In my last post about EdgeRank, I made the following comment towards the end of the post, which I thought deserved a bit more clarification:
Treat being liked as a primary conversion goal, and use tools like Website Optimiser to ensure that the button is placed in the most conversion friendly position on your website.
Testing and re-testing page layouts to improve conversion rates is an essential part of online marketing, and one that often gets overlooked. A visitor that does not convert has a very high cost, but even a non converting user can still tell you plenty about your website.
Conversion optimisation is a massive area and requires a lot of specialist knowledge to get the best out of it, but there are enough tools available to help anyone make improvements to their site.
Using software like the excellent Click Tale will allow you to monitor user journey through complete capture of mouse movements and form filling, while your regular analytics software will tell you plenty about generalised behaviour.
If you start to consider social media as part of your conversion funnel, and improvements to social visibility as a goal in its own right, you can begin to incorporate it into any AB testing programme that you have on the website. Try different positions for your like button, different back ground colours. Try making it larger – or smaller, try placing it above rather than below the article or even try dropping an image above it.
Remember to investigate other opportunities for more visibility. The recently launched Facebook Blog Comments push your content straight into the stream, and ensure that you get more visibility, and are well worth considering.