Archive by Oliver Wheaton

What is CRO and why is it so important in digital marketing?

12Jun

What is CRO? Conversion rate optimisation (CRO) is the process of optimising your website to increase the likelihood that visitors will complete a specific action. The higher your website’s conversion rate, the better. Your website could do brilliantly in all other areas, but if your conversion rate is poor, it will directly impact your bottom line, so it’s essential you make improvements.

There are many different steps you must take to create a website that persuades browsers to perform an action. That action could be enquiring about a service, making a purchase, creating an account, subscribing to a mailing list or getting in touch.

Firstly, the design of the site has to engender the browsers’ trust. It should be easy to navigate and simple to use. It must also attract traffic in some way, whether it’s through the organic search results or a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign. The final step is perhaps the most difficult. All that traffic is worth nothing to your business if it is not compelled to act in some way, so your website must be able to ‘convert’, by turning a proportion of that traffic into leads, subscribers and customers.

How important is conversion rate optimisation?

There are a number of reasons why conversion rate optimisation is so important. Firstly, when you’re spending money on SEO or paying for traffic via a PPC campaign, a good conversion rate will provide you with a higher return on investment (ROI). It’s also more cost-effective to convert the visitors you already have rather than attracting more traffic.

The importance of CRO is not lost on digital marketing teams. In fact, 59 percent say CRO is crucial to their overall digital marketing strategy, which is why more and more businesses are choosing to invest in CRO training. CRO training can provide businesses with the skills they need to identify and break down the barriers that are reducing conversions to increase revenue and maximise ROI.

How can conversation rates be optimised?

Conversion rate optimisation can be an extremely simple and cost-effective way for digital marketing teams to have a dramatic impact on the success of their online campaigns. Many marketers who receive CRO training have been amazed by just how much difference a few subtle changes to a website can make.

Conversions can occur all over a website, from the homepage and service pages to pricing pages, blogs and landing pages designed for specific campaigns. Here are a few simple ways those pages can be optimised for conversions.

  • Homepage

A homepage is not typically the page visitors will complete an action on, but it still has a critical role to play in conversions. It must make a positive first impression on visitors and guide them clearly through your website to the information they want to find. A homepage should display clear links to product and service information, include buttons that allow visitors to take quick action and even incorporate features like a chatbot that can provide answers to visitors’ questions.

  • Landing pages

Landing pages are specifically designed for people to take action. They are often the main destination of paid online marketing campaigns and a lot of money is spent driving traffic to these pages, so it’s important you get them right. Limiting the number of potential actions visitors can take, clearly articulating the value the product or service can provide the visitor and establishing the credibility of the business are just a few of the elements you need to consider to optimise conversion rates.

  • Pricing page

A website’s pricing page is primed and ready for conversion rate optimisation. A visitor who reaches a website’s pricing page could well have the intention to buy, so this is the page that could make or break that decision for them. Giving the visitor a range of pricing options (e.g. prices per week, per month and per year), offering promotions, including discount codes, providing plenty of information about the product features and having simple payment options can all help to increase the conversion rates.

  • Blogs

Blogs are an excellent way to answer the questions visitors may have about your products or services and provide more information about the kind of benefits they can provide. That also makes them an effective way to potentially turn readers into leads. Publishing relevant, genuinely helpful content which includes a call-to-action (CTA), invites readers to find out more and asks them to submit their email address for more comprehensive information can help you convert.

How can CRO benefit your business?

There are numerous reasons why digital marketing teams are increasingly spending their time and money on professional CRO training. The benefits of conversion rate optimisation include:

  • You can capitalise on your existing traffic without having to spend money on SEO, PPC and other traffic generating methods.
  • A higher conversion rate leads to more repeat business and greater customer retention.
  • Conversion rate optimisation allows you to win customers from your competitors.
  • By analysing data such as user session recordings and website navigation behaviour, you’ll gain a better understanding of your leads, prospects and customers.
  • You’ll be able to identify which parts of your website are underperforming and make the necessary improvements.
  • Having a website that guides visitors seamlessly to their objectives will help to boost brand perception.

CRO training from Digital Kitchen

Realise the benefits of conversion rate optimisation with CRO training from Digital Kitchen. Our beginner and advanced CRO training sessions will teach you the tools and principles you can use to achieve best-in-class results so you can develop your own cost-effective CRO strategy. Get in touch today to find out more.

DIGITAL KITCHEN: 6 Benefits Group Training Courses Can Bring Your Team

21May

In today’s competitive job market, employers are having to work extremely hard to recruit candidates with in-demand skill sets. Record low levels of unemployment in the UK and the uncertainty of the ongoing Brexit negotiations have combined to create a dearth of top-class talent in industries such as accounting, finance, banking, manufacturing, HR and procurement. However, there are also similar shortages in low-skilled roles such as hospitality, health and social work, wholesale and retail.

To bridge these skills gaps, employers are trying to win over candidates by offering higher salaries, but many are also trying to differentiate themselves by putting together an exciting range of perks. A major Glassdoor survey found that benefits and perks are a major factor in the decisions of 60 percent of candidates, while 80 percent of employees said they would prefer to have more benefits rather than a pay rise.

So, which benefits should you choose? Staff training courses have become one of the most popular ways for employers to reward their teams due to the wide range of benefits they can bring. But just what are those benefits and why should you consider investing in staff training courses in 2019?

1. Attract new team members

Offering staff training courses as an advertised benefit will show potential new recruits that you’re serious about what you do. Ambitious candidates want to have the opportunity to improve existing skills and develop new talents in the workplace. Investing in ongoing training will show that you’re an employer that empowers your workers to achieve their professional goals over the longer term.

2. Reduce costs

One of the biggest benefits associated with group staff training courses is the reduction in costs when compared to training individual members of your team. If third-party training providers charge per attendee, the likelihood is that you’ll be able to negotiate a reduced cost per head when training multiple employees at the same time. Similarly, if the training provider charges per hour or per day, you’ll receive excellent value for money by training multiple employees per session.

3. Boost personal development

With so many different options out there, choosing which benefits to offer employees can be a tough task for HR teams. While staff parties and bonuses can be popular among staff, they are expensive and offer very little over the longer-term. Staff training boosts the personal and professional development of employees and makes them feel more empowered in the workplace, giving them a greater sense of autonomy and confidence in their work. Those are all benefits that will be felt over a much longer period of time.

4. Increase workplace engagement

Employee engagement in UK workplaces is at an all-time low, and in fact, research has shown that British staff are the least likely to be engaged when compared with workers in nine other regions around the world. The engagement and productivity problem in UK workplaces is proving to be a difficult one to solve, but regular staff training courses, and the process of analysis and planning that goes with them, can be an effective strategy.

Regular development initiatives can prevent feelings of dissatisfaction and negative working habits. Assessing the current skills and abilities within the team to strategically plan targeted development programmes is key, as is the revaluation of employees and their skills on a regular basis. Both of these processes boost levels of engagement by showing employees that there’s a clear progression plan in place.

5. Close the digital skills gap

The UK is currently facing a digital skills gap that threatens the prosperity of businesses and individuals. Research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research found that 12 percent of Britons lack basic digital literacy, and the UK could miss out on £22 billion of economic benefits over the next 10 years as a result. Group training courses that are focused on closing that digital skills gap are an effective way to give your team lifelong skills and can become an important tool to help you retain and grow your team.

6. Retain your best staff

In such a competitive employment market, staff retention can become a major challenge for employers. One simple way to address this is with staff training courses. Offering development programmes or training budgets as part of an individual’s employment contract can establish their sense of value within the company, foster loyalty and boost staff retention. With hiring such a significant cost for many businesses, any initiatives that boost staff retention and lower the turnover rate should be seen as money well spent.

Digital skills to empower your team

At Digital Kitchen, we provide a range of group training courses to help professionals of all levels, in all sectors, increase their digital marketing knowledge. Take a look at our range of digital training courses in London and get in touch to book your place today.

DIGITAL KITCHEN: This is why your social media strategy isn’t working

10May

Like it or loathe it, social media is an immensely powerful marketing tool. Done right, social media offers an unrivalled potential reach and engagement at a relatively low cost, but for some businesses, their social media campaigns are destined to fail before they’ve even really begun.

Why? Simply because crucial elements of their social media strategy aren’t in place. In our social media training course, we go through the practical reasons why your social media strategy isn’t hitting the heights. We also focus on improving your social media skills so you can identify the cause of the problem and quickly put it right.

In this quick guide, we’re going to take a look at some of the common social media mistakes that are making it impossible to achieve your goals.

1. There’s no strategy

The single most common reason for the failure of a social media marketing campaign is because no strategy has been put in place. The term ‘strategy’ has largely been lost to corporate jargon over the last few years, but at its heart, it’s a very simple word with a very simple meaning.

A strategy is putting a clear plan of action in place to achieve a clear goal. It does not have to be a 50-page document. You just need to have clear and measurable goals, a method of achieving those goals and a clear brand voice. Without a strategy, you’ll simply be another brand shouting into the social media echo chamber and failing to deliver an effective message to your target audience.

2. It’s not integrated

A social media campaign only works effectively when it’s integrated with and complemented by your other marketing assets. Social media is not an island. Every profile you have should be linked to all your other platforms, with each providing a different but consistent type of messaging. Your social media should also be tied directly to your website, email and paid search campaigns so customers can easily access the most appropriate touchpoint to meet their particular needs at that time.

3. You assume people want to be your friend

We don’t want to take you back to lonely days in the school playground, but to succeed on social media, it’s essential you understand and accept that no one wants to be your friend. You might be the premier soap manufacturer in the southwest, but guess what? No one cares.

People are not gathered around eagerly waiting for you to post a piece of content. What they want is value. Your social media has to add value to the user in some way, whether it’s by giving them access to exclusive offers and promotions, providing customer service assistance or simply by making them laugh.

4. You don’t understand the data

Over time, your social media campaign will generate a huge amount of data. If you know how to collect and analyse that data, it will tell you exactly where your efforts are succeeding and failing and why. Success with social media marketing is not just about likes, engagement and shares. In fact, these stats are largely irrelevant when it comes to achieving your business goals. Improving your social media skills by learning how to use data analysis tools will be a huge boost for your campaign.

5. Your strategy is not your own

Social media experts are great for improving your social media skills, but what they can’t do is create your social media strategy for you. The most successful social media strategies are those that are unique and give consumers an insight into the personalities behind the brand. Authenticity is a must, and as soon as you copy another brand’s strategy or use a strategy that’s been created for you, you lose that immediately.

6. It’s all about YOU

One key to success on social media is thinking about what your audience wants and giving it to them. Too many brands use social media to post an endless stream of “buy from us because we’re fantastic” posts, without ever giving their followers anything back. That’s no way to build a community. Instead, you should follow your audience’s interests closely and always think about the WHY of content before you post it. Promotional posts have their place, but they should always be interspersed with posts that give your followers genuine value.

7. You expect success overnight

So much has been written about social media marketing that some brands think all they need to do is create a profile and the followers will come flocking. Like anything, building a successful social media campaign takes time and effort. If you want to get sales right out of the gate, paid social media ads can help you achieve your short-term goals, but there’s no shortcut to building a community. The truth is that it can be months before you see any concrete results.

8. You don’t know your audience

Researching your audience is a vital part of creating your social media strategy. This is not just true of a social media campaign but of any form of marketing. Understanding who your audience is, what they look like and what makes them tick is essential if you want to engage them.

Asking customers questions, running surveys and looking at the conversations your customers are having online can all help to build a detailed picture of your audience. You then need to think about which social media platforms they’re most likely to use and what type of posts will engage them.

Are you failing to achieve your social media goals?

At Digital Kitchen, we run beginner and advanced social media training courses to give your business the skills to create a social media strategy that works. Get in touch to book your place today.

DIGITAL KITCHEN: Why training is the best benefit you can offer your employees

16Apr

Some employers think of staff training as just one of the many employee benefits they can offer, but investing in the careers of your employees is much more than that. It’s about safeguarding the future of your business and equipping your staff with the skills they need to drive you forward.

For many businesses, money is tight, but staff training is one of very few employee benefits that can deliver a targeted return on your investment. Whether it’s increased productivity, improved quality of work, better customer service or reduced staff turnover, there are many potential benefits businesses can realise by putting even a small training budget in place.

Investment in training is on the rise

According to the latest research by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), two-thirds of businesses are worried they will not be able to find candidates to fill high-skilled roles. Rather than trying to hire new candidates with the skills they need externally, businesses are increasingly investing in staff training to overcome shortages in every industry from information technology to construction.

The result is that 85 percent of UK firms plan to maintain or increase their investment in staff training over the next year. That would see the annual training pot grow from the £44.2 billion that is spent currently.

Training is a highly valued employee benefit

A survey conducted by a leading recruitment website found that in today’s competitive employment market, a good employee benefits package was more important than ever before. In fact, 86 percent of the respondents admitted to being influenced by the employee benefits on offer when deciding whether to take a new role.

However, despite the clear importance of employee benefits, there was still a disconnect between what HR leaders thought staff valued and what employees really wanted. In particular, the research found that employees placed a much lower value on benefits such as office-based perks and social events than HR decision-makers had thought. Instead, the research found that professional motivators such as staff training and opportunities for promotion were highly valued, particularly among younger workers who seek personal fulfilment above all else.

The benefits of staff training

Of course, putting together an attractive employee benefits package is not just about considering what works for your team. It should also present a compelling business case. A commitment to staff training is a perk that can provide significant benefits for both parties.

For employers:

  • Increased employee performance – Undoubtedly one of the most compelling benefits for employers is having a highly skilled team who are able to perform their current duties competently and take on new responsibilities as part of their role. With highly skilled candidates few and far between, upskilling from within can fill skills gaps and boost your business’s position in the industry.
  • Improved employee engagement and morale – Survey after survey shows that the UK has an employee engagement deficit, with only around a third of people admitting to being engaged at work. An investment in training can make employees feel valued, appreciated and challenged – three factors that play a key part in levels of satisfaction and engagement at work.
  • Reduced employee turnover – If staff feel valued, invested in and are given opportunities to progress in their current roles, they’re less likely to seek opportunities elsewhere. The cost of recruitment is high, particularly in hard to fill roles. That makes strategies aimed at keeping your existing employees a much wiser investment.
  • Enhanced company reputation and profile – Having a strong and successful training strategy helps to enhance your reputation as an employer that values and wants to develop its staff. That makes it more attractive to new recruits and mid-career changes looking to improve their skills and progress in their careers.

For employees:

  • The opportunity to grow and develop – Career progression is one of the most important considerations for ambitious employees. With an investment in training, employees know they will be able to develop their skills, achieve their goals and progress their careers with their current employer.
  • A nurturing culture – A good manager is one who empowers their team to grow and learn. A commitment to training is a clear sign that the managers and the organisation as a whole really care about the progress of its employees.
  • Improved confidence and performance – There’s nothing worse as an employee than feeling that you’re not up to the job. Ongoing training can give employees the skills they need to thrive in their roles and eliminate any shortcomings they may have.

Digital skills to empower your team

At Digital Kitchen, we offer a comprehensive range of digital marketing courses in London to reward and upskill your team. Find out more about our SEO, PPC, social media, content marketing and CRO courses and get in touch today.

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