Karl Blanks

Google's favored rocket scientist?

October 27, 2009: 1:32 PM ET

Google-approved Conversion Rate Experts use statistical analytics and gumshoe tactics to help sites boost online revenue

By L. Michael Cacace, Senior list editor

Jesson, left, and Blanks, right, help companies convert online visitors into buyers. Photo: CRE

Blanks, left, and Jesson help websites convert online visitors into buyers. Photo: CRE

If you think it takes a rocket scientist to improve your corporate website, you would be correct.

Conversion Rate Experts, a London- and New York-based company founded by Ben Jesson, 30 years old, and Karl Blanks, a 37-year-old former rocket scientist (really!), guarantees to increase substantially the revenue generated by a company's website. Google (GOOG) thought so much of their methods that the online ad giant named CRE one of the first authorized consultants for Google Website Optimizer, a testing tool that helps sites figure out how to improve sales.

How is it possible to "convert" more website viewers into buyers? Jesson says his company has developed techniques that systematically analyze the behavior of a website's viewers. Basically, it is a combination of multivariate statistical analysis and good old-fashion detective work.

First, CRE determines the website's current conversion rate. For example, if 95 out of 100 visitors to the website leave without buying anything, the current conversion rate is only 5%. CRE then examines and analyzes the data of those 95 visitors to understand why they did not take action. More

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