Getting more leads is at the top of every company’s marketing and sales team’s wish list. Rather than marketing into a void, your team wants to reach out to real people so you can convert them into customers or clients. But the challenge is to find reliable ways to generate those leads!
The key to attracting online visitors is a great website that’s optimized for collecting leads. Unfortunately, doing so is more complicated than adding a “Join Now” button on the homepage. You can create the perfect website for your business with a list of top 10 best website builders.
If you already have a site in place, here are eight ways to generate leads.
1. Use A/B Testing
A/B testing, also known as bucket testing or split testing, involves testing two near-identical parts of a website, each element having a single variation. After a trial period, you’ll keep the piece of content that generates more business leads while discarding the other.
Let’s say you have a landing page with a call to action (CTA) that encourages visitors to subscribe to your weekly newsletter. You want to know if “Join Our Mailing List” is the best possible CTA. All you have to do is duplicate the landing page and direct equal amounts of traffic to the old page and the new one, which reads “Keep Me Informed.” Which one do your visitors respond to?
A/B testing isn’t a one-time process. Be sure to repeat it until you reach satisfactory results. Perhaps neither CTA produced as many leads as you wanted. Keep trying other options until you discover that, let’s say, “Subscribe Now” has the highest conversion rate.
Keep in mind that A/B testing doesn’t apply strictly to CTAs. You can use this process for logos, ads, banners, fonts, color schemes, and free trial lengths. While A/B testing is a time- and labor-intensive process, it’s arguably the best way to increase your business leads.
2. Optimize the Purchasing Funnel
In a perfect world, someone would visit your website and immediately purchase one of your products or services. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world. The purchasing funnel has zigs and zags that make it far from a linear process.
Too many websites fail to consider how customers get from point A to point B. Let’s say that you run an online bank. If you create a blog post titled, “Ten Reasons Why Online Banks Are Better Than Traditional Ones,” you should include a link at the end of your article that directs people to create an account.
If you write a persuasive and engaging entry, people want to join your bank after reading your blog. They can do that with a click when they see the sign-up link at the bottom of the page. If you don’t include it, or if you put in an unrelated link, you risk bouncing customers from your site.
Every time you create a page, you should ask yourself how it can generate more business leads. The goal is to remove as much friction as possible so that first-time visitors will quickly become customers and, ultimately, repeat customers. Small gestures, like a thank you page or social sharing buttons, can make all the difference in your lead generation.
3. Add a CTA on Your Homepage
A CTA tells users exactly what to do. Maybe they should “Give Us a Call” to schedule an appointment or “Get Involved” by attending a company event. These short and direct statements are why every YouTube video seemingly ends with, “Don’t forget to like and subscribe.”
If you don’t have a CTA on your homepage, you should add one. It can give customers the nudge they need to start moving through the purchasing funnel. A HubSpot survey found that anchor-text CTAs can increase a website’s conversion rate by 121%.
As mentioned, you can use A/B testing to figure out the best style and copy for your homepage’s CTA. SEO guru, Neil Patal, found that putting a CTA above the fold lowered his conversion rate by 17%. Quicksprout found that red CTAs helped Performable converted 21% more visitors.
4. Offer a Freemium
Freemium is a combination of the words “free” and “premium.” It involves giving a product or service away for free in hopes that customers will sign up for the premium service later. While the process requires taking an upfront loss, it can pay dividends later. That’s because freemium is an acquisition model, not a revenue-based one.
Freemium lets people try your product or service with no strings attached. The most common example is a free trial for website membership or video streaming service. Ideally, people will go through the test run, realize that they love the product, and then become paying customers.
For instance, Spotify lets people stream music for free when they create a basic account. The tradeoff is that those customers have to listen to ads every few minutes. However, you might sign up for the basic version if you think $9.99 per month for premium users is too expensive.
So, how does Spotify convert non-paying customers into paying ones? It offers a free trial for $1 a month for six months. This way, you get all the perks of the premium account at a fraction of the price.
The music streaming service hopes that you won’t go back to ads after finishing your trial. That model has worked out so far. Spotify currently generates 91% of its revenue from subscriptions.
5. Try a Heat Map
It’s almost impossible to overstate the importance of empathy when building a website. Empathy lets you imagine the browsing experience from the customer’s perspective. Fortunately, you don’t have to imagine anymore. Tools like Dynatrace and Smartlook provide heat maps that let you see how consumers navigate your website.
Heat maps show you where people interact with different page elements. The colorized snapshots glow red for places with high activity and blue for less active ones. It’s the easiest way to find out what content works and what needs improvement.
Some heat map companies, like Crazy Egg, also offer recording services. They record user’s screens so you can see firsthand where people get stuck in the purchasing funnel. It’s like standing right behind someone while they use your website.
6. Install a Live Chat
‘The customer is king.’ While the adage borders on cliché, it remains as true as ever. If they want to stand out in an ever-competitive economy, companies must consider customers’ needs first.
One way to assist customers is with a live chat. It’s an ideal platform for e-commerce sites that want to generate more business leads. Answering questions in a friendly and timely manner can help you push customers through the purchasing funnel.
A live chat also provides a cost-effective way to improve customer experience. If you run a restaurant, you can use it to make reservations or give people directions. Taking the time to assist people will increase the likelihood of a positive experience and of them becoming repeat customers.
7. Start a Blog
Generate more business leads by improving your visibility on Google. According to SmartInsights.com, the tech giant search engine accounts for 86.86% of all search engine traffic. If you can put your website on the front page of search results, you have a great chance of getting new customers.
Blogs can help you appear higher on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). Google Search rewards sites that regularly create useful and engaging content. Blogs provide an opportunity to flex your industry-knowledge and creativity while boosting SERPs.
Let’s say that you opened the first vegan ice cream place in Atlanta. You should write blog posts that emphasize the unique benefits of vegan desserts. When Google crawls and indexes your site, it will put you higher in the local SERPs when Atlantans search for vegan ice cream.
Your blogs don’t have to be salesy. Write about why you started the business or give people a behind-the-scenes look at how to make vegan ice cream.
If you’re running low on blog ideas, here are a few ways to spice up your posts:
- Answer FAQs
- Make top-ten lists
- Profile an employee
- Interview an industry expert
- Share your biggest failures and successes
- Have a contest
- Write about a day in your life
8. Add Testimonials
Do customers love your products and services? Let other people know. Testimonials are an excellent way to share your customers’ positive experiences with prospective consumers.
According to Big Commerce, 92% of people read an online review before purchasing a product or service. Additionally, Nielson found that 70% of people trust reviews from strangers. Hence, placing testimonials on your website provides a way to satisfy both of these qualifications.
Glowing testimonials can be better PR for your company than a traditional marketing campaign. Word-of-mouth loyalty has helped companies like Chik-fil-A, Zappos, and Apple build strong customer bases. In March of 2015, Apple started a “Shot on iPhone” campaign that served as a testament to its iPhone 6 and patrons.
If your company has been around for a while, there’s a good chance that you have positive customer reviews online. Websites such as Yelp, Google, and Angie’s List let people share their experiences about different companies. If you have a startup or small business, you can offer customers a discount on their next purchase if they write a genuine testimonial.
We hope this article has been helpful as you consider creative and effective ways to use your website to generate more leads, helping your business expand and thrive.
Author: Chris Muller
Chris Muller is a professional personal finance writer who has written for some of the largest financial publications in the world. Chris brings a BBA and MBA in Finance, along with a decade of experience in the field, to help break down complex financial topics into easily digestible pieces through his written content, to assist others in better managing their finances. Chris is currently in pursuit of FI/RE, is an aspiring minimalist, loves craft beer, and is dad two to kids.
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