Is it true the lower down the conversion funnel, the bigger impact it makes?

We built a simple model to model out each level of our conversion funnel: 1. Try 2. Registered 3. Pay. We realized given the same lift in percentage, the lower the conversion funnel, the bigger impact it makes on revenue. Is this true to most SaaS / eCommerce apps / sites? If so, shouldn't we be focused much more effort bottom up?


Logically this makes sense. However is easier said than done, and many would argue that even if you aim for a bottom up approach you are in essence still going through the traditional model because you have to filter out anyway to get to your actual conversions.

Referrals are probably the best shortcuts there are but you still have that funnel approach.

Answered 9 years ago

As a rule of thumb, I would still begin from the wider part of the funnel.

if you have a lot of traffic and with that probably a lot of different traffic sources, campaigns, marketing efforts, expectations of the people coming are likely different. Optimization in that case should be done for certain traffic source or visitors segment only. If you manage to get more of those visitors to go down the funnel, you'll get more "juice" to play with and test in the next phase: optimize the next step in the funnel for those visitors/segments only. This would be done much harder (read: slower) if you began from the bottom up.


Answered 9 years ago

I've been optimizing a large SaaS website for a few years now and found that the biggest gains were on the payment pages and pricing pages at the end of the funnel.

That being said, for this particular site, there were glaring usability issues with the site and poor content on the pages so it was the obvious choice of a place to start.

To find places that you can make the biggest impact, after you've fixed any glaring usability issues, look in Google Analytics for pages with high exit rate percentages. These are pages that people had issues, if you can answer their objections then you're one step closer to a conversion.

If you'd like advice specifically tailored to your website I'd be happy to help. Give me a call here -

Answered 9 years ago

Great question. The simple answer is yes. Now a more complex answer. This is what I've learnt after successfully optimizing for large e-commerce companies and SaaS:

CRO is not only a matter of testing opportunities, but a matter of timing and resources. Especially within organizations where both are limited.

When you have many testing opportunities, the ideal thing is to focus on the ones that are closer to the money exchange between customer and you. That means getting the sales funnel backwards, and working through the motions.

Why? You focus first on the people that are about to give you their money, but couldn't for any sort of reasons. They're the lowest hanging fruit.

The other side of the coin is, a massive influx of new leads can also bring great benefits. Even if new people fall of the funnel, a great deal will still go through. Only issue is, if you're paying for that traffic, then you're losing a lot of money.

So start closest to the money. Make sure that part of the funnel is fixed. Then either move to middle of the funnel or don't be afraid to open the top funnel too to get that landslide of new users.

If you need more advice, simply give me a call.

Best regards

Answered 8 years ago

For the funnel to work the way it's intended, you need to spend equal time on all parts of it.

The key with marketing is to realize that the funnel is a linear, sequential process. You can’t skip ToFu and MoFu and turn strangers into customers. Everyone has to proceed through your funnel in order. Top, middle, then bottom. No exceptions.

Here are some more tips for how to get the most from the funnel from a blog I wrote:

Answered 7 years ago

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