Remove distractions and increase conversions

1. Decide on the most wanted action for the page: this should combine what you want the user to do and what the user wants to do.

For example, you want visitors on your home page to end up on the pricing page. However, you’d also like them to submit their email and sign up for your newsletter. Your visitors might not be ready to navigate to the pricing page yet. Perhaps they don’t know enough about your product or that’s too big a commitment for their level of intent. So, making move to the pricing page your most wanted action would be a mistake. Instead, you could focus on getting their email address as a good first step. Your most wanted action should be simple, distraction-free and realistic.

2. Minimize distractions by removing elements that don't lead the user to the most wanted action, like large navigations that take up a lot of screen space, fonts and colors that take attention from the CTA, moving images, and additional calls to action with high contrast colors.

The closer you get to closing the sale, the fewer things you should have on your screen. Once they get to the checkout screen, you shouldn’t have ANYTHING on the page that doesn’t directly contribute to conversion. Note that it is not only internal factors that distract your visitors. They can also be distracted by external factors (their phones, their environment, their social media, their email). They are also more likely to be distracted when they’re bored. To demonstrate how common distraction is, WiderFunnel analyzed Enterprise’s PPC landing page, which also serves as their home page. What they found? 12 points of distraction on just one page… Note how minor some of these distractions seem. Distraction isn’t always Comic Sans and flashing banners. Chances are, your site is distracting your visitors from your most wanted action without your knowledge.

3. Gather a group of stakeholders or team members and on every page of your website, look for elements that might be distracting users from your most wanted action for that page.

Record your findings so that you can redesign problem pages later. When trying to identify distractions on your site, ask yourself: What’s on the page that’s not helping the visitor take action? Is anything unnecessarily drawing attention? What can I remove without compromising performance? Are there navigation elements that could be removed? Is the top header taking up too much screen space? Is there any unrelated copy here?

4. Map the visual hierarchy of each page on your website by recording the order in which you register elements on the page, then assess whether the visual hierarchy highlights the right elements.

Certain parts of your site are more important than others, which is why you need visual hierarchy. It’s what draws attention to your call to action. It’s why the headline is always bigger and bolder than the subheadline. Are the right elements at the top of your hierarchy? If your call to action is low on the visual hierarchy, that means there are too many distractions.

5. A/B test variations of your problem pages that remove distracting elements or reduce the level of distraction associated with those elements.

You might find that the elements you thought distracting were actually fine. For example, product pictures and Q&A on an ecommerce product page are positive elements because they serve the most wanted action. Other Products on Sale, however, might be a distraction.