What is CRO? How to boost Shopify conversion rate optimization?


In today post, we will find out about the terms CR (Conversion Rate), CRO (Conversion Rate Optimizationand how CR is calculated. We will also look at what doing CRO involves for Shopify merchants and how merchants can improve their success from their existed traffic.

What is CRO?

What is “conversion rate”? 

CRO stands for Conversion Rate Optimization. So what is “conversion”?

A conversion, in a digital sense, is when a website visitor takes an action that the site owner wants them to do. If you are an online merchant, then “conversion” to you means when a visitor completes a purchase. So conversion is like a goal you set for the visitors. Having said that, the final goal can be divided into smaller, easier to achieve goals:

Macro conversion: This is the primary action you want customers to do, one that is valuable to your business. Since this article is for online merchants. When we refer to “conversion” below, we talk about a customer successful purchase.

Micro conversion: Smaller goals on the way leading to the big goal. They can be clicking on a collection, add a product to cart, get to the check out page.

What is CRO - What is Conversion Rate Optimization
What is CRO – What is Conversion Rate Optimization (Image: Simplify)

Conversion rate is the percentage of visitors that convert. This number tells you how much of the many people going to your site actually become your customers. It is a crucial number in measuring your success.

How do you calculate your conversion rate?

Here is the general formula for calculating the conversion rate over a period of time (usually it’s a month):

Conversion rate = Number of goal achievement / Number of visitors x 100%

In reality, applying this to your business can be a bit different. If a visitor can convert every single time they go to your site, then change “Number of visitors” into “Number of sessions”. If you sell something that conversion happens once per person, then divide it by the number of unique visitors. 

How to caculate conversion rate
How to caculate conversion rate (Image: Invesp)

For example, if you sell physical products like clothes or accessories, then it is possible to sell customers something new every time they go on your site, so your conversion rate will be:

Conversion rate = Number of goal achievement / Number of sessions  x 100%

If you sell subscriptions or service, then usually a person will only sign up once or twice (people don’t need a plumber every day). In this case, the conversion rate is calculated as: 

Conversion rate = Number of goal achievement / Number of unique visitors  x 100%

Why Conversion Rate Optimization Is So Important

Simply put, Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) is actions you take to increase the conversion rate of your site. 

CRO helps you make the best out of your existing traffic. Earning more traffic at one point will do little if you don’t raise your conversion rate. The equivalent is taking water with a slotted spoon.

How to boost Shopify conversion rate optimization?

About Shopify CRO

Step 1: Determine if you need CRO yet

Before you hop in googling “100 tips for CRO”, I want you to take a look below to see if Conversion Rate Optimization is really the thing you should be focusing on.

See if you have enough traffic:

Having enough traffic is important: it allows you to paint a picture of potential customers. You can’t optimize your store if you don’t even know who you should do that for. Once you start to get a clear profile of your target customers, you can move on from the common Shopify template and make your site more specified toward that type of customer. 

Determine if you need CRO - Conversion Rate Optimization
Determine if you need CRO – Conversion Rate Optimization (Image: Social Sutra)

In addition, testing requires a sufficient amount of traffic for the result to be accurate. To get a general idea, take these two tools for example: A/B test size calculator and A/B test duration calculator. They give you the estimation of how many people and how much time you need for an A/B test to produce usable results. Do you have enough visits for a simple landing page test?

If the answer is no, then you better working on drawing traffic on your site. But don’t close this tab just yet! There are best practices that every merchant can apply regardless of their sizes. Even if you don’t have enough traffic, you should still lay down the prep work in advance so that when the time comes, you got everything ready to move on the next step.

Step 2: Analyze your audience and decide what to do

You would need a tracking system such as Google Analytics to help you with this. Shopify also has a comprehensive guide on how to read your back end report. This should give you a pretty good idea on what your customers are like and what to test.

For example, you may have heard that mobile-first optimization is the way to go. But if 95% of your purchase comes from desktop, you better off spending time making the site load faster on PC.

On a side note, sometimes CRO is not the only answer around. Say your site is having 100 000 sessions with a 1% CR a month. Which will be easier and cheaper for you to do? Getting another 50 000 sessions per month via ads, or making site improvements to increase the CR to 1,5%? Both yield the same result, but pick the one that will cost you less time and effort.

How much should you set your goal? 

It is likely hard for you to determine if this is the first time you dive into CRO. A good starting point is to compare yourself with Shopify store benchmarks to see how far you can go.

Tips to increase Shopify conversion rate:

Don’t get confused CRO with general best practices. Because every business is different, it would not be a CRO strategy if everybody is doing it – it is best practices. This involves things like easy to navigate UI, having fast and trustworthy payment methods, being easy to reach, etc.

Tips to increase Shopify conversion rate
Tips to increase Shopify conversion rate (Image: Internet)

In general, Shopify supplies you with pretty good out of the box technical foundation. But here is a few things to take note of:

  1. Responsive website: This is one function that comes built-in with Shopify, so you don’t have to worry about it too much. But it is still a good idea to test your site on mobile to see if the loading time is acceptable. Think with Google tools allows you to do just that, along with other tools for customer insights
  2. Homepage and Navigation: It should allow the customer to easily reach what they want to find within a few steps. An intelligence search bar which displays a preview of suggested product is a good start.
  3. Discount promotion: If you have a public coupon code, you would want to promote them to as many people as possible. The built-in announcement bar is a nice, non-intrusive method to do this. If you are running multiple coupons at the same time, Instant Upzily is a free tool for automatically changing the discount promotion bar in accordance with the product the customer is seeing.
  4. Popup: The ever-popular method for building up email lists. An app like Smart Popups will help you set up pop-ups and even A/B test them in no time.
  5. Converting customers has a totally simple roadmap. The key factor that forms a typical conversion is when people see what they need. Breaking this process into step-by-step tactics with Eggflow, you can win the conversion rates battle without too much spending.

    How to increase conversion rate with Eggflow Apps Circle

      How to increase conversion rate with Eggflow Apps Circle

    All Eggflow apps are designed based on the tasks you’ve got to do to step-by-step increase conversion rate in your Shopify store:

    • Attracting store visitors
    • Optimizing store experience
    • Converting visitors into customers