Micro and macro goals for your CRO strategy

No matter who you are, it’s crucial for your website to have business objectives and goals to be able to optimise for growth.

At Branded3, we have a variety of clients with varying goals and objectives – from ecommerce sites with a primary conversion goal of increasing transactions, to lead generation sites with a primary goal of form submissions.

We focus on identifying the key business objectives that will make a significant impact to our clients’ customer experience, and ultimately to their macro conversions. To do this, it’s important to not to focus solely on the main conversion rate (whether that be transactions or leads over visitors), but also to consider the smaller interactions a user can have on the website. Of course, your key focus should always be on your macro goal, but to really optimise your website to its fullest potential, you shouldn’t ignore the smaller things.

What’s the difference between micro and macro conversions or goals?

micro and macro goals

Google defines these as the following:

  • Micro-conversions can include signups for your email newsletter, account creations, video plays, and other activities that often precede a purchase.
  • Macro-conversions can include things like transactions over visitors and lead generation over visitors.

But the list can be much longer for micro conversions, for example, you might want to track engagement on a navigation, clicks on certain content, progress from the first page in a form to the second.

Focusing on both micro and macro conversions in your CRO strategy is key if you truly want to improve your customer experience as it’s these micro conversions that lead to your macro conversions. Just focusing on an area of the site that gets 3% of your traffic (your success or thank you page) means that you could be missing opportunities in other areas of your customer’s journey.

You can think about micro-goals as your macro-goals, broken down in to smaller bite size chunks that help you be more specific in your CRO programme. You should ensure you’re focusing on the parts of your site that can make a difference to the bigger picture.

Identifying goals?

So, you understand what goal tracking opportunities are out there, but how do you decide where to start?

You should already have goal tracking set up in Google Analytics, if not, this is a good place to start. Ask yourself, what are our business goals and what do we need our customers to do on this website? Then, get building. Read this guide on goal tracking for more info.

Why should you focus on more than one goal but not too many?

Testing against both types of your goals will allow you to run more tests side by side and really understand what changes are making the impacts and at what point in the funnel the test is impacting.

For example, if you conduct a funnel review using analytics, and see that the clicks on the ‘add to bag’ button is falling over time, or below what you would have hoped, you can focus a test on this area of the customer journey. Then, you can also conduct tests further down the funnel which may be focused on your macro conversion.

But make sure you stay focused! Too many goals or KPIs will distract you from spending time on the important bits.

A CRO programme should start with the identification of business goals and their performance, and then be built up according to these goals and hypotheses to improve these. The programme should have data at its core, whether that be quantitative or qualitative data.

In summary:

  • Setting up micro-goals allows you to broaden out your CRO programme and not just focus on one metric.
  • Micro-goals allow you to make each test specific to each of your business objectives.
  • They can lead to quicker results than macro-goals can generate for you.
  • Use your website’s quantitative and qualitative data to build up hypotheses around your macro and micro goals.


To get your website goals set up, there are some useful resources on Google. Likewise, take a look at these guides from B3:

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