Have Your Sign-Up Form on the Homepage. K-I-S-S.
I find that this is very uncommonly used by people that own their own websites and it baffles my mind to why you would not want to have your sign-up form on the home page of your site. Please, do not feel like you are begging for business. When you place your sign-up form on the homepage, it is more likely to be used. If your visitor decides that they like the way your site looks and what you have to offer, they are more likely to remember that the sign-up is on the page that they started from instead of having to click seven or eight different places.
My favorite phrase in the whole wide world is K-I-S-S: Keep It Simple, Stupid. The more simple something is and looks, the more likely the task will be completed by a visitor. You will only want your sign-up form to have a few fields. Many people will skip over forms that look like they are going to keep too much information. The easier it is to sign-up or subscribe, the more likely someone will be to use it.
Walk A Mile In Their Shoes: Be Skeptical
When you run an e-commerce website or use internet marketing in general, the most skeptic people are usually the ones that are going to convert. They are the visitors to your website that ask the following questions --
Will I like this product?When you are able to be skeptical about your own website, you should be able to easily answer these questions and questions like these to help ease the minds of buyers. You want to be able to creatively satisfy these concerns in your visitors in the same split second that they might be thinking about these questions.
Do I need this product?
Are they going to spam me if I give them my information?
Is this site secure? Will they treat my information securely?
If I have a problem, will they be willing to help me resolve my issue?
One of the easiest ways to answer these questions should be right in the description of your product. Just a simple note when people subscribe to your mailing list that you will not spam, or a fun and easily read description can solve your problem. If you are selling a product, be as up-front and transparent about your prices as you can. If you are offering discounts, add the discount code at the beginner of user checkout. Include shipping and handling costs in the total cost of the item before the user places in the credit card info. Just some tips and tweaks to make your website more handy.
Use User Reviews and Testing to Your Benefit
The other big thing that people trust is other people. If you have a "Guest Book" section where people can rant and rave how spectacular (or less spectacular) the website is, there is more of a chance that a visitor will stay on your site. These honest and unbiased reviews will also be able to give you direction to how you can make your website better overall.
I do not recommend catering to each and every individual, but if there is a characteristic that is mentioned over and over again, then it is probably worth your attention.
I also recommend to use a user testing website to test the functionality and UI of your site. UserTesting.com and Userlytics.com are among the top websites that I have found that guarantee an increase in conversion when you use their product. To use these testing websites, you create some type of "test" to test the functionality of these websites. The websites will then send it to a specified panel of users (you can choose the demographic and geography of these tests) that will be able to test your website and give their open and honest feedback.
In the end, you will want to do what is best for you. Trial and error is the best way to figure out how to increase your conversion rates, and as always do your own research! Find what works best for people in your niche!
Thanks again for reading!
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