The Butterfly Effect is the idea that small differences can make a big difference. In science, it’s the notion that an insect flapping its wings could be the start of a hurricane. In business, it's the idea that tweaking small things could end up having a huge impact on your company.
Take your conversion rate, for instance. It’s a barometer of how you are faring with customers. But if you really want to optimize it, then you may have to examine smaller-level factors that go into it. In particular, if you are only measuring conversion at one spot--say your website--then you are getting an incomplete picture of what you need to do to improve your results. Guidance provides some expert insight below.
According to research by Forrester, successful websites convert in the 2.5% range, but there are large variations by industry. But if you only think about how your site converts, then you are missing the opportunity to optimize many other digital factors. For example, breaking down conversion performance by email campaigns, sales funnels, specific channels, and individual products can tell you what needs fixing--or where you should double your efforts.
In fact, this approach should extend to all marketing channels such as email, paid advertising, earned media, affiliate programs, social campaigns, and direct. All these have specific conversion rates, but you also have to look at multi-touch conversion. For example, are you driving customer interest with organic, but only converting with the follow-up retargeting? You have to measure these nuances before you can optimize them.
Discerning Customer Intent
You also have to look at the conversion rate by device and understand the customer intent that is taking place on them. Today, tablet conversion rates are similar to desktop. However, mobile conversions lag by at least 30% compared to desktop. Rates for mobile are low because people are using it for different reasons. It’s inherently more difficult to convert there. However, by understanding that you can find ways to use mobile to drive activities where conversion rates are higher.
For example, recently the number of shopping carts being created on mobile has increased dramatically. In fact, From 2015-2016 there’s been a 70% year-over-year rise in the number of carts newly generated. Put simply, trillions of dollars of in-store revenue is being influenced by mobile activity. How can your business harness this trend? More specifically are you using mobile to drive in-store activities?
Too often, many VPs and CEOs are focused on just one conversion rate--typically the website. However, there are so many different dimensions that influence that figure.
In fact, conversion rates are a bit like the DJIA--a rough indicator of a broad sentiment. Similarly, your conversion rate (CR) tells you about trends and how the customer feels, but it doesn’t give you the details of what each channel, or even what a specific email blast, is doing. For a more accurate barometer, you have to dig deeper and inspect things at a more nuanced level.
Consequently, you need to look at every channel, product, and customer touch-point and optimize through testing. That way, you can make small adjustments at critical junctures that could possibly have a big impact overall.
When it comes to conversion rates, there’s no giant lever that will lift everything up. Instead, you have to think in terms of fine-tuning small parts and make sure they reinforce one another. In short, doing the little things right is what can end up making a really impactful difference.