One of the many things I do for members inside the Inner Circle is review their blog. When I do these reviews, I almost always do it on video. I’m looking at things like design, list building effectiveness, and conversion. I also evaluate the structure of the content, navigation pages, etc.
Rarely is the direction of that blog review reversed. And, like everybody else, I also value an expert third-party perspective.
Derek Halpern seems like he’s come out of virtually nowhere in our niche, from “who’s that?” to a guy a lot of us are paying attention to. He’s actually not a newcomer to this stuff at all. He has a lot of experience when it comes to building traffic and converting traffic into leads.
Well, Derek has been making the rounds a bit lately by doing blog critiques. He did one for Chris Brogan, Pat Flynn, and more recently, Corbett over at Think Traffic. Derek and I chat every now and then on Skype anyway, so when he offered to do one of these critiques for DavidRisley.com, I took him up on it. I’d be an idiot not to.
This is especially good timing for me because I’m only a few weeks into the new design here. So, in this video, Derek offers his advice on a number of ways to increase the efficiency for this site. First, here’s the video (see below), then after the video, I’ll offer a few comments of my own.
Get out a piece of paper, because you might want to take some notes. He packs a lot into this…
(NOTE: If you’re reading this somewhere other than my site and can’t see the video, click here.)
So, here’s a little summary of his suggestions for me:
- Resource pages for top navigation, with a drip content launch of them (See video for more details on this). The good news is that I was already working on these pages before my call with Derek, so SCORE for me. He provided some tips on the structure of those pages, though.
- Include the links to my reports in the main sidebar above Popular Posts. Now, I think Derek and I sometimes got the terminology confused between “guides” and “reports”, but I’m pretty sure he meant to link to my reports there.
- Test out getting rid of the related posts beneath my articles. In order to give more weight to the opt-in.
- Put separate opt-in forms on the guides that I’m creating, thereby allowing me to deliver a custom autoresponder sequence and a custom launch process into the Inner Circle. Now, I think this is a great idea. The good news is that I had already thought of the separate tracking on those pages… but it had NOT occurred to me yet to build in a custom evergreen launch to lead people into the Inner Circle. That’s great.
- Put an opt-in into the footer in order to grab people who scan through the comments.
- Consider dropping the RSS link at the top. Or at least removing the duplicate links and inserting nofollow’s on those links.
Now, a quick “how to” on the custom tracking for opt-ins mentioned above…
With Aweber, the opt-in form HTML has a hidden form field called “meta_adtracking”. By default, Aweber throws some useless numerical form ID into that field. What you can do is replace that with a unique identifier so that you know exactly what form people used to sign up for your site.
See, you can create separate forms (even for different lists) if you want, but you can also just recording the ad tracking. So, for example, on my About page, I have 3 opt-in forms on there. The forms are identical, so there’s no reason to create 3 different forms in Aweber. Instead, I just assign different a different adtracking ID to each so that I can run a search in Aweber and tell exactly which of those forms were used to subscribe.
Alright, moving on…
One of the things I like about Derek is that he is really good at thinking about the psychology of the person on the site. This is something that I definitely focus on, and I personally find that element of design and marketing simply fascinating.
I encourage everybody to watch the video, and then begin really concentrating on your reader’s mindset. When your site is designed to tailor the reader, you get more traffic and more conversions. And isn’t that the name of the game here?
I recommend that you check out Derek over at SocialTriggers.com and sign up for his newsletter. In fact, he is opening up his private email list to DavidRisley.com subscribers for a limited time. This is only the 7th time he’s opened up this particular list. This isn’t some weird scarcity play… you’re actually getting on a list which he personally replies to when you email him. So, for that reason, he doesn’t keep the list open all the time (I can’t blame him).
Time to get busy, baby!