You could be getting a lot of traffic to your website. But if you aren’t converting visitors to customers, you can be wasting time and money. Substantial sales funnel leaks means you are missing out on business opportunities.

Once you get people to your website, there are 2 phases that lead to sales: turning visitors into leads, and nurturing those leads into paying customers.

Let’s have a look at these 2 phases, and what can be causing any drop-offs.

Turning website visitors into leads

Whether your website visitors come from Google search, social media or paid advertising, they can potentially become valuable business leads. They are classed as leads as soon as they fill out a form, call your number or chat online.

Before visitors reach out to you, there needs to be a natural flow between the external source and the content the source leads them to. Keep up the momentum and they will be inspired to give you their details or even speak with you.

Here are some possible road blocks that could be sending visitors away:

1. Confusion

Reason: There is so much going on when people get to the landing page, they can’t see what they came for.

Fix: Drive your visitors to clear, clean content that is focused on one proposition. Don’t crowd it with other highlights or intruding invitations to look at something else. A custom landing page for your links is usually the best way to avoid this issue.

2. Irrelevance

Reason: The link to your website states a specific promise, but takes visitors to a page that is not related to that promise.

Fix: Make sure the text and imagery used with your link matches the page people will be landing on. If there is no consistency, the momentum of thought is interrupted, and they just balk and leave.

3. Targeting the wrong people

Reason: You could be targeting the wrong audience – from the original link they click on, to the landing page.

Fix: Make sure your personas, or ideal customer outlines, are up to date and that you are using them. Your external marketing may be off-target, or your web content may be. Either way, you could be attracting disinterested traffic, while missing out on the real deal.

These first 3 points will affect whether people stay on your website or leave immediately. The next 3 focus on inviting visitors to take action.

4. There is no clear Call To Action

Reason: You’ve sold your visitor on how well you know the answers to their issues, but you haven’t invited them clearly to take it further.

Fix: You might think this a bit unnecessary… ‘our contact page is there, what else do they need?’ You’d be surprised at how many more responses you would get with a call to action. Leaving out an invitation to act can give the impression that you are unavailable to the average visitor. Include a solid action statement with a clear benefit, and lead conversions are sure to rise.

5. No irresistible offer

Reason: If visitors are not ready to contact you, they are not likely to hand over their contact information lightly. They need something in exchange.

Fix: Offer valuable downloads lead magnets or free tools that visitors can get something worthwhile out of – in exchange for their email address. Now they are on your mailing list to build a relationship with.

6. Not super-easy to contact

Reason: It’s hard work to find a number, to email, or just to chat briefly.

Fix: Repeat your phone number clearly in relevant places. And make it clickable for mobile users. Keep forms short for enquiries and offers. A customer service chat box can get a lot of engagement, depending on your type of business.

The opportunity to connect with you, overall, should be ample on your website.

In the next section, we look at how businesses neglect to turn these leads into customers.

Turning leads into paying customers

Once you have converted the leads, don’t stop there. You have a great pool of contacts to build an on-going relationship with. Too many businesses fail in this area, possibly due to:

7. Lack of lead nurturing

Reasons: The resulting email list is not used to its full advantage. These leads may never hear from your company. Or if they do, it’s a ‘sell’ email only.

Fix: Set out a solid email marketing plan and stick to it. It’s OK to offer a sale now and then, but make it minimal and mix it in with newsletters and educational pieces. Make your recipients feel like you are there to help them out. Not just to take their money.

8. Irrelevant and overly-frequent emails

Reasons: The same information is sent to all of your list all the time, rather than breaking it up into relevant groups.

Fix: Segment your email list. If you sell, for example, to first home buyers and to retirees, both groups don’t want to be seeing the same content. The lists can also be broken up into new contacts just learning about your services, and seasoned leads who expect a higher level of information.

9. No connection between the sales and marketing teams

Reasons: Leads can be showing all the right signals, from what they download or enquire about, but aren’t passed on to sales people. Or sales people can be dissatisfied with the quality of the leads coming through.

Fix: Establish a strong connection between marketing and sales strategies so everyone is on the same page. This should be a 2-way conversation, so that everyone is clear on the necessary flow from market reach to the final sales conversation. This is an extremely important step that gets the company moving in one strong direction.

Continuing to reduce the sales funnel leaks

After initally looking into why your sales funnel could have massive leaks, it is recommended that you develop a process towards continual improvement by consistently monitoring, reviewing and testing numerous elements on your website.

You will find your website becoming a more valuable asset month by month.

Carolyn Wilson
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