How Successful is Your Landing Page?
The 3 Key Metrics You Need to Know

Image of Landing Page graphic

We’ve spent a lot of time exploring the copy and design techniques that drive successful landing pages. But do you know how to best measure your success?

That’s the focus of a most excellent article I read in Practical Ecommerce, Measuring Conversion Success: What are the key areas to watch when trying to keep visitors’ attention?

I’ve recapped the most essential points for your review.

1. Conversion Rate

We spend a lot of time talking about conversion rates. Let’s consider some of the benchmark numbers:

So what exactly is a conversation rate? It’s the percentage of visitors that turn into a lead, sale or some other desired outcome. A retail site is frequently considered a success when its purchase conversion is in the high single digits, but for lead generation sites, numbers in the high teens are considered good. An average retail site is converting about 1 to 2 percent of visitors and an average lead generation site is doing 5 to 6 percent.

Do the negative math. That’s a whopping number of folks NOT responding, NOT clicking, and NOT buying.

How can you calculate a purchase conversion rate? It’s simple. Using your site’s analytics package (see recommendations below), locate the number of unique visitors during a given period and divide that by the number of sales transactions during the same period. If you are 2 percent or less, the good news is that you have plenty of room to grow your business.

Increase your transactions by even one percentage point and wow, you’re making some real money. Consider this example:

Let’s say you have 10,000 unique visitors per month and you’re generating 100 sales transactions per month (1 percent) with an average sale of $90. Boost your site’s purchase conversion rate one percentage point and that translates to an extra $108,000 annually. Pop your conversion rate to 5 percent and you’ll realize a sales increase of $432,000 annually.

See why we spend so much time on this topic? :=)

2. Home Page Abandonment Rate

I’m including this part just for your reference, even if your particular interest is primarily landing pages attached to promotional email, site link and PPC campaigns. But let’s consider your landing page in the same light as a homepage. How many folks come to your landing page and bail? Like any transaction-page site or page, you have a short window of opportunity in which you can keep a visitor’s attention.

10 percent of visitors leave a site after the first click, but many of these visitors constitute either accidental traffic or are unqualified buyers. You probably wouldn’t have converted them anyway. An astounding 55 percent however, have dropped off after the second click, and 80 percent of the visitors have left after the third click. A well-constructed site with strategically placed calls-to-action can help address site abandonment issues.

3. Cost Per Sale

Here’s our last metric, cost per sale. Here you’ll divide your advertising costs by the amount of sales to calculate your the average cost per sale. What should your average number be? It probably doesn’t matter as much as just setting one. Ask yourself, “What is a customer worth to you, by single transaction as well his/her lifetime value (the number of sales, anticipated revenue) over time.” Then start working the numbers. When you can successfully manage the upfront cost-per-sale, you could easily realize big returns on the back end.

“Many business owners don’t know their cost per action or cost per lead. When talking about a customer’s lifetime value, you may take loss in front (to get the customer), but if you can keep him, he’s worth a lot. A pay-per-click keyword costing $8 may be expensive, but if you keep the customer it attracts, you get that back in spades.”

Next Step: Start running your numbers with a basic analytics package.

Here are some recommendations to get you started. (No excuses now. One of them is free.)

Copywriting Maven’s Landing Page Makeover Clinic News

Your response to my first makeover (SEOmoz) was outstanding, thank you! We have two (count ’em two) more candidates ready and willing to have their landing pages made over – live and in person – here on Copyblogger. They are:

  • Brian Armstrong’s how to start your own biz site, Start Breaking Free
  • Helen Graves promises to help entrepreneurs grow their biz at her smartly named site,

Thank you to both Brian and Helen for participating in the Maven Makeover and supporting Heifer International. I’ll be presenting these makeovers approximately every 2 to 3 weeks, so stay tuned.

Wanna play, too?

Got a landing page that’s more poop than pop? Willing to share with Copyblogger readers? Prepared to put a little of your own “skin in the game” for a Maven Makeover? Then follow your click to Maven’s Landing Page Makeover page for all the details.

Roberta Rosenberg is The Copywriting Maven at MGP Direct, Inc.

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Reader Comments (27)

  1. says

    You call this article the 3 key metrics, but I don’t see a #1, #2, and #3 in this page. I read… then I skimmed.. and finally I’m lost.

    What were the keys I was suppose to be getting?

  2. says

    #2 doesn’t seem important to me. Isn’t it that same as #1? Shouldn’t a properly designed landing page give the user the option of either making a conversion or leaving the page?

  3. says

    Thanks for making it perfectly clear on how conversion rates affect your ROI. I have seen a ton of articles lately on this very topic. We have been focusing on this very thing lately with some intriguing results. Here’s some things that we have observed concerning lead conversion, particularly web leads:

    Our research shows that the average salesperson only makes four to five attempts to contact a new lead in the first week. This means only 55% of a company’s web leads will actually get contacted.

    There are solutions available that trigger callback attempts within seconds. They will continue to make twenty or more attempts at different times of the day and different days of the week to boost contact rates above 85%. Also, these solutions can automatically market to these leads and continue to generate prospects every 3-4 weeks for 2 years or more.

    Speed is critical. We are finding that most leads sit somewhere between forty-eight and seventy-two hours before the salesperson actually attempts the first live contact. Much of the slowdown in routing leads is because there isn’t a pre-defined process to decide which salesperson get’s to work the lead. Many sales managers still dole out leads by hand after taking time deciding who is best suited to work each of the leads.

    Bottom line: Acquire a system that immediately and systematically pushes the leads to the best qualified salespeople. A system that also allows the salespeople to immediately and frequently respond to leads and turn them into prospects. Again, this simple but overlooked approach can boost net results by 20 to 200%.

  4. says

    Since I’m not selling anything on my site per se, I’ve found it difficult to track conversion. In my case, conversion means “RSS Subscriber.”

    It’s difficult to tell which pages create the most subscribers — since it may have in fact been a cumulative effect, the result of multiple visits.

    I’ve been using time-on-page and bounce rate to determine the success or failure of a particular article, but I’m still searching for a satisfactory way to measure conversion.

    So far, I’m taking “total visitors” and deriving from that the “percent Subscribers.” But this is only helpful for evaluating the site as a whole, not any one particular article (landing page).

  5. says

    Web Analytics seems to be a science to me, for what I have been reading about it over the web.
    Have recently registered with , to have some web statistics for my marketing team to work on.
    Are there any consultants who can setup a process for my marketing team.

  6. says

    I was just wondering how to implement this theory if you are a free web service realizing in banners. I mean, how can you count the cost per sale and conversion rate because we are not selling anything.

  7. says

    Great article! It seems silly to set up a page advertise and then scratch your head as to why MAYBE its not working. Captilize your time and make sure your page is effective and bringing in the results you want. If it is not bringing in the sales, then time to change.

    Thanks for the information appreciate the time you took to create.

  8. says

    Thanks for such a great resource. I’ve been experimenting with different types of landing pages (outsourced and mine) and I’m going to go back to them afters reading through this module.

  9. says

    For landing page metrics you can also try our service . Pagealizer helps site owners get insight on how powerful their site content is. We show you in great detail how long people stay on your page, how far they scrolled down the page and where they clicked.

  10. says

    Thanks Roberta for enphasizing the importance of these key metrics. I find that most of the businesses I speak to fly totally blind in regard to this whole subject. At best they focus on driving traffic to their site, but they seldom keep track of their metrics

  11. says

    I’ am commenting not only to say this is a fantastic post, in reply to the first comment “it kept me reading, there are 3 clear key points too” i think the points covered here are very important and well documented here.

  12. says

    I’ve had a hard time justifying CPC advertising. I use it sparingly, and thought it’s a necessary evil. You’ve made me rethink its priority.

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