User Experience
& Conversion Rate Optimization

What Is the User Experience?

Every day, the average person is surrounded by the voices of countless brands, each with their own products to sell, services to provide, and messages to convey. As an entrepreneur, one of your top priorities is to distinguish yourself within this crowded arena of commerce, especially online. Creating a better user experience for people who visit your website is a central part of this, and CAYK can help you make it happen. But first, what exactly does this mean?

Really Though, What Is It?

“User experience” (often abbreviated to UX) is a term used to describe, assess, and optimize the experience that an individual has of something that has been designed for them. Broadly speaking, this may be an application, a website, a product or service, or even an event. In this case, by sparing you endless scrolling through unnecessary lead-in paragraphs and simply offering you a plain English definition of this concept, we’ve optimized your experience of this page as a source of information. You’re welcome!

When popularized in the early-mid ‘90s by Apple User Experience Architect Don Norman, the concept of UX typically encompassed the relationship between a user and a computer. With the evolution of the internet, web and software design, mobile technology, and digital marketing, it’s come to refer to a far broader range of interactions. Today it’s a highly practical concept for business owners like you to better understand and improve the way people engage with almost everything you offer them, but your website is by far one of the most important.

Why Should It Matter to You?

Every good entrepreneur is constantly on the lookout for sophisticated & effective ways to keep their audiences and customers engaged, happy, and loyal. In our Web-driven world, a site that prioritizes strong UX design is essential to this. Your website determines the presentation and appeal of your products and services, the way you communicate yourself as a brand, the principles that guide your business, and so much more. As a result, how you approach UX design can mean the difference between growth and stagnation for your business.

Consider, for instance, that video content can convince 73% of users to buy your products or services, that 94% of visitors stop trusting a site that has outdated web design, or that 47% of people expect a web page to load in two seconds or less. The vast majority of customers will go to a competitor due to a poor customer experience, and the expectations of your website are core to this dynamic. A company that takes the UX of its site seriously will benefit from much higher conversion rates, better customer satisfaction and retention, and a more polished image.

Design & Functionality

So what exactly separates a poor user experience from an excellent one? Let’s take design & functionality as primary examples. Your approach to UX is headed in the right direction when your site combines attractive, up-to-date design with maximum usability and readability. Distinctive yet tactful use of colour, geometry, images, and text formatting are major elements of this, but so is the way your site is navigated. First impressions of a website are design-related by a significant majority, with simplicity and ease of navigation being key ingredients.

Those who understand UX also know that website design and functionality must be understood at the level of user and consumer psychology. How do you regulate a user’s attention and guide it in precisely the direction you want? What role does the degree of simplicity or complexity of information play in sustaining user engagement? What subconscious expectations does the average user have about how a site should look and feel? These are all questions that any business owner should be asking about the experience they’re providing for their web visitors.

Great Content,
Great Experience

In addition to the influence that design and functionality have on the overall experience offered by your site, it’s crucial to consider how you create and utilize content. UX has played an increasingly important role in content marketing over the years, and it’s a testament to how dynamic this concept can be. A user’s experience is not only about how aesthetically pleasing your site is or how intuitively they can use and understand it on a functional level. It’s also about how engaging and useful the information on it is, and how that information made them feel.

A strong content strategy not only lends value and usefulness to your site as a resourceit adds the kind of flair and variety that a positive user experience requires. A well-written and consistently updated blog, engaging video content, eye-catching infographics, and downloadable content like case studies & white papers are just a few of a vast spectrum of possibilities. Truly understanding UX means appreciating just how much your business website depends on great content. Without it, even the fanciest site can fall flat as an experience.

UX & Mobile Technology

It’s impossible to overstate just how influential mobile technology has been in shaping the way we use the web and engage with businesses. It has radically streamlined our ability to discover, research, and select between the brands that compete for our attention. Unsurprisingly, then, the close bond between mobile-centric design and UX is one that shouldn’t be ignored. The quality of the experience that your site offers — and in effect, how well it converts and retains customers — depends hugely on the degree of attention you devote to mobile-optimization.

Mobile users, which comprise roughly half of internet traffic today, are 5 times more likely to abandon a task when using a site that isn’t mobile-friendly. A poor mobile experience will make 52% of users less likely to engage with a business overall. If your site doesn’t load in 3 seconds or under, 53% of users will leave. The reason for all of this is quite plain — expectations for a mobile-based experience are high when it comes to immediacy, clarity, and convenience. A UX strategy that doesn’t properly account for mobile is therefore hardly a UX strategy at all.

The Human
Element of UX

User experience can be quite technical in nature, but it also requires a deep and intuitive understanding of how the human mind operates. Even with a well-designed, mobile-friendly site that’s loaded with distinctive and engaging content, the ideal user experience isn’t quite there. UX encompasses not just a set of perceptions, but a relationship, and that relationship won’t take shape properly if visitors feel that they’re interacting with a mechanical or impersonal entity.

Your site and its users should therefore be interacting with one another in a reciprocal, fulfilling way. Customer surveys and feedback, live chat, and targeted landing pages are all examples of how this sense of reciprocity can manifest. Want someone to sign up to your email list? Give them a valuable resource in exchange for a completed subscription form. Want to spark confidence in your products or services? Use your site to offer free trials or consultations.

In this sense, the user experience should be thought of as a core component of the overall customer experience. Your website is the place where the two principles intersect and blend together. It should exemplify the strongest attributes of your business while serving as an indication of what it’s like to interact with your team. Trust and esteem must be earned, and we can help you do it by creating a user experience that is as human as it is professional.

Build an Awesome Experience with CAYK!

With all of these ingredients in mind, does your website offer a fulfilling user experience? Is it converting and retaining to its utmost potential? Working with businesses across Calgary, we design not only great sites, but outstanding experiences. From mobile-friendly design to content strategy, in-depth testing, and user psychology, our knowledge of the many facets of UX will serve as one of your greatest assets. Contact us now to give your visitors nothing but the best!

Why Does Your
Website Matter When
It Comes to Sales?

Much of what we do here at CAYK is centered around our client’s websites. We could tell you all about how stylish our sites are, but at the end of the day, you operate a business. You want to know what your site means for your bottom line. It’s obvious that this is where you showcase your products or services, but its effect on your sales is more complex than that. This is precisely why a sales-driven approach is essential to how we design and develop custom sites.

What Does Your Site Say
About You?

Within a fraction of a second, the average visitor can establish an opinion on your site and decide whether or not to stay. That fraction of a second can make or break a sale. Opinions may be based on the aesthetics of the design, its load speed, its clarity and usability, its mobile-friendliness, and many other factors. Are these really more important than the quality of your products or services? Not necessarily, but no matter how good you are at what you do, we live in an age where your website is as much a salesperson as any
actual person on your team.

Product videos, for instance, can increase purchases by 114%. Even before making any kind of purchase at all, up to 80% of your potential customers will research your company to see if it’s the right choice, and 48% of them will consider your site’s design to be the single most important indicator of your credibility. Boosting sales isn’t just about what products or services you display, it’s about how you present them and what it says about your company. This includes your site!

How Design
Affects Customer
Decisions

When a lead forms an opinion of your business through your site, what are they looking for in terms of design? Simply put, a usable, readable, fast-loading, mobile-friendly site with an up-to-date look and all of the information they need. This may not be a checklist they have taped beside their computer, but these are the factors that shape today’s standards. The quality of the overall user experience is more important than ever in getting your conversions and sales where you want them to be.

The research makes all of this as clear as day. If your content or layout are unattractive, you can lose almost 40% of your visitors as customers. 69% of smartphone users (who will comprise an enormous portion of your traffic) are more likely to buy from companies whose mobile sites efficiently answer their questions. Sluggish load times alone can result in billions of lost retail sales globally per year.

Not all sales-influencing design traits are particularly conscious or obvious. A visitor probably won’t be thinking, “If this company’s site doesn’t have red CTA buttons then I’m outta here.” Yet, many businesses have seen significant increases in conversions after switching their CTA buttons to the right colour. When Bing opted for a certain blue in the design of its search pages, it ended up with an added $80 million in annual revenue. The sale is certainly in the details!

Your Website and
Your Marketing Plan

When considering its impact on your sales, it’s also important to understand the role that a strong business website plays in your marketing plan at large. SEO, PPC advertising, social media, content strategy, and CRO are all key processes that guide potential customers toward a sale. Your site is fundamental to the success of all of them.

Let’s say that, since you knew it could increase conversions by 86%, you put an excellent video on a landing page that a customer found through a Google ad. Or, since you know that the right content strategy can multiply your conversions by more than 5x, you consistently post engaging articles that keep your visitors engaged and interested in your products or services. Maybe, since you heard that 28% of searches for something “near me” result in a sale, you’ve even devoted ample attention to your local SEO efforts. These are all examples of how your site should work in concert with other aspects of your marketing plan to make sales happen.

Meanwhile, consider the brand image and voice of your business. From the visual style that people associate with your company to the way your content is written, this overall impression is a powerful motivator when it comes to both customer acquisition and retention. You can increase your revenue by up to 23% when your brand representation is consistent across all platforms. Since your site establishes your branding and leads the way for all other components of your online presence, its role in driving these sales shouldn’t be underestimated.

Of course, a business website can also be a versatile marketing tool beneath the surface. Through email list subscriptions, forms, and visitor behaviour analytics, your site is a potential treasure trove of information for your marketing automation efforts. When you nurture your leads properly, you can make 50% more sales at a 33% lower cost than if you don’t. Leveraging a website properly can transform the way you conduct market research, help you target your best leads, and create an experience that turns visits into sales.

Communication,
Confidence,
and Care

A sale requires trust and confidence. 86% of customers will charge more for a good customer experience, and this is defined by a variety of traits that a good business website must secure. It is, after all, one of the primary means by which you communicate with potential and established clients, not to mention the jumping off point for countless customer support interactions. The visibility and accuracy of the contact information on your site is a key example. 50% of your visitors will be discouraged from choosing you if that information is outdated.

Meanwhile, there’s also a pretty good chance that sensitive information is going to flow through your site, whether it’s a lead’s full name and phone number or a customer’s credit card details. If your visitors feel the site is not secure, 84% of them will not make a purchase. This highlights the importance of SSL certification, trust symbols indicating safe payment processing and information security (such as from PayPal and McAfee), and an easy-to-find privacy policy.

You’ll also earn a considerable amount of trust with your site when you display testimonials, awards, and accreditation from organizations like the Better Business Bureau. These and other contributors to customer confidence should be just as important to you as the sales numbers themselves. Following these principles not only drives revenue and loyalty, it makes for greater entrepreneurial integrity and a happier community overall.

A Better Site and Better Sales with CAYK

No matter what kind of business you operate, whether it’s an e-commerce enterprise with purchases taking place entirely online or a small business with a website as its digital hub, that site is deeply intertwined with your sales. As such, it must be built with a precise, sales-driven approach that will help you meet and even exceed your goals for growth and profitability. This is our promise to you when you work with the CAYK team. Contact us to get started!

A/B Split Tests

In running any kind of business, one of your primary goals is to minimize uncertainty as much as possible. The better you understand how successful a given decision will be, the more confidently you can make it. This is just as true about a business website as it is about managerial or strategic decisions made within your company. At CAYK, our A/B split testing methods can guide even the most subtle details of your site in the right direction every time.

What is Split Testing Anyway?

Designing and developing a business website involves a serious amount of decision-making on multiple scales, much of it directly affecting how successfully you land conversions. Even seemingly minute details, such as CTA button designs and simple word choices, can make or break conversion rates. So why open just one door and stick with it when another could potentially outperform it and give you better results? This is the beauty of A/B split testing. It can show you the way towards better customer acquisition and retention.

Anytime you need to determine the course of action that will most empower your website to convert, a split test can be carried out. During this process, the CAYK team will implement more than one option simultaneously and traffic will be directed to them through randomization. In a basic A/B test, the existing version is referred to as the control while the one you’re comparing it to is called the variant. A hypothesis is typically established to determine a variation that is worth testing and predict how it will improve results. Through skillful monitoring and analytics, we’ll settle on the version that performs best and is positioned to get you the most business.

How Can It Be Used?

Split testing is as versatile as it is practical. Want to find out what kind of landing page gives you the best chances of a booked appointment? Design multiple versions and run a split test. Not sure which navigation menu style will give mobile visitors the best experience? Split test. Need to fine-tune your checkout system to minimize the chances of an abandoned cart? Boom. Split test. Ultimately, these and many other applications of split testing revolve around conversion rate optimization, so it will be a core part of how our team implements your CRO strategy.

It’s important to keep in mind that split testing need not be limited to your website itself. It can also maximize impressions and engagement for your social media strategy, helping you narrow down the optimal date and time for posting and demystify other variables. It’s also excellent for gaining insight into how users respond to different word choices in ad copy for your PPC campaigns. Don’t forget that the timing, content, and calls to action you use in your email campaigns will need to be optimized, so they’re great candidates for split testing as well.

Get a Closer Look

When we carry out split testing to strengthen your website, we’re not simply looking to find out whether something does or doesn’t work. We want to know why, and this means learning as much as you can about the behaviour of your visitors. It’s a crucial form of insight that the CAYK team can provide you with through effective A/B tests and the analytics that accompany them.

For instance, you may very well be getting plenty of traffic to a landing page thanks to a great social media post or ad campaign, but traffic does not guarantee a conversion. This is why bounce rate is one key metric that split testing will take into consideration, as it indicates how much of the traffic to a page is made up of visitors who simply navigate away from it rather than converting. A/B split testing with CAYK means zeroing in on the version of your landing page that will get you the lowest bounce rate possible.

Successful split testing should also reveal the precise ways in which visitors interact with the pages you depend on for conversions. This is often done through the use of heat maps, which offer detailed visual representations of click and scroll behaviour on the page you’re monitoring. giving you a closer look at precisely how visitors engage with what they’re given. When integrated into an A/B testing procedure, tools like these can be powerful assets in achieving the high conversion rates you need.

Does It Actually Work?

The short answer: Absolutely. But you don’t have to just take our word for it. There are plenty of real-world split tests to look towards as examples of what this process can reveal. In 2007, search specialist AJ Kohn ran an A/B split test between two nearly identical sets of ads in a Google Ads campaign. It revealed that ads using capitalization in their website name (www.WebsiteName.com) earned a 53% higher click through rate than those using lowercase.

At the wellness and fitness product site Fab.com (which at the time was a community marketplace site for home goods), senior product manager Shane Lapsys ran an A/B split test wherein one version of their add-to-cart CTA buttons used a cart symbol while the other used text, such as “Add to Cart” or “+Cart”. He found that shoppers w