Shanelle Mullin

Shanelle Mullin

Shanelle Mullin does content & growth at ConversionXL. She writes on optimization and content marketing.

Viral Conversions

Right now there is almost certainly an enterprise exec in a boardroom somewhere saying, “We need it to go viral.” Kittens and memes and babies kissing puppies… viral.

When most people think about going viral, they think about raising a lot of awareness for their product or company. But what about money in the bank, what does going viral mean for your bottom line?

So, the statement becomes: We need to go viral in a way that makes us actual money. Not surprisingly, that usually looks a little different than kittens and memes and babies kissing puppies.

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Ad Wars

With Google processing over 40,000 searches every second and Facebook being a hub for 1.13 billion daily active users, Google AdWords and Facebook ads are obvious choices for PPC campaigns.

But is one better than the other? Are the optimization processes for both similar? What about A/B testing?

These are the questions optimizers need answers to before they can really reap the benefits of two very powerful advertising platforms.

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UX Research and A/B Testing

A/B testing is common practice and it can be a powerful optimization strategy when it’s used properly. We’ve written on it extensively. Plus, the Internet is full of “How We Increased Conversions by 1,000% with 1 Simple Change” style articles.

Unfortunately, there are experimentation flaws associated with A/B testing as well. Understanding those flaws and their implications is key to designing better, smarter A/B test variations.

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Comparison Shopping

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, right?

That’s the mentality of comparison shoppers. If they look hard and long enough, they will find a better value. If they don’t look around, they’ll miss out on greener grasses.

Today, the term “comparison shopper” describes the majority of consumers, especially those online. If you’re running an eCommerce or SaaS company, you absolutely must be optimizing for comparison shoppers.

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User State Models

William A. Foster once said, “Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.”

Yet, we continue to see businesses pushing leads through doors, pushing customers through funnels… just hoping that they’ll create a high quality, engaged audience by accident.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. A high quality, engaged audience is anything but accidental. It requires that optimizers put in the effort to create user state models, dig into cohort analysis and correlative metrics, run experiments for different user states, etc.

It’s not the easy choice, but if you’re looking for long-term revenue growth, it’s the only choice.
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Swearing in Copy

Can you remember the last time your parents scolded you for swearing?

Throughout childhood, we’re conditioned to believe that swearing is inappropriate and crass. You could offend someone, it makes you seem uneducated, it’s unprofessional in the workplace… the list of reasons we’ve been told not to swear goes on and on.

But how bad is swearing, really? Is there a chance that it could be beneficial in business and optimization? As with most things people have told you that you absolutely should not do, there’s a chance you should be testing it.

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Personalization

In his famous novel, 1984, George Orwell wrote, “Big Brother is Watching You.”

When you’re browsing around online, someone is watching you, too. Actually, a lot of someones. Sites collect plenty of data about each and every visitor that passes through. “The more data, the better,” they say.

But you’re already well aware of that because all smart optimizers are watching their visitors (and customers) as closely as possible.

All of that data is now being used for website personalization in an effort to increase conversions. But, by their own admission and according to consumer opinion, it seems that companies are getting personalization all wrong.

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m(Dot) vs. Responsive vs. Adaptive

Every once in a while a big debate comes along in the conversion optimization industry. There was the carousel debate, the hamburger menu debate, the above the fold debate, etc.

Recently, optimizers have been debating a new question: Which mobile design is best for optimizers?

Is it m(Dot) design, responsive design or adaptive design? All three options have their unique pros and cons as far as UX and SEO go, but which is most suitable for someone running experiments and tests on the regular?

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Web Analytics Analysis

For an optimizer, these are words to live by: “Without data, you’re just another person with an opinion.” [Tweet It!]

Optimization isn’t about educated guesses and hunches, no matter how many years you’ve been in the industry. It’s about doing the research, asking the right questions, digging for clues in problem areas, paying attention to the signs when they appear, and running smart A/B tests.

Web analytics analysis is a big part of that. It helps to separate the optimizers from just another person with an opinion.

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