Conversion of website visits to sales – it’s what we all strive for but frequently we can be disappointed with the results. There can be many different reasons but lack of interest can be a major one. Lack of interest can be termed as ‘visitors not being able to find what they want to purchase on a website’, either because it is too difficult to find or because it is not available.
Many of the most successful online retailers have adopted a Gap Analysis process to gain competitive advantage.
A major online supermarket that sells a vast number of products from groceries and life insurance to electronics goods and clothing, usually fulfils most – if not all – of a visitor’s requirements and in doing so not only satisfies their needs. This means each visitor probably spends more than they originally intended.
And if that hypermarket satisfies twice as many of its visitors’ buying intentions, it effectively halves the cost of acquiring a customer and makes it more likely that the visitor will return to that site rather than visit a competitor’s.
On the other hand, a “one-horse” company – only selling its branded products – is therefore limited in its customer offering. There’s a limit to how large such a company can grow if it only can satisfy a limited amount of its visitors’ requirements.
Enter… Gap Analysis
In simple terms, Gap Analysis is used to identify and quantify the opportunities for satisfying a website’s visitor intentions. The starting point could be an on-page survey to ask site visitors why they visited your website in the first place. Once several hundred responses have been collected, you can create a matrix that summarises visitors’ original intentions, whether or not they were satisfied, and if they purchased/achieved what they originally intended.
So, what do these findings mean financially in terms of current and potential revenue?
You may discover that you satisfy only a small percentage of your visitors’ needs. Most companies don’t think beyond this point because if they do not offer a certain product they are happy for the visitor to go elsewhere to find it. But those who look at the potential financial returns of offering more products may have a more successful outcome.
The Gap Analysis survey feedback can be followed up by professional research into new product line options, research into what competitors are offering, detailed information from suppliers on costings of new products, and calculations of potential extra sales.
This may lead to the decision to broaden your product offering and – more importantly – increase profit per site visitor.
For many websites, a key performance metric is the typical cost per acquisition (aCPA), which is how much you need to spend to acquire each visitor. That figure depends on how much profit can be generated from each visitor. So if you can increase your profit-per-visitor, your aCPA can increase. This means you have the potential to outbid your competitors on ads and get a bigger share of traffic. But of course, your competitors may be thinking the same way too!
There are ways that can help you identify products and services that would satisfy your visitors’ intentions. For example, temporarily add a Google AdSense box to the page. AdSense is powered by auction bidding, so the ads that are shown will be those that the advertisers (and Google) are confident will persuade your visitors to spend money. Once the ads are live on your website, study which products and services they promote.
There are ways that can help you identify products and services that would satisfy your visitors’ intentions. For example, temporarily add a Google AdSense box to the page.
Also, look at which products and services your competitors offer – particularly those that they push hard. Then identify companies that have similar economics to yours, and look at which products they cross-sell. This will suggest not only the products you should be cross-selling, but you may also discover that the similar companies could be cross-selling your products. It is an easy, relatively risk-free way to add products and services.
There is a process to be followed to allow you to explore tentatively how you could offer a new product range. For example, run ads on your page and if they are generating significant revenues, continue to run them. You can contact companies that are advertising on your page, and do deals with them directly. They can pay you on a cost-per-impression (CPI) basis, or on a performance basis with a cost-per-acquisition (CPA) deal or a cost-per-lead (CPL) deal.
For more information about Gap Analysis you should contact QliQ. Call 01635 800868 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.