Blog | Marketing

Magento Conversion Rate Optimisation Improvements


You get one chance to make a great first impression.

When it comes to your customers, using Magento’s tools in the right way and removing features that don’t work, is a quick and straightforward way to make a lasting first impression.

Where to Start

The standard of a ‘good’ Conversion Rate varies from industry to industry, so you may have to do some digging to find yours.

Generally speaking, anything over 2% is considered fair, and in terms of improvements, anything between a 10% and 15% increase per quarter is definitely achievable for most.

There are many factors to look at when optimising your CRO, but the main aspects to always remember are:

  • Navigation
  • Speed
  • Ease
  • Trust
  • Value

Always consider the customer in relation to these five points, and so whatever changes you make, they must lead back to these.

Magento Conversion Rate Optimisation

Using the features that already exist within Magento can give you quick wins when it comes to Conversion Rate Optimisation.

Magento features a number of standard functions that are customisable, allowing you to quickly and easily implement changes.

1. Navigation

i) Visual Merchandiser

This allows you to drag-and-drop products into categories quickly and easily, as well as optimise meta data and see stock levels, all on one page.

Visual Merchandiser is available for both the Community and Enterprise editions of Magento.

In Community, there is a sort order table which can be accessed via heading to Catalog > Manage Categories.

Click on any category in the left hand navigation and you’ll see a tab for Visual Merchandiser in the category tabs:


With normal Magento functionality, you use a numbering system to prioritise your products.

However, when you have stock levels in the thousands, this can become difficult to maintain.

Visual Merchandiser allows you to drag and drop products in any order you wish, with every product within the category dynamically shifting once you drop your chosen product into position.

You can also move more than one product at a time. Shift-click one or more products and the headers will turn blue.

Simply drag-and-drop these selected products around the grid and the other products will shift positions around the ones you move.

In Enterprise editions, go to Catalog > Categories > Manage Categories to find the options for Visual Merchandiser and the functionality is identical within both editions.

ii) Filters

If you know anything about CRO then you’ll already understand the importance of filters in your category pages.

But what you might not know is that always showing your filters on every category page may not be working for your Conversion Rates.

Depending on your products, you may have an extended list of filters running down the left hand side of the page.

Having these filters always expanded may actually be turning potential customers away as they are overwhelmed with the number of choice available.

If you do have a large number of filters, we recommend that you minimise them to only show the title of each filter, and not every option within it.

This way, your customers can choose what they want to filter and what they can ignore, helping them move faster towards the sale.


2. Speed

Speed can be separated into two areas of focus; speed of funnel and speed of page. We’ll look at both here:

i) Speed of Funnel

Google Analytics

If you don’t already have your Google Analytics account associated with your Magento website, get that up and running as soon as possible.

GA gives you insights into how your sales funnel is working and can highlight pain points for potential customers.

The main areas to focus on are the Shopping Basket and Checkout Page.

By using the Enhanced eCommerce plugin, you can track the journey of your customers along the path from product page to shopping basket to checkout page to success page.

Using the data within this report, you can then see where customers are dropping out of the funnel and which areas need attention to keep the customer journey flowing.

ii) Speed of Page

Enable Magento Caching

Magento is a great tool for eCommerce but it can be a bit of a greedy guts when it comes to your resources.

Enabling caching will help free up some space and keep Magento running smoothly.

  • Head over to System> Cache Management
  • Choose the select all button in the top left hand side of the page.
  • In the Actions drop down on the right hand side of the screen, click Submit
  • Caching in Magento is now enabled!

Streamline Front End Assets

Make sure you optimise your front end assets, such as images, fonts, JavaScript or CSS files, etc…

You can also minimise HTTP and image requests, compress your images to reduce load time, and remove any unnecessary extensions that are no longer in use.

3. Ease

i) Disable Non-Critical Features

Not all features within Magento will be necessary for the success of your business.

  • Add to Wish List‘ and ‘Add to Compare‘ functions come as standard in Magento, but you need to assess how often your customers use this feature. Removing features that aren’t used by consumers reduces the potential actions on a page and therefore focusing the customer towards the main CTA, such as ‘Add to Basket
  • Switch off tags if you don’t need them, for the same reason as wish lists, as this will reduce the number of CTAs on a page and put more focus on the main journey.
  • Same goes for the Out of Stock function. (However, if you’re in a niche industry, you may find that keeping this on works for you.) However, if you are within a larger market, then you will need to decide whether displaying out of stock products has a positive or negative impact on your brand against the competition.
ii) Elasticsearch

Although currently only available for Enterprise Editions, this feature allows you to give your customers a better search experience.

You can tailor your search to set weighted attribute values, include stop words, and use search synonyms, making it easier for users to find what they are looking for.

And, as we know, the less time spent searching, the more likely a customer is to buy.

iii) One Step Checkout

A general rule of thumb is; the quicker your customer can get through the checkout, the more likely your chance of a conversion.

This may sound completely obvious (if they’re in the checkout, of course they’ll convert!) but you’d be surprised.

Checkout abandonment is a common occurrence, especially if the customer feels the process of making their purchase is overly long or complicated.

Getting a one-step checkout in place vastly reduces the risk of checkout abandonment.

Checkout Pro, OneStepCheckout, or One Step Checkout by MageWorld are all great options to choose from.

 4. Trust

i) Tailor your Content

Make sure you look at it from your customer’s POV and ask yourself – What would they expect to see/read?

Showing that you know your stuff when it comes to the product you are selling helps to build trust and confidence in the customer.

Category pages

For example, on your category pages – what are the key messages about the product range/group you are presenting that the consumer will need to know.

Use your Category Image field to display banners that are relevant to the products underneath and/or talk about a specific site-wide or category only promotion.

Product Pages

On product pages, make sure you have the critical features formatted with bullet points for easier reading, with more in depth descriptions within the Long Description.

Magento’s WYSIWYG allows you to wrap images and videos into content, so if you have an opportunity to share this kind of material then do so.

You will find this provides a better experience for the customer and shows search engine crawlers that you have a good selection of varied content and formats across your pages.

ii) Short Descriptions

If your consumers would prefer List view (instead of the default Grid View) then make sure you have optimised your short descriptions.

As well as giving your customers valuable information on the product page, short descriptions can also be used to help customers navigate quicker through category pages.

When viewing a category in a List View, short descriptions will be pulled in from the product page and display alongside the product image and name in the category view.

If you optimise your short descriptions with this in mind, you can tailor them to help inform your customer from the category page, saving them from having to enter each product individually.


iii) SSL Certificate

Getting an SSL certificate for your eCommerce website is one of the quickest and most important ways to build trust with your customers.

SSL certificates show the customer that any data they input on your website will be kept safe and secure.

Websites without an SSL often flag up to the user as soon as they enter with a warning about security, so not having one can instantly turn potential customers away.


iv) Contact Details

For many, buying off the internet is a new experience and customers need to feel reassured that the purchase they make is above board and trustworthy.

A simple way to relieve their fears is to display your content information clearly within your website.

Include your phone and email address as a minimum, and if you have a physical address, include that as well.

This reassures the customer that you are a legitimate business and, if they want to speak to you at any time during their buyer journey, you will be available.

5. Value

i) Personalisation

Tailoring your products and services to each individual customer can have a powerful impact on your CRO.

Personalisation allows you to cultivate the experience each customer has based on how they interact with your website.

Magento has a good selection of personalisation tools you can use, including Nosto or Listrak.

Both of these help to create personalised experiences for the customer based on what they have viewed and interacted with.

For example, Nosto has an existing, easy-to-use Magento integration and looks at shopper behavior, learning their preferences to create personalised product recommendations, pop-ups and relevant offers in real-time.

ii) Rewards

Customers love feeling like they’re getting something for nothing and a robust loyalty system can achieve just that.

Retaining customers is a smart practice for any eCommerce business, as it costs far less to keep a loyal customer than to seek out a new one.

Plus, returning customers often convert at a much higher rate than new customers, so they are definitely worth keeping hold of.

Take a look at either the Magento Reward Points Extension from MageStore, or the Magento Loyalty Program from Amasty to get your own system in place.

iii) Reviews

One of the best tools at your disposal for attracting customers to your business actually comes way before a customer even lands on your website.

Online reviews are this generation’s word-of-mouth and can be a strong factor in driving traffic to your eCommerce business.

While this obviously builds trust with customers, reviews are also highly valuable to them as well.

Reviews give customers instant insight into the products they wish to purchase and can answer specific queries they may have.

Encouraging reviews from existing customers could potentially bring in new customers who are seeking the same valuable resolution to their problem.

Conversion Rate Optimisation Troubleshooting

Customers come to your website with certain expectations, and your Conversion Rate is a straightforward way to tell if those expectations are not being met.

These are some of the most common causes for turning customers off your site and onto your competitors’.

1) Delivery Costs

If your delivery is free, you need to make it clear on every page so your customer doesn’t have to go rooting around for information.

If your delivery is not free, you need to make it as simple as possible to understand. Have a dedicated Delivery page detailing all the information they need in a clear and easy to understand format.

Note: Free Delivery is a massive advantage when it comes to online shopping, so if you don’t currently offer it, but you can afford to, it is worth considering.


2) Customer Service

Installing a Live Chat option on your website gives customers an easy way to get information from you.

This means that, instead of customers getting frustrated with waiting for an answer by email or phone, you can quickly help direct them towards a successful purchase.

3) FAQs

Your customers will often have questions that need answering quickly before they make a purchase.

To save them waiting around for you to help via email or phone, display your most frequently asked questions on a dedicated page and make it easy to access from all product and category pages.

4) Limited Payment

Online shopping has become more popular over the years largely due to the instant nature of transactions.

Customers don’t want to be kept waiting or encounter obstacles on their sales journey. One particular bugbear is limited payment options.

Ensure you offer them a variety of payment methods, including debit and credit cards, online wallets such as PayPal, and even Gift Cards, depending on your eCommerce business.



CRO is not a one-shot-fixes-all task. It will take time and consistent monitoring to start seeing results and even then, you will need to work hard to maintain any traction.

That being said, it is achievable if you remember the steps laid out above, and always keep in mind of your customer’s journey.

As long as you are working to their expectations and not your own, you can achieve sustainable Conversion Rate Optimisation growth.