As we had previously discussed on our Conversions: Turning Visitors into Customers post, being on the first page of Google and increasing website traffic will be pointless if all your leads are getting tossed out the window due to poor conversion techniques.
But what is considered a conversion? A conversion event happens when a visitor completes a pre-determined desired action in response to a call-to-action placed within a website section. If you have a small business and you have a website, you probably have at least one of the following items:
- A general contact form on your “Contact Us” page asking for the visitors contact info.
- A newsletter opt-in form allowing your visitors to sign up for your email newsletter.
- An appointment request form allowing your visitors to book a time with you for a consultation.
- A shopping cart and multiple products your visitors can purchase from you online.
What do 4 these things have in common? They’re all examples of website conversions. Without conversions a website serves the same purpose of a brochure. Sometimes brochures are picked up and result in a call, but most of the time they get a single glimpse and then they’re tossed in the trash.
Enter Conversion Rate & Optimization
Given what you’ve now learned about conversions, it’s easy to see why tracking these visitor events is of absolute importance.
Measuring conversion event goals is conducted by a metric called the conversion rate. This can be calculated by taking the total number of visitors who have completed a desired event (also known as a “conversion goal”) and dividing it by the overall size of the audience for during a specific period. For example, a website receives 20,000 visits in the last 30 days. Out of that group, 800 visitors clicked on a call button (ie. converted): 800/20000 = 0.04 or a 4% conversion rate.
Conversion rates are immensely important when optimizing a website’s layout and functionality. Not only do they indicate whether your marketing is profitable, but they also reveal how visitors engage with your website.
But that’s not all — here are the main reasons why the conversion rate is so important:
- Conversion rates can often predict the level of success or failure: As a business owner, you want to know whether your business is on the right track or not, right? Conversion rates make for an honest assessment of the current state of your website. Likewise, decreasing conversion rates indicate where your business strategy needs work.
- Better conversion rates can save (a lot of) marketing money: Websites with better conversion rates are generally more efficient than websites with weaker conversion rates. A higher conversion rate lets you cover more ground without increasing your marketing budget, or you can reduce your advertising budget and have cash leftover for testing new marketing tactics.
- Focusing on conversion rates will generally improve the website: As you learn which factors are most important for driving conversions on your website, you’ll eventually discover how to make your site more valuable for visitors and existing customers — and the benefits of this extend far beyond short-term profits.
Conversions aren’t all that matter — you still need to watch the total number of visits, overall time spent per visit and numerous other metrics — but paying attention to conversion rates is generally the key for a successful online presence.
Mahalo for reading.