You want more leads – we all do. If you didn’t catch Part 1 of this series, here’s a quick recap: If you want to double your web leads, you must set big goals (vs. incremental goals) which encourage major changes in behavior. You have to recognize that the lead generation strategies you employ and how you execute them depends on whether you’re selling to other businesses (B2B lead generation) or to consumers (B2C lead generation) – and the industry you’re in. A plumbing company is going to utilize different messages than a high-end remodeling company might.
Far too many business owners treat their website as if it were an online brochure. Your website is NOT an online brochure. It’s a virtual sales rep – complete with a built-in sales funnel! Brochures sit in the corner of an office and collect dust. Sales reps have quotas and they produce tangible results measured in sales, revenue and profit. You cannot maximize your online performance without thinking of your website as if it were a sales rep for your business. The same principles used by an effective sales manager must be applied to the management of your website.
Every sales manager knows there are two dials you can turn if you want to increase sales output – rep activity and close rate. Your website also has two dials – traffic and conversion rate. If you want more leads from the web, turn both dials UP – but know that it is often considerably easier to reliable get more qualified visitors to a website than it is to increase a website’s visit-to-lead conversion rate. Anyone that has ever managed sales reps understands this – it’s usually easier to get a sales rep to make more calls than it is to develop a better pitch.
In Part 2 of this series, we’re going to explain some of the processes required to double your web leads.
You gotta know your numbers
You cannot maximize what you don’t measure. Trying to increase your website’s sales and marketing performance without accurate tracking in place is like bowling blindfolded! Think about it – if you don’t know how many leads you receive today, it’s going to be pretty difficult to determine when you have doubled them!
You also won’t see which tactics are getting you closer to your goal(s) and which are a waste of time and should be changed or eliminated. Need another analogy? Image planning to drive from Maryland to San Francisco without bringing a map, compass or GPS! Simple right? Follow the setting sun and eventually you’ll get there!
You might have an enjoyable ride, but there’s no way you’ll get to where you want to go as quickly or efficiently as someone with the right tools. You might also find yourself in the hills of West Virgina with the cast from the movie Wrong Turn!
TRACK, TEST, TWEAK, REPEAT
Inevitably, every business owner wants to spend their marketing budget on “silver bullet” advertising strategies. Be clear – over the long run, there’s no such thing. Things that sound too good to be true… are. You learned it the first day of ECON 101, “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Businesses and concepts that appear to spring to success from nowhere are either luck or (more frequently) a case of “never let ’em see you sweat.”
The closest thing to a silver bullet in the advertising and marketing world is the process: TRACK, TEST, TWEAK, REPEAT!
When it comes to your website, small changes, imperceptible changes generally happen before the larger ones – like increased (and you still may not notice the larger ones immediately). Your ability to sense these small changes or leading indicators is incredibly inaccurate. The dieting process illustrates this time and time again.
You go on a diet and quit a few weeks later because you “nothing was happening.” If you had the ability to see inside your body and watch the metabolic process in more detail, you would have found that all sorts of changes were occurring. You just couldn’t see the changes because they were too small to notice.
Advertising and marketing can be very similar. As a result, many business owners quit right before they start getting noticeable results!
Sometimes even large changes are difficult to notice. Again, think back to a time when you were dieting. You never noticed the changes because you see yourself everyday, but when a friend from out of town comes to visit, they remark about how much thinner you are. If you spend every day working “in” your business, sometimes it’s hard to see the forest transforming. Data combined with gut intuition outperforms gut intuition alone – every time – guaranteed.
You need tracking in place to keep you on the right path even when you can’t see or feel the results you want.
The types of metrics you should be tracking
If your goal is to double your web leads, you should be tracking the following metrics – at a minimum:
Visits per month
Visitors per month
Visits from organic search per month
Visits from paid search and other paid marketing strategies per month
Visit-to-lead conversion rate (web leads AND phone leads)
Cost per conversion by marketing strategy
You need reports like this:
Remember, your website is a sales rep
Would you ever hire a salaried sales rep without setting a quota for him or her? Would you ever have them go about their day/week/month without having them report to you metrics like:
Of course you wouldn’t! If you’re paying someone a salary, they need to be accountable for certain levels of activity. Your website is no different.
You cannot maximize your website’s performance without setting clear performance expectations and having the right tools in place to quantify results. In order to do this, you must more accurately track your website. “If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got.”
Do you really know how well your website and online marketing strategies are performing today? Most business owners don’t!
Knowing how many visitors you get each day/week/month and where they come from is good, but it’s not enough! Tracking your online leads (web forms completed) is not enough either. If you want to double your leads, you must track all inquiries generated by your website – this means tracking web lead activity AND phone inquiries generated by the web.
Stay tuned for our next blog post where we’ll outline some of the strategies you can use to drive more qualified visitors to your website and convert more visitors into leads and sales.
About The Author: Ben Landers is the President and CEO of Blue Corona, a data-driven, inbound internet marketing company. Submit an inquiry to book Ben to speak at your next conference or event.
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“This has by far been the best return on investment I’ve ever seen. This has opened up another door for revenue to come in. My website has turned into my best sales rep. The company markets itself! ”