How website performance affects conversion rates

A website’s conversion rate is the percentage of users who take a desired action, and conversion rate is tied directly to how much revenue a website generates. Page speed has a huge impact on user behavior.

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What is a webpage’s conversion rate?

In web jargon, a user converts when they take the action that the designers of the webpage wanted them to take. For example, on an e-commerce page displaying baby strollers, a user converts when they decide to purchase a stroller and click on the ‘buy’ button. A user does not need to purchase something in order to convert, however, as a webpage can have a variety of purposes. Other examples of user conversions include filling out and submitting a contact form, answering survey questions, or even just clicking through to the next page on the website.

The conversion rate is the percentage of total visitors to the webpage who convert. If 100 users visit the page advertising baby strollers, and 2 users actually click the ‘buy’ button, then the conversion rate is 2%. Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the practice of pushing this figure as high as possible. Conversion rate optimization is an ongoing process, because unless a page’s conversion rate is 100%, which is highly unlikely, it can always be optimized further.

Conversion rate vs. page traffic

Conversion rate is a separate measurement from the total traffic, or number of visitors, to a page. If a page’s conversion rate declines, then the total number of users converting goes down even if page traffic remains exactly the same. Conversely, if a page’s traffic stays the same but the conversion rate increases, the total number of conversions will go up.