Macro vs. Micro Conversions: What They Are & Why They Matter in Sales

The customer journey is filled with many different stops along the way — both small and large. Understanding macro and micro conversions is just one part of ensuring you’re reaching your campaign goals.

Macro vs. Micro Conversions: What They Are & Why They Matter in Sales

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As anyone in digital marketing will tell you, the path of taking a lead from first impression to becoming a paying customer is a long and winding journey.

In fact, it is full of both big and small actions and decisions that make up the larger part of their overall interaction with your brand.

For companies, paying attention to these macro and micro conversions is an important aspect of setting goals and creating successful campaigns.

When done correctly, it can even be a significant part of your inbound marketing strategy.

Here’s what you need to know about the difference between the two types and why it matters for your business growth.

    What are Macro Conversions?

    Macro conversions are essentially the big goals of your marketing campaign. 

    For example, if your business is eCommerce, then a good example of a macro conversion would be when a customer places an order.

    In other industries, it might be when a client requests a sales phone call or signs a contract. This really just depends on your niche and your overall business process.

    The main point? 

    Macro conversions are those activities that directly relate to the profits of your organization or your overall main goal for growth.

    When creating a digital marketing campaign, your team will likely look at macro conversions as a way to hit major milestones or benchmarks for tracking success.

    For example, you might have a set goal of three hundred new leads within the quarter or an increase in sales by 18%. 

    These would both be considered macro conversions, as they directly relate to the bigger picture reason why you’re engaging in marketing activities in the first place.

    The Problem with Macro Conversions

    It is important to note that macro conversions are where a lot of companies keep their focus. 

    The truth? 

    There are other elements to your sales process that you should be tracking and paying attention to that ultimately lead up to the overall big sale or quote request.

    Staying too focused on macro conversions can be somewhat detrimental in that it can cause you to lose sight of the bigger picture and the various steps in the overall customer journey.

    What are Micro Conversions?

    In contrast, micro conversions are the small steps that a customer takes on their way through the process.

    These can essentially be broken down into two types: 

    Process milestones 

    Process milestones are those steps critical to taking the customer from that moment of first contact — such as when they first arrive on your website — to when they ultimately make that macro conversion by asking for a quote, making a purchase, or becoming a solid lead.

    Secondary actions 

    Secondary actions are those that show interest or intrigue in the information you’re presenting, whether that is on your website, across your social media profiles, or in another form of digital advertising.

    For example, a process milestone might include something as simple as signing up for an email newsletter, adding a product to cart without checking out, or clicking on a link to learn more about the service you offer.

    Those secondary actions that show the user is working towards bigger process milestones or even ultimately a macro conversion include things like commenting on a social media post, saving a link, watching an interactive video to full completion, etc.

    Both types of micro conversions can be an excellent way to track whether your campaign is effective or needs minor adjustments to prevent bottlenecks in the greater customer journey.

    Why Do These Conversions Matter?

    Both macro and micro conversions are an extremely important part of the sales process, as they show what’s working and what isn’t with your campaigns.

    Without tracking these metrics, you might not know the point in which a customer is losing interest or what is driving your success.

    Think of it using this analogy. Let’s say your website is a machine.

    State of Marketing Report 2024

    If that machine were to break down at a certain point and not operate as designed, you would want to know the exact part that was the issue, right?

    Micro and macro conversion metrics are a lot like this. 

    If you’re getting a positive response, you should have data for both the small steps and the bigger picture actions.

    However, if there’s a lack of data, then you might have an issue that’s preventing the customer from achieving those tasks.

    As an example, if you’re getting a low number of views on a sales video despite high levels of traffic and later discover there’s a tech error that’s preventing it from rendering correctly, you would want to know this. And it would definitely show up in your conversion metrics.

    Simply put, both micro and macro conversion metrics are important to gauge the effectiveness of your digital marketing tactics.

    How to Take Advantage of Micro and Macro Conversions

    So, how do you take full advantage of micro and macro conversions when planning your digital marketing campaigns? 

    Here are a few key tips to consider:

    1. Use Tracking to Determine Micro and Macro Conversions

    The thing about micro conversions that is so important to understand is that you might not even know they exist.

    If you think about it for a minute, you probably pay far more attention to your macro conversions than you do those itty-bitty micro ones.

    Instead, make sure you’re keeping an eye on both types. 

    By using tracking in this manner, you can easily spot areas where there might be an opportunity to scale up a specific element of your campaign or even make changes to prevent issues with getting your customer through the sales funnel.

    Google Analytics has many different methods for customizing your tracking, making it an excellent place to start.

    2. Know When to Segment Users and Analyze Data

    It’s also important to realize the context behind why a specific user might make a micro conversion and where they might never fully move forward to a full macro conversion.

    For example, looking at users across multiple channels, it can be easy to spot those that will make a full completion to a macro conversion and those that likely won’t. 

    Take two customers: one that’s coming to your website from a LinkedIn post and one that found you via a keyword search on Google.

    The LinkedIn user likely won’t ever make a purchase, as they’re interested in a job and not the products or services you offer. However, the customer that did a web search for what you’re offering might.

    By using tracking to segment users in this type of fashion, you can see where each category of customer enters the sales funnel and their likelihood of ultimately making a macro conversion.

    3. Understand How to Spot Critical Issues in Your Sales Funnel

    Ultimately, the biggest job of macro and micro conversions is to give you enough data to make highly accurate assumptions about your sales funnel.

    Again, this information is crucial in giving your digital marketing team clues in what is working well and what is falling flat with your campaigns.

    Learning how to spot these issues based on data takes time, but knowing the context behind these metrics when analyzing your information can really be a quick way to make improvements for the better over time.

    Wrap Up: Increasing Lead Generation with Conversion Metrics

    Tracking micro conversions is a good way to fine-tune your campaigns for better overall results. 

    After all, when you know what your clients are doing within your sales funnel, you can make adjustments that best reflect their needs.

    The end result? 

    More macro conversions, like eCommerce sales, quote requests, sales calls, and other inbound marketing goals. 

    Ultimately, this improves the growth of your business and helps you reach bigger goals in a shorter period of time.

    Ready to learn more about lead generation and how elements like conversion tracking can ultimately increase your results? 

    Our Rock Content ebook can help give you the answers you’re looking for with plenty of actionable tips to increase your conversions. Take a look!


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