Why Content Marketing Isn’t a Numbers Game

It’s easy to see big numbers (or small ones, if that’s the case) and get excited. Numbers and figures are often an ancillary part to any presentation and clients often demand the biggest and best no matter what.

Hey, that’s totally fine in our books. We demand the best from ourselves every day, and clients should too. But, here’s the kicker: looking just at the numbers is not healthy. One of the best ways to illustrate why is in a conversation often had regarding content marketing and its effect (or lack thereof) on conversion rates.

Great content writing often drives conversion rates down. Why? Better yet, why is that a good thing?


The reason content marketing exists is because of a firm belief in engagement. Engagement, at its core, is about giving the customer something. Are you giving them handy guides, tips, tricks, information, overviews of products and services? The marketing landscape continues to evolve. It’s a wide berth, but engaging the consumer on a basic level is integral to moving them through your sales funnel. Without engagement, you just have a bunch of visitors gumming up the works.


When you’re working to engage through the offer of more content, you increase the likelihood of being found online. Without getting into most of the details, this is because search engines love data! They love words, and they love to index the pages where these words are found. SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process where we use specific keywords to get that search engines attention. It’s not as simple as it sounds, but that’s your basic principle.  It’s a tool to help potential leads that would be interested in your product or service find you.

The Conversion Process

Moving through the sales funnel, you want to attract visitors, qualify leads, convert them to customers and eventually have customers become advocates of your brand. Converting a lead into a customer can be tricky, so you want to give yourself the best chance at success by targeting as many people as possible. That is exactly what great content helps you do!

By offering potential online visitors more opportunities to see your web site, and draw them in with great content, they’ll be more likely to re-visit your site and trust you as an authority on your product or service. Looking at raw numbers in this sense can be very misleading. Below I’ve created an infographic that does a good job of explaining:

As you can see, the biggest box is the amount of visitors to your site through utilizing content marketing — you reached 100 people. The smaller box represents the amount of visitors to your site utilizing a more product-focused method — reaching 40 people.

Both websites converted 10 percent of their visitors into leads! That’s great, but in this case the content-focused site was able to attract a larger amount of visitors, producing more customers and potential customers across the board.

The example becomes even more potent if we shrink it further. If a traditional, product-focused website has only a product page, category page, and maybe one or two information pages, and reaches less than 10 percent of the content-focused websites, it may still retain those four conversions giving you a conversion rate of 33 percent. A great figure, but not within context.

More Than the Sum of Its Parts

The main takeaway here is this — producing content that allows you to be searched for more, that offers your visitors something more than just information on how to buy, and delights while doing so, may appear to push down your conversion rate. But, upon closer inspection, you’re converting more than you would without that content.

Are you doing everything in your power to capitalize on attracting visitors to your website?