Wondering how to optimize your WordPress Directory for Conversions? If your site is failing to convert new listings, here are some tips to consider.
Have you built a WordPress directory website recently? Maybe you are planning to build one soon? Either way, building the site is only half the battle. It won't mean much if you aren't converting customers on your site.
Depending on the type of directory you are working on, a conversion might mean a new user or a new listing submission (or both). If you are running a WordPress site, we're going to run through a few tips to send your conversions through the roof. And actually, even those without a WordPress website will benefit from these tips too.
Let's get to it!
1. Make your directory site faster
Let's make one thing clear. If your site is too slow, you won't even reach the conversion stage! If you want to speed up WordPress, there are a number of things you can do:
- Reduce HTTP requests
- Use a caching plugin
- Avoid having too many plugins
- Make sure your site is updated
- …and much more!
You may think your site is fast enough, but most visitors won't wait more than a few seconds before they leave. You can always test your site with a free web tool like Pingdom to see what issues are affecting load time.
Besides, search engines love sites with an emphasis on fast page loading. So a faster site could be great for SEO too. And of course, there are other considerations when it comes to speed. A clean WordPress installation & a speedy WordPress theme can also help a lot.
2. Optimize your directory listings submission form
The most important consideration on a directory listings site? The listing submission form. Naturally, listings are the most important content for a directory site. So the form you use to collect them needs to work efficiently.
When designing a form with lead generation in mind, there are a few things to think about:
- User experience
- Ease of use
If the user finds the form useful and easy to use, then you'll get more conversions. To illustrate this, let's consider what not to do first. Have you ever been to a site and been asked to fill out an endlessly long form? How did you feel?
If given a choice, most people will abandon excessively long forms. And the nature of the internet today? There are a lot of choices for your would-be listing submitters.
Since we maintain one of the most used directory plugins for WordPress (the aptly-named Business Directory Plugin), we know a thing or two about building a listings submission form. In fact, as of December 2020, we've revamped listings submission form with conversions in mind.
Here's what it looks like:
You may notice a couple of things. First of all, this is a multi-page form. Why is a multi-page form important? For starters, a listings form is very different than a contact form. You'll be collecting a lot of info, and potentially a payment.
For that reason, we want things to be as concise as possible. One way of achieving that is through a multi-page form. By diving things up into smaller chunks, you can expect a huge increase in conversions.
3. Reduce bounce rates
Here's a stat that can tell you your site isn't optimized: bounce rate. Depending on the kind of content you use to get traffic, your bounce rate could vary quite a bit. But if it's very high (above 70% on average across all your pages), you may have some work to do.
So how do you reduce bounce rates? One way is to make sure your content is doing what your audience wants. For example, you could have high-ranking SEO optimized content that pulls in traffic but fails to deliver on the needs of the audience.
Truth be told, this happens much less than it used to. Google and other search engines are getting better at moving sites with poor bounce rates down in the rankings. But this isn't always the case.
Another way to reduce bounce rates and improve conversions? Use Google Ads to make sure your target audience is visiting. It may cost you more money than relying purely on SEO, but targeted traffic will reduce bounce rate and may help SEO. The increased traffic from all sources could boost conversions too.
Finally, if you want to reduce the bounce rate on your site, make your website more engaging. Ultimately, you want to keep people on your site so you have a better chance of converting them. We'll talk about two big ways to expand on this concept in the next sections.
By the way, if you aren't tracking your site analytics from your WordPress dashboard, you should be! A WordPress plugin like MonsterInsights can give you real-time analytics on your site with a slick visual display. If you can insert a small code snippet into your site, you can use this plugin no problem.
4. Create conversion-focused landing pages
Part of converting more users depends on the total number of pages on your site. More pages, more engagement, more links, more options. But you should still be creating a few pages on your site that are designed to convert new listing submissions as the main goal.
Typically your home page will be a type of conversion-focused landing page. But it shouldn't be your only one. For example, you may have 2 different tiers of listing on your directory site. A free listing and a paid listing. But should the marketing and conversion process be the same for each target group? Probably not.
Your overall strategy may be to convert users into a free listing and then to convert free listings into paid listings. So then, you may have a few different target groups:
- Free first-time listers
- Paid first-time listers
- Free listers you can upsell
- Paid listers you can turn into affiliates
Based on these groups, you may want to create different forms and/or different landing pages to increase conversions. Give it a try! And if you are looking for a great landing page plugin, check out SeedProd for WordPress.
5. Use calls to action (CTA's)
How do you get users on a landing page? You could use social media to drive traffic. Or Google ads as we mentioned earlier. Another way is to use calls to action throughout your content. A CTA is a prominent link that directs traffic to your conversion-oriented landing pages.
A strong CTA is itself usually a button or some kind of image that users click on. Usually, it is accompanied by some strong text as well. The text and the button work together to entice people to click. These elements also work to prepare the user for what's coming on the next page.
So if you want to optimize your pages for conversions, it makes sense to use CTA's. Not only will they drive traffic, but they will put people into the right frame of mind – making them easier to convert.
If you've been wanting to learn how to boost conversions on your WordPress directory site, kudos! You made it here, and hopefully, you've learned a thing or two about converting users into customers. Thanks for stopping by.
If you haven't started your directory listings site yet, why not check out our directory solution? 30,000+ users already did!