by: Ahmed El Dabaja
For a business owner keeping an eye on the performance of his/her website, establishing a performance baseline by calculating conversion rates, is one of the easiest ways to understand whether your marketing investment is delivering against your expectations.
Google Analytics comes with an epic array of measurement tools and happily establishing how to calculate conversion rates is one if it’s simplest. Each time a website visitor takes a predefined action on your website it can be measured as a “conversion”. Ultimately, these conversion rates should provide a window into how well your bottom line is delivering.
Conversion Rate Defined
A conversion rate is the percentage of website visits, which results in a transaction or sale.
By measuring the conversion rate measurement business owners can calculate how many website visitors are actually converting into actual customers.
Three Conversation Rate Calculations
Three most common conversion rate calculations obtained using Google Analytics are:
1. Overall Conversion Rate:
Total events defined as conversion divided by a total number of visits.
This constitutes a site’s overall effectiveness rating for encouraging website visitors to take action in a single visit.
2. Scenario Conversion Rate:
Total visitors beginning a defined scenario divided by the total number who successfully complete it.
Scenario conversion rates help you quickly identify specific onsite processes that need refining or identifies those that should be emulated.
3. Conversion Over Time:
Assesses a website’s effectiveness in generating conversions over time.
Particularly helpful for complex purchases requiring multiple visits.
How To Calculate Conversion Rates
Your website conversion rate reflects the number of visitors that come to your site that actually purchase. It can also illustrate the process of converting a visitor into a customer by having them take pre-defined actions during different stages of the sales pipeline, which you can set up under Google Analytics using its “Goals” dashboard.
To view the conversion rate performance of each goal, log in to your Google Analytics account and go to your ‘Goals Overview’ report and select the goal you would like to analyze from the drop down menu.
A better way to assess each goals conversion performance is to look at the traffic source behind each goal. Go to ‘All Traffic’ >Source / Medium report in your Google Analytics account and click on the ‘Goal Set 1’ tab. Clever Google Analytics will display a breakdown of your conversion performance by traffic source right before your eyes.
Instead of evaluating a generic high-level conversion rate, you are able to assess your website performance based on how a cluster of goals is performing by traffic source. This gives you a much more robust insight into your website’s true performance.
You can continue to segment conversion performance across a number of criteria by each goal to allow you to refine your marketing strategy and your targeting effectiveness.
Benefits Of Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)
If your website witnesses conversions beginning to drop, it may indicate a problem with the website’s visitor experience, content, messaging, navigation, or a dip in search engine rankings. Other benefits of calculating conversion rates include:
- Improved results: CRO testing provides an informed roadmap forward
- Fact-based decision-making: CRO allows you to make decisions based on data rather than gut instinct and allows the results of A/B tests and evaluating the results
- Generates incremental revenue over time as you constantly refine your operations to take advantage of small gains in conversion efficiency
- Improve SEO Rankings: Testing identifies areas that improve the length of time visitors spend on your page, reduce your bounce rate, which Google factors into your SEO ranking
4 Tips For Improving Your Conversion Rates
Once you have mastered calculating your conversion rate, it is natural to want to explore ways to improve it. Here are four tips for improving your conversion rate.
1. Filter Out Internal IP Addresses
Google Analytics measures all traffic directed to your website as part of its default setting. So, your conversion rate is impacted by internal website traffic. To avoid this, activate IP filters on your main reporting view.
2. Filter Out Existing Clients
If you have a CRM that tracks customer activity, you should be able to distinguish between converted customers and website visitors. You should always look to calculate your conversion rate based on new customers by excluding existing customers. Your conversion rate will become a much more reliable if you are able to exclude your existing customer base.
3. Filter Out Specific Countries Or Regions
If potential customers can read your content or buy from your site, it doesn’t make much sense to include them visitors in your conversion rate analysis. Establish an extra view where you include specific regions that you target for your brand.
4. Funnel Conversion Rate
Google Analytics has a function that allows you to set up a sales funnel, which allows you to measure your sales funnel conversion rate. Your funnel conversion rate calculation is based on how many visitors enter your sales funnel and how many ultimately convert.
A Final Consideration
Once you have mastered how to calculate conversion rate for your website, you may want to consider adding granularity to your analysis by measuring your individual product’s conversion rate. Understanding each product’s individual conversion rate is a great platform to base an optimization strategy looking at pricing, product descriptions, and SEO keyword phrases.