Average Conversion Rates By Industry
It means everything. When we don’t provide it, clients get confused, marketing teams flail with leads, and relationships (both professional and otherwise) can come to blows.
In digital marketing, we often ask “what is a good conversion rate for my website?”, but we don’t provide the context. Measuring industry benchmarks can’t be answered this way, because they don’t tell you:
- What conversions are we measuring?
- Who are we measuring?
A benchmark conversion of 2-3 percent might look good on paper, but it doesn’t help your business set meaningful goals because it doesn’t answer these two questions.
But let’s back up for a moment, and explain what conversion rates for industries or MQL (marketing qualified leads) are.
A conversion can be a visitor:
- Submitting their email address for your newsletter subscription
- Downloading your eBook or eSeminar offers
- Submitting a form for a consultation or demo
- Engaging with call-to-action buttons
MQLs are visitors on your website whose engagement levels (signing up for your newsletter, clicking on call-to-actions) indicate that they’re more interested than the average visitor, but not fully committed. Every action they perform has a different “score” or metric that helps your sales and marketing teams determine where exactly that person is in the buying cycle.
On the other hand, SQL (sales qualified leads) are the individuals your sales team has determined as ready for a sales follow up. These leads are far more valuable than newsletter signup, and it’s important to be able to make that distinction. You can use the help of marketing automation software companies like Marketo, Eloqua, or HubSpot.
Image Source: MQL-to-SQL Conversion Process
Contrary to popular belief, there isn’t a standardised set of marketing conversions or universal benchmark rates. Quality and measure of conversions depend on a company’s goals and its sales team’s efficiency.
So why look at conversion rates?
Examining conversion rates helps understand your company’s marketing pipeline to see a visitor’s sales-readiness. From the very first encounter, a conversion is a change in the client-business relationship and completely dependent on the consideration and tactics you use to secure that lead.
Image Source: Marketing & Sales Funnel
Implicit analysed hundreds of companies and found the average conversion rate from Leads to Opportunity (MQL to SQL) to be 13 percent with an average of 84 days to convert, but these numbers vary according to the source of the lead. For websites, leads convert at 31.3 percent.
The next thing you want to answer is who you’re measuring, or looking to convert. Is this anyone who takes an action, or specifically qualified business leads? When you determine who counts towards a conversion, you can better assign value to that conversion, and creating buyer personas is very useful here.
For example, for someone who submits an email address for your newsletter can value around $3, but an MQL-to-SQL conversion can set a value of around $2500. This is because on average, SQL conversion rates have been identified as people who are interested and have a higher inclination to buy from you.
“But conversion rates are low in my industry.”
This is possible.
Conversion rates across industries varies greatly, and you should try not to make the mistake of comparing your business to the average across industries because it gives you the impression that you’re doing well when you might not be in the top 10 percent of your industry. The chart below highlights these differences.
Image Source: Wordstream: Conversion Analysis of Four Major Industries
Besides this, a Marketing Sherpa study of conversions from the top-of-the-funnel process fall in these ranges:
|Industry||Average Conversion Rate|
|Retail + eCommerce||3%|
|Manufacturing + Packaging Goods||4%|
|Technology Equipment + Hardware||5%|
|SaaS + Software||7%|
|Media + Publishing||10%|
|Financial + Professional Services||10%|
If you’re looking for realistic numbers, keeping the average of your industry in mind is important. It also helps you to avoid getting overwhelmed by the sheer amount of data and numbers coming in from your competitors, or your own marketing and sales teams.
We know how to focus benchmarking on genuine conversion rates and get your lead generation soaring. Tribe of Brands can help you stay on top of trends to effectively navigate the complex waters of the internet. Our marketing agency can help you with further ideas of how to design world-class websites, seamless user journeys, and digital marketing campaigns.
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