Conversions – Why they are a big deal in Digital Marketing

You’ve probably heard of them, but what is a conversion and why are they so important? Conversions are key to understanding how your digital marketing efforts are performing. Let’s dive in…

What is a conversion?

A conversion is when you encourage a person to take a specific action and they follow through. You “converted” that person.

There are many types of conversions such as a potential customer signing up for your newsletter, making a purchase, or even filling out an intake form on your website. A conversion doesn’t always lead to an immediate sale. If your customer has a longer customer journey or they put a lot of thought and research in before they are ready to buy, your goal may be to convert them into a lead versus an immediate paying customer.

The type of conversion you choose to track is based on the goal you are trying to achieve. For example, say your goal is to increase website traffic. A conversion you track could be the number of website clicks a particular Instagram post gets you. You can go into your insights and see how many people saw your post and then go a step further and see how many website clicks resulted from that. Those are the Instagram users you “converted”. From there, you can calculate your conversion rate for various posts to see which content is converting the most people.

How to Calculate Conversion Rate

After you determine which conversions you want to track based on your goal, you can calculate the Conversion Rate, which will help you assess your performance. A high conversion rate means what you’re doing is working. People are connecting with it and wanting more – they’re motivated to follow through.

Conversion Rate Calculation:

Total number of conversions divided by total number of visitors. Then multiply by 100 to get your percentage.

For the following example, let’s assume you are trying to build an email list by offering a free download. The conversion here would be the number of people that give you their emails.


500 people viewed the landing page that promoted your free download.

You received 25 emails from people downloading the freebie.

25/500=0.05  Multiply 0.05 by 100 and you get a conversion rate of 5%.

From there you can continue to optimize your landing page to see if you can get a higher conversion rate. In this example, you’re not converting 95% of the people that get to your landing page. Why is that?

If you see high traffic on your website, but a low conversion rate, you have to take a deeper look at why potential leads or customers aren’t following through. Maybe your website isn’t user friendly and hose visitors leave your site confused. Maybe you’re not giving them call-to-actions or telling them what to do next. Or maybe there are too many steps involved and they are too overwhelmed the freebie isn’t worth it anymore.

Identifying the reason and then working to improve the results is called conversion optimization. Also known as Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO), it’s a system for increasing the percentage of visitors that convert into customers or complete your desired action.

Why Conversions Are a Big Deal

If you’re spending any money to increase traffic to your site, a high conversion rate means you’ll get a better return on that investment (ROI). If you’re successful at getting a lot of people to your site, but none of those people convert into paying customers or leads, you’re not making money. In fact, you’re spending money and getting nothing in return. That’s not good for your cashflow. 

Next Steps

Take some time to identify your business goals. To prevent overwhelm, I recommend choosing one big goal per quarter. Then you can identify your conversions, regularly track them, determine your conversion rate, and continue to optimize your efforts until you’re reaching your goal.

Google Analytics is a great tool to help measure your performance. You can even set up conversion goals within the platform and they will calculate your conversion rate for you – which makes it easy and saves you time!

Not sure if your social media efforts are paying off?

Our team is happy to review your insights and make suggestions to help you optimize your efforts and reach your goals. If you’d like our help, send us a message and let us know this is what you’re looking for!


Erika Conleay Digital Marketing Consultant

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