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Benjamin: Welcome back to the MarTech podcast. This podcast is sponsored by Searchmetrics Searchmetrics sets the standard for innovation and the content and search engine optimization industry. This support businesses who care about understanding both how to use content as a marketing channel and how to improve their organic ranking. In Google, if you're an enterprise level marketer, the Searchmetrics suite of software and services will help you optimize your existing content, help you understand what topics you need to cover next, and help you ensure that your writers produce effective content. There are billions of google searches happening everyday and Searchmetrics gets your stories to the top. Okay. 

Benjamin : Today we're going to talk about the complex topic of conversion rate optimization, also known as Cro. With us today is Justin Christianson, who is the CO founder of Conversion Fanatics, which is a full service conversion rate optimization agency that is work with companies like Hertz, paypal, and burt's bees. In this episode, Justin's going to walk us through his approach to creating an effective conversion rate optimization plan. Here's the first part of our interview with Justin Christianson from Conversion Fanatics. Justin, welcome to the MarTech podcast. It's great to have you here. 

Justin: Thanks for having me. It's a pleasure. 

Benjamin: We're excited to talk a little bit about the wide wide world of conversion rate optimization, but let's start off by you telling us a little bit about you. How'd you get into this field? Tell us a little bit about your background. 

Justin: Well, see, I've been in the digital marketing space about 15 years now. Started off in my early twenties and got fascinated one site, kind of the psychology behind what makes people do certain things or take desired actions and things like that and I became partners on a company that we grew quite successfully and published a bunch of information about some of the Ab tests that I was doing and some of the different improvements that I was making there. And when I sold my partnership back to my business partners back in, oh nine. Everybody approached me saying, what are you going to do next? Can you help me with this? Can you help me with that? And you know, I really want to optimization side. So I started a small kind of one man show consulting agency doing implementation and optimization and about approach. And about five years ago I partnered up with my longtime friend who had the systems and processes and staff already started and something I was very weak at. I was usually just kind of me doing my thing and we started out teaching it and we figured out quickly that people did not want to learn it, they just wanted us to do it for them and we built a fantastic team of super smart people that handle all of that now and we just guide the ship and really help companies realize more out of their traffic. So that's kind of long and short of it. 

Benjamin: So you started off well the first company you were working at, was it a specific product that you would do in conversion rate optimization or were you sort of doing an agency model back then too? 

Justin: No, it was our own product. We had a whole list. It was an information publishing company then it became partners with. So we're publishing a lot of information training for a certain niche on the ins and outs of lead generation and things like that. And I was publishing a lot in our monthly. 

Benjamin: So it was a content based business. You were working in the digital space? Yeah. Interesting. And so then you teamed up with your longtime friend and he was sort of the administrator and now you're helping companies doing conversion rate optimization. Tell me about some of the companies that you've worked with. Are they enterprise level companies? Are early stage startups. Where's your sweet spot? 

Justin: Our sweet spot is kind of in that five to 20 million in revenue range. We work with some smaller companies and some larger obviously. But yeah, that's kind of our sweet spot is that mid market typically ecommerce for software as a service and subscription type companies. 

Benjamin: So those are companies where people are buying a product or a service online using a website. So it makes sense why conversion rate optimization would be important for them. For people that are early in just learning about conversion rate optimization before they're 10 to 20 million in revenue. Tell me a little bit about how you think about a methodology that everyone can apply for conversion rate optimization. 

Justin: Well, the underlying aspects are simple. Really what we're doing at the end of the day is we're dealing with people and we need those people to take a desired action. So what we're really looking for is removal of any friction points on the site, so all we're really looking for is where people have had on the site, where are they coming from, where are they going, where are they fallen off, what are they paying attention to, and what they're ignoring. And that's generally what we look at on the bottom. Of course there's a whole bunch more in terms of methodology that goes into actually executing on that plan, but at the end of the day we're just looking at what our visitors respond to most. And most people when they initially hear the word conversion rate optimization, they immediately think split testing and split testing is only really just a small piece of it. That's just a way for us to prove or disprove any of our assumptions or our hypotheses around the optimization side of things. But really it's just I'm looking at the data, serving customers, understanding what makes them tick, and then removing those roadblocks that stand in their way of taking a desired action that you want them to take on your site. 

Benjamin: So when you start with a new client and they come in and they say, I want you to optimize my website for conversions is the first thing you're doing, customer analysis, customer segmentation, or you really just getting into the weeds, tell me a little bit about the process that you go through. 

Justin: Initially, what we're trying to do is gather as much data as we possibly can, so we'll get some qualitative kind of analysis on things. Heat maps, click maps, scroll maps, we'll look at analytics, we'll find out some commonalities, key problem areas. We'll ask the client a bunch of questions to understand what their goals are, what problem areas they're seeing, what are some of their burning desires, things they wanted to fix. So just really understanding the INS and outs of the company before we really dive deep and get in the weeds and then yeah, as quickly as possible. Usually within the first few weeks, get that first split test up and running as we're gathering some of those other details. So we're just trying to measure. Hopefully we can come out and win and improve something, but we're taking kind of our best guests based on some of the initial analysis while we gather some more Intel and then we'll deep dive and actually create the hypothesis, experiment plan and get those first 20 or so ideas to help solve those initial problems. 

Benjamin: So essentially a client comes to you with a problem that they're trying to solve or a part of their website, a property that they're trying to optimize. It sounds like the first thing that you're doing is data collection and aggregation, figuring out what they have for you to analyze, be understanding specifically where people are dropping off or how far they're getting down a marketing funnel and then see coming up with some hypotheses to figure out what levers you can pull to try to improve the conversion rate. Is that fair? 

Justin: Yeah, and really what we're doing first in the perfect world, you know, we're looking for testing on some small incremental elements to really figure out what holds the most weight on the various landing pages that the visitors land on. And then we can kind of judge engaged and then build up and build upon those results as we gather even more data. 

Benjamin: I did a podcast a couple of weeks ago with Graham Hunter and the topic of that conversation was what's the difference between growth and marketing and to me, one of the themes that we came up with is there's essentially a top down and a bottoms up approach to doing your marketing. One is we have a brand and an identity and a focus on a specific customer and we're going to try to put together a plan that speaks specifically to them because we know who we are as a company, very brand forward approach and I would say that's more of a traditional marketing approach and then the second is the growth approach, which is we don't know what's going to work, let's throw something out there and start making some minor tweaks and doing some optimization. And to me that's a lot of conversion rate optimization and more what people are referred to as growth hacking. Do you have a different sense of what growth hacking is and how does sort of brand and identity play into figuring out what these little levers are that you can. 

Justin: Paul, it's kind of tough when you come into a company that they want us to help solve some initial conversion problems when they have a stronger brand. Sticking with that brand integrity can post some issues, especially if they're not used to making those small swings. You know the big doors swing on small hinges, right? Micro optimizations. Doing those small things to better understand their visitors and their behaviors and things like that. It can be a little difficult, so I kind of find a happy medium in there. I kind of believe that you need to start somewhere, but if they have an established brand, then it's sometimes actually easier to move those levers if they're willing to kind of give up a little bit of control. Of course we have to keep with the brand integrity as much as possible, but I kind of fall somewhere in the middle. I don't want to get into analysis paralysis and just constantly try to dive deeper and deeper into the customer avatar without actually testing it on live data and understanding how they're interacting with the particular marketing messages and the brand and things like that. 

Benjamin: You said something that I think is interesting. You said that big doors swing on small hinges. Did I get that right? Yeah. It's a quote by I believe w clement stone. That's brilliant. I'm a big fan of. I'm going to steal that at some point. I put it in every single one of my presentations. I think that's very app for conversion rate optimization because a lot of the things that you're testing for our what I mentioned earlier as micro optimization, so tell me what are some of the things that you know when you're testing, what are some of the variables that you look for? I mean placement, position, messaging, color, like how do you think about what the hypotheses are and what are the key things that people get wrong? 

Justin: That's a several part question, but you know, I kind of go to the top five or so things, you know, usually can I tell quickly what this company does, what the product does, what I'm going to get out of using that product and what clearly is the next step. I look for things like social proof for other elements. I look for a lot of benefit statements. So many people talk about the features of their product and rather not the benefits. That's probably the biggest thing that people fall short on is they're shouting from the rooftops of how great their product is and look at all of these cool things we can do, but they're not leading from a place of what's in it for me as the consumer. The more you can do that, the better you're going to be maximizing the flow of it. 

Justin: Removing distracting elements, try to be very linear in your path. Is happens a lot, particularly in ecommerce. They want to showcase all of their 400 or 4,000 or 40,000 skews that they have and they're pulling people in so many different directions. That happens a lot, software as a service as well. It's like you have a white paper and then you have a Webinar and then you have a demo and you have a free trial and they're trying to pull these visitors and all of these different directions, hey, sign up with me, sign up with me, but if you lead them, I call it, lead them down the path of least resistance to where you want them to go and it's just being very streamlined in that path and a lot of things. I'll look forward to our, you know, colors and calls to action. Colors do play a big role. 

Justin: Obviously brand guidelines and things like that. We can't do the colors all that much, but something as simple as adding some contrast to your main call to action button throughout the process and just subconsciously treating each one of those steps so they get used to clicking on an orange button or they get used to clicking on a green button throughout the process and they know that this is the call to action. I need to click on. Okay, I clicked on the shop now button and it was green. The next one is added to cart and it's green when the next one is continue to checkout, which is green, you know, just keeping it very linear in that path if not distracting them with other shiny objects along the way. 

Benjamin: Interesting. So tell me about how the practice of conversion rate optimization has changed. What are the new things that are going on? 

Justin: It's changed quite a bit. I kind of look at it as cro is kind of where Seo was 10 years ago where people are realizing they need to have it where four or five years ago we had to educate our audience a lot more on what optimization is or really truly what effective optimization is rather than just kinda throwing stuff up and seeing what sticks, but having a methodology and a practice and understanding and learning from everything that you're doing throughout that process and where I kind of see it going is more. It's becoming more and more mainstream. There's more and more agencies popping up that are doing what we do. What's really happening is a lot of the big data type stuff is being more accessible to the smaller guy so we have access to more resources and tools and solutions that allow us to make more educated decisions on our marketing performance and the optimization side. We're seeing a little bit creep in now from ai and machine learning, which isn't quite there yet. There's a lot of stuff that needs to happen yet there right now that's kind of glorified multivariate testing, which I am not a big proponent of because it can waste a lot of time, energy and money to actually do it and you often learn more from the incremental tests. 

Benjamin: So there's clearly a lot of changing and I think that you hit on an important point is the accessibility to data and the ability to launch tests and move quickly is something that's increased with web bandwidth and storage space. So I'm interested in hearing about how much your focusing on data science and applying it or how much of it is red or blue. We have to wait for 10,000 impressions like where are you getting access to more data and how is that affecting your practice? 

Justin: We've always been pretty focused with what limited data we had, but it's still shocking to me how many companies don't effectively use even something as simple as google analytics or they don't leverage something as simple as a hot jar or a solution like that for heat maps and click maps and how they don't pull their customers or they don't survey their customers and they don't just simply ask those simple questions that, what did you like about our product or what can we change or what can we do different and what didn't you like to really gather some Intel? I do it almost every day. I can go through a site and pick out 100 things that we should be split testing, but until you have some data to kind of back that up, it really is kind of just again, throwing stuff up and seeing what sticks. 

Benjamin: So you mentioned that you've always sort of been data centric. What I'm interested to know about is what's your MarTechh stack? What are the tools that you have hooked to your tool belt? 

Justin: We typically don't like to reinvent the wheel. When we come into a client campaign, we make sure that we're effectively leveraging things like google analytics. Very simple majority of websites have that. If they have a secondary analytics, secondary click tracking, things like that. We use all sorts of different call tracking stacks or whatever the company wants to do, but in terms of tools that we kind of bring to the table is we need to split testing tool will often times will use things like optimize Lee or vwo. Our favorite recently and what I would say the majority of our clients are on right now is convert.com and then we require all of our clients and actually provide this as a hot jar or account or making sure they have some kind of screen recording. They have heat maps, click maps, things like that to help us understand what's going on in the qualitative side. 

Justin: It allows us to do polls, allows us to do surveys and things like that, but we don't try to get too crazy on the tech side because often times we're dealing with a very large organization and making changes like that can be very difficult. It can be months for them to implement something like that in some cases, so we try to keep it very simple from the tech staff perspective and that generally will get us the majority of what it is we're looking for. The way we have it set up, so we'll take something like convert.com and we'll pass the variables over as custom dimensions into Google analytics so we can get a second set of eyes on it and then we run individual heat maps and things on the variation so we can understand what's going on from the click and the scroll and things like that. 

Benjamin: So it sounds like there's an ab testing tool, your split test tool, you're doing some heat mapping using google analytics. Those are kind of the primary ones to get started. And then there's maybe some other proprietary tools that you throw in every once in a while. 

Justin: Yeah, it's usually a case by case basis on. And then of course we've got different Java scripts and different exit intent and different things like that that we leverage that we have built over time and kind of a Rolodex. 

Benjamin: Okay. I think that's a good stopping point. So that wraps up this episode of the MarTech podcast. Thanks to Justin for joining us in part two of this interview, which we'll publish tomorrow. Justin is gonna. Walk us through a case study and show us how he applies his crl methodology in a real world scenario. If you can't wait until the next episode and you'd like to learn more about Justin and Conversion Fanatics, go to Conversion Fanatics.com. Special thanks to search metrics for sponsoring this podcast. If you're looking to grow your online presence, go to Searchmetrics.com to request your free tour of their platform. If you'd like to read the transcript of this podcast, we've published it on our website, MarTechh pod.com, and if you're a subscriber to the MarTech podcast already, we just like to stop and say thank you. We'd love for you to leave us a review in the itunes store and we want you to feel like a member of the community. 

Benjamin: So if you ever have any questions, if you'd like to connect with our guests or if you'd like to be a guest on the show, you can find a contact form on our website. Again, it's MarTechh pod.com. Where you can reach us on twitter and linkedin are companies. Handle is Benjshap, LLC b e nj  a s h, a p Llc. If you haven't subscribed yet to the MarTech podcast and you want a weekly stream of marketing and technology knowledge and your podcast feed in addition to part two of our episode with Justin Christianson from Conversion Fanatics. We've got some great episodes lined up, so hit that subscribe button in your podcast app and we'll be back in your feed tomorrow morning with the rest of our conversation with Justin. Okay. That wraps it up for today, but until next time, my advice is just focus on keeping your customers happy.

Part 2

Benjamin: Welcome back to the MarTech podcast. This podcast is sponsored by Searchmetrics Searchmetrics sets the standard for innovation and the content and search engine optimization industry. They support businesses who care about understanding both how to use content as a marketing channel and how to improve their organic rankings. In Google, if you're an enterprise level marketer, the Searchmetrics suite of software and services will help you optimize your existing content, help you understand what topics you need to cover next, and how to ensure that your writers produce effective content. There are billions of google searches happening every day and Searchmetrics gets your stories to the top. All right. Today we're going to hear about conversion rate optimization. Justin Christianson is the founder of Conversion Fanatics, which is a conversion rate optimization agency that works with the likes of Hertz, PayPal and Burt's Bees. In our last conversation, Justin walked us through his methodology for conversion rate optimization, how he works with some of his clients, and a little bit about the toolkit that he applies and today we're going to ask Justin to join us in a case study where we go through a real world example of how he can apply his conversion rate methodology to a startup that I started years ago called strumschool.com. 

Benjamin: Here's the rest of our interview with Justin Christenson from Conversion Fanatics. Justin, welcome back to the MarTech podcast. 

Justin: Hey Ben. Thanks for having me. 

Benjamin: So I have a sob story to tell you. The first startup that I started as a business called strumschool.com and strum school is a guitar lesson marketplace where originally we started trying to connect guitar students and teachers for live lessons. I left my job at Ebay and decided I was going to start this startup to be essentially the face time for guitar lessons and that business model crashed and burned. Turns out people would rather have youtube videos or just take lessons at home. So I pivoted my business to being focused on video guitar lessons where we were putting together a collection of the first 50 videos that every guitar student needs before they start taking lessons. With that context where the SOB story comes in is my business was trucking along. 

Benjamin: We were driving a bunch of traffic with our videos and when I put everything behind a paywall, naturally our organic traffic tanked. So I went from driving tens of thousands of visitors to my guitar lesson website to hundreds within a day when we made a change to how Google views our content. So my issue now as I'm sitting with a website and for the record, I don't pay much attention to strumschool.com, but I think this would make a great case study for us to talk about conversion rate optimization. I have a website that people are coming to primarily through organic traffic and we're not getting a lot of conversions and what we're trying to sell them is online guitar lessons. So talk to me about how you would put together a strategy for driving conversion rate optimization. Knowing that we're getting primarily organic traffic and we're trying to sell people a package of 50 guitar lessons and it's a $100 lifetime subscription. 

Justin: Okay. The first thing that I would do is comb through any of the data to figure out kind of, you know, we talked in the previous episode a little bit behind the methodology, but it's really just understanding what these visitors are doing, how they're interacting with the site, what kind of roadblocks they're seeing. And then I would basically go through and comb through the site and kind of follow the typical visitor journey. Starting from the homepage and working our way through to the rest of the pages on the site to see what kind of split test ideas initially we can come up with. And then we kind of match that up with the initial data. Now I haven't seen any other data. Then I literally just opened this website. So this is to be a little bit fun. 

Benjamin: It's beautiful, isn't it? I can't tell you that, uh, this was my pride and joy for years and the truth is the reason why I stopped doing strum school.com is my girlfriend at the time said she was willing to accept a promotion to fiance, but I had to go get a steady paycheck. So I abandoned strum school to basically spend more time with who is now my wife. That said, I can tell you a little bit about the data that we have. So when people come to the website, most of the time they're coming through a content page. There's a fair amount of blog content. Most of it is easy guitar, Song Related Content. The business model is selling people the first 50 lessons. So everything from the body of the guitar through how to tune the guitar to understanding how to fret notes and then play basic cords, the cords that everybody needs to get through their first song and we sort of stop there and say, okay, once you know how to play, the basic chords will help you find a guitar teacher in your local area. 

Benjamin: The problem that we have, we do a pretty good job of getting people from the content to the home page. They click the strum school logo in the top left of the page and they'll actually go through the homepage and they will give us their email address. We actually do a pretty good job in terms of email collection, but getting someone from the email collection phase into actually purchasing the product seems to be the problem. So once you're getting some information from somebody, what do you do to bridge that gap to get them to actually purchase a product? 

Justin: Well usually it's the benefits side of things. So actually what I'm gonna do is I'm going to fill out this first form, see kind of what you got going on. Let me give you my information, I'm going to accept the terms and we're going to go on to the next step and see what happens. 

Benjamin: Great. 

Justin: Okay, so now when I just entered the information on the form and on the homepage, right on the hero section, of course I could have gone through a bunch of stuff on the homepage on potential tests to kind of improve those overall metrics there to get people to opt in, but that wasn't the big problem. The problem is that you did a good job about getting people to sign up for their quote unquote free account, but you have a problem of upgrading them initially, so when I immediately come to the next page, it shows nothing about what I actually just opted in to get it says account created. Welcome to strum school, but it doesn't actually give me any information about those 50 lessons are those 50 videos that I was talking about immediately. Instead I'm presented with choose your membership package, which doesn't give me a lot of context around that. 

Justin: It just gives me options. It's like, okay, I didn't get what I just asked for, but I just got asked for money and one thing that I have done particularly well in a subscription type model is once they create their free account is present them with a one time special offer that would essentially say, okay, you created your free account. Great on this page. Only you can upgrade to all of these premium membership benefits and all of these great things and here's what it's going to do for you for this special one time only price or this special one time. Only offer two them at one time, only chance to make a purchase and oftentimes what I will find is 20 to 30 percent or so of people will take you up on that special offer and then from there you can say, oh no thanks. 

Justin: I just want to see the first three videos and then you can take him to there and then give them another option to upgrade at a later date to premium. But also on this page is you're saying get unlimited access to all video lessons. Master every chord with the cord book. Learn the lingo and the vocab section. Stay up to date on our inspirations. There's a lot of great features there, but there's no real benefits. What am I going to get out of this? As the consumer? I came here to learn how to play guitar. I'm a guitar player myself. I've been playing since I was 14 years old, but what are some of the big problem areas you've got to tackle and address some of those things and he you're giving them multiple different options. 

Benjamin: For the people who aren't looking at the page. The flow for this website is you go to the homepage, you enter your email address and you create a password and the page that you're dropped off asks you to choose your membership type and your feedback was that the membership offer shouldn't be. The first thing that you show at. My thought was, okay, you've now created account. Pick which flavor of account do you want? Do you want a trial? Do you want a monthly membership or a lifetime membership? What's the thing that you suggest is shown in the place of the option to select which membership? 

Justin: So you get access to the free 50 videos, correct? 

Benjamin: Yes. It's a 14 day free trial is how we landed people initially and then on the 50th day then they hit a paywall. 

Justin: Okay, so now you're giving me an option to buy the starter bundle, which is a free trial, but I already just signed up for that. So that 14 day free trial is kind of irrelevant. What I would do is actually lead with that or lead with a free video lesson or something like that to get an email address only first to bring them into the fold because here it's kind of, for lack of better terms kind of bait and switch. I didn't know I just signed up for a trial, but now I'm presented with an option to sign up for a trial or monthly membership or lifetime membership. Instead I will just say, Hey, you started your trial. You can see all your content here to unlock all of these other amazing features. Here's your two options. You can pay monthly or you can get a lifetime access for $99, cancel at any time, money back guarantee. But you're going to get all of these benefits and not so much the features. Why do I want to pay for it is the big question, what am I actually going to get if I give you money? What additional benefits am I going to get versus just the first 50 videos that I see if I scroll way down the page after I've been asked several times for more money, 

Benjamin: so let's play that out and let's say that the call to action when you sign up for the trial is more of a confirmation of what's happened. Hey, your 14 day free trial has been activated. You can use this site and an unlimited fashion. That then leads the focus of the product away from trying to drive someone into an instant conversion and more into an upsell mode. So talk to me a little bit about how you think about driving upsells as opposed to getting someone through a cart. 

Justin: The biggest thing here is you've got a membership. You want them to start using the product before you actually ask for money. You got to get them into it and kind of have that sticky factor. It's like, okay, I cannot live without these videos. These are absolutely amazing, and then you can ask for money. Another option is you started your 14 day trial, would you like to upgrade right now for a super limited one time only special offer, and then the second side of that is they start using the content and then you give them a chance to upgrade throughout that process. So every video or every page that they viewed the video on gives them an option to upgrade and then I've explained the benefits of that and what I would typically do instead of the price breakdown is just give them a full blown landing page that sells them on the premium. Why do I want to upgrade? And here's all the great things. Here's the benefits and the features and everything you're going to get if you just unlocked this for the measly amount of $14 a month. Right? So essentially you're saying 

Benjamin: confirmed the action that's happened from where they entered their information. When somebody on the homepage gives their email address, confirm that, hey, you've now created a trial membership and have that page be, here's a special offer to upgrade right now, or you can just go on to test the content. 

Justin: Yeah, no thanks. Continue on to the content. 

Benjamin: Right, and then as someone is working on to the content, your focus becomes here's how you upgrade. So as they are perusing the content, that becomes more of a question of I'm assuming email marketing to reengage with them or as they're getting through the website. You mentioned having an interstitial page before they can access every piece of content. Let's try to drive them to upgrade. 

Justin: Yeah, you're trying to get a credit card at that point and walk them through the actual sale, but you've got to sell them on what's going on with the premium. You can't just assume that they're going to know that I get unlimited access to all video lessons, but what exactly are there? How many are there? What am I going to learn in these videos? What are the key benefits to me and then you can give them the chance to do that throughout either with popups as they're watching the video and they get five minutes into one video or they get something. You can have a banner on that page, you can test the pop up, you can obviously email marketing and things like that. You can do remarketing with ads and things to get them kind of engaged in that process. Taking them back to a longer form, either video, hybrid type page that sells them on the opportunity and run them through the $14 a month type thing and the $99 membership and position one over the other. I'm guessing majority of people don't sign up for $14 a month. They pay a hundred bucks for lifetime. The honest truth is most people 

Benjamin: outside of for either, which is why I now do consulting and MarTech podcast. 

Justin: Okay. Well, yeah, I mean there's some things you can do to from the monthly membership site, if they sign up for the monthly membership, you can say, hey, why don't you just unlock a lifetime membership and pay just a little bit more one time instead of paying monthly. Nobody likes monthly, right? Even though it is a minute amount of money, death, but yeah, it's just really selling the benefits and the features of going through that process and then when they click, giving social proof of what people are getting, nobody wants to be first. When it comes to signing up for something, especially guitar lessons, they want to know that somebody else has achieved what they are looking to achieve, that they know that you are the real deal. Social proof plays a big role in this and then clicking on to the actual checkout side of things. 

Justin: There's a handful of things that you can do. Basically you're selling them. I just clicked on the $14 a month button, taken me to the checkout page and here is something that you can just keep your logo, but you can remove the header so you don't give them any distracting elements or what they want to do. And then what's weird here is it actually says $19 a month on your checkout page instead of 14. Just a little caveat there, but I know this isn't a big focus for you, so but monthly premium membership. What is the monthly premium membership? Usually I'll put a progress bar. I'll restate the benefits of the actual membership of what they get all back it up with some social proof. I'll do things like icons instead of just saying 30 day money back guarantee or cancel any time or whatever it might be. 

Justin: I'll use icons, satisfaction guarantee. Thirty day money back. I'll use some social proof on here too. What happens is most people stop selling once they get to the checkout page, they don't restate all of the great things and keep them excited throughout that process and keep that level of trust all the way through to when you actually get some money from those visitors and then you know, just restate what the actual product is. It says unlimited access one month, but it's like monthly membership, unlock, blah blah, blah. Here's these bullets. Show them a picture of inside the members area of what all the videos look like. Things like that to support the process. 

Benjamin: Okay. Without getting too much into the weeds about strum school, the reason why I wanted to go through a case study is because I feel like that's the most tangible way for people who are learning about conversion rate optimization to understand the mindset that someone like you goes through when they're looking at a new product. So as I sort of tried to summarize before, to me, the first thing that you looked at is what are you trying to complete your getting past the email stage. So obviously the broken part of the funnel is this next page where in some schools example you have to pick which account you want so there was a discrepancy in your mind between what the person was signing up for and then where they land is, it confirmed what they're getting and then what are the steps for them to go forward and we talked about some modifications to be able to go through and how you can basically clarify what someone is getting and start to upsell them on what the best possible way for them to move forward is. 

Justin: Yeah, and what I really tried to do is I put myself in the mind of the visitor, so do I know very quickly what I'm going to get or what this company's going to do for me, and then what's the path and what is stopping me from getting to the next step. What are the friction points in that process? And there can be hundreds if not thousands of different things. We could talk all day long about things we should split test on from school, but when it comes down to it, it's just very simple. It's just moving visitors from one step to the next with the ultimate goal in mind of money changing hands for a service or a product. It's just getting them feel comfortable in that nature. 

Benjamin: So I think that mindset is what I was hoping to accomplish with this podcast recording is the way that conversion rate optimization specialists think about the user journey in the sense of what are they seeing and interpreting it from not only just a visual perspective but also are you delivering on what is being expected from step to step, and it actually brings me to the question that I ask everyone in this podcast as we're wrapping up. You've sort of have stated with the mindset is, and for the people that are new or have properties where they can't afford it, conversion rate optimization specialists. You're doing this seeing a website for the first time. What advice do you have for people that are just getting started, are interested in learning conversion rate optimization, or just starting out their career in marketing? 

Justin: Just get really good about listening to your customers. That is the biggest thing. Understand what your audience wants, what makes them tick, what keeps them up at night. You know, building that customer avatar which everybody talks about. It's kind of Cliche in the marketing world, but it really is, especially if you don't have enough traffic to actually split test and you're not getting a lot of traffic to your site, is measure some of that qualitative data. Don't necessarily pay attention to the quantitative side of things or the actual data. You know, what are the hard metrics? You don't really need that when you're first starting out. Get really good at understanding the behaviors of the visitors. Get a second set of eyes on your marketing, especially if you've been doing it for a little bit longer. You know, I just went through this site very quickly, firsthand not ever seeing it before, and we see that oftentimes, even with companies that are doing millions of dollars in revenue, they get so close to their product, they get so close to their marketing that they oversee some of the biggest roadblocks that are holding them back from just exponential growth, so just pay attention to the data. 

Justin: You can read my book if you really want to learn more about optimization. That's a good one. I'll walk you through very simply that tried to not fluff it up. When I wrote the book, I just said, here's some tangible things and some actionable steps to really understand how to make your marketing more effective. 

Benjamin: I totally agree with you. I think that's great advice and I will go on the record of saying I am totally blind to everything that is wrong on the strum school site because it was such a passion project of mine that I just think it's a beautiful little snowflake. But with that said, let me ask you the last question before we let you go. I know that you have your website for your agency. You mentioned that you have a book and any other things that our listeners should know about you, anything that you'd like to promote or how can people get in touch with you? If they're interested, 

Justin: you can actually find me directly on any social channels by going to click [inaudible] dot com. C L Y x o.com/Justin Christianson. All one word. It's basically a glorified business card. It shows all my social channels and ways to get in touch with me. Just easier to put it all in one place and try to list out my facebook and twitter and Linkedin and all of that fun stuff, but I'm all over there. You can find all information. A bunch of great case studies, a bunch of great blog content, and a bunch of great information around marketing and optimization over@conversionfanatics.com. There's also a link over to my book, our. You can find it on Amazon by searching for my name or conversion fanatic in the book section. You should be able to find it on there, both paperback and kindle, but if you are interested in getting a second set of eyes on your marketing, feel free to reach out to me at any time. I'm happy to do an in depth conversion analysis for any of your listeners to help them kind of understanding what their data is telling them and where they're kind of falling short on their website. 

Benjamin: Great. Well Justin, thank you so much for joining the MarTech podcast and that wraps up this episode of the show. Thanks to Justin for joining us and if you're interested in learning more about Justin and Conversion Fanatics, go to Conversion Fanatics.com. Special thanks to search metrics for sponsoring this podcast. If you're looking to grow your online presence, go to Searchmetrics.com to request your free tour of their platform. If you'd like to read the transcript of this podcast, you can click our show notes, or you can go to our website MarTechh pod.com. If you're a subscriber to the MarTech podcast. Thank you very much for being a member of our community. If you ever have any questions or if you are interested in being a guest on the show, you can find a contact form at our website. Again, it's MarTechh pod.com, m, a r t e c h pod.com, or you can find us on Linkedin or twitter or company handle is Ben j Shap Llc b e nj  o s h a p Llc. If you haven't subscribed yet and you want a weekly stream of marketing and technology knowledge and your podcast feed, we've got some great episodes lined up for the next few weeks, so hit that subscribe button in your podcast app and we'll be back in your feed soon. Okay, that's it for today. Thanks again to Justin and until next time my advice is just focused on keeping your customers happy.

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