Conversion Rate Optimization: A Strategic Marketing Necessity

Collective Measures
April 8, 2016
What are the signs that a marketing strategy could benefit from conversion rate optimization (CRO)? Find out how CRO works and when brands should implementing CRO at the agency blog.


Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is a method of combining analytics and user feedback to improve overall performance. At NHI, we are focused on increasing performance of new and existing media strategies in order to help brands achieve their goals. Whether we are splitting traffic between landing page concepts or running across multivariate display banner tests, we work to improve results across channels.

At NHI, CRO tactics are divided between performance creative testing and conversion flow optimization.

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  • Performance creative:

    The process of optimizing landing pages, paid media, and social content to aid in raising conversion rates. Testing examples: landing pages, display, paid search, and/or paid social

  • Conversion flow optimization:

    A process of evaluation, iteration, and testing that maximizes conversion paths within a campaign, website, or digital property. Testing examples: onsite content, paid campaigns, email, applications, redesigns or new build strategies


  • Baseline measurement and research: Measure what is happening today to uncover insights and future opportunities.
  • Strategic thinking: Partnering opportunity with innovative thinking and best practices to create sound testing strategies.
  • Planning and testing: Create a testing model and measurement strategy to validate new solutions with real users.
  • Analysis and implementation: Ensure effectiveness by closely monitoring test progress allowing strategies remain nimble.
  • Iteration: Leverage results and insights to implement meaningful changes for future testing, maximize ROI, and create positive customer experiences.


1.There are multiple conversion goals

If a strategy is working toward multiple conversion goals, it makes sense to implement multiple strategies and tactics to best achieve those goals. To maximize revenue and spend, it’s a good idea to test both strategies and tactics for best performance.

2. The page views are extremely high or low

Efforts to direct traffic to a site (like paid media campaigns or social media posts) may be setting the wrong expectations for the content on a site. In this situation, it’s a good idea to do some message testing within any traffic-driving efforts – for example, testing different headlines or calls-to-action (CTAs) to see which most effectively meet expectations or increases engagement. Alternatively, taking a look at the content on your site’s entry points in the form of landing page optimization may help resolve issues.

3. Time on site is extremely high or low

Similar to the challenge above, if time on site is extremely low, it would be helpful to look at whether or not there is a disconnect between traffic drivers and site content.

If time on site is extremely high but conversion is low, it is a good investment to analyze the page and site content. The content may be confusing or overwhelming, causing users to spend additional, unwanted time on your site.

4. Low relevance of landing pages

  • Paid keywords don’t match website content: If you are targeting keywords for organic or paid strategies that don’t match the content on your linked landing page, it is highly recommended to implement updates – or at the very least, testing landing page content concepts. These days even search engines are paying attention to the user’s intent when seeking out products and companies. If the user’s words aren’t matching the way one is talking to consumers, conversion rates will be negatively impacted.
  • Organic results not matching intent: Similar to the details above, if visitors are searching for a specific set of words or phrases and the results do not match, the likelihood of having dismal conversion rates in organic search is high. Oftentimes when there is a disconnect between search intent and content, bounce rates tend to be high and likely indicate that some changes or testing could make a positive impact.

WHY Conversion rate optimization (CRO)?

As digital usage increases, the ability to rise above the clutter online becomes more difficult. Traditionally, a quick solution for a quick bump in brand awareness, website traffic and revenue has been to implement paid media campaigns. The challenge with paid media campaigns that don’t leverage optimization is that many times they result in high traffic (whoop!), but a less-than-expected bump in revenue.

While we as marketers love celebrating huge traffic wins, at the end of the day, business is about making money. If campaigns aren’t boosting revenue significantly, what are we running them for?

CRO benefits



The goal when investing in a CRO campaign strategy is to maximize profits within the existing PPC campaign. Optimizing the end-to-end campaign experience will maximize profits while maintaining – or minimizing marketing and sales costs.


Paid media campaigns are highly effective, but only effective for as long as the media is live. Optimizing content, messaging and websites will have lasting effects that can be utilized over months – or even years depending on the business.

Conversion optimization connects users (traffic) to the content (website or landing page) that is valuable, relatable, and helps them to confidently convert, impacting revenue steadily over time.



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