Why Your Website Conversion Rate Fluctuates

June 30, 2023

Your conversion is so much more than just how good your website is. 

Unfortunately many brand owners and marketers get sucked into thinking that their website is bad when their conversion rate is down before they look into other areas of their business that might be causing conversion drops.

Let's break down why your conversion rate fluctuates and what you can do to keep your site as profitable as possible.

Traffic Source. It's no secret that you should be utilizing an omni-channel growth channel. But have you thought about how each of those channel fluctuations can impact your conversions?

I talk to brands all the time that are seeing a significant swing in their conversions without changing their site.

However they did make some changes in their traffic source. For example, they changed their ad targeting, campaign structure, offer, etc..

If the quality of your traffic changes, of course this is going to have an impact on your conversions because those people might be at a different stage in their buying process or actually unqualified to buy altogether.

Landing Pages. Similar to traffic quality, where you are sending people on your site can have a major impact as well.

In a perfect world, your ad/email is showing the same offer, angle, and product that your landing page is showing.

All too often, ads are dropping people on the home page.

95% of brands need to stop doing this!

Think about it, if someone clicks on an ad for a specific product, they don't want to click around on your site to look for it! They want to land on, or at least near, that product.

You can have the best website in the world, but if your pre-click and post-click aren't aligned, you are going to be leaving conversions on the table.

Seasonality. This is something we've been talking to a lot of brands about as the weather gets hot. For winter brands, summer can be a challenge, and vice versa!

With ecom being a global industry, we've been seeing more brands targeting international shoppers during the appropriate seasons.

If international is not an option, the goal should be to give people a reason to buy. Special offers, bundles, etc... are great ways to combat seasonality when framed correctly.

Shopper Opportunities. An often overlooked reason for conversion fluctuations is what is going on in the marketplace to give shoppers a more appealing opportunity elsewhere.

Ever wonder why everyone has a sale on the same days?

If your competitor has a sale and you don’t, who is the shopper going to buy from? Not you unless you have a highly unique product or a very committed audience. To stay competitive and not give the competition a leg up, brands are competing on sale days.

So what happens when you don’t have as good of an offer as a competitor but you’re still sending traffic to your site?

Your conversion rate goes down simply because there is a better deal somewhere else. This fluctuation has nothing to do with your website but all to do with your competitor having a better offer.

Shipping. Although this is technically part of your website, shipping costs can fluctuate if you have dynamic costs from carriers or 3PLs.

If your shipping is changing, this can have a huge impact on your conversion rate simply due to customers being accustomed to free shipping. Obviously shipping rates are not completely in your control, but you should be negotiating rates or at the worst case, finding ways to overcome shipping costs with higher AOVs.

Unfortunately there is no one size fits all solution here and this process will fluctuate drastically from brand to brand, but if your conversion rate is dropping and your shipping rates are going up with no other variables changing, it’s pretty clear where the pinch point is.

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