B2B Marketing Agency for Technology Companies

If Website Conversions (both Macro & Micro) were like Football

Generating macro conversions indicates your website is winning. But, what if it’s not? Is it failing? Maybe not. Let’s explore with this football analogy.

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by Eric Sharp

Here are some comments you won't hear in tomorrow's marketing or sales meeting.

  • "No orders came through...no problem!"
  • "No one filled out our contact form...no worries!"
  • "No one registered for our webinar...no sweat!"

Just like a patient football coach won’t panic when his team punts on 4th down, neither should you if your website doesn't generate macro conversions.


Macro conversions (e.g. orders, contact form completions) clearly indicate your website is doing its job. However, is your website failing if it’s not generating macro conversions? Possibly. Or, perhaps it’s creating micro conversions (e.g. email newsletter signups, blog comments) which are indicators of potential future macro conversions.

To further explore this dichotomy of website conversions, I’ve called upon my Chicago roots (where one special NFL team resides) and schemed up this football analogy.

Let's kick things off!

What are MACRO Conversions?

Macro conversions map directly to the primary goals of a website. They are significant conversions that reap immediate and big rewards (hence the “macro”) and are typically tracked through a measurement tool such as Google Analytics.

Sample macro conversions:

  • Orders
  • Registrations
  • Form completions
  • Key downloads
  • Calls to a 800 number

If MACRO Conversions were like Football

You can't win a game if you don't score any points.

John Madden

You know John, sometimes the obvious needs to be stated.

Macro conversions are like touchdowns, field goals, extra points and safeties. These accomplishments rack up points and get plastered on the scoreboard for all to see. Just like the Chicago Bears won’t win without Jay Cutler throwing (beautiful) touchdowns to Brandon Marshall, neither will your website win without macro conversions.

What are MICRO Conversions?

Unlike macro conversions, micro conversions do not map directly to the primary goals of a website. Though desirable, they are typically undervalued conversions because there’s no direct and immediate yield. Consequently, and, unfortunately, micro conversions might not be tracked and measured.

Sample micro conversions:

  • Signed up for newsletter
  • Commented on blog
  • Shared content
  • Watched video
  • Viewed a particular number of pages

If MICRO Conversions were like Football

Micro conversions are like first downs, creating turnovers and rushing for 100+ yards. These small victories won’t put points on the scoreboard, but they're positive indicators that the team is moving the chains, getting into scoring position, and increasing their chances to win the game.

Micro conversions are indicators of potential future macro conversions. A newsletter sign up doesn’t immediately impact your bottom line, but it could move you closer towards receiving an order, registration, or form completion down the road.

Remember ‘Sweetness’

Walter Payton, 'Sweetness'

When Sweetness ran harder, Bears fans could sense a touchdown was in the future (and their gut was right, most of the time).

Walter Payton (nicknamed 'Sweetness') accumulated 16,726 yards and 110 touchdowns as a Running Back during his Hall of Fame career. Most people remember him for those high-flying end-zone diving touchdowns, but what made him special was his ability to get that extra yard. He consistently put his head down, plowed through defenders, and picked up first downs.

He was undoubtedly a micro conversion animal on the field.

To get your website’s whole story, don’t focus on just your macro conversions or panic when they slow down. Look more closely at your website’s overall activity and determine if those micro conversions are setting you up for those ultimate goals.

Remember Sweetness.

And Go Bearsss.

We believe a conversion-focused website — paired with the proper traffic, content, automation, and end-to-end ROI measurement — equips B2B technology companies with a real asset to scale their business.


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