Whoever we may be, wherever from; whatever be the size of our website; finally we need just one thing from our websites – and that is SALES. Nothing else matters. And to reach this one goal – we do all the running around and knowledge gathering to make sure that our website becomes our vehicle for selling our stuff to audiences far and wide.
We do everything we can within our reach – right from spending money to spending time; to learning to implement new things on the site– so that our website works for us. And majority of us do it right; albeit by the book; reading everything that’s on the net and implementing it. Where else can we go, after all?
Whatever we read on blogs, sites and forums we implement on the site; and most things do seem to show an impact. And finally we reach a point when things begin to look and sound as if they are working.
We generally declare all is well with our website when it:
- Is professionally designed;
- Has easy to understand content published on all the pages;
- Is optimized for search engines;
- Is indexed by spiders;
- Has decent traffic generated via various ad campaigns
Even when all these things are in favour of website, we come across so many webmasters or online entrepreneurs complaining that they have not quite found a space for themselves where they can feel happy and confident of future. What is the reason for their discontentment, and is it justified?
Do the above sentiments echo your thoughts about your website too?
Problem of these aspiring web entrepreneurs is that their website is not working for them; the good thing is that they have woken up to it. All the right things happening on the website are in fact not helping the webmaster to add value to the business in anyway. There is very little or no `sale’ or business to show for the time and money being spent on the site.
After a few months of working on & watching over the website, these web entrepreneurs realise that though there is traffic trickling; and that there are even business enquiries being generated; however when it comes to conversions there are none. In marketing language, it means – there is traffic; there are leads (enquires): but there is no (or very little, almost negligible) action (conversion, sales orders) on the part of the customer.
This is where the whole confusion starts. This is the time when webmaster does not understand what could be wrong with the site, and what aspect of work should he doubt; and above all what will identify the problem and what could fix it!
Under such a situation, to most webmasters and their web-consultants, what seems the most obvious and visible way out is to increase the ad budget; and when they do this, they notice some positive changes immediately. But increasing the budget is not a permanent solution, neither is it considered to be a cost effective one in the long run; because return on investment is bound to diminish, other things remaining unchanged.
At this stage thinking pattern shifts a gear for many. And that’s the way is should be. A wise and an experienced entrepreneur will think differently at this stage – meaning from thinking of ways to `generate increase in traffic number’; his thought will shift to ‘using the existing traffic number more effectively’.
This new perception will prove to be a turning point in the entrepreneur’s success online. If the number of visitors that can be converted into buyers goes up; his business will flourish and show a better growth at a reduced cost; a great feat indeed. In simple words if you are receiving 50 visitors a day on your site and within three days your website is able to convert three of them into leads and finally one out of those three becomes your buyer.
This equation has to change and webmaster has to focus on converting 5 leads out of 50 that he receives everyday; and within three days the leads converted from traffic should be more than 10 and number of buyers should increase to 4 from one. This means the basic traffic of fifty people per day remains as it is; you are just ensuring that your website or blog is able to use its power or enhance it to convince more number of people to become users of your product or services.
For the client to take action to increase his leads from existing traffic, following aspects are important:
- Client has to feel more convinced and comfortable than he feels on the competitor’s site – which means your web content may have to be communicated differently; it has to sound more trustworthy; this may require alternation or composition of sentences; the tone may have to undergo a change; it needn’t sound overbearing or aggressive; the trigger should not convey desperation or hurrying the client into buying stuff.
- Another hurdle in the way of leads not getting converted into sales could be that your site does not provide sufficient number windows to facilitate communication between web enterpriser and costumer. Do you have the contact or communication form on several pages that conveys the feeling that the website is alive and eager to help? Where the client can send his query with a simple click of a button?
- If the client manages to send an e mail to you, do you have a team in place to address it at the earliest; and does the reply give an impression that you are an expert in your industry and not some desperate seller? Does your response sound the right mix between personal and professional communication?
- When you have a form on your website which is used by your lead for sending queries or showing his interest in the products and services you are selling, make sure that the form undergoes split test.
What Is Split Test?
Split Testing is a process that analyses specific aspects of your website like contact and query forms which help a website convert more sales without increasing any traffic on the site. Meaning, the number of people currently visiting the website will not undergo any change, what will change is their lead conversion ratio; number of people becoming your customers; placing orders online will go up.
Split testing comprises three main aspects; software the webmaster will use for split testing; the element of site that will undergo the test; & what is the website owner trying to achieve by split testing the element of website? Is he focusing on more people joining his newly launched forum or newsletter; is he trying to increase sales by split testing; or does he want people to spend more time on his website, and explore more pages.
The software available for split testing are very user friendly therefore nothing much to worry on that front. People put all kinds of things on the test like headlines of various web pages; website’s layout; videos and so on. People test different versions of their websites and compare them for choosing the best or making alternations for better results.
So that’s what concept of split testing is all about.
So when you put your website through a split test you can actually manage to improve revenue from business without investing extra money into business by way of ad-campaign or redesigning etc.
Split test is done in several parts: There is Split Test to evaluate traffic to lead ratio; or and there is split test that measures lead to conversion ratio. This gives webmaster an insight into further working on the website’s improvement.
How Can You Improve Business Performance of Your Website
Whenever you have an opportunity, make sure you display or share your industrial knowledge in the most competitive manner that you can. This is about general publication on the website or blog.
When it comes to communication with client or leads on one to one basis, it should be more focused and designed on addressing the sender’s problems and talking to him/her on a personal level. Plus it should have practical easy to use current information that will help him to make better decision.
Your content quality and tone also should be such that it gradually and steadily aspire the visitor to become your lead and then try your product. Thos the reason why content developers and marketers are so insistent that your content should focus on customer benefit and not product quality.
After you incorporate all these changes, you can make the lead capture form on your website undergo split test which will help you to identify flaws in the process and you can fix `traffic to lead conversion’ rates; likewise you can split test the second half of the phase, i.e. Lead to Conversion Ratio. This will ensure your conversion rate is constantly on the rise.
Business Survival Secret -Striking equilibrium amid Traffic – Leads – Conversion
Success of any business lies on three things; Traffic, Traffic that can be converted into leads; and leads that can be converted into Sales. Irrespective of the nature of business; its area of operation; its competitors; geographic location; the target audience profile, the main elements of success are traffic, leads and conversions.
How to Get Traffic to Your Site?
To get traffic you can use many vehicles besides your website, you can have a blog, you can become part of social networking forums; place your demos etc on YouTube. Next you can link this content via social bookmarking services. Inclusion of this step helps you get noticed by search engines spiders and drawing traffic via that source. Well presented content is bound to draw traffic.
Next effective way to generate traffic & improve visibility of your product or services is by participating in discussions about them. Joining forums and blogs that specifically talk about product and services related to your own, you can become active there by way of offering your comments and making contributions (by way of doing guest posts) that encourages discussion and debates. This is a very effective way to draw traffic to your site. There are many social networking sites and forums where this can happen.
If you make this a routine practice, it is a free and organic way to draw traffic. Marketing expenditure can be curtailed to a great extent if you can make this effort. Plus organic means will give way to organic traffic in great proportions. Visitor who has taken the effort to come all the way from forum to your site via your link would have placed a lot of trust in you compared to the guy who reached your site via an ad.
How to Turn This Traffic into Lead
This traffic can turn into leads by facilitating information; encouraging people to join newsletters, finding ways of starting conversation with them which can be converted into a more concrete business relationship in future.
Let your communication reflect your expertise; fill it up with practical information. Without trying to desperately sell something, give your traffic a feel that you can help; you know your business better than anybody; and you are not hard-pressed for achieving sales.
Another thing to remember while turning traffic into lead is that forms if need to be filled at this stage should be short and quick. Just an email address should suffice. Long wound procedures put off visitors.
When traffic or lead fills out email address for newsletter or towards becoming part of the forum and receives boring long wound information in reciprocation over mail, the whole thing puts him off for good.
How to Turn Leads into Sales
Don’t sound overtly convincing; don’t show desperation; your confidence about your product lies in your patience and allowing lead to take time; don’t mess around with his mindset by frequent follow ups like “time is running out” Your Email Subject Field reading “reply to information you asked” the reality is that there is no information you asked for in the first place. It’s the worst put off, cheapest and easiest way deceiving the lead.
When you are trying turning leads into sales, there are more don’ts than dos. Dos are few, like maintaining your knowledge front; poise during asking questions related to competitor’s products and services, confidence in your product, and above all patience through all this.
If through your series of communication you can prove to him that you can help, things will click. An interaction at a human level; at a connection level; where you are directly talking to each other and not at each other is what will help sales materialize.
It’s a rather long post. But if you’ve read through each and every sub headline, I am sure it would have made some sense to you and would have given you a different way to think about the problem.
Wishing all webmasters, the very best, and success!