What are Your Visitors Thinking When They Should be Clicking?

By | Google+ , August 30th, 2010 in Conversion | 13 comments

What if you could read the minds of your visitors? Why they didn’t convert, what confused them in your campaign message?

Finding a Reason to Change

Landing page optimization is an exercise undertaken based on a desire to make your pages convert better. The changes you make are typically based on either a new idea, or the result of an expert critique. Rarely is it in direct response to customer input.

Seems like a great opportunity is being missed here…

Using Feedback for Landing Page Optimization

The simplest way to find out why your page isn’t converting is to just come right out and ask.

There are a couple of cool products out there that let you do this, either via a survey or live chat.

  • KISSinsights: This is a survey tool that pops up after a customizable period of time and asks your visitor a question (or multiple questions) about the page. This is great for reporting purposes as you have a finite set of questions, allowing you to gauge changes in sentiment over time (assuming you add positive and negative answers to your question).
  • SnapABug: This is a live chat tool with several interaction modes. It can popup with a question after a pre-determined time, to prompt the visitor into having a discussion. Or it can be user activated via a “help” label at the tide of the page. Great for SaaS pricing pages or a landing page that involves a purchasing decision, as you can be there to answer questions in real-time and help nudge people towards a sale. Has the ability to send a screenshot of the page to you, which is awesome for debugging issues (such as cross-browser CSS bugs).
  • Olark: This is another live chat tool with a great client list. Like SnapAbug, it lets you chat in real time using most common instant messaging apps including Google Talk. They have a great feature called ChatLinks that gives you the functionality without having to embed any code on your site.

The Effect on User Experience

Both interaction methods (survey and live chat) could be considered interruption devices, and as such they may infuriate some people. The question is, what is the impact on your brand and user experience worth? From using these tools on Unbounce.com, we’ve noticed a few things:

  • Some people hate it: I’ve seen the occasional rant about “those annoying widgets”. How seriously should you take this type of negative feedback? Very, if you are seeing a lot of it. So far my experience is showing only occasional negative reaction.
  • Some people love the personal touch: When people have a genuine problem, the instant connection to a real person (with live chat) can leave a very positive impression with the visitor. Especially when you get to talk to the CEO (being a startup, we all rotate interacting with the feedback tools).
  • Lots of people asked us what the tool was: I’ve had a ton of people say they love the interaction and want to know what software it is. Great word of mouth marketing.
  • It can be really entertaining: With survey tools like KISSinsights the feedback is anonymous, resulting in some hilarious responses. Reading a blistering rant or drunken review can be great for some light relief and always gets a laugh around the office. You’ll be surprised at how candid people are when they have that shield of anonymity. A couple of choice outtakes for you:

    In response to the question: “Do you understand our pricing?”

    The cow talked to me once but I didn’t understand what he said.

    soooo confusing dudes! you need some monkeys in there! Pick a plan – screw that – pick a banana!!!

Get In – Get Feedback – Get Out

To maximize the effectiveness of your feedback loop, don’t leave it active indefinitely. Turn it on for a test group (for example: only hit up 10% of your email list), ask some questions to gather feedback, update the page to address any major issues, then take the feedback widget down again. This way 90% of your potential visitors will benefit from an improved conversion experience, and you’ll enjoy a more successful campaign as a result.

Adding feedback mechanisms to a landing page

Adding this type of tool to a website is typical, but it’s a fairly new concept to add them to a promotion-specific standalone landing page. I’m excited to see what the results turn out to be, and I’m pretty optimistic that it will prove to be a valuable conversion aid. As such, I just whipped up a video to show how you can add a KISSinsights widget to an @Unbounce landing page. Check it out, and watch out for the cop car coming to get me near the end of the video :)

What do you think?

What are you thoughts on these feedback mechanisms? Is it an acceptable level of interruption? Is it a genius way to feed input into your optimization efforts? Let me know in the comments…

Oli Gardner

About The Author

Photo of Oli Gardner

Co-Founder of Unbounce. Oli has seen more landing pages than anyone on the planet. He is an opinionated writer and international speaker on Conversion Centered Design. You should follow Oli on Twitter
» More blog posts by

Comments

  1. Eric Reiss says:

    Although Unbounce is an interesting and useful tool, most landing pages fail for one simple reason: they do not directly respond to the message in the ad or brochure that sent them there in the first place. Hence, visitors are plunked down somewhere unfamiliar and have no idea where to go (from a home page, for example). For example, search for “ROI calculation tool” and Google’s sponsored link will send you to a curiously unhelpful page. No conversion possibility in sight.rnrnYour tool assumes that site owners understand how advertising works. Alas, most don’t.

  2. Oli Gardner says:

    Thanks for jumping in the conversation Eric.nnIt can be a tough scenario for sure. However, a decent proportion of our customers are internet marketers with a decent sense of how message match and information scent can be leveraged to improve the performance of the landing page.nnFor those that know – it’s no problem.nIt’s an ongoing educational process to help educate those less familiar through materials in the blog and by evolving our UI and interaction models to make it intuitive enough that people can get it more quickly. nnWe’ll also be building out our template set to cover industry verticals and other use cases to further simplify the process.

  3. Oli Gardner says:

    I’d be curious what you think of the central point of this post – about the effectiveness (postulated or experienced) of the feedback mechanisms discussed. nnHow much value do you think you could get out of someone via this type of interaction?

  4. Michael B says:

    I have to say that I have seen a lot of landing pages that ignores usability and converted horribly, even with message match with the ad.nnI think this tool as aimed more at those marketers that are already aware of their conversions and trying to build a legit conversion audit for a site.nnPlus, can we ever have too much info on our users?

  5. MichielGaas says:

    Nice post. I really like unbounce as a tool. As for message & match: bad marketing = bad landingpage. I’m looking forward to see the results of the page we are about to publish. What I really like about unbouce is the IT-free thing. Great for a marketer like me. I could do with some enhanced features though. Will write up a wish list and send that to you guys for review. Ciao.

  6. Oli Gardner says:

    Thanks Michiel.
    Look forward to seeing the wish list.

  7. […] post What are Your Visitors Thinking When They Should be Clicking? – The Unbounce […]

  8. I use KISS Insights to ask prospects specific answers in order to uncover their motivations and needs. I always keep it real simple e.g.:

    What’s most important to you?:
    – To save money
    – To get a high quality produkt

    On my blog I use it to get data on how people react to different messages, e.g. a CTA with or without the word “buy” in it. Or A headling starting with out without “How to”.

    – Michael

  9. […] For more detail on this concept, read “What are Your Visitors Thinking When They Should be Clicking?“. […]

  10. Henrik says:

    Great post you have made, and i just find – and i will try to use these ideas now

    thank’s

  11. It sure is important to take surveys.. What’s more important (and harder) is analysing the answers and make the changes for better…

  12. […] Use your brand loyalists and ask them for feedback on your site. You may want to consider offering them a little something for their […]

x
Get actionable optimization tips delivered straight to your inbox.

You'll learn:

  • What it takes to build successful marketing campaigns
  • Why your landing page design and copy might be working against you
  • How to increase conversions while delighting leads and customers