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What is Conversion Rate Optimisation? And 4 Common Myths

Learn about CRO and the common misconceptions that Develo's CRO specialist Steve tackles every day

What is Conversion Rate Optimisation?

Conversion rate optimisation (CRO) is the process of refining various elements of a website or digital asset to encourage visitors to take a desired action, ultimately leading to increased conversions. 

These conversions could range from making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, clicking an advert, or filling out a contact form. In essence, CRO is about increasing the number of customers who complete a specific goal.

Sounds simple enough, right? 

Despite CRO being one of the most cost-effective methods of improving online performance, it still isn’t fully understood by business leaders, resulting in a number of misconceptions.

Myth 1: CRO is only for eCommerce websites

One common myth is that conversion optimisation is only applicable to eCommerce websites. While optimising for sales is a common objective, conversion goals can vary depending on the nature of the business. 

For example, a software company may aim to increase free trial sign-ups, while a service-based business may focus on generating leads through consultation requests. Regardless of the specific goal, the principles of CRO can be applied to virtually any digital asset or platform to enhance its performance.

Myth 2: I only need to perform CRO once

Another misconception is that conversion rate optimisation is a one-time effort. In reality, CRO is an ongoing process that requires continuous analysis, testing, and refinement.

Consumer behaviour and preferences evolve over time, as do market trends and technological advancements. To stay ahead of the competition, businesses must regularly analyse data, conduct experiments, and adapt their tactics to effectively meet the needs of their target audience.

Myth 3: The marketing department should be responsible for CRO

Some people believe that CRO is solely the responsibility of the marketing department. While marketing plays a crucial role in understanding the wants and needs of the customer, driving traffic, and creating compelling messaging, successful conversion rate optimisation requires collaboration across departments. Better engagement from the design, development, and customer support teams will inevitably lead to better business outcomes. 

Each aspect of the website, from its layout and functionality to its content and customer service, contributes to the overall user experience and, consequently, the conversion rate. And don’t forget those pesky senior stakeholders. They hold the purse strings, so communicating your plans and results is essential to ensure ongoing support for experimentation and innovation.

Myth 4: I’ll only get big results by making big changes to my website

Ever heard the term marginal gains? While big, expensive redesigns can sometimes yield significant improvements, CRO is more often about making incremental adjustments based on data-driven insights. 

This approach involves conducting market research, usability studies and A/B tests to identify areas for improvement and iterating on them over time. Small tweaks to elements such as messaging, creative, call-to-action buttons, and form fields can have a substantial impact on conversion rates without the need for a complete overhaul. 

So, what is Conversion Rate Optimisation? It is (or should be) an important tool in the modern marketer’s toolkit for improving the performance of their digital assets. But it’s important for the marketing team to take the rest of the business on the journey with them. If the whole business embraces a data-driven approach, continuously testing and refining their ideas, it will lead to higher conversion rates, and ultimately, greater financial success.

Want to read more about Develo’s approach to CRO?


Steve

Steve is a CRO Specialist who has worked in eCommerce since 2008 and has been with Develo since 2023. Steve enjoys CRO because it's customer-focused and backed up by data, which makes those difficult stakeholder conversations a little easier. His biggest achievement since working at Develo is increasing one client's marketing signups by a whopping 51%. Outside work, he can be found hiking in the Lake District or the local cocktail bars - there's no in-between.

Develo is a leading Magento agency and eCommerce web development company based in Birmingham, in the UK, serving clients globally since 2010. Our Blog covers topics around the array of services we offer including Magento web development, Hyvä themes development, Adobe Commerce, PunchOut catalogues, ERP integrations and much more. To speak to a friendly member of the team about your next project, contact us here.


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