Engaging Audiences: Tracking Audience Conversion
About 79% of those responding said they did not track or measure whether they converted site visitors to take on other roles.
Engaging site visitors in various content-creation roles was identified as most important to the success of the respondents’ sites. Ranked as “very important,” “important” or “somewhat important” were:
Converting audience members into sources for future stories or tipsters and crowdsourcing participants (both 88%).
Converting site visitors to be actual contributors of stories or photos was cited by 77% of the respondents.
What is Audience Conversion?
Ranking lower in importance was converting casual site visitors into advertisers (66%) although advertising was not applicable to 16% of the respondents. About 55% said converting site visitors into donors was important, but donations did not apply to 27% of the sites. Of some importance to 25% was converting visitors to paid subscribers, but paid subscriptions did not apply to nearly 47% of respondents.
For purposes of this study, audience conversion is defi ned as the process of moving users beyond superficial interaction to actual investment in an online news site.
The investment can be monetary or take the form of social capital. Examples would include engagement that prompts, or converts, a website visitor or social-media connector to become a content contributor, a volunteer, a donor, an advertiser or a subscriber.
In general, an online conversion rate is calculated by taking the percentage of site visitors who take a desired action. That action can take many forms from the sale of products to membership registrations, newsletter subscriptions or software downloads.