A conversion path is a journey planned by marketers and/or website developers to connect steps you want visitors to take through your website - from entry points to specific desired actions.
Think: a social post to a blog with a CTA to a landing page to form.
This journey can be comprised of many assets to intentionally guide visitors toward a specific conversion.
Important! Different buyers visit different parts of your website at different times in their buying process. Creating journeys that kick off from these different starting points is important to give your site structure and your visitors guidance.
As the name suggests, there is no destination without a way to get there. We like to call this the “From-To” model. In other words, what are the interactions or moments that kick off a visitor's journey with you, and (in an ideal world) what journeys do you want them to take?
Simply gathering a visitor’s information isn’t the end. The journey your conversion paths take users down ends when you deliver on the promises you made. That could look like:
- Delivering a downloaded piece of content
- Giving them access to your team’s calendar to book a call
- Sharing the results of their assessment, or any other conversion on your site
Planning your conversion path requires a plan for follow-through to build a great user experience.
The best conversion paths’ “endpoint” should kick off your post-conversion engagement such as
- One-to-one communication to keep the conversation going personally
- One-to-many communication to nudge them into the next conversion path and keep momentum down the buyer’s journey.
That’s a lot to plan! What seems like an email, a CTA, and a landing page is so so much more and does need intentional strategic planning to keep your visitors engaged.
We know from experience: that it’s hard to keep all of these moving, connected, and important pieces organized! So we use HubSpot to keep it all organized in one place:
- building assets
- scheduling promotions
- analytics and reporting
- and more (Unless you want that first! You can jump down to learn about our favorite tips for conversion paths in HubSpot!)
Building a smarter conversion path strategy
Have you ever tried to reach a new destination without a map? Maybe you found signs along the way. Maybe your sense of direction helped you get close. These passive routes can be fun at times, but just won't cut it when you're on a mission.
Content dumped in a resource center or randomly promoted on social media or by email doesn’t help your customer or you. Users won’t reach a destination you’re not guiding them towards.
Don't leave this journey up to chance with your website visitors.
Passive → Active
Your conversion path strategy is the map to your visitors' destination on your website. This journey entices your target audience to go from channel to channel, page to page actively and willingly.
As their curiosity is piqued and their questions are getting answered, your strategy will deliver them to that conversion.
The results of this mindset: conversion optimization
The road you’ve already paved is easier to track than trying to follow the random dots of emails, social media, CTAs, blogs, etc.
Mapping and optimizing conversion path entry points: Monitor channels, content, and messages that bring visitors to your site most often so you know where to invest.
Following where they go next: Tracking clicks and forms on known valuable pages gives you levers to pull and optimizations to test.
- Segmenting this analysis by audience and service line: Not all personas, segments, and service/product lines will have the same paths or behaviors in those paths. Segmentation will help you optimize and specialize your conversion strategy even further.
Steps to create a better conversion path from start to finish
Odds are, you’ve created some sort of conversion path before (though you may not have called it that previously). Follow these steps to create your next conversion path smarter.
- What is your conversion goal? Your goal should give you a clear direction for planning your conversion path. Alignment of these two questions will help you validate if your goals are on track:
- What conversion is most important to your business?
- What conversion is most helpful for your audience?
Which persona is the primary focus? Zeroing in on your persona will help you keep the tone, design, word choice, and offer relevant and helpful.
What pain point does this solve for that persona? Your conversion path should add value to your user. The pain point will guide how you frame the solution and when it is most needed for this persona.
Where do these personas normally engage with you the most? This will help you plan their starting point for your path on your site and where to plant your first stepping stone.
Is this persona active on your LinkedIn page? Do these people normally hang out in your blog passively reading? Do they love your resource center and download every new piece of content you release? Do they frequent your webinars? Are they often browsing your pricing pages?
What type of content or interaction do they typically prefer? Do they prefer content that helps them problem-solve on their own? If yes, that's good news for establishing you as a trusted partner so your next step can be about your product or service. Do they prefer content that compares their purchasing options? If yes, that's a great place to nudge them toward interacting with your team.
- Choose the conversion destination. Depending on the stage in the funnel, this could be a content download, booking a meeting, or conducting a free trial. The conversion destination must take all of the above steps into consideration to be logical.
- Build the components of a strong conversion path.
- Your CTA(s) - the message and design that grabs their attention when they are browsing your site and nudges them to your next step
- Landing Page - the place where you will continue the story and value proposition started in your CTA compelling the visitor to take your desired action
- The Delivery and/or Thank You Page - where you confirm that you've delivered what was promised and follow through on the story you've been building (Bonus points if this step also includes a CTA to kick off your next conversion path to keep their buyer's journey moving down the funnel.)
Plan your promotion. Your promotion should be targeted and specific to your audience(s) and their recent behaviors in your marketing and sales funnel. This could include
- Intentional promotion on social media and via email (1:1 and 1:many) directing your audience directly to your landing page or other starting point of your path
- Cross-linking on partner websites to bring in more
- New or updated blogs on your website to bring new traffic in via organic search
See more ideas in our campaign builder blog
Launch. Timing matters both for your audience and your team. For your audience, what day and time will catch their attention? What time frame are they most ripe for help (i.e. when they get a promotion, when they subscribe to your newsletter, or when they purchase a product for the first time)? For your team, timing matters based on when previous campaigns have been successful and when your team has the bandwidth to handle a potential influx of sales activity.
Analyze. Conversion paths are not to be set and forgotten about. You should be evaluating your conversion path overall and the individual assets on a regular basis. The great thing about creating assets on software like HubSpot is you can see data in real time and then make changes as needed. Look out for metrics such as click rate, conversion rate, form submissions, and new contacts.
- Adjust. With the information you get from above, you can make changes or test different versions via A/B testing. Remember to only change one variable at a time so you can pinpoint exactly what is causing the positive or negative change.
Implementing conversion path assets in HubSpot
As mentioned above, HubSpot is a fantastic tool to create, house, manage, and analyze your conversion path. Here are 15+ HubSpot tools that help you build and track your conversion path strategy.
House conversion path content
- Website pages. HubSpot’s CMS Hub allows you to build pages that reflect your company’s unique style with functional designs that communicate purpose. Use website pages in your conversion path to display web experiences, pillar pages, service pages, and more.
- BONUS: Payment link. You can put payment links directly on your HubSpot website! You don’t have to worry about losing users if they have to navigate to another provider to submit payment. Phew.
- Blogs. HubSpot’s CMS Hub has a brilliant drag-and-drop editor to make the eye-catching blogs of your dreams. You can also use the performance dashboard to see how each individual blog is doing in terms of page views, bounce rate, entrances, and time per page.
- Landing page creator + A/B testing. Your landing pages can live directly on your HubSpot website as well. You can use a drag-and-drop method to design the page with your choice of forms, CTAs, images, text, buttons, etc. You can also create A/B versions to test which color button performs better or which feature description converts more users.
- File manager. You can store your files (premium content offers, images, videos, courses, etc) right in your CMS. This makes it easier to update the right version in all places it’s used and keep track of how many times it’s been opened (and by whom). Additionally, files stored in the file manager are compressed to be served optimally on the page, which reduces load speed.
- Knowledge base tool. Users like to seek solutions on their own first without having to go to a service agent. HubSpot’s knowledge base tool allows you to create KBAs that resonate most with your audience whether through copy, images, video, or a combination of all three. You can see data on which articles are the most helpful and which are frequently sought. Use this in a conversion path to connect a certain KBA page view to a path that educates on a helpful product or service related to the pain point that brought them to the KBA in the first place.
- CTA creator. You can create graphical and anchor-based CTAs in HubSpot. You can see how they are performing and where they are placed. Make changes once and apply them to all places the CTA lives.
- Form creator. Forms can be created natively in HubSpot as well with options for pop-ups, slide-in, dropdown, standalone, or embedded forms. These forms have a variety of options for the type of conversion, form fields, dynamic form fields, and design. Plus, you can track performance for forms as well.
Amplify conversion path content
- Email marketing. Send emails directly from your account to your targeted audience. Emails can be sent at a certain time or based on a certain action. You can also string emails together as a lead nurturing campaign through a workflow (learn more below). HubSpot’s email marketing tool also allows for A/B testing. Plus, metrics are live on the performance tab for open rate, click rate, and reply rate.
- BONUS: Meeting Links. Sales and Service Hub users can create meeting links that connect directly to team members’ calendars and are stored in the user’s contact records.
- Social media tool. Create, schedule, and analyze social media posts directly in HubSpot.
Pro Tip: use the calendar tool to see when a particular conversion path’s promotional materials are going out over a set period of time.
- Workflows. You can use HubSpot’s workflow tools to do a lot of heavy lifting in your conversion path.
- Idea 1: Set up an email lead nurturing campaign post-conversion
- Idea 2: Send out a promotional email for your conversion path based on a certain action (visiting a page or leaving a page without an action)
- Idea 3: Send an abandoned cart/conversion email to people who visit a landing page but don’t follow through.
- Ads tools. Track your Google, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn ads directly in the HubSpot Marketing Hub.
- Sales templates, snippets, and sequences. Save the sales team’s time with pre-crafted messaging based on the conversion path that can be deployed automatically.
Analyze conversion path content
- Campaign tool. The campaign dashboard is your eye in the sky for how individual assets associated with the campaign are performing as well as the campaign overall. Key metrics include sessions, contacts, influenced contacts, and closed deals. You can also see revenue attribution! This is the place to quantify the success of your conversion path and see if you are meeting the goal you first set out to achieve.
- Customer journey reports. Within the HubSpot Reports tool, you can add stages that lead to your conversion destination. You can then see which assets get the most interaction and traction.
- Attribution reports. Within the campaign tool, you can see first touch, last touch, time decay, and linear models for asset attribution. This is helpful when analyzing what’s working and what’s not. It can also help you see where you should put more energy into creating or optimizing.
Ideas for conversion paths
Conversion paths can work for a variety of funnel stages. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking about which conversion paths you may need:
Pump up your conversion marketing
Some key takeaways from this blog:
- Define your goal and continuously analyze your assets to adjust to user behavior.
- Using a tool like HubSpot allows you to work smarter, not harder, when it comes to creating, hosting, promoting, and analyzing your conversion path.
- Users can come into a conversion path at many entrance points. Meet them where they’re at on the platforms they’re at.
Want more content strategy wisdom? Check out our Elite Campaign Strategy Planner!