Susan Delz – Ion Interactive
Lulu Gephart – REI
Moderator: Scott Orth

Summary: Once you get the visitor to the site, are they doing what you want? Are they filling out your quote forms, adding themselves to your newsletter, or completing that purchase in your shopping cart? This session will look at some tracking options and tools for professional search marketers, as well as educate businesses on the critical concepts.
Susan: The power of post-click marketing
3 distinct efforts/stages of marketing:
  1. Pre-click
  2. Post-click
  3. Post-conversion
You only get 1 chance at each stage.  Post-click is important, but all the attention tends to go to pre-click marketing.
Industry average conversion rates: ~3%
~100% improvement is very reasonable
“Fastest way to improve ROI is post-click optimization.”
15 post-click marketing principles:
  1. Is it user-centered?  Think about people, not data.
  2. Is it fluid?  Continuity from click through conversion.
  3. Is it relevant?  Where visitors land is always contextually relevant.  Bridge visitors to conversion without conceptual leaps.
  4. Is it conversion focused?  Think about the desired outcome — both initial conversion, and long-term outcome.
  5. Is it segmented?  Post click NOT pre-click.  Segmented audience 4x more valuable than non-segmented.  Use the page to get valuable info, don’t make them enter it in a form.
  6. Is it targeted?  Take advantage of the opportunity to provide a highly targeted experience.
  7. Is it measured?  Real-time reporting is critical.
  8. Is it tested & optimized?  Continual, methodical testing.  A/B strategic, multi-variate more tactical.  Which test won?
  9. Is it analyzed?
  10. Is it transparent?  Sharing results across organization.  Secure budget, reinforce approaches.
  11. Is it integrated?  Pre-click flows into post-click.
  12. Is it agile?  Run your post-click without friction & hurdles…must be responsive & MARKETER-managed.
  13. Is it bold?  Think big, have confidence in the program…step outside of the box.
  14. Is it branded.  Capitalize on every visitor experience to provide a fantastic brand experience.
  15. Is it prioritized?  Never “set it & forget it”.  Incorporate into every facet of planning, take a holistic approach.
The payoff:
  • Higher conv. rate
  • Better conv. quality
  • More online marketing ROI
  • Lower cost/acquisition
  • Efficient online marketing
Think big!  Better media visibility & optimized spend
Tragedy of Soft Ice Cream — all the rage in Japan
REI mission: Inspire, educate & outfit for a lifetime of outdoor adventure & stewardship.
Very seasonal business (not volume, but products)
Offline + online focus
Common challenges to successful optimization:
  • Resource intensive
  • Never free – gotta spend on PPC
  • Risk of customer fatigue
  • Potential for inconclusiveness
2 types of conversion: landing pages>content pages>cart/form pages
  1. Soft: connecting with customers, Widening the funnel at landing page level:
  2. Hard: solving website issues, Widening the funnel at cart/form level
Auto dealer: soft conversion (test drive, conversation) v. hard (closing the deal)
Truth about multivariate testing – shortcomings of statistical significance
Solutions for soft conversion – Understanding your customer is the poor (& smart) man’s conversion optimization
  • Qualified traffic
  • Timing
  • Customer type
  • Customer needs
  • Creating “stickiness”
Traffic mix tells you a lot about users
Pre-click messaging & decisions
Seasonality & competition
Customer type (personas, segementation)
$500 GPS-equipped ski goggles!? – how to speak to super-techies v. $100 stylish goggles – how to speak to style-conscious users
How to identify specific personas?
Industry average: 8-13 visits before conversions – What can you give users when they’re not ready to buy to create stickiness?
  • REI Gearmail email
  • Store Locator
  • “digital schwag”
Developing methodology & rules for engagement:
  • Understand your agility & timing: plan > design > implement > learn > iterate
  • Setting expectations: what are the traffic & conversions you need to draw conclusions? what is the conversion you’re trying to produce?
  • Priorities: Focus on pages with biggest bang for the buck.
  • Iterate: Focus on bounce rate & getting people deeper into site — break conversion optimization into steps
  • Reporting template: Test doc should include process, hypotheses, required resources, thresholds for conclusiveness
  • mid-text check-in, recap, recommendations for iterations.
  • Trust your gut: Engage salespeople, qualitative feedback from customers, store visits, usability testing.
Lulu’s dirty secret?  Conv. rates dropped in 2010, but Lulu still has a job…drove people to stores with in-store inventory feature.
Every business should have their own definition of conversion.
Value of online v. offline customer for REI?  Lulu took the 5th…
Easy ways to do conversion optimization for small organizations?
  • GWO (you are paying for the test through clicks, you do need IT help)
  • Unbounce, Performable – cost-effective
  • Visual Website Optimizer – non-techie
  • LiveBall – enterprise level
  • Strategic A/B will give the highest lift
  • Pare down variables for multi-variate…have to reach confidence before making a change
  • Usability testing can be a substitute for testing if traffic volume is prohibitive
  • Split traffic manually via PPC
  • Seasonality will change results along the way
  • Google Trends best tool for dealing with this
What are the best practices?
Beware best practices, because there’s always an exception — follow principles & things to think about.

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