Just as Microsoft pretty much rules the world of operating systems, so WordPress pretty much rules the world of site and blog building. In fact, of the top 10 million sites, as ranked by Alexa, 25% use WordPress. As far as content management systems, the closest competitors, Drupal and Joomla combined, make up only 5% of websites.
Because of its popularity, the movement to develop plug-ins has not slowed. In fact, a look at WordPress.org will show that there are now over 40,000 plugins listed. This is great news for marketers, because a good number of them relate to CRO. It is also bad news, because there are so many options, it is difficult to know which are really going to meet individual needs.
Your first goal, of course, is to create content that will increase traffic to your site. The next goal is to get the conversions you want from that traffic. Below are list the most popular CRO plugins currently in use, with a brief explanation of their functions. While this is certainly not a complete list, using them will go a long way toward helping with CRO and perhaps cut down on your research time.
Landing Page Plugins
Whether you just have a home page or several landing pages for visitors/customer at different stages in your sales funnel, landing page design, along with the CTA’s you will place there are critical.
Of course you want to develop your landing pages with a free plugin if possible, and you certainly can. However, at a one-time $97.00 cost, the newest version of OptimizePress is worth it. You can build a site from scratch, build email lists, set up your blog, create as many landing pages as you want and even add membership areas.
The 2.0 version is improved because you do not have to use any of its 30+ themes. If you already have what you want, their plugin will work without you having to change your theme.
Best of all? No coding required, and it automatically makes anything you create mobile compatible. Check out the site so see this huge number of features.
A very simple way to build a landing page – drag and drop. You can include popups too. But there’s more. You can create email opt-in forms, and this plugin will integrate with some of the most popular email services – Infusionsoft, MailChimp, and A. Weber. You can update pages at any time. The 350+ templates are all based on research for conversion, and analytics and A/B testing come along.
Unbounce has one of the best blogs in the content marketing/landing page business, and it has used all of its expertise to build a plugin. Build and customize your landing page(s), manage them all with just this one plugin, and conduct essential testing too.
While most of us worry that popups will be an irritant, research shows that they actually do improve CRO. A visitor may have missed an earlier opt-in; a visitor may have had too many choices provided. Whatever the reason, popups began as a visitor’s behavior was tracked and showed that they were about to bounce.
Now there are other places for popups that can prove effective too. If you decide to use popups, be sure to test their placement effectiveness, along with what you are offering for that conversion you want.
Over 275,000 site owners use Optin Monster. Users can choose from a large variety of forms and conduct that critical A/B testing to see which ones are more effective.
Elegant Themes Bloom Plugin
This plugin is darned comprehensive. You can set up automatic optin-in popups almost anywhere and at any point in a visitor’s journey around your site or blog. The popups can actually pop up or they can fly-in. They can be scheduled as a visitor finishes reading an article, in the middle of an article, or in your widget area.
One of the most effective CRO tactics is to get visitors and readers to share your content on social media. To do this, you need buttons that are clearly visible, along with any content you publish or email you send out. You may want them to be “sticky,” that it, scroll down a post with the reader; you may want them at the end of each post. Testing will tell you which placements are the best.
Elegant Themes Monarch Themes
Visit the Elegant Themes site and look at all of the options you have – for placement, for scrolling, for adding to emails, images and videos. There is also a popup design feature included. They have a great demo that will walk you through everything you can do.
If you want a recommendation, here it is: CrazyEgg’s blog uses this plugin to produce its tweetable quotes that it publishes all of the time. Foundr Magazine uses it too, and creates great photos and images along with its quotes. When visitors are inspired by something you have on a landing page or in a blog post, they will Tweet it, and their communities will now know who you are and where the quote came from.
Your CTA buttons, their placement and the words on them, can make a huge difference in whether that visitor clicks or not. Both Bloom and Monarch provide help with these, but there are others as well.
The Hello Bar lets you add a bar at the top of any page on your site that gives an engaging option and a CTA click. Here is an example of how ShoutMeLoud.com uses them:
It’s easy to install the plugin and anyone can learn to use it within minutes to add these bars. Here is another example of how Neil Patel uses it on his popular blog, QuickSprout:
While InboundNow offers a variety of marketing tools, its CTA plugin provides a large number of templates. You can create CTA buttons any place on your site, customize them, and then run A/B testing. This is just on plugin of many from InboundNow, so be sure to check out the others too. All are focused on conversions.
One Word: Yoast
If you have not installed the Yoast SEO, then do so immediately. It has both free and paid versions, but the free version will give you a wealth of information. It will provide great prompts as you are crafting you meta descriptions, your keywords, and will give you a final review of your post or page. Conversions do not happen if people do not find you.
Search engines like site maps. Here is a plugin that will allow you to put one together quickly and easily.
Testing everything will let youi know which of your elements are workingm ore effectively in converting. There are severl plugins that can do this for you, in addition to the ones mentioned oabove in other categories.
Easy to install and simple to set up split testing – just three steps. Also some key tips to help you test better.
Nello AB Testing
If you want to test everything, then this plugin is for you. Here is a listing of all that you can split test:
A Couple of Additional Plugins You Will Want to Think About
Offering content upgrades in the middle or the end of your posts is an effective way to get a subscription opt-in. These can be in the form of anything of value you can offer – a cheat sheet, a checklist, a list of resources, a PDF version of your post, etc.
Just make certain that it is of value. Even though your regular content is amazing, people are in a hurry, and they may find the upgrade more valuable. Content Upgrades Pro is the perfect plugin to create those upgrades and highlight them within your posts.
WordPress Touch is an almost instantaneous way to make your pages mobile-friendly – a couple of clicks and you are finished.
A website is meaningless unless it is working for you. And working for you means you are getting conversions of any type: leads, subscribers, social shares, and, of course, sales. These 15 plugins will make your site work for you.