The Micro Conversion – How Small Decisions Get Customers to Buy

The Micro Conversion – How Small Decisions Get Customers to Buy

How do you eat an elephant?

As business owners, everything we do all boils down to one basic end goal: get customers to buy.

And that’s why we apply various sales and marketing strategies like advertising. We want to get our offer in front of people to get them to buy.

But if you’re spending to advertise but you aren’t getting sales, then you’re just wasting money.

Does that mean that advertising doesn’t work?

I’d argue against that.

But why do lots of business owners claim that advertising just sucks out their hard-earned money?

That’s because they’re being advertisers right out the gate.

What does that mean?

Let me illustrate with an age-old marketing analogy.

Will You Marry Me?

Imagine a single guy deciding in a moment that he wants to settle down and get married.

Does he go to a bar, meet a woman and ask her to marry him? No, they have to go out first.

Once they go out for coffee, does he propose? No, they should go to dinner first.

Once they go out for dinner, does he propose? No, they should exclusively date first.

Then they should be boyfriend-girlfriend.

Then when the time is right and the relationship is right, that’s when he proposes.

Given that framework, if he chose to propose at any time before the right moment in their relationship, would he have gotten a yes?

Maybe not.

And it works the same with advertising your business.

If you make an offer at the wrong time, you risk turning off your prospect. It’s like asking them to marry you when you’re not there yet.

In fact, you even risk losing them forever if you creep them out at the start of the relationship by making such an ask.

So even if your main goal is to get purchases, it doesn’t follow that you go for that goal immediately.

What should you do then?

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Enter Micro Conversions

Micro Conversions are smaller steps you can ask your audience to take to help them make bigger decisions easier.

Micro Conversions are not like more hoops you ask your customers to go through during the buying process.

They are more like steps on a set of stairs. Instead of asking your customers to take a big leap from one level to another, you lay out smaller steps for them to take which eventually lead to the next level.

Here’s an example.

Take e-commerce stores which sell supplements.

Store A decides to run ads telling its target audience to buy his products.

Store B decides to run ads leading to a blog post which educates active gym goers on the benefits of supplements. In that post, they make references to their products as examples and how they can benefit from them.

Which ad campaign would perform better?

In my experience, the strategy employed by Store B is more effective.

So it doesn’t have to be a long drawn-out process.

You’re just putting in smaller steps which are more easily actionable in front of the big ask.

These steps or micro conversions are different for every business model. But I’ll share with you a common framework which you can pattern until you figure out your own.

Micro Conversion 1: Lend Me Your Ears

Everyone loves free tips.

And when someone gives you free advice which got you results, that automatically makes you a believer of that person.

So the first micro conversion in this framework is to get people to listen to you.

Provide a quick and actionable tip which gets the person immediate results.

Once you are able to do so, they’ll pay attention to whatever else you have to say.

Micro Conversion 2: May I Have Your Number?

Advertising is about broadcasting your message to a defined audience and it gets results.

But can you imagine how much better results will be if you are able to reach your audience on a more personal level?

That’s why you’ll notice a lot of online businesses offering free ebooks and webinars which are filled with tons and tons of value.

You pay with your e-mail address which is very very valuable.

Giving away a piece of value in exchange for contact information is a very easy decision to make, making this a very effective and popular micro-conversion.

This process is usually called lead generation where potential customers opt in for what is commonly called a lead magnet.

Micro Conversion 3: May Barya Ka Ba?

Finally, if you want to get your audience to pay you for your product or service, there’s one more small step they have to take.

That step is to take out their wallets.

Try going to someone and asking for 1,000 pesos. If you’re not close with that person, chances are, they won’t immediately reach for their wallet.

But if you ask for 20 or even 100 pesos, then they’ll probably take out their wallets to do so.

This is a step I see a lot of online businesses do online.

They sell a low-priced offer which again is filled with so much value that you’re probably getting it at a very big bargain.

Once a user enters his payment information to purchase this low-priced offer, businesses then make a logical upsell to their main product or service. At this point, since the payment information has already been entered, all the user has to do is to decide whether or not to take the upsell.

This process is commonly called Tripwire Marketing.

It does take a bit of skill and planning but once set-up effectively, it can do a lot to improve a business’ purchase numbers.


Whether with business or any goal we wish to achieve, going straight for it is not always the best plan of action.

Take small steps.

Focus on small wins.

And if your micro conversions are set up properly, you can set yourself up for consistent big wins.

So, how do you eat an elephant?

One bite at a time.

Enjoying what you’re reading?

I share a lot of these posts and new ideas and sharings on Facebook ads, marketing and entrepreneurship to my e-mail newsletter. You can get awesome tips like this delivered to your inbox too!

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