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Monday, Sep. 22, 2008 at 5:48 pm

Top 10 Online Retailers by Conversion Rate: August 2008

By Bryan Eisenberg
September 22nd, 2008

Here are the top 10 converting websites for August 2008*. These are based on Nielson Panel data and are calculated by toolbar user to final conversion.

1. ProFlowers 41.50%
2. 1800flowers.com 20.8%
3. Blair.com 20.10%
4. QVC 20.10%
5. LaneBryant Catalog 19.7%
6. LL Bean 19.7%
7. Roamans 18.80%
8. The Sportsman Guide 17.7%
9. Office Depot 17.30%
10. eBay 15.2%

*Source: Nielsen Online / Marketing Charts

What happened to Proflowers.com? 41.50% is just amazing. Interestingly, last month we had all three big florists, but FTD fell off the list. Most important, Children’sPlace was on the last month, but not in the month of August right before back-to-school shopping, is this a sign of early holiday shopping to come?

Additonal June Retail Benchmarks:

Page Views Per Session 11.64
Product Page Views Per Session 3.06
Average Time on Site (in seconds) 479.87
Average Items/Order 6.15
Average Order Value $154.89
Shopping Cart Conversion Rate 32.61%
Shopping Cart Abandonment 67.39%
New Visitor Conversion Rate 1.96%
On-site Search Session 16.22%
On-site Search Conversion Rate 5.85%
On-site Search Average Order Value $178.52

Marketing Summary Benchmarks:

Direct Load:
Traffic % 48.72%
Sales % 73.02%
Conversion Rate 3.19%

Natural Search:
Traffic % 13.59%
Sales % 7.83%
Conversion Rate 2.12%

Referrals:
Traffic % 6.04%
Sales % 1.81%
Referral Conversion Rate 1.77%

* Source: Coremetrics LIVEmark Benchmarks US (PDF) – UK benchmarks PDF available.

Coremetrics LIVEmark leverages aggregate performance data across more than 300 participating brands to deliver over 35 benchmark metrics addressing performance indicators such as campaign and channel effectiveness, site stickiness and conversion rates.

Canada’s Top Internet Retail Sites

1 eBay
2 Apple Inc.
3 Amazon
4 Shopzilla.com
5 Best Buy
6 American Greetings Properties
7 Wal-Mart
8 Sears.ca
9 Bell.ca
10 CanadianTire.caSource: comScore Media Metrix

If you need help increasing your conversion rate, let us know.

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Comments (20)

  1. Hi there, thannks for publishing these benchmarka – I have tried to download the UK benchmark report but it seems to have been removed, can you help?
    Best wishes!
    Rossella

  2. Interesting. Very interesting. I wonder why online flower delivery converts so well? Any ideas?

  3. I assume that the conversion rate data for ebay includes where people have placed a bid (rather than actually purchased a product). If this is the case then the ebay conversion rates above will result in very low actual purchase rates (in the form of winning an auction and payment being excahnged for a physical product or tangible service).

  4. I know we’ve argued about this before (and you usually win ;) ), but seriously, 41.5%?! I’ve got to ask: do you believe it, and do you think we’re comparing apples to apples? To me, that means 41.5% of unique visitors make a purchase. Now, I know that ProFlowers is a perfect storm for conversion: a strong brand, an easily understood product, a short-timeframe purchase (especially we married men 2 days before a holiday), a relatively low price point, and to be fair, a very well-built site. Still, the empiricist in me just can’t accept 41.5% without seeing the data, especially in this weak economy.

  5. Dr. Pete,

    I was pretty shocked when I saw that number too. Realize that this is for the particular segment of people who use Nielsen Online and allow them to collect their activity. So it is an apple to apple comparison. In theory you could benchmark your site if you access to the rest of their panel data.

    Thanks,
    Bryan

  6. Hi Bryan !, great data, can you share with us conversion rates for the online travel industry? ( visit to book ratios?), I always have the doubt if we understand a conversion as the act of purshasing and paying for something, instead of filling a form, downloading something, lead generation, etc, acording with your data, 4 over 10 visits purchase flowers? , just can’t believe it!,

  7. Hi Brian,

    I own an e-commerce website with terrible conversion ratios. In my opinion (and I’m sure you’ve heard this before) the website looks great. I mean that in all humility, we spent a lot of time optimizing every aspect of the website. With that being said, the website also gets a fair amount of traffic. I assume this would be the perfect scenario to figure out what’s wrong with it, because in my opinion there has to be something. If you’d be interested in further discussing this, please get in touch with me.

    Adam.

  8. Bryan,

    Let’s think rationally about this. One out of every 2.5 people who VISIT Proflowers.Com buys something??!

    I’m sorry, that is impossible. Even if they were giving out their flowers for FREE I wouldn’t believe these numbers. If you examine ProFlowers’ architecture, you’ll see they do a lot of odd things with their URLs and their cookies, not to mention a little black hat SEO.

    All of us in the business are very quick to accept and defend the Neilsen NetRatings and ComScores of the world, because there isn’t anything better to look at. But until they open up their methodologies for all of us to scrutinize, it is amazingly open to abuse, deliberately or not. Remember “Dewey Defeats Truman”.

  9. this is a great benchmark list. It would be great if someone could provide similar benchmarks for lead gen/content site.

  10. Are these benchmarks data that the top 10 online retailers reached?

  11. This is interesting data. On our E-comm site we get decent traffic but traffic is relatively low. However I have observed that increase in traffic does not impact the conversion. Thus I am confused whether it will be worth increasing traffic on my site as am not even able to sustain the conversion forget increasing it. Any idea what would be an avg conversion ratio of E-comm site of a publishing house? Also would it make sense to buy traffic to increase conversion or should I just go listing on other E-commerce portals?

  12. i should start selling flowers lol

  13. Wow, what happened to office depot. Last report they were right up there at the top. Just because we’re entering a depression people stop buying office supplies?

  14. It’s too bad it’s impossible to compete against these retailers. The little guy will never win.

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  16. It is great statistic. You are a smart marketter. I like your article.

  17. Very interesting article. Fantastic conversion rates, this sites are to be emulated.

  18. 41.5%, if only we could have that kind of conversion rate. I even 15% is good.

  19. his is interesting data. On our E-comm site we get decent traffic but traffic is relatively low. However I have observed that increase in traffic does not impact the conversion. Thus I am confused whether it will be worth increasing traffic on my site as am not even able to sustain the conversion forget increasing it. Any idea what would be an avg conversion ratio of E-comm site of a publishing house? Also would it make sense to buy traffic to increase conversion or should I just go listing on other E-commerce portals? bye

  20. @gratta e vinci aams: Lots of interesting points and questions here. You are absolutely right that increasing traffic doesn’t necessarily increase conversion rate. Often, increasing traffic LOWERS conversion rate because you’re bringing more un-qualified traffic to your site. We don’t know the average conversion rate of publishing house ecommerce sites, but if you’re running Google Analytics, consider opting in to their anonymous benchmarking data sharing. Under account settings you can opt in to “Share my Google Analytics data anonymously with Google and others.” This will provide you with benchmark data. Don’t buy traffic expecting it will increase conversion. If you have enough conversions to make a decent profit, it may be worth optimizing conversion rate BEFORE investing in traffic generation. Phew…

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Bryan Eisenberg, founder of FutureNow, is a professional marketing speaker and the co-author of New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling books Call to Action and Waiting For Your Cat to Bark and Always Be Testing. You can friend him on Facebook or Twitter.

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