How well is your website converting visitors to customers?

Digital marketing tends to be over-run with data and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) but ultimately there is just one metric that matters and that is conversion rate.

If your digital marketing efforts don’t produce leads or sales then they have been wasted.

Maximising conversions should be at the top of every digital marketers to-do list and no amount of fancy reporting of KPIs will cut it if the conversions are poor.

And the way to deliver a good conversion rate is my having a well-optimised website that provides a great user experience and smoothly channels visitors to the right place for them to convert: make a sale, sign up to a newsletter, download a guide or whatever the conversion goal might be.

To be able to do this the business must be absolutely clear about what their goals are.

What is a good conversion rate?

There is no one answer to this question because conversion rates vary across industries. Take a high-end interior designer, for example, each project might be worth £100,000 in profit so even if only 10 visitors a year convert out of a total of 10,000 visitors then that conversion rate of 0.1% would be considered good by the business.

On the other hand, a 0.1% conversion rate from 1,000,000 visitors would be very poor if each sale yielded just £10 profit – making a total of just £10,000 over the course of a year.

So calculate what would be a good conversion rate for your business based on your industry, pricing and sales cycle then set that as a benchmark.

Tracking website conversion rate

Now that you know what you would consider a good conversion rate you can track the actual data against that benchmark. That will help you determine the effectiveness of your digital marketing and search engine optimisation (SEO) efforts in order to improve them.

Track conversions by setting up goals on Google Analytics and monitoring them on a regular basis – either weekly or monthly depending on traffic volumes.

Improving website conversion rate

To improve a low conversion rate you will need to take the following steps:

  1. First identify the top-performing web pages that are driving the majority of visitors to your website, which is easily done using Google Analytics.
  2. For those pages you then need to check metrics such as Bounce Rate and Dwell Time to see what proportion of visitors spend time on those pages and take further action.
  3. Next review the calls-to-action (CTAs) on those pages to identify whether they are encouraging potential customers to take the next step towards converting. Test different CTAs with different wording, location, size and colour to improve conversion rate. Consider using image-based CTAs with overlaid text.
  4. Use heatmap software such as HotJar to analyse visitor behaviour and identify which sections of your top-performing web pages are most popular with visitors. The results can often be very revealing and don’t necessarily correlate with expectations. Use these results to refine CTAs.
  5. Review your sales funnel to ensure it is helping, not hindering, conversion rate and ensure your website is nurturing visitors at every Consider all 4 stages of the sales funnel as a step closer to conversion:
  • awareness/attraction of people to your product/service
  • people engaging with your business (e.g. reading a blog post or informational page on the website)
  • people want or need your product or service – this is the point they are most likely to convert.
  • And, finally, they take action and buy your product, call you, arrange a meeting or complete one of your other business goals.

These are the basic concepts that you need to understand, analyse and improve to maximise website conversion rates and form the fundamentals of Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).