A good website should serve to do two things:
1) Inform consumers about what a company does, and 2) Collect information from potential customers (aka leads!)
Now, when marketers or business owners struggle with #2, plenty of doubts start to surface at the back of their head.
*Is my product too expensive?
Is there no product-market fit?
Am I in the wrong industry?*
Well, we’re not saying you should COMPLETELY rule out the above, but oftentimes the problem is a lot more simple:
Your website simply isn’t optimized to convert website visitors to leads.
If you think this might be the issue, don’t worry…
We’ve put together a 8-step action plan that will help you with the process of converting website visitors to leads.
All you need to do is go through this plan and follow it step-by-step – it’ll help you transform your website into a lean, mean, lead-generating machine.
Ready? Alright, let’s jump in!
Step 1: Survey your existing customers
The first step when it comes to converting website visitors to leads is to survey your existing customers. Basically, you’re starting from ground zero.
What’s the rationale behind this?
Well, there’s often a disconnect between:
- What customers want, and
- What marketers THINK they want.
If your website communicates what your company thinks your customers want (instead of what they actually want)…
Then you obviously won’t get that many leads.
Now, you really need to dig deep here, so instead of simply sending across an online survey, we recommend meeting your customers and talking to them face-to-face.
At this point, you might be thinking… well, this sounds like it’ll will eat up a LOT of time.
Don’t worry – you don’t need to survey your entire customer base; just speaking to 5 to 10 people will suffice.
The trick is speaking to the right folks. The ideal candidate is someone who has been your customer for some time now; if your company produces different products/services, be sure to survey a good mix of customers who use the different products as well.
Here’s a list of questions that you may ask:
- How did you come across CompanyName?
- What was your first impression of CompanyName?
- How did you first get in touch with CompanyName? Did you sign up via a form on the website?
- How long did you wait before you signed up to give CompanyName your information? What eventually made you take the plunge?
- What do you like about CompanyName?
- What are your biggest work-related challenges?
- What work-related goals are you trying to achieve?
- Do you know of other companies who do the same thing as CompanyName?
- Did you sign up on these other company’s websites?
- Why did you choose to use CompanyName over its competitors?
The last question is particularly important – this seeks to tease out what your customers feel is your company’s Unique Selling Proposition (USP).
Again, you’ve probably defined your USP internally, but whether your customers will agree with this is something that remains to be seen.
Once you get more information on what draws your customers to you, and what makes your company stand out, then you can tweak your website to highlight these points.
Step 2: Optimize your website for clarity
Once you’ve figured out the key messages to highlight on your website, the next step is to optimize your website for clarity.
Now, clarity is CRUCIAL for converting website visitors to leads.
If you’ve got a website that’s disorganized and all over the place, then you’ll generate fewer leads – simple as that.
Here’s a negative example:
There are so many elements and contrasting colors on this website…and the overall effect is pretty distracting.
It’s definitely not lead-friendly, we can tell you that!
So, how do you make sure your website has clarity?
Step 1: Edit your website to emphasize your key message Step 2: Edit your website to reduce clutter and noise. Less is more! Step 3: Do the same for your lead capture pages – edit them to emphasize your key message, and reduce clutter and noise Step 4: Send the relevant links to your customers, friends and family and ask for their feedback
BONUS: You can also use Five Second Tests to measure the first impressions people have of your website and lead capture pages.
If you’re new to Five Second Tests, these basically help you test whether your website or lead capture page is effectively communicating its intended message.
How do they work?
Participants take five seconds to look at a page; once that’s over, they answer some simple questions. These questions might include:
- What is the purpose of the page?
- What are the main elements you can recall?
- Who do you think the intended audience is?
- Did the design/brand appear trustworthy?
- What was your impression of the design?
If the results of your Five Second Tests aren’t as you hoped, you might have to go back to the drawing board and work on your site design.
Once that’s done, you can administer another test to see how participants’ impressions of your website have changed.
At the end of the day, you only have one shot to make a first impression. So make it count!
Step 3: Optimize your website for mobile traffic
Alright, now to move onto something more technical… optimizing your website for mobile traffic!
If you haven’t already done this, you’re kind of late to the game.
For one thing, traffic from mobile devices accounts for more than 50% of total Internet traffic, and mobile search traffic is through the roof.
On top of that, Google has already begun to roll out its mobile-first indexing.
If you’re not 100% clear on what this means, here’s a quick explanation we’ve pulled from Google’s Webmaster Blog:
“To recap, our crawling, indexing, and ranking systems have typically used the desktop version of a page’s content, which may cause issues for mobile searchers when that version is vastly different from the mobile version. Mobile-first indexing means that we’ll use the mobile version of the page for indexing and ranking, to better help our – primarily mobile – users find what they’re looking for.”
In simpler language:
- More than 50% of existing Internet traffic is mobile traffic
- Google is now featuring more mobile versions of websites on their search results, so we can expect the amount of mobile traffic to climb even higher
Before you start optimizing your site for mobile, go ahead and run a few diagnostic tests.
First of all, you can use Google’s Mobile Friendly Test to assess your website.
This tool is pretty straightforward; it basically tells you whether your site is mobile-friendly or not.
If your page ISN’T mobile-friendly, it’ll also highlight the problems that you should fix.
Once you’re done with this, use Google’s “Test My Site” Tool to assess your website load time as well. Load time is a key factor that influences mobile-friendliness, so you’ll definitely want to know where your website stands.
Using the Test My Site tool, input your website URL into the tool, and click “Enter”.
You’ll get redirected to a page that tells you your loading time + the estimated visitor loss due to your loading time.
To get recommendations from Google on how to speed up on your site, click on the “Get My Free Report” button.
Now that you’re done with all the testing, it’s time to optimize your site for mobile traffic. Here are a few things that you can do:
- Limit the content on your page. Again, less is more!
- Include a search bar or drop-down menu for easy navigation.
- Ensure that words are large enough to be read. (Google recommends that you use a base font size of 16 CSS pixels).
- Ensure that your Call To Action (CTA) buttons and other touch targets are large enough. Read: Finger-Friendly Design: Ideal Mobile Touchscreen Target Sizes.
- And of course, reduce your website load time. Read: 20 Ways to Speed Up Your Website and Improve Conversion.
Once you’ve implemented all the changes, run the two tests again, and look at your results. Hopefully, your site will now be performing better!
Step 4: Optimize your CTAs
When it comes to converting website visitors to leads, CTAs are extremely important.
So how do you optimize your CTAs?
First and foremost, make sure your CTAs talk about the benefit of your offer.
Negative examples: - Find out more - Sign up now - Get your eBook
Positive examples: - Download the cheatsheet that I used to generate $10,233 in sales - Sign up and unlock your eCommerce store’s full potential - Get the eBook that will help you 5x your revenue
Makes a world of a difference, huh?
Next, make sure your CTAs stand out from your page. This isn’t rocket science – just have your CTA be a contrasting color from the rest of the page.
Here’s a negative example…
And here’s a positive one:
Last but not least, make sure you add CTAs everywhere. We know you already have these on your home page and lead capture page – but what about within your blog posts?
Now, you have two options here. You can use:
- A standard CTA button OR
- A simple in-text link
It all depends on how salesy you want to be.
If you’re not sure which type of CTA will perform better, try both out using an A/B test!
Step 5: Install live chat on your website
If you don’t already have live chat on your website, you’re missing out.
Yes, we know that most marketers view live chat as a support tool, and something that’s out of their domain…
But the truth is that live chat is crazy useful when it comes to generating leads.
More specifically, statistics show that live chat can increase online leads by an average of 40%.
What is it about live chat that makes it such a goldmine for leads and conversions?
If you ask us, it’s the fact that it’s so accessible and convenient.
Pre live chat days, if a website visitor wanted to reach out to a company, they’d have to…
- Navigate to their Contact Us page
- Copy the email address listed on the page
- Open up their email client
- Paste the address in, and
- Compose and send their message
If a company has a form embedded in their Contact Us page, it does simplify the process, but it’s still not as convenient as simply clicking on the live chat bar and chatting with an agent or sales rep immediately.
That said, installing live chat on your website doesn’t guarantee you leads.
You’ll still have to follow the best practices, and ensure that your live chat is as user-friendly as possible. Here are some tips:
- Make sure your chat button is visible, and stands out from the rest of your page.
- Make sure someone’s always on standby to attend to chat requests in a timely manner. It’s a huge buzzkill if your customer clicks on your live chat, only to be greeted with a message that says you’re offline.
- If your live chat tool supports this, showcase each agent’s name + photo in the chat function. This helps your agents build rapport with your customers.
- Employ a conversational tone. (Instead of “Greetings. What has prompted your visit today?”, ask “Hey there! What are you looking for today?”)
- Cue your chat box to pop up. Instead of waiting for your visitor to reach out to you, go to them instead!
- Prepare a list of FAQs and answers for your agents, BUT remind them to tweak and contextualize their replies instead of just copying and pasting them.
- After answering your customer’s questions, offer to send them additional resources (eBooks, white papers, case studies, etc). This way, you can get their contact information, and add them as a lead in your system.
Step 6: Install Albacross on your website
If you’re looking for a quick and easy hack that will help you in converting website visitors to leads, Albacross is IT.
Here’s the thing:
Regardless of how much effort you put into improving your website, you’ll never be able to capture 100% of your website visitors as leads.
Say your newly-optimized site converts at 20% (that’s VERY optimistic, given that the average website converts at just 2.35%).
So out of every 100 website visitors that you get, 20 of them will go into your system as leads.
Well, what about the other 80 visitors?
Since they accessed your site, we can safely say that they have SOME sort of interest in your products/services, and there’s some purchase intent there.
Bearing this in mind, it’s a huge waste to just let them churn.
Here’s where Albacross comes in!
In a nutshell, Albacross is a tool that tells you who’s visiting your website, and how you can reach them.
This tool is 100% free, and it’s super easy to use.
Here’s how it works:
Step 1: Sign up for an Albacross account. (This takes just 30 seconds of your time, and you don’t need to input any credit card details!)
Step 2: Paste a tracking script on your website.
Step 3: Sit back as Albacross collects information on your website visitors.
You can set up your account so that you’ll receive daily, weekly, or monthly email reports about which leads are visiting your website.
Albacross also includes information on:
- Your lead’s company (revenue and employees)
- Your lead’s contact information
Inundated with too many leads?
That’s a good problem to have, but you can use Albacross’s filtering tool to sift through all your leads, and identify those who are a best fit.
Once you’ve done that, pass the baton on to your sales team. It’s now up to them to get in touch with those leads!
Step 7: Create a lead magnet
Putting a lead magnet on your site will go a long way in converting website visitors to leads.
Simply put, a lead magnet is some sort of gated content or asset that you provide to your website visitors, in exchange for their contact information.
Here’s a list of the various lead magnets:
- Swipe File
- Case study
- Tool kit
- Resource list
- Calendar / Planner
- Worksheet / Workbook
Whoa, that’s a lot of options.
How do you decide what type of lead magnet to create?
Read on to find out!
Deciding what lead magnet to create
First, take a look at the lead magnets your competitors are offering, and try and do something that’s different.
If you’re creating a digital marketing eBook, and all your competitors have their own versions of digital marketing eBooks, it’ll be hard for yours to stand out.
Next, consider your target audience. What stage of the Buyer’s Journey are they at?
If your readers have just started researching their problems, and figuring out the scope of said problems, then an eBook or report might be a good fit.
You can dig deep, and convey a ton of useful information with these formats.
What if your readers are well-acquainted with the problem, and they’re working on a solution?
In that case, a tool kit, planner or workbook might make more sense.
These are more actionable, and they provide a lot of value for consumers who are looking for fixes for their problem.
Creating your lead magnet
Once you’ve decided what lead magnet suits your audience best, the next step is actually creating that magnet.
If you’re coming up with a tool kit or a planner, this will be fairly simple.
You’ll create a structure for your lead magnet and fill in the content; you can then use a tool such as Canva to get it to look pretty.
But what if you’re coming up with an eBook, and there’s a lot of writing involved?
If you don’t have the time to do this by yourself, you can always outsource this to a freelancer. We like using Upwork for these jobs.
Setting up your lead magnet
Done creating your lead magnet, and ready to unleash it upon the world?
First, you’ll have to set up a lead capture page that allows you to collect your website visitors’ information.
To learn more, check out our guide on creating a lead capture page.
Now, it’s important to sell your lead magnet in a way that resonates with your audience.
Here’s an example:
Say you’re targeting startups founders, and you’ve created a digital marketing eBook that teaches them how to run Facebook and Google ads.
You could try and convince your audience to download your eBook by saying that digital marketing is the channel that brings business owners the highest ROI.
Or you could say that digital marketing allows business owners to bring in revenue quickly.
Or you could say that digital marketing is essential for business owners who want to leapfrog ahead of their competitors.
Which option should you go with?
Well, it all depends on the challenges your target audience is facing.
Remember Step 1 of our action plan, where we asked you to survey your customers?
If the common consensus is that they struggle with cashflow, then talking about how digital marketing brings in revenue quickly will do the trick.
If they say that they’re concerned with ROI, then talk about how digital marketing gives businesses better ROI than, say, traditional advertising.
You get the idea!
Promoting your lead magnet
If you simply want to work on converting website visitors to leads, you can stop here. Your job is done!
But if you want to milk your lead magnet for all it’s worth, then we recommend bringing it full circle, and promoting your lead magnet as well.
When you do this, your lead magnet doesn’t just help you convert more website visitors to leads… it also takes on the role of driving more visitors to your site!
So, how do you do this?
Since you already have your lead capture page, go ahead and plug it on social media.
- Share on your business’s social media channels
- Share on your personal social media channels
- Ask your friends, family and colleagues to help share and RT your posts
If you have the budget to do so, you can also go one step further and run paid ads for your lead magnet.
To learn more, read How to Create and Market a Lead Magnet: The Ultimate Guide (skip straight to the section titled “Marketing your lead magnet”).
Step 8: Configure an exit intent pop-up
Alright, here’s a final tip on converting website visitors to leads… use an exit intent pop-up to reach out to visitors who are about to leave your site.
We’re huge fans of exit intent pop-ups, and that’s because:
- They’re easy to set up
- They can help you increase conversions by 5-10%, and
- They’re insanely versatile
You can use exit intent pop-ups to promote your lead magnet:
Or to get someone to sign up for your newsletter:
Or even collect customer feedback:
Pretty cool, huh?
If you’re wondering about how exit intent pop-up tools work, they basically trigger pop-ups when your site visitors are moving their cursor towards the “close” button on the screen.
Now, there are plenty of tools and platforms that you can use to configure your pop-ups.
Personally, we recommend OptinMonster.
While exit intent pop-ups don’t work on mobile, OptinMonster with an “Inactivity Sensor” rule that allows you to trigger similar pop-ups for mobile devices.
Just like its name suggests, this rule triggers pop-ups when a mobile user has stopped clicking and scrolling for a given amount of time.
On top of that, OptinMonster also has a nifty Dynamic Text Replacement feature that allows you to personalize your exit popups with the visitor’s name.
Of course, you’ll have to get your visitor’s name in order for this to work. You can:
- Collect your visitor’s name when they subscribe to your email list
- Ask for their name in a previous pop-up, OR
- Detect their name if they’re an existing customer
Finally, OptinMonster also allows you to use referrer detection technology to detect when a visitor is coming from a specific domain.
Why is this important?
Well, you can use this information to customize your exit popups, and increase their relevance to your site visitors.
Say Visitor A clicks through to your website from a guest post that you did somewhere else.
When they show signs of wanting to leave, you can hit them with an exit intent pop-up that says something along the lines of:
If you ask us, that’s personalization at its finest!
A final word on converting website visitors to leads
Nice work. You’ve made it all the way to the end of this guide… and you’re officially an expert on generating leads via your website!
Now, it’s time to implement the action plan that we’ve just walked you through.
You might be tempted to skip a few of the preliminary steps (such as surveying your customers!), but DON’T do it.
In order for this to work, you have to understand your customers on a deeper level, and know them like the back of your hand.
Once you do that, you’ll be able to adjust the messaging of your website and lead capture pages such that it’s more relevant and targeted to your audience…
And from there, everything will fall into place.
So take the first step today, and start reaching out to your customers to see who’s willing to meet you for a conversation.
We’ll see you on the other side!