How to Break Down the Conversion Friction


Nancy Ryan

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To get more offers for your website, you should give the due consideration to the conversion optimization. The first thing you should care about is  friction, the bitterest conversion enemy.

What is Friction?

Friction is everything that takes your visitors away from your website and raises the ire of your potential buyers. It’s the cruelest conversion killer.


5 elements to increase Conversion



Time to increase conversion rate

Any delay affects conversion and causes the friction. It can be the load time, complex content, complicated fill in form and parallax scrolling.

In general, the problem can be described this way: the more time it takes for a visitor to accomplish the certain action or to wait for a particular process to be proceed, the less chances you will gain the conversion.

Sometimes, friction occurs only in the human consciousness: i.e., a complicated-looking shape is usually associated with long information supplying. But the presence of progress animation while filling the form may reduce the friction members, as they got this feeling of sequential execution of required task.




Every Landing should hold users’ attention to gain the conversion. If there are any elements that make exploring your website complex, you will lose the visitor. Any factor which draws the visitors’ attention away is a friction point:

  • awkward and unreadable text
  • lack or overabundance of images
  • too distracting images
  • garish color blend
  • intriguing anchor text links
  • images with hyperlinks
  • sophisticated design elements

Modern web design allows you to create a very colorful and rich variety of widgets layout, which, unfortunately, is not always a positive impact on your conversion rate.




Incorrect Landing concept is one of the most common friction elements.

The well-done structure gradually leads a visitor down from the beginning to the end of the page, directing him to accomplish the conversion. Improperly structured layout, on the contrary, makes a person to review all the Landing several times that require much more time and cognitive effort.

It is also important to place the site elements in the correct logical order in order to make it easy to find the necessary information.




The website content can also be a friction element. The text of the call-to-action buttons often repels visitors to accomplish the conversion. The copywriter Joanna Wiebe has made a list of the commonly used words in CTA-word buttons that are high, medium, and low friction:

  • high – buy, sign up, submit, give, invest, donate, sponsor, support, complete;
  • medium – join, share, switch, find, start, visit, learn;
  • low – get, check this out, discover, reveal, earn.


Cognitive dissonance

Cognitive dissonance

Cognitive friction is worth to be described in the separate article, as every visitor is the whole world of friction.

As it’s not possible to control every visitor’s perception, then it is required to state and eliminate the possible causes of cognitive dissonance. For example, let’s consider the distrust issue. This problem can be solved in a simple manner: to place the trust symbols, providing the trust issuance of your site.

The distrust issue is just the one of the possible friction reasons. But if you know your target audience, you may cut friction to a minimum.

How to eliminate Friction?

Of course, friction is  bad news, but it has one plus, friction elimination is the most effective way to increase conversion.

The solution is quite simple: you should find the friction elements on your site and neutralize them. You should test your landing page using the following elements:

  • the location of the call to action button above or below the fold
  • the page landing conducive to conversion
  • the button efficiency
  • eliminate all the possible distraction (distracting videos and images, offsite hyperlinks, etc.)
  • readable font
  • the right color theme and appropriate offer topic

Test your websites and analyze the results. That’s the most effective way to get rid of friction, without harming your conversion metrics. Good luck in the struggle with friction.