January 27, 2006, 12:00 AM

Overstock tweaks search landing pages to reduce exits

When traffic to one of its coupon pages was producing a high conversion rate but also a high exit rate, Overstock.com’s internal marketing team figured out how to shut the door.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

When traffic to one of its coupon pages was producing a high conversion rate but also a high exit rate, Overstock.com’s internal marketing team figured out how to shut the door.

“Some customers were turned off as soon as they got to the landing page,” Doug Sundahl, director of internal marketing, who heads a team that tries to keep the traffic delivered by external marketing campaigns, told an audience at Shop.org this week. “But we figured this could be an easy win.”

It was easy to figure, he added, that visitors to the coupon page were shoppers looking for price discounts, so his crew set out to see how it could change the coupon page to make it more appealing to bargain hunters. “A small change can go a long way,” he said.

Sundahl noted in a brief interview with Internet Retailer that his team analyzed traffic on its home page and other product pages to find particular promotions that were producing above-average conversions. By making similar versions of some of those effective offers on the coupon page, Overstock, No. 19 in the Internet Retailer Top 400 Guide to Retail Web Sites, managed to reduce the coupon page’s exit rate while maintaining the high conversion rate, he said.

He cautioned, however, that it’s important to continue measuring, analyzing and re-testing changes to landing pages to check which are most effective.

Overstock’com.s Jacob Hawkins will speak at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition June 5-7 in Chicago in a session entitled Making Sense of Online Shopping Malls.

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