Danielle Walton

What is the Real Benchmark for Conversion Rates?

In the world of digital marketing, arguably no metric is more important than conversion rates. What is the most accurate benchmark for conversion rates across e-commerce and lead gen sites? We've researched the data to find the right benchmark for the clients we service. 

In the world of digital marketing, arguably no metric is more important than conversion rates. What is the most accurate benchmark for conversion rates across e-commerce and lead gen sites? We've researched the data to find the right benchmark for the clients we service. 

Conversion rate is one of the most key metrics for any digital marketer or digital marketing plan. Why?

It has a significant impact on performance across the board.

Conversion rate is ultimately what drives e-commerce revenue or the number of leads that are generated (which ties to revenue). That means when your conversion rate is up, other metrics can be down and you won’t feel a thing. Conversely, a slight increase or decrease in conversion rate can make or break your month or even your year.

This all means, of course, that we talk about conversion rate a lot.

Which also means that we often get asked the burning question – what is a good conversion rate?

Challenging the accepted norm

Historically, the industry has believed that a good e-commerce conversion rate is 2%, because that is what Google Analytics used to report.

But, is that number accurate?

After a lot of data gathering, reading, research and really smart people running other analyses, we have found that the average conversion rate of 2% really isn’t the most accurate benchmark.

And since I get asked this question all of the time (that is, what’s a good conversion rate?), I wanted to have one place, one go-to spot where the conversion rate data we use can be easily found.

Finding the right benchmark

Conversion rates can be segmented in a multitude of ways. You can segment it by:

  • Type of site
  • Industry
  • Device Type
  • Channel
  • Customer Segment
  • Stage of the funnel

While every digital marketer should look at these breakdowns for their business or client, they should also pay attention to the overall conversion rate. Personally, I use the “overall” as the benchmark and then look at the segments separately as well for reference. 

So, what is an accurate conversion rate benchmark?

In looking through a lot of different data sources, the following are my preferred sources because they are the most recent, and they compiled the data in a very helpful way.

Overall Conversion Rate Benchmark - Average vs. Top Performers

Rather than look at “global” averages, I like to split out the data to focus specifically on e-commerce versus lead generation. With that in mind, I compiled the chart below.

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SOURCE

I love the way Wordstream compiles their data, sharing both the average and the top performers. It’s a key point—after all, who strives to be average? Of course no one does. 

This is important because we want to know the average, but we also want to know what we should strive for. This is a great way to do that.

Average Conversion Rate By Device

I also like to use Smart Insights to discover e-commerce conversion rate benchmarks by device breakdowns.

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SOURCE

Unfortunately, I haven’t had much luck in finding a great source for conversion rates by device for lead generation. If you happen to have any recommendations, please let me know. 

What's your target benchmark?

In the world of digital marketing, we live and die by metrics, benchmarks and numbers. And no metric is more critical than conversion rate. Hopefully you’ll be able to reference this post as often as I do and find it to be useful. Happy conversion rate benchmarking and improving!

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Danielle Walton

About Danielle Walton

Co-Founder of Adept, Danielle builds integrated digital strategies for companies who place a prioritization on growth. With a background in both technology and management consulting, she provides the strategic oversight necessary while leading multi-disciplinary teams of digital specialists to achieve successful new client acquisition and/or increased revenue.