Shanelle Mullin

Shanelle Mullin

Shanelle Mullin does content and growth at CXL and CXL Institute. She’s a jill-of-all-trades marketer with a background in PPC, SEO, content marketing, analytics and PR.

Smoke Test

Think you’re sitting on the next big idea for a product or a product feature? Before you spend dozens of hours and tens of thousands of dollars on the idea, you need to validate it.

In other words, you need to make sure your audience is just as excited about the idea as you are.

So, how can you validate the ideas sitting in your startup notebook or your product feature backlog without wasting resources? By running a smoke test.

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Affiliate Marketing

Bo Bennett once said, “Affiliate marketing has made businesses millions and ordinary people millionaires.”

Of course, affiliate marketing has this mysterious aura about it. Many of the top search results for the term are focused on what it is and whether you can make money from it.

The truth is that it’s not all that mysterious. It’s nothing more than another marketing channel for you to experiment with, analyze, optimize and grow.

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How to Argue

Here’s a common phrase that perhaps you’re familiar with: “Don’t raise your voice, improve your argument.”

As an optimizer, you’re in the business of arguing. You’re constantly arguing with your visitors about whether they should leave their email or not, buy something or not.

Improving your argument, even just a little bit, can have a huge impact on your conversion rate. That’s where rhetoric and persuasion come in.

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Web Accessibility

What if you found out you are, at best, only optimizing your site for 81% of the people who might possibly visit it?

Whether you’ve spent years perfecting your site’s usability or are just getting started, you’d want to know about that other 19%, right? That 19% represents millions and millions of people with disabilities who can’t access or engage with sites in the traditional way.

That’s where web accessibility comes in, opening you up to conversion opportunities you didn’t even know you were missing out on.

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Product Filters

Discoverability and findability are two important terms that optimizers should be familiar with.

Discoverability is when you find the perfect book, even though you were not necessarily looking for it. Findability is when you find the exact book you were looking for, even if all you knew about it was the author’s last name.

eCommerce product filtering, when done right, can solve both issues.

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How to Create a Conversion-Focused Tone of Voice

You’re likely familiar with the finding that over half of communication is non-verbal.

So perhaps you won’t be surprised to learn that your copy is “saying” a lot more than you think it is. That’s because tone of voice is at play, influencing how visitors read your copy and relate to your company.

Fortunately, tone of voice can be deliberately created, managed and optimized.

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Memory

Every company wants their visitors (i.e. potential customers) and customers to leave their site with a lasting positive memory. Of course, that’s much easier said than done when you consider technical issues, copy confusion, price barriers and the like.

If you want to bring a smile to people’s faces when they hear your company name, you’ll need to understand how memory works and how you can design for it.

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Tabbed Navigation

One of my favorite UX quotes comes from Chikezie Ejiasi, UX lead at Nest.

He wrote: “Life is conversational. Web design should be the same way. On the web, you’re talking to someone you’ve probably never met – so it’s important to be clear and precise. Thus, well structured navigation and content organization goes hand in hand with having a good conversation.”

Can tabbed navigation be clear and precise? Of course it can, which makes it a valid form of navigation and content organization. What matters, as with most things related to UX, is how you implement it and how you optimize it.

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