You are building a website to boost your legal practice. You want to talk with the Conversion Rate Optimization ("CRO") Guy First. There are Three Reasons:
- Money: Your CRO Guy makes sure you don't throw good money at a bad design,
- Money: Your CRO Guy makes sure you don't waste money creating unnecessary content,
- Money: Your CRO Guy makes sure that your first iteration, and each subsequent one, increases the rate at which your site visitors become your customers, and
- Time: Your CRO Guy keeps you from wasting time on stuff that doesn't advance your business; so that's really about money as well.
So Who is this CRO Guy?
Your Conversion Rate Optimization (“CRO”) Guy is the marketing specialist most in tune with what you want from your site. He helps you answer two basic questions:
- What do I want from my site visitor?
- How do I make sure that every element of my site is designed to produce that?
Put simply, if you haven't asked, and answered, these two questions before you start designing your site, you could spend a lot of money on things that might make you feel good for a moment, but cost you rather than add value.
It's like when you go to the grocery store. If you just go in with the vague sense you are hungry, you might come out twenty minutes later with a box of donuts. And then an hour later, you remember you need to feed your family too. So you go back to buy a healthy meal for your family, and while you look at the steak in your hand, you look down at your stomach and say, “Wow, I really didn't need those six donuts.” And the rest of the box is still back on your desk. And you know you'll probably eat it in the morning.
A website that isn't designed to get the result you want from your visitor—the call, booking the consultation, signing on to your e-mail list or subscribing to your blog—is like that box of donuts, a waste of money. And you're going to work harder later to fix it, if you don't give up on it entirely.
Your CRO Guy makes sure you get your dinner, and no extra calories.
Your Web Page
If you're not careful, or lucky, this is probably how it will go: You'll hire a designer (anywhere from a few hundred to many thousands of dollars). Maybe he'll be or bring along a branding specialist (great logo (or not as the case may be), consistent look, nice new letterhead and business cards too). They'll tell you “content is king.” You'll bust your behind to produce a ton of great content.
Then they'll tell you you have to get ranked high to be seen. They'll either have a Search Engine Optimization (“SEO”) person on board or do this themselves. They might even have a traffic specialist, a step beyond SEO, this person will be looking at how to bring people to your site, from facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and a bunch of places you have probably never heard of.
You'll have a webpage. With good SEO, you'll have one that shows up high on Google. You'll have traffic, whether paid or organic. And you'll see a bump in your business, and you'll be happy. But maybe you'll also notice—if you even track the data—that you are not getting the business you thought you ought to. For every hundred visitors, maybe only one or two are taking the action you want, and you can bet that ten to twenty times that could use your service.
Conversion Rate Optimization
So maybe you figure “I can do better.” Or you hear a competitor is getting crazy business from his website. Now, let's say you are a malpractice lawyer, the inspiration of this post. You start visiting sites, and you see things yours just doesn't have. One has a call to Experience, Compassion, Results, and you recall the old ditties Like a Good Neighbor, or You're in Good Hands, to borrow from our insurance friends.
Another tells a good story, with video. Another has a pop up chat box (just wait for it). Some try to create scarcity: A Limited number of cases are accepted each year. (This one has been updated since: Look at them now. A whole bunch tell you about the millions they've won, or their ratings and associations (scroll menu at bottom), or how smart they are. And some just plain bore you.
And you start to think about the choices made on these sites, and wonder if you made the right ones on yours, or what you should add to yours. And then you figure there's got to be someone out there who thinks about this more than I do, and I bet he knows how to get the best out of my site. And you've just thought of the CRO specialist.
Why Talk to the CRO Guy First?
For starters, it's to avoid the doubt of the last paragraph, but the truth is it's really just about three things:
Money, Money, Money, and Time
Your CRO Guy makes sure your time and money go where they have the largest effect on your business. Maybe your site only needs a few small tweaks. Sometimes, you can get a big bump just by changing your call to action, or adding a link to schedule a consultation, or making it easier for your potential client to give you his contact information. We CRO People spend our time thinking about how your button text affects your conversion rate (the rate at which site visitors take the action you want them to), We think about listing benefits instead of features, things like “Money, Money, Money, Time” instead of “Look at my license, Look at my School, Look at my Pretty Picture.” We look at how to bump up indicators of credibility.
And maybe your content doesn't speak to your audience. Look through the sites linked above, or any random search for lawyers. Look at the blog posts and articles. Ask yourself how many actually target a client, and put him at ease. We CRO people take a look and wonder if a simple case checklist might not give a client more peace of mind and value than ten articles like Sprue-like Enteropathy Linked to use of the Drug Benicar. And who understands that? Couldn't they have just said. “Do You Think Benicair Gave You Stomache Problems? You May be Right.”
And the way we look at this is by using the evidence, things like heat maps (seeing where a cursor hovers while a visitor is on our site) and split tests, to keep tweaking your site to drive the action you want. And sometimes a site redesign is warranted, and sometimes it's just moving the key information that drives action into the top 500 pixels of the screen.
And if you visit with a CRO specialist first, you'll know your site design or redesign is constantly focused on driving your business. So, reach out and schedule a time and we'll look at your site and draw up a plan that's right for your business.