Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Better description

  1. Jun 11, 2010 #1

    Sometimes I get confused about the right way to describe a phenomenon. Consider the following examples.

    Example 1: I have a 1% conversion rate on 100,000 visitors, i.e I get 1,000 customers for every 100,000 visitors. I change something and I get it up to 2% on the next 100,000 visitors, i.e. 2,000 customers.

    Which is a better description?
    1. I doubled my conversion rate or
    2. I increased my conversion rate by 1%

    Example 2. A hotel has 300 rooms. On day 1, they had 70% (or 210) rooms occupied and on day 2 they had 90% (or 270) rooms occupied. Which is a better description?
    3. Occupancy increased by 29% (from 210 to 270)
    4. Occupancy increased by 20% from 70% to 90%


  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 11, 2010 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    The first one is fine; the second one is not. The conversion rate did NOT increase by 1%. It increased by 100% going from 1% to 2%. However, you could say that the conversion rate increased by one percentage point.
    The first one is OK (the increase is actually a little less than 29%); the second one is not. You could say that the occupancy rate increased by 20 percentage points, but this is different from a 20% increase.
  4. Jun 11, 2010 #3
    Thanks Mark 44.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook