Today sees the release of Econsultancy’s sixth Conversion Rate Optimization Report, in association with RedEye.

The report looks at the types of conversion strategies and tactics organizations are using, in addition to the tools and processes employed for improving conversion rates. 

It is based on an online survey of over 1,100 client-side and supply-side digital marketers and ecommerce professionals, the highest number of respondents in the survey’s history. 

Here are four findings from the report…. 

Dissatisfaction with conversion rates

The vast majority (89%) of companies see CRO as ‘crucial’ or ‘important’ to their overall digital marketing strategy, and conversion rates have increased for 72% of respondents.

However, none of the companies surveyed indicating they’re ‘very satisfied’ with conversion rates, while less than a quarter (22%) say they are ‘quite satisfied’, a 15% decrease compared to 2013.

Q: How satisfied are you with your conversion rates?

This does not mean that companies are performing badly though, as Dr Karl Banks, Chairman and Co-Founder of Conversion Rate Experts explains:

36% of respondents were ‘quite dissatisfied’ or ‘very dissatisfied’ with their conversion rates. But don’t make the mistake of thinking that these companies are under-performing. In our experience, some of our most successful clients are highly sophisticated but ravenously hungry for more.

Using a range of CRO methods increases conversions

Using a range of methods was a common factor in those that have recorded improvements in conversion rates.

  • Companies that are improving their conversions typically use 35% more methods than their counterparts who are not seeing conversion rates change positively.
  • 95% of companies who used customer journey analysis, copy optimization and segmentation saw an improvement in their website conversion compared to an average of 72%.
  • Further analysis shows that companies with significant increases in sales are completing 6.45 A/B and multivariate tests a month, in comparison to the 2.42 test average among those whose sales are decreasing.
  • While most companies are using A/B testing as part of their optimization strategies, only 30% are using multivariate testing, despite it being among the most valuable methods.

Most effective techniques for improving conversion rates

Respondents were asked for the most effective methods fro improving conversion rates, offering a variety of examples.

A large proportion put forth A/B testing, while others mentioned the impact of website / landing page redesign and customer journey analysis as key catalysts to improved conversion rates.

Q: What has been the single most effective thing you / your clients have done to improve conversion rates?

Where do companies find ideas for testing?

Analytics is the most common source of inspiration, with 67% deriving testing ideas from this data.

This is followed by employee suggestions (58%), user research (57%) and articles / whitepapers / industry blogs (55%).

Q: Where do you get your ideas for testing?

According to Tai Rattigan, Head of Partnerships EMEA at Optimizely:

It’s brilliant to see such an increase in employee suggestions as a source of testing ideas. Successfully growing a culture of data-driven decision making within a company starts with involving stakeholders throughout the business in planning and the work being done on a daily basis.

An excellent example I’ve seen of a company making feedback like this part of their cultural DNA is Schuh. They give their customer service team the ability to mock up test ideas and provide suggestions based upon customer conversations they’ve had, meaning that fresh client feedback is always helping to drive their online strategy.