It’s Friday again, YAS, and that means yesterday we hosted a new episode of The Ecommerce Growth Show. Our guest this time was Michael Aagaard, a Senior Conversion Consultant, and also… The only Viking in Canada.

Who is Michael Aagaard?

Michael Aagaard is generally known as one of the most passionate and enthusiastic people in the CRO industry. He has worked full time with Conversion Optimization since 2008 and his research-driven process has helped companies all over the world create better experiences for their customers. Michael is a sought after international keynote speaker on the topic of Conversion Rate Optimization.

Michael Aagaard Consulting /

Key Takeaways from this Episode

What do eCommerce Managers or Marketers miss out on when it comes to the Conversion Rate Optimization methodology?

Sometimes I compare CRO to where SEO was some years ago. I think there’s kind of a similar development as far as it’s starting with this kind of exotic thing that nobody really understands but everybody gets really excited about doing.

I think right now CRO it’s very much on the map and I think a lot of companies understand that have to do it but I think the biggest problem is how to do it and how to get started. I think that is, in my experience, where it gets confusing for a lot of people.

And it’s easy to get confused and distracted by shiny things like: there’s this new tool out that will make everything better for us!

In my experience, I think that that’s an issue. The other issue is the lack of a methodology. 

Then next thing you know, you’re just testing random ideas, and in my experience that is not the best approach because it becomes a bit of a random thing and then, if on top of that you haven’t done your calculations and you don’t understand what you’re doing, that’s where it goes really bad for a lot of companies.

I think when some companies get involved with a split testing program but don’t quite have a grasp on the underlying statistics, they end up running all these tests on little traffic and all of the sudden they think they’ve made progress when they actually haven’t.

Another issue I’ve encountered myself is that a lot of companies in principle agree with the whole kind of data driven or the experimentation culture. But when it comes to everyday reality they’re not really onboard with it. 

What is your take on Customer Retention?

I think it’s super important. I’ve seen a lot of evidence that if you can get your customers involved and if you have a good kind of nurturing program in place, that can take you a very long way. 

I also think that you need to have offers that make sense for your customers and also there has to be an incentive for them to stay purchasing from your store.

That is why I absolutely think that Customer Retention is something, that as an eCommerce, you should definitely focus on.

Is CRO enough to sustain growth nowadays? What do you think about the transition from CRO to Customer Journey Optimization?

I think it’s really important. I think it’s a big mistake to box yourself in and think that the only way of growth is CRO alone and it’s about just touching up pages here and there.

On the other hand, I think it’s also dangerous to try to make yourself an expert in everything. 

I think you a diverse team that needs to work together. You need people with different skills and then you put them all under a growth team because working in silos is still a thing that happens nowadays unfortunately. 

So, I think what we’re going to see hopefully is that things are going to come together. It’s all about growth.


Make sure to tune in next Thursday at 4 PM GMT for a new episode! Our guest for next week will be Mike Dragich Founder @ Shopafree and we discuss more about how to make the best use of the free version of Shopify.