases to support your decisions, such as:
Attentional Bias: The attentional bias involves the tendency to pay attention to some things while simultaneously ignoring others. This impacts not only the things that we perceive in the environment but the decisions that we make based upon our perceptions.
If your customer is focused on an in-store purchase and your site does not sufficiently make them aware of an appealing alternative, it’s unlikely that they will convert.
Similarly, if COVID-19 marketing messaging on your site is too distracting, they could also abandon a conversion.
Look for opportunities with personalisation
Through segmentation techniques, you can provide your customers with tailored and relevant experiences. This can range from simple changes such as serving COVID-19 pop-up messaging to new customers but not returning ones, through to creating tailored landing pages dependent on traffic sources.
Make sure your paid and social channels are driving consistent messaging from off-site to the landing page in order to optimise the experience. For example, if customers are coming through display ads with the expectation to see a certain product or campaign, ensure they are not bombarded with COVID-19 messaging in the hero banner. Remember, one size does not fit all for your landing pages.
No one knows how and when this pandemic is going to unfold, only that it will end eventually. Use technology to your advantage now so you can adapt as the situation changes and be ready to support and facilitate your customers’ needs every step of the way.