So you've got a new website. Either you built it yourself or you hired someone to build it for you. Since you're here on this website, I'll assume that you're interested in using it to attract new customers to your business.
A good first step in making that happen is to realize that your website is more than a digital business card. If all your website does is to tell the public who you are, what you do and where to find you, then you're leaving money on the table.
It does absolutely nothing for you if visitors come to your website look around and then just leave.
Two Questions That Put Money in Your Pocket
- What exactly do you want visitors to do when they get to your website?
- How good is your website at getting them to do that?
The correct answer to the first question is “take some action that that will lead to a sale.” That could be anything from joining your mailing list, to scheduling a consultation, to taking an online poll. The specific action they take doesn't matter. What does matter is that there is something for them to do other than look around and leave.
The second question is a bit most challenging because it doesn't ask “does your website do what it's supposed to do?” It asks “how well does it do it?”
In this post, we're going to take a look at that second question. We're going to turn on the scoreboard and examine something called a conversion rate.
For this conversation, we're going to talk about conversion rates as they apply to websites. However, these concepts apply whether you're running Facebook ads, sending out SMS text coupons or even advertising in the local Penny Saver newspaper.
So What Exactly is a Conversion Rate?
Let's start by introducing you to my fictional friend Jim.
Jim owns a small air conditioning company. Last month he ran a promotion to generate a little business. On the front page of his website, Jim offered a coupon for $50 off of a $150 air conditioning service. His visitors just needed to fill in a form on Jim's website with their email address so he'd know where to send the coupon.
By the end of the month Jim had sent out 42 coupons. When he looked at his website stats, Jim saw that he actually had 350 unique visitors to his website during the month. When you divide the number of coupons Jim sent by the number of people who saw his offer, you get a conversion rate of 12%.
So your conversion rate is the number of people in any group who do what you want them to do, divided by the total number of people in the group.
That's a neat piece of Jeopardy information to be sure, but it's probably not that helpful to you yet. For that number to make some sense, we need a little context.
The Sales Funnel
Last month wasn't the first month Jim ran that particular promotion. He's run it off and on for the last couple of years.
He keeps running it because he keeps getting results.
Those $50 service coupons are Jim's lead magnets. They start visitors on the journey through Jim's sales funnel. This is a series of email messages, videos, and secondary promotions that Jim set up ahead of time to go out automatically.
These automated messages are designed to educate and build rapport. They are also designed to emphasize his visitor's pain points and position Jim as the expert who can best make that pain go away.
Jim normally sees one full air conditioner replacement for every fourteen service coupons he sends out. This 7% conversion rate consistently provides Jim with new air conditioner replacement customers worth between $6,000 and $10,000 dollars each.
It took some experimenting for Jim to develop the best mix of messages to produce his current conversion rate. Once he got it right, his sales funnel has been a consistent source of revenue for his business.
If It Were Easy Everyone Would Be Doing It.
If you're like most small businesses, then you're probably still using your website as an online business card. Converting your website into a sales funnel is simple. Of course, in this case, simple and easy are not the same thing. This process does takes some work.
This is actually a good thing because it creates a huge opportunity for you. Few, if any of your competitors will be interested in putting in the work to create their own sales funnel. That will make you one of the few professionals that provides prospects in your market with the the information they're looking for to solve their problems.
If you need help putting the pieces in place just reach out on our contact form and we'll be happy to help you get started putting the pieces in place.