Ethan Denney

Hooks – The Fast Way to Increase Your Website's Conversion Rate

Want to quickly increase your website’s conversion rate?

Watch this video to see how adding a Hook website message to your site can boost the conversion rate of any page.

In this video, you’ll also learn the Five W framework we use to engage the right visitors with the right message, at the right time.

People are passing by websites every day and are not taking the next step.

The truth is… unless they have a good reason to, why should they?

If you’re not hooking your website visitors with something that grabs their attention and gives them a reason to take the next step, then the majority of people who visit your website won’t take action.

They’ll leave as soon as something else grabs their attention.

If you want to increase your website conversion rate, generate more leads & customers, and increase online sales for your business, then your website needs a hook.

Hooks command people’s attention.

As you probably know, when people are looking at their inbox, they won’t open your emails unless you hook them with a great subject line.

When people land on your website or landing pages, they probably won’t read further or scroll down the page unless you have a headline that hooks them.

When people are scrolling down your web pages, and you want them to take an important action such as clicking to another page, buying a product or moving down your funnel, chances are they won’t, unless you hook them and drive them to take action.

That’s why every website needs a Hook.

So, what’s a Hook?

Hooks are subtle calls-to-action you can use to engage your website visitors and guide them to take the action you want them to take next. Whether you’re a company or a freelancer, they can help you amplify your efforts in optimizing your content and portfolio.

Adding a hook to every key page on your website is one of the fastest ways to increase your website’s conversion rate. Especially, if you’re not already proactively engaging your visitors on key pages like your homepage, blog posts, service/feature pages and your purchase page.

So, how do you create a high converting hook for your website?

Well, when we’re launching a hook on our website, there’s a framework called the Five W’s that we use to show the right message to the right person at the right time.

Here’s how it works.

The 5 Ws of launching a high-converting hook

Whenever you’re launching a hook on your website, answer these five questions.

  1. Who are you engaging?
  2. Why are you engaging them?
  3. What is your message?
  4. Where are you engaging them?
  5. When will you engage them?

Let’s start at the top.

1. WHO are you engaging?

In order to engage people on your website with the right Hook, let’s think about the person you’re targeting on your website.

Where are they coming from?

They might have discovered your site from Google when searching for something, or maybe they landed on your site from Facebook or another social media network. They might have seen a blog post or an ad that you’re promoting, which then led them to your website.

Knowing which websites are referring visitors to your website allows you to show a hook that’s relevant to the site referring them and what their intention might be when visiting your website.

If your visitors are coming from Google, we can assume that they’re searching for information and are possibly looking to educate themselves about the product they are considering to buy, or that they’re looking for information to help them to achieve a specific outcome.

For example, let’s say you’re selling an online backup software and you found that your visitor discovered you through a list of reliable options. This tells you that your visitor is already considering this kind of software, and they’re simply looking into which one’s the best.

When these visitors who are coming from Google arrive on your website, we can assume that they need specific information in order to take the next step.

So by hooking them with a call to action that helps guide them to the information they’re looking for, we can create a relevant way to get people who land on your website to take action and move to the pages or the next steps of your funnel that you want to drive them to.

Another significant factor to consider when targeting visitors is recognizing who the visitor is. Are they a new visitor, or a returning visitor? Are they a subscriber? Are they already a customer or a user of your product?

Knowing the type of person that’s visiting your website allows you to personalize the call to action and show the right hook to the person based on what’s most relevant to who they are and what their current relationship is with your business.

If the person on your website is a new visitor, maybe you need to segment them by engaging them with a survey that collects data about them, and based on their response, guides this visitor to the information or products that are most relevant to what they’re interested in.

If the person on your website is already an email subscriber, then you might want to direct them to content or products that help them move towards becoming a customer.

For example, if this visitor is a subscriber to your newsletter or your blog and you know what blog posts they’ve read or videos they’ve watched, then you might want your hook to guide them to relevant content or products based on what they’ve been reading or watching on your site.

If your visitor is an existing lead in your CRM, then maybe the hook you should show them is a call to action to schedule a consultation, join a webinar, or to talk with a sales rep who gets them to purchase your product.

If they’re a free user of your product, the hook you engage them with could be a call to action to start a trial of your full product or to upgrade to a paid plan.

Knowing the type of person that’s visiting your website is probably the most crucial factor in targeting them with a hook that’s relevant, converts high and drives visitors to move to the next step in your funnel.

2. WHY are you engaging these visitors?

Once you know who on your site you’re targeting, then the next question to answer is “why are you engaging them?”

If you know that the visitor you’re targeting is stuck on a step in your sales funnel, then the reason WHY you are engaging them is to help them take the next step.

Let’s say you run an e-commerce store, and the last step your visitors took was visiting your product page and adding a product to cart. However, your visitors left your site without purchasing your product.

In this scenario, the reason why you would engage these visitors with a hook the next time they visit your website is to take the next step and complete their order.

Let’s run through a different example.

Let’s say you’re targeting visitors who registered for a webinar, but that didn’t purchase your product.

The next time they visit your website, the hook you would engage those visitors with would be a call to action to purchase your product or to get a special deal if they purchase your product before your promotion ends.

Answering the question of why you’re engaging specific visitors on your site helps you clearly define the goal you want those visitors to achieve and helps you create a hook that is relevant to your visitor’s previous actions.

3. WHAT is your message?

Now that we know who your visitor is and why we want to engage them, the question we need to answer next is “what will be your hook’s message”?

If you have data on your visitors, such as the topics they’re interested in, what products they’ve purchased or are interested in purchasing, then you can weave this information into the message of your hook.

Think of your Hook’s message as a follow up to the last action your visitor took.

What can you say that takes into account what your visitor did last, and that guides them to take the next step?

Your message should be clear, concise, and should have a strong call to action.

4. WHERE are you going to engage these visitors?

After you’ve determined what message you’re going to engage them with, next, it’s time to determine where on your site you are going to engage them.

Are are you going to engage them when they’re reading your blog posts?

Are you going to engage them when they’re checking out a product page?

Or are you going to engage them when they’re exploring your pricing page, or when they first land on your homepage?

Knowing where you’re going to engage your visitors is important because the message and the overall goal of your hook should consider the content of the page people are currently on to be truly relevant.

For example, if people are visiting your pricing page, then it’s likely that promoting a relevant blog post isn’t the best hook to show them, because it is a distraction from the action you want the visitor to take.

Your hook might be more effective if it’s designed to help them make a buying decision and overcome objections they have. For example, the hook on your pricing page could promote scheduling a consultation or a demo with your team so that you can help to answer any questions they have before buying.

Taking into account where on your website you’re going to engage visitors also helps you identify what type of hook you need to show them.

5. WHEN will you engage your website visitors?

The last question of the Five Ws is “when will you engage your website visitors?”

Converting visitors with the right message at the right time requires more than just knowing whom you’re engaging, why you’re engaging them, and knowing the message you’ll use to engage them. You also have to get the timing right.

The timing of your hook can have a significant impact on your conversion rates.

Well-timed hooks lead to high conversion rates.

Poorly-timed hooks might lead to annoyed visitors.

If your hook slides up the moment your visitor lands on a web page, before they have the chance to get a feel for the content on the page, chances are they’re going to get annoyed and close it out.

However, by engaging your visitors as they scroll down your blog content and when taking the next step or learning more is relevant to them, you can make nudging visitors to take action a seamless experience.

Some other examples of hooking your visitors at the right time are…

Considering the timing of a campaign such as a webinar or a Cyber Monday promotion, and only promoting hooks for that campaign during the time that campaign is running.

Triggering your hook once visitors reach a section of your product or services page that qualifies them as being interested enough to be engaged about learning more or about taking the next step.

Using an exit intent popup to engage visitors who added a product to their shopping cart and are about to abandon your website without buying, is an excellent opportunity to create some urgency and offer a discount or special deal for purchasing now, rather than later.

Bonus tip

Now that you have a good understanding of how to use the Five W Framework to engage the right visitors with the right message, one last step you can take to increase the conversion rate of your hooks is to make them personal.

People like to do business with people they know like and trust. So, when you’re launching your hook on your website, make it come from someone on your team. Make it personal. Make it friendly. Make it conversational.

By using merge tags in your hooks, you can greet your visitors by name or personalize each message with any other data you have on your visitors.

People don’t like filling out long boring forms or being interrupted with annoying pop-ups that disrupt their browsing experience. So, by making your hook personal, you can make sure it’s relevant, friendly and building a relationship with your website visitors as they move through the buyer’s journey and your purchase funnel.

Wrapping it up

In summary, if you want to boost the conversion rate of any page on your website, engaging the right visitors with the right hook is one of the fastest ways to do it.

Also, using this Five W framework is one of the best ways we’ve found to make sure every hook we launch engages the right visitors, with the right message, at the right time. It’s worked wonders for us, and can work great for you as well :)

If you want to dive more in-depth and get access to Hook templates you can quickly launch on your site, then check out our ecommerce funnel guide.

Thanks for checking out this conversion tip! If you have any feedback, feel free to leave a comment below. We’d love to know your thoughts.

About the author
Ethan Denney
Co-Founder & CEO, ConvertFlow
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Ethan is the Co-Founder & CEO of ConvertFlow. He loves reading about and sharing anything that helps marketers convert more website visitors.