Yesterday I participated in an event at a company that mainly operates within the niche of digital management consultancy. In less ambiguous terms, this means that they primarily help companies grow their digital presence as well as their online sales success. Practically, this includes work such as UI/UX tweaks to increase conversion rates and order volume, SEO, increasing the amount of visitors through Google Ads and similar services, etc.
This particular event was centered around digital growth strategies and providing a general overview of the primary areas within that. While this perhaps isn’t strictly within the realms of startup and entrepreneurship, I thought that I’d share a summary of what was presented as developing these skills and understanding the area better may still be highly relevant and applicable when trying to develop and grow a small company or startup dependent on an online presence. Within this text I’ve bolded some key words, highlighting their significance within a digital growth strategy.
To begin with, a digital growth strategy is commonly divided into smaller and more tangible parts by describing transactions through a simple equation:
Offering + Traffic + Conversion = Transactions
The three first parts make up the main topics that I’ve written about below. By choosing to improve one, or several, of these, the transaction volume should increase, meaning higher revenue.
The most essential part of a company’s offering is developing a well-thought out value proposition. A value proposition should be a statement summarizing why a customer should choose your product or service, instead of that of a competitor. Initial development of a value proposition can be through an outside-in view, where potential customers are first identified, then their needs are mapped to support a hypothesis on how to create value by addressing these customer needs. By using an inside-out view instead, the analysis is inverted and starts with value creation.
Following this, customer groups should be segmented based on common attributes that define a need for a different type of customer-company relationship. It should also be known what customer group is the most important, as well as if other stakeholders need to be adressed.
The information from this customer mapping process should then be used to identify how your company creates value by addressing the customer needs. In markets with heavy competition, core value drivers and differentiating aspects should also be thought-out in order to coordinate these with the correct customer groups.
The single most important point of the offering and above paragraphs is making sure that the company’s value offering is aligned with actual customer needs.
Traffic can be divided into two main categories, organic or paid. Organic traffic is composed of people visiting the site through non-paid sources, e.g. a “normal” Google search or visiting the website url directly. Paid traffic contains website traffic from paid sources such as ads, or placements on other websites.
Increasing the organic traffic is usually done through what’s referred to as SEO, Search Engine Optimization. Primarily, SEO focuses on improving the actual website content, the foundation and UX, as well as external links. Some perks of using SEO is that it usually brings good ROI as well as organic traffic being the majority of web traffic.
The customer journey is usually divided into four stages, with the primary internal goals below.
- Create brand awareness, create broad and emotional connection
- Engage and drive relevant traffic
- Generate action and profit (conversions)
- Re-engage customers (create loyalty)
When tasked with improving this part of the digital experience within a project, this company usually work in the order of:
- Current state analysis
- Define a starting point using available metrics
- Identify improvement areas
- Simultaneously, identify quick wins that can be implemented immediately
- Formulate a tactical growth plan
- Implementation support
In the beginning, work also centers around the key question “How can client X increase traffic and conversions through channel Y?”.
Finally, it’s important to note that using marketing channels can be divided into push or pull activities, depending on the platform and type of ad.
- Push marketing
- Try to create an interest in your brand/product
- E.g. platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, Facebook etc.
- Pull marketing
- Try to “catch” customers that are already interested in your product/a similar one
- E.g. specific search terms ads (Google, Yahoo, etc.), customized embedded ads.
This company usually works with another company that specializes in CRO (Conversion Rate Optimization) that usually assists in projects needing this type of work. Basically, they focus on tracking digital footprints in order to investigate customer behaviour and where they “bounce” (choose to exit the website), convert, and do other things of interest. Using this data they detail a funnel from how a potentially interested person leads to a fulfilled order, identify which part has the highest bounce rate, and then start addressing that specific section of the website responsible.
The data supporting their analysis usually stems from Google Analytics, click maps, scroll maps, user session replays, etc. Sometimes, exit intent polls are implemented on a website in order to ask users bouncing how their experience could’ve been improved.
A final thing mentioned on this part was that Cialdini’s 6 Principles of Persuasion can be used very effectively when implemented in website design and CRO. These principles may seem basic and somewhat obvious, but actually implementing them in a skillful way commonly yields highly noticeable results in terms of increasing conversion rates.
Unfortunately I didn’t get any good pictures from this event due to me sitting somewhat far back in the room.
I hope you found my post insightful, thank you for reading!