How to measure your success

What is a Conversion?

The word “Conversion” is often used when talking about [online] marketing. A Conversion occurs when someone performs a specific action you specifically want them to do. You can define different Conversions and measure them over time to see if your campaigns is performing as intended.

Example: The web shop owner

As a web shop owner you might want people to visit your web shop and to have a look at what products you are offering. You might also want them to have a closer look at specific products and maybe add some of them into their shopping cart. Later on you also want them to go ahead and complete the transaction by payment.

In this example the Conversion would be the exact moment when they actually bought the product. (completed the transaction by payment) Reversely, if the visitor abandons the session at your store without completing the purchase of the specified product, you did not achieve your Goal (of Conversion).However, keep in mind that all the previous actions the user did in your shop are very important, since this can be measured systematically and analyzed into what is referred to (below) as Key Performance Indicators (KPI). These will help you understand why, where and how you lose the customer still on her way to Conversion.

In other words: Within the scope of your Marketing Plan, you may have defined a Goal as to sell a certain product on your web site or on other third part services. The moment the actual sale is achieved is when, according to your Goal in your Marketing Plan, the Conversion occurs. Reversely, if the visitor abandons the session without completing the purchase of the specified product, you did not achieve your Goal (of Conversion).

Examples of Conversion can be:

  • – When someone buys [specific] products in your web shop.
  • – When someone signs up for a newsletter (so you can communicate with them later)
  • – When someone buys a specific product at a specific retail service (E.g album on iTunes)
  • – When someone downloads a specific document (Example a price list or a poster)
  • – When someone subscribes to your Spotify playlist
  • – When someone becomes a follower on Twitter or Instagram (expanding your platform for communication)

Conversion optimization

When you have defined 1-3 important Conversions for your business you can optimize all your online presence towards these specific Conversions. Do not define too many Conversions, it will only clutter your communication and you will probably end up with a lower Conversion rate. Reason being: “You cannot get people to do 5 things at the same time..”

The key to success in online marketing and marketing in Social Media is finding good ways to measure Conversions and then measure them over time. When you do this you will have a clear picture if a campaign is working (leading to Conversions) and if you are reaching your Goals with your Marketing Plan. With this you can also determine which campaigns are not working so you can stop wasting your energy on them.

Read more about tools that will help you keep track of your Conversions.

KPIs: Key Performance Indicators

Find which measurement parameters you can use to measure your online success. Choosing the right KPIs is reliant upon having a good understanding of what is important for your business.

Ask yourself:
1) What are my Goals?
2) What parameter(s) can I use to measure if I am getting closer to my Goal (/Conversion)?

Note: This is not the same as measuring Conversions but rather finding good parameters to measure your online performance/presence towards generating Conversions hence the word “Key Performance Indicators”

Example: Make a “Social Media KPI-report” in Excel.
Each channel you are represented in should be present with its own section in this report.
There should also be a section that is for your website in general.
Create columns that represent weeks and measure numbers over time. By doing this you will get a clear picture of how you are performing online / in social media.


Make your own: KPI-Social-Media-Template

Number of fans for each channel
Number of visitors on your website (directed from the different channels)
Number of Conversions from visitors at each of the different channels
Number of newsletter signups on your website

Note: Some of these numbers can be retrieved and compiled with tools like Google Analytics. If you use Google Analytics, you can set up custom reports that will track these numbers automatically for you. Read more about tracking on our tools pages.