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Being a salesperson or business owner, you are probably well aware of how much the internet can help you grow and expand your business. To utilize the power and effect it can have on your business, it is of the utmost importance to find the best way to increase website leads. In this article, we will share some of the ideas on how you can generate online leads, while efficiently driving more traffic to your site and turning more buyers onto your product, or service.
Unfortunately, there is no shortcut to making your website a magnet for prospective buyers. Instead, you will need to use different tools and ideas to convince potential customers that you are the right choice. Only with a proactive approach will you be able to establish and grow relationships with potential buyers that will ultimately lead to generating leads that can offer long-term value.
Optimize your website to achieve higher visibility
This is where you should start. The first thing you should do is make your site more visible in search results for targeted keywords and phrases. The best means for this job is your Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It can help you generate leads online without advertising, but be prepared to evaluate, add and revise written content to ensure your website continuously ranks highly. On-page optimization is very tricky. The bigger the competition for your product or service, the tougher it will be for your site to rank high in search results, But SEO offers a free and easy way to update your website to drive traffic and increase revenue, if you’re willing to put in the leg work.
Grow more leads by optimizing your conversion rates
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) is a process of constantly optimizing and improving your website content to convert visitors into leads or customers. It usually involves comparing different versions of a single webpage to determine which is more effective for driving conversions. So, what exactly is a conversion rate? For example, if one out of every four visitors on your website makes a purchase, your conversion rate is 25%. Since the goal is to get it as high as possible, marketing specialists must frequently evaluate their webpages, set up A/B or multivariate tests to compare and contrast elements and find the ones with poor conversion rates. This testing can involve large changes to graphics or blocks of copy or might focus on seemingly insignificant details. Sometimes a change in the headline or a single word in a call-to-action phrase, as minor as it seems, with the right combination of graphics can increase conversion rates dramatically.
Targeted paid advertising
Not so long ago, print media was the place to go for advertising, however, with the changing times, this method is no longer as effective as it once was and the results are almost impossible to track. That is why more and more businesses deploy highly targeted online advertising. Available through popular programs like Google Ads, Bing Ads, and Facebook Ads, Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising is an easy and cost-effective way to generate online leads. PPC is an advertising program in which you pay each time someone clicks on your ad. The prices may vary anywhere from a couple of pennies to hundreds of dollars for a single click depending on the keywords or phrases targeted. This is a very popular method of generating leads because it allows you to focus on specific phrases and target those people that browse the web in search of products that you have to offer. Your ad will appear every time that phrase or a similar one is searched, and chances are people will interact with your site. Sure, you may pay a few dollars for that click, but if that person goes on to become a customer, you are going to get your money’s worth. Thanks to all the reporting options available, you can always see which ads are performing well and consider increasing their visibility or targeting more similar phrases.
You can also purchase ad space on popular websites, blogs or online magazines. These ads are more difficult to track, and you may need to set up a custom URL in your analytics program to receive a report on the number of clicks and conversions.
Maximize user experience
There is no use in having the best looking site in the world if people don’t want to use it. That is why maximizing user experience should be at the top of your priorities list if you want to see longer on-page time and high interaction and conversion rates. User experience (UX) refers to the way people search, browse and use your website. Navigation is the key to having a great user experience. Your website navigation should be as simple as possible. Avoid having long and complicated menus, sub-menus and pages. Use phrases that people are more accustomed to, like “shop” or “store”, instead of “see what we have to offer”. Also, place your navigation bar where people expect it to be – at the top or side of the website, and have it laid out in sensible order with related pages grouped.
If people looking for your product or services can’t find what they are looking for in a matter of seconds, they are most likely to leave your website. To avoid that, try to evaluate your website UX yourself. Sit down and browse your website as if you were the lead, learning about your company for the first time. If everything is where you want it to be and your navigation is clear and easy to follow, you are on the right track. If not so, plan to make instant changes. You can always look for a second opinion by having some user experience testing done to determine your website’s weaknesses and ways to fix them.
Offer valuable content
Many brands have found success by creating and promoting content that is relevant to their followers. By educating your potential customers, solving a problem that they have even before they have made a purchase, or simply entertaining them with content that is related to your business, you are likely to create loyalty to your brand. You should know that as high as 90 percent of consumers find content produced by a brand useful.
Content marketing comes in a variety of forms – from blog posts to infographics to whitepapers. Everything relevant to your leads can help draw in and keep the attention of visitors to your website. Another successful method of finding leads through content is placing that content behind a form on a landing page. To access it, people will need to enter their email address, which allows you to start a lead nurturing email program, or simply send a quick “thank you” message. Those who enjoy your content might return your email and eventually convert.
Build up your social media profiles
Although social media usage can vary from industry to industry, it is more useful than ever for generating internet leads. Before buying a product, your future shoppers would probably want to get informed about what other people think of your company. That is why it is no surprise that 68% of shoppers visit a company’s social media channels to read product reviews and customer feedback before buying. So, if you don’t provide a place for them to get all the information they need, they might not take you seriously.
Depending on your business, you may not need a presence for every social media network there is, so pick your channels wisely. For example, if you are a company selling software, you will need to have a strong presence on Facebook and Twitter where you can start conversations and answer questions, but you may not have any use for Pinterest or Instagram. On the other side, if you are selling baked goods, Pinterest is good for sharing recipes, and your Instagram feed will look great with all the pictures of delicious cookies. In that case, Twitter might not be a good choice, since your future customers would need far more information than 280 characters can provide.
Evaluate social media advertising options, build your profiles according to your customers’ needs, and you will be able to create a presence that quickly draws in new leads and customers at little to no cost at all.
Host a webinar
If you have a lot of knowledge to share on a particular topic, you should consider hosting a webinar. It is an online seminar and is usually free to attend. It can sometimes be tricky to set up, but if executed properly, it can be one of the best ways to locate new leads and increase website revenue. Webinars can last anywhere from 15 minutes to several hours and should revolve around sharing your knowledge as an industry leader with your attendees. With a good presentation, you may be seen as an expert who can be consulted for your services, or as a source for a problem-solving product.
Let’s say you run a toy store for infants and toddlers. You may consider yourself an expert on toy safety and run an informative webinar on choking hazards. You can talk about safety standards that your company implements and show off your products that are safe for young children.
It is also very important to finish your webinar with a Q&A session and offer people a way to contact you. You can also build up a relationship with your attendees by sending them a “thank you for attending” email which can serve as a reminder for them to check your website.
Begin a lead nurturing email program
Nurture relationships with your leads by sending highly targeted messages. For example, you can walk your shoppers through every stage of the buying process from the initial exposure, to your brand, to post-purchase feedback. This is especially important if you are a business-to-business company, or offer complex services or products. There are many ways to grow a lead into a buyer, but email is considered to be the best since it is highly customizable and can help you deliver the right message at the right time. When someone shows interest in what you have to offer by signing up for your list, you are already halfway there. After that, the smart thing is to create an email schedule or marketing automation program that will send targeted messages to users at important stages of the buying process.
For example, if your company offers business-grade networking systems, you should know that your advertising should be a six-month process. That is usually how long it takes for an IT administrator to research solutions, seek approval, and have a final budget granted for a purchase. So you shouldn’t be wasting your time and maybe even annoying your potential customer with a “buy now” message at the end of the first month. Instead, start with product information, since that is what they are likely to need the most in the beginning. After that, you could send a couple of messages about special features or something that could convince them that your solution is the best out there. Finally, when you get close to that six-month mark, you can offer them a way to get in touch with you. By timing your emails right, you have the best chance to draw in your potential customers by giving them what they need exactly when they need it.
Set up an outreach program
Tracking down an online lead yourself can be very productive if conducted in the right way. In case you have found someone who could benefit from your product or service, you should have an outreach program that doesn’t mean signing up everyone that is remotely in your area of interest. That kind of approach is very unlikely to show any results and it violates the CAN-SPAM Act. Instead, if you see someone mention on Twitter that they are having a hard time finding safe toys to buy for their three-year-olds, you can tweet back and kindly ask them if you can help them, and refer them to your online shop. You should know that there is nothing like the personal touch, and the leads you find this way will often show to be the most important and qualified that you will ever encounter.