from Digital Marketing, Analytics

Conversion is Not a Sale: It's the Top Digital Marketing Metric

By Larisa Aslanyan
August 8, 2016 - read

conversion-optimization-internet-marketing-greenville.jpgIf you haven't mastered all the internet marketing metrics yet, you should know this; conversion does not always mean a sale. It is a specific action taken by the user, who adopts a different role after that action.

For instance, a user visits your website, at this moment they are only a reader. Now when they submit a form, trading their information for exclusive content, they convert and become a lead; their role and value change.

Numbers like reach, bounce rate, time on website are merely hints that give you an idea about the current situation. All those metrics should serve to the sole purpose of increasing your conversion rate.

And although you will come across the term Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) a lot when reading about e-commerce marketing, so much that you would think it's specifically an e-commerce tactic, in reality, conversion is vital for ALL businesses who want to generate online ROI.

Conversion is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

A user never clicks on your website link from Google's search result page, goes to your product page, and buys right away. I don't know why, but this kind of magic never happens  (especially with high-end products). Instead, your entire conversion process (from point A to point B) must be divided into micro-conversions, different pieces of the same puzzle or phases that lead the user to the end result by connecting the dots in between. 

Your user is on a treasure hunt. Have you ever seen Indiana Jones finding the treasure right away? Of course not! The user has to complete the planned actions to reach the end point. 

A marketer's job is to map out and optimize those micro-conversion points, based on data, stats about user behavior on your website, as well as simple experience and intuition. 

If you're a company selling high-end spas in Greenville, a catalog download might be your final conversion point, because after that, it’s the job of the sales consultant to reach out to the user and close the deal.

If you’re a digital marketing agency, requesting a quote or a free consultation is a good conversion. Any other business will apply. In fact, here's the average conversion rate based on industry. 

Conversion-rate-benchmarks.pngImage Source: Marketing Sherpa

Conversion Channels Hold the Key to More ROI

Complete knowledge of your conversion channels allows you to do smart budgeting and work organization. Let's take an example, if most of your conversions are coming from LinkedIn ads, you can calculate your spend and ROI and determine if it’s worth increasing the budget. If these ads bring you more profit than what you spend on them, congratulations, you just found a gold mine!

However, if you’re spending thousands of dollars on ads and not receiving any conversion whatsoever, reconsidering your targeting criteria or advertising on that platform would be your next best idea.

Don't Think Inside the Conversion Box

Results matter. You will hear this a lot (some of it from us!), but don’t let it turn into a limited mindset. Make a note to come out of the conversion box once in a while and breath fresh growth hacking air. Inhale tests and experiments, exhale growth. Now repeat that again!

Apart from the sure-thing results we love aiming for, there are multiple opportunities you should not ignore. Just because your organic traffic is not reaching the end conversion doesn’t mean your SEO is useless. Maybe there is only a single point that distracts your users or a technical issue that breaks your conversion funnel. 

Most importantly, build your internet marketing strategy on many columns, not just one or two. When one of them collapses due to a Google update or Facebook changes its feed algorithm again, you have other channels to supply qualified traffic to your website and keep the well oiled marketing machine rolling.

Ask Yourself ... Why?

Conversion points should be the answer to the question "Why?" Why are you spending so many hours on writing that blog article? Why do you want to re-design your website? Why do you want to hold your demo event in Asheville, not in Columbia? If the answers to those questions bring you one step closer to your final conversion point, then the time and effort you spend on them are justified. If not, then you may need to look for an alternative.

Keep reading about optimizing your website conversion rate. Or even better, grab our free ebook and get all the information in one place. Download below.

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Tags: Digital Marketing, Analytics