Traffic, traffic, traffic! That’s all you’ve been hearing for the past year or three, and the assumption has always been that if you managed to achieve the right number of visitors to your website, your sales would go up by default. Suddenly you’re realizing that isn’t the case. You have tons of visitors, but nobody’s buying! If you take action right now, you can try and change the situation before it affects the financial well being of your business, if it hasn’t done so already.
Check Your Targeting
Determine whether your website is optimized to increase conversion rates in the market you want to reach. You might have tons of content offering useful information to readers, but are they the right people who are likely to buy your products or services? Are you connecting with them emotionally? Remember, you get only 10 seconds to persuade new visitors to stay on your site. If they aren’t able to see and feel right away what you can do for them, they’re movin’ on, Jack!
Check your analytics to see which pages your visitors are spending the most time on and interacting with, and make sure you give them more of the stuff they want. To find out whether your site is correctly targeted, examine your answers to questions such as:
- Who are the main audience I need to reach?
- What kind of lead generation am I looking for? This could include requests for contact, product queries and orders or simply email marketing leads.
- How do I get my visitors to give me their contact information?
- What am I going to do with the leads once they come in?
Then evaluate your answers against your actual results and performance, and you’ll be able to determine whether your website is delivering what you need—or not.
Update the Content
Speaking of content, how up-to-date is yours? We don’t mean “are you posting regularly” because if you weren’t you probably wouldn’t be getting the traffic. No, we mean how relevant is the content RIGHT NOW in your industry?
And how sales-y is your information? Few visitors come to your site looking to be sold to; the majority come looking for information and advice, and they are most likely to buy from the company that provides them with it. Free and gratis, without an underlying motive to get a sale. Even if they know and you know that sales are the primary purpose, it shouldn’t be obvious.
So check your marketing-speak at the website door and make sure it doesn’t overflow into your blogging and articles, and you’ll encourage potential buyers as well as random traffic.
Evaluate the “Convertibility” of Your Site
Maybe one day this word will make it into the dictionary, and you’ll remember you read it here first. Convertibility means your ability to convert visitors into leads, so you need to identify:
- How are you set up to encourage conversions?
- Do you have a working contact form that prospects can use to tell you they are interested?
- Do you offer them an incentive to complete and submit the form, such as downloadable documents they can’t get anywhere else?
- Or are you just hoping some of the people landing on your site are going to take pity on you and fill in the form?
Make sure your site is ready to convert, with good, intuitive navigation, upfront special offers and a clear message on what you can do for your customer.
Develop New CTAs
You’d be surprised how many business people still believe that having the last line of the blog post read “click here for more information” is a call to action (CTA)! Well, it isn’t! It’s underwhelming to say the least—rather like some of the performers on American Idol lately.
First off, your CTAs should be in a graphic format, both to make them visually attractive and to eliminate the risk of posting duplicate wording on multiple pages of your website. That, as you probably know, is a sure-fire way to get penalized in search, but it’s not often recognized as being the problem.
Make sure you have enough CTAs, that they are graphically engaging and prominently visible enough to attract attention. Also make sure you have a range of them and that the links are working effectively, because nothing puts a visitor off faster than a click here that doesn’t work.
Introduce Special Offers
Perhaps in the beginning the information you published was enough to draw your visitors, but if you want to get them to take action you have to give them a reason to do so. Introduce regular offers, promotions, coupons and discounts that provide an incentive and a fair exchange for the prospect. Remember, it’s his personal information you’re asking for as well as potentially his money, so you have to offer something in return. The product or service is the exchange for his money, but to kick-start the process you need to offer something for his time and information.
Create a Sense of Urgency
Nothing chases people faster than a “special offer” that has been running forever. Limited-time deals that are time- or quantity-sensitive, however, encourage users to take action sooner rather than later. And even those users who don’t connect with you will develop an awareness that you have specials going on, and they are more likely to sign up for your mailing list so they can be sure not to miss out on the deals they want.
Having lots of traffic isn’t a problem exactly, but if you aren’t generating leads then you’re doing all the work for nothing beyond exposure and reputation-building. With a bit of due diligence and some tweaking, you can make your website deliver a much higher percentage of actual leads. By following those up effectively (and that’s a whole other blog post!) you can increase your sales as well as your bottom line.