The One True Long-Term Fix For Your Digital Marketing

30 June 2021

Digital marketing expert Phil Byrne cuts through the noise to bring you some tried and tested methods of ensuring your website converts well. 

In the world of digital marketing, advertisers often find ourselves searching endlessly for this perfect audience believing it must be out there somewhere …  After all, the many advertising opportunities received each week all promise that they are the secret to your digital growth. In the world of higher education, the truth is many institutions have probably reached our perfect audience already. But as it happens everyone else in the sector has reached them too, and all of us at the same key times of the year for student recruitment.  
So, in this very competitive recruitment race, what can you do to ensure your institution wins? The answer is to not bank everything on discovering some mystical traffic source, but far closer to home; it’s about making your website convert better than it already does.  
There is no “good” or “bad” conversion rate. You may have already noticed that conversion varies greatly per course, per college and per location. What matters around your conversion rate is that it improves, and if it does, that all of your marketing channels become more effective as a result.  
So, what’s the best way to improve your conversion rate? Today, many e-commerce sites are taking advantage of enhancements in personalised on-page messaging to deliver a better visitor experience and entice positive actions.  
Some examples of how this personalised messaging might work include: 
1. Bring Email/SMS/Chat Connection Requests Forwards 
Most sites hide their email signup forms, SMS info opportunities and chat options near the bottom of pages. This means users have to scroll to discover them. If you have ever looked at your scroll drop-off, you will discover that for most sites over half of webpage visitors disappear without ever scrolling. We live fast lives these days, and whilst many of these quick fingered visitors might not ever be visitors who become customers/students, some most definitely will. So, test out the positions of your email signups, SMS registration and chat windows. Where do they work best for you? What positions on the page turn into the most positive actions for you?  
2. Target Your Triggers To Specific Visitors, Not Everyone 
Not every new visitor coming to your site is the same, so treat them differently. Why not trigger an email signup specific to the course someone is viewing at a particular moment?  Or why not let someone know about alternatives to what they are viewing, perhaps encouraging applications on less popular courses?  Not all signups need to be the same.   
Equally, someone who returns often to specific pages on your website might welcome a live chat, or an opportunity to speak with someone about this course of interest. By contrast, someone who returns to your site often but visits a number of course pages might instead welcome a chat with someone who can help them focus down their choices. 
You can personalise your messages based on the type of courses people look at, so if a visitor is browsing Masters or Phd pages, why not create an email signup incentive that offers more information on postgraduate opportunities specifically? Or, if someone is visiting your site from overseas, can you offer them further information on international study?  
3. Test, Test & Test Again 
Do you truly know what makes visitors to your site “convert”? If you don’t have statistical data proof of what you would answer here, then you don’t. Every option for enticing enquiries, email/sms or prospectus requests should be tested against each other over time until there is proof of the best performing options. And once that is done, the testing probably needs to start again – tools, technologies and preferences are changing all the time. 
Where To Start  
Chat to your development team about building into your webpages the ability to customise the key action focused parts of your website. The more you can test different offers, calls to actions and incentives against each other, the more likely you are to improve your conversion rate. It will make it easier to consistently improve over time and ensure that your site’s key calls to action are current and relevant to the specific visitors viewing them.  
There are a number of useful apps on the market right now that focus purely on personalising your messaging/calls to action. Take a look at Just Juno, Sleek Note and Poptin
All of these integrate quickly with the most commonly used website platforms and will offer more ideas on how you can bring in a consistent plan of conversion enhancement to your digital marketing.  
CarringtonCrisp work with Phil Byrne, founder of Positive Sparks, to deliver digital marketing and advertising campaigns. 

Subscribe to our newsletter