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What is it about conversions and conversion rates that makes each marketer and online merchant focus all efforts on them and prioritise them over any other metric? 

Well…conversions are those actions taken by prospects that literally define whether your business succeeds or fails. 

This article wraps up the fundamentals of conversion rates in the e-commerce world (we will mark the difference between this percentage and conversion rates in marketing). By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of what exactly a conversion rate is, how to calculate and optimize it.

We’ve organized the essentials in the neat table of contents below to give you the opportunity to jump promptly to a specific point if you need. 

Now…without further due, let’s dig into this topic and reveal all you need to know about your store’s conversion rate. 

Table of Contents

  • Conversion rate definition – What is a conversion rate in e-commerce?
  • Conversion rate impact – Why is conversion rate so important for your store’s success?
  • Conversion rate calculated – How to easily calculate the percentage of your store’s conversion rate?
  • Conversion rate in numbers – What percentage should you aim for?
  • Conversion rate optimization (CRO) – How to organically increase your conversion rate and boost sales?
  • CRO tips and tricks to try – Which are the best practices for increasing conversions?
  • Expert conversion rate optimization – How can you take your store to the next level? 
  • Conversion rates wrapped up 

1. Conversion Rate Definition

What is a conversion rate in e-commerce?

Simply put, the conversion rate is the percentage that equals the number of users who completed at least one of your store’s goals (conversions) divided by the total number of your website visitors.

A site goal can be any objective the webpage has. Whether you convert prospects into clients or not directly impacts the conversion rate.

In marketing, each customer’s activity that leads to accomplishing a specific marketing objective (e.g. subscription, share, download of marketing materials, click on a call-to-action button, email opening) is considered a conversion. 

In e-commerce, a conversion primarily means making a purchase, yet other activities could be also classified as specific site goals (conversions). 

To name a few examples of conversions in e-commerce: 

  • Making a purchase 
  • Adding products to the cart
  • Joining email marketing lists (subscribing)
  • Using a discount code 

As you can see, the difference between marketing and e-commerce conversions is minimal. It’s all about your business goals. 

2. Conversion rate impact

Why is conversion rate so important for your store’s success?

Conversions mean sales, sales mean profit, and profit means success. At least in e-commerce. 

Even if there are some other major assets (brand image, value proposition, market share etc.) that have to be taken into consideration when evaluating an e-commerce company, profit is the cornerstone of its success. 

As a main metric, the conversion rate of a Shopify store is directly related to the number of conversions. The higher the conversion rate, the bigger the profit. 

In other words, the conversion rate of your online store is the ultimate indicator of its prosperity and determines whether an e-commerce venture is going to thrive or fail in the highly competitive digital world we all live in today.

3. Conversion rate in numbers

What percentage should you aim for?

Conversion rates vary across different sectors.

If your e-commerce business is in the broad “Home” niche, a rate as low as 0.5% is what you would strive for. 

When we jump into a sector like “Fashion” and surprisingly “Finance and banking” good rates soar to 1% – 2%.

Still seems low, doesn’t it? It really is harder than previously thought…

On the other hand, fashion companies have the edge of being “modern”. These brand cultures have a powerful pull on customers which reveals numerous creative ways to increase the capital of the business. A brand in this sector can become a lifestyle for many millennials who feel comfortable in the digital world. 

The finance sector has one of the lowest click-through rates, but contrary to this, their purchasing rates are sky-high due to customer’s strong brand advocacy. This is the niche in which people store their money or invest. The commitment grows for years, but once the trust of the client is gained, they will continue to be yours and only yours customers. Forever.

Each industry has a different conversion rate range. 

Take a look at the chart showing Growcode’s latest statistics 

When setting your KPI’s you must take into account the average conversion rate in your niche and adjust your strategy to it.

4.Conversion rate calculated

How to easily calculate the percentage of your store’s conversion rate?

The crucial percentage that shows where you stand among your competitors can be calculated quite easily with this simple formula. 

That is all there is. 

A quick example: If your store had 2000 visitors and 20 of them purchased an item and successfully finished their checkout (20 conversions), your conversion rate would equal 1%. 

Now that you’ve calculated your store’s conversion rate and have compared it with the average rate in your industry, it’s time to start finding out how to increase it. 

5.Conversion rate optimization (CRO)

How to organically increase your conversion rate and boost sales?

Conversion rates are constantly fluctuating. They increase and decrease in time and you need to make peace with this fact. 

Analysing your conversion rate and executing A/B tests constantly is key to increasing its percentage and optimizing your store performance. 

CRO (Conversion rate optimization) is the process of implementing, adjusting and testing different approaches to increase your store’s conversion rate. 

Conducting CRO is a progressive process that must undergo various changes along its way. You must adapt your strategy to what works and drop what doesn’t. 

There are no strictly fixed practices for a successful CRO. Each store has its audience, goals and specifics. Adding filters to a store that offers hundreds of products, for example, may result in an organic conversion rate increase as potential customers will have a smooth and pleasing shopping experience. At the same time, this feature won’t be necessary for a brand that offers just a few items and focuses on their uniqueness. In that case, creating remarkable product descriptions would probably convert better. 

In spite of the fact that different stores need different approaches, there are some tested CRO tactics that have proven their effectiveness.

We’ve gathered the very best of them in the next point, so make sure you keep on reading. 

6. CRO tips and tricks to try

Which are the best practices for increasing conversions?

Marketing is what gets the ball rolling for every business and we all know that full well. 

Our experience in the e-commerce world ensured us that using the correct marketing tools simultaneously with various technical enhancements is the optimal way to organically boost sales.

With that in mind, we are sharing 5 smart tips & tricks for you to try. 

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1. Create outstanding descriptions and photography for your products 

Getting creative with copy and visuals is always a good idea. High quality images and the way you present your offerings have a huge impact on the customer’s buying decision. 

Professional shots and well-written descriptions will build the credibility of your brand while highlighting the best parts of your products. They serve as  eye-catchers and have the power to convince your leads they must purchase and own your product. 

2. Invest in finding the best professionals for each enhancement your store needs 

Trying to execute SEO on your own without having the required skills could probably save money but would definitely not lead to the results you desire. The same applies for every other store enhancement. 

Whether you decide to implement a new functionality or to start email marketing, you must make sure you have the best experts by your side. This  strategic business decision will hugely increase your chance of succeeding.

3. Choose to go for mobile first 

Do you know that over 70% of the users claim they have made at least one purchase from their smartphones in the last 6 months? 

Can you imagine not having your phone at your disposal anytime you need it? 

That’s what we thought. 

Mobile devices have majorly taken over and a well-structured and optimized mobile version is crucial for your online store. Today, users are expecting to find exactly what they need within seconds and if you do not use these breaths to offer it, you risk them leaving your storefront and finding it somewhere else. 

Mobile first storefront
Mobile first version of a storefront

4. Improve your customer’s user experience 

Another area you want to focus your attention on is the UX design of your store. Make sure your online visitors have a pleasant experience with your store, capture their attention and guide them in the direction you want them to go. 

Poor user experience comes at a high price as it results in losing potential leads that are already browsing your store. On the contrary, providing your visitors with a smooth and enjoyable shopping journey rapidly increases your conversion rate. 

Mobile devices have majorly taken over and a well-structured and optimized mobile version is crucial for your online store. Today, users are expecting to find exactly what they need within seconds and if you do not use these breaths to offer it, you risk them leaving your storefront and finding it somewhere else. 

5. Develop your unique selling proposition and market it 

You already know how important marketing is. Take the opportunity to develop a unique selling proposition and to tell your story. 

Use the power of words, images and videos to let your leads know what makes you different from the others on the market. Think of a store functionality that will help customers understand what is best for them or how to achieve a certain goal of theirs. 

There are limitless ways to prove your brand is special thus optimizing your conversion rate while gaining loyal brand advocates.

These 5 points present specific tactics that generally optimize your store while building up your brand image.  A few other and very common CRO practices are noted in point 8 so make sure you add them up to these insights. 

7. Expert conversion rate optimization

How can you take your store to the next level?

Optimizing your store’s performance and increasing the number of conversions is a long and complicated process. Alongside with being aware of the importance of conducting CRO and A/B testing all the time, store merchants should realize how crucial finding, trusting and investing in expert support is. 

Having professional developers and marketers by your side is hugely beneficial not only because it ensures work done well but also because you will have expert recommendations from people who have optimized many storefronts in various ways. Their experience will guide you through the CRO process and will ensure optimal results. 

In other words, your best move in CRO is discussing your ideas with vetted experts, listening to their proposals and then trusting them to do what they are best at.

8. Conversion rates wrapped up

The conversion rate of your online store shows the percentage of visitors that turn into clients and purchase at least one of the products you offer. Its increase proportionally scales up your brand presence and profit. 

Optimizing your conversion rate constantly is key to successful performance and business growth. The process of increasing the total number of conversions is called CRO (Conversion rate optimization) and includes testing various tools, implementing different functionalities and conducting strategic marketing activities. 

Amongst the most common practices for organic conversion rate optimization are: 

  • Speed optimization 
  • SEO 
  • Implementation of reviews, testimonials and other social proof 
  • Development of different functionalities 
  • Integration of various apps 
  • Live chat automations & support 
  • Email marketing 
  • Brand positioning 

Each industry has a different average conversion rate, each channel drives different amounts of traffic, different tools and functionalities work for different stores. Therefore, testing various approaches, analysing the collected data and adapting your strategy are what marks the success of your CRO efforts. 

Constantly increasing your store’s conversion rate is a challenging and complex process that requires expert development and marketing skills. Trusting professionals for optimizing your conversion rate is the ultimate way to reach your goals and scale up your e-commerce business.