Today’s post may sound odd coming from a bunch of conversion rate optimization experts, but it’s a reminder that there are other KPIs that deserve our attention as marketers. We tend to have laser focus on conversion rate, and that’s for good reason. It’s a crucial metric for any online business, and it has gained wide acceptance in “The Board Room.”
There’s no reason not to be laser-focused on your website’s conversion rate. But, it’s wise to keep your eyes on other key metrics while you optimize. Like most things in life, if your viewpoint is myopic, you’ll at best miss opportunities, or at worst ruin your business.
For example, we worked with a client this summer to make a series of changes to their website in order to overcome the business challenge of “not selling enough accessories.” To give some context, the client’s site sold core products, it sold supporting accessories, AND it had the potential to bundle core products with accessories.
The problem was that the website made it too hard for customers to “bundle” products together, and didn’t provide enough incentive to do so. The result was decent product sales (at low margin) and poor accessory sales (at higher margin).
Had we narrowed our focus to just conversion rate optimization, we might have optimized the site for selling low-margin products, and what fun is that? When we widened our view of the site experience to start thinking about selling more accessories, it gave us analysts a powerful new perspective.
We had the client create an initial set of “packages” that bundled a core product with several useful accessories. By bundling in higher-margin accessories, the client could offer an attractive discount which provided an incentive, in addition to the added convenience.
These product bundles were placed as up-sells on single-product pages, and the client very quickly noted an uptick in their sales of accessories, attributed largely to the sales of bundles.
We continued to refine the presentation and persuasiveness of the product bundles via three smaller site changes over time. Net result? Their Average Order Value is up 34.94% year-over-year! That’s a nice lift heading into the Holiday shopping season, don’t you think?
Another point of interest is that Conversion Rate stayed relatively flat during this period of time, so again if we’d been too tightly focused on our core metric, we might have missed the fact that something great was happening to the client’s online business.
We estimated the monthly increase in revenue (due to the increase in AOV) to be over $36,000! Imagine making 4 changes to your website and then enjoying an extra $36k a month in perpetuity!
So, to businesses, marketers, and optimizers out there: Yes, it’s good to pick a KPI and focus on it, but make sure when you’re looking at your data that you don’t “miss the forest for the trees.”