Let’s talk about one of my favorite e-commerce metrics – your conversion rate.

Before diving into how to increase your shop’s conversion rate or even why this stat is so important, let me explain what the heck it is (in case you’re unfamiliar!).

What does conversion rate mean?

Your conversion rate is a percentage of how many of your visitors become paying customers. Basically, how much of your traffic actually gets their wallet out and buys something from your store.

You can calculate it by dividing your total number of orders in any time period by the total number of visitors during that same time period. (Use visitors, not visits or views.)

In the example above, this shop owner has a 3.75% conversion rate. Thus, we can say that for every 100 visitors she gets to her shop, 3.75 of them will buy something.

You can also find your conversion rate on your Etsy stats dashboard (no calculator necessary!). 

In the written example above, this shop owner has a 3.75% conversion rate. Thus, we can say that for every 100 visitors she gets to her shop, 3.75 of them will buy something.

You can also find your conversion rate on your Etsy stats dashboard (no calculator necessary!). 

The higher your conversion rate, the better. A typical e-commerce conversion rate is about 1-5% (in other words, it’s generally pretty low!).

Why does your conversion rate matter?

I like to talk about conversion rate because it’s a pretty interesting metric to focus on improving. Let me zoom out for a sec.

You likely have a goal to increase your shop sales, am I right?

There are essentially three things you can do to increase your shop’s sales:

  1. Get more visitors.
  2. Turn more visitors into customers.
  3. Get your customers to spend more money.

That’s honestly what all your options boil down to when you think about it. Let me dive in deeper…

One – You can get more visitors to your site. More traffic. More eyeballs. Generally the more people you get to see your stuff, the more sales you will make. This is focusing on volume. It’s the thing most shop sellers default to doing when they’re trying to make more money. They start working on marketing, outreach, social media, email list building… a bunch of volume-focused things which are indeed valuable and helpful, but also quite vague, time-consuming, and intangible.

Two – You can increase your conversion rate. What if you took the visitors you’re already GETTING and just found ways to turn more of them into paying customers? 

Three – You can get people to spend more money on your site. You have people who are already ready to get out their wallets and make a purchase – can you get them to spend a few more bucks? This is what I call increasing your average order value. You can do this through simply raising your prices, but there are dozens of other ways as well. That’s a lesson for another day.


Improving any one, two or ALL of these things will lead to an increase in total revenue for your shop.

We often choose to focus on increasing traffic, when really increasing your conversion rate and/or your average order value can be a TON less work for just as great, if not a greater, impact on your bottom line.

You want to make sure your shop site is optimized to convert BEFORE you spend time driving more traffic there.

Before you dive into social media marketing, Pinterest, SEO and ALL the things, I suggest making sure your shop is ready to convert all that future traffic you’re gonna work so hard to get into paying customers.

Why bother doing all that work if you won’t make the MOST out of it?

Let me drive the point home with another example. Let’s say you sell just one product for $10 on your site. Your conversion rate right now is 2%.

If you drive 10,000 visitors to your site, you’ll get 200 orders for a total of $2000 (10,000 x 2% x $10).

You take a weekend to improve your site following some suggestions from my shop audit checklist (link below!) and you increase your conversion rate to 3.5%.

Next month, you get the same amount of visitors – now those same amount of visitors gets you $3500 in sales (10,000 x 3.5% x $10). 

That’s a few hours of work for a 75% increase in revenue. ????

My favorite part is that it doesn’t require the time-consuming never-ending-hamster-wheel-work of trying to get more traffic to your site.

How can you increase your conversion rate?

Ok Janet, you’ve convinced me that improving my conversion rate is a worthwhile endeavor. What do I need to do?

First make sure to actually jot down your current conversion rate. It’s important to have a benchmark so you can know if your tweaks make an impact or not.

Next, think about what conversion rate actually represents. Why do visitors NOT convert? Usually it’s due to reasons falling within one or all of the following categories:

➡️ Your potential customer experienced some sort of barrier to checkout that caused them to abandon their cart.

Example: Requiring guests to make an account before checking out or having an annoying pop-up on mobile that gets in the way.

➡️ Your potential customer didn’t have confidence in your product, brand, professionalism, etc.

Example: Lots of typos on your product listing, blurry photos, etc.

➡️ Your potential customer was left with unanswered questions about your product, shipping, or shop policies.

Example: No info on refund policy or turnaround time.

➡️ Your potential customer got distracted during the checkout process and forgot to come back.

Example: Your cart page also links to blog posts so your potential customer decides to go read your posts instead.

➡️ Your potential customer got turned off by hidden or additional fees at checkout.

Example: I hate to use this conversion example BUT free shipping has statistically shown to increase your conversion rate!

Basically, you need to make the path from browsing to buying as smooth as possible for your potential customers. 

There are a lot of simple little tweaks, additions, and changes you can make to your site that can have a positive impact on your conversion rate and thus boost your bottom line. The good news is that generally making these changes can be done quickly and at no cost.

In fact, I have a 10 page “shop audit” checklist with over 40 ways you can improve your shop’s conversion rate. Many of these you may not even realize are leading to cart abandonment on your site!

Implementing just a handful of the items on this list will help you optimize your current traffic and make more revenue. Grab your free shop audit checklist here or click the image below.

Click here to download