These days websites play a central role in the buying process, and they connect with more people than a salesman ever could. Whether you believe or not, absolutely every website is in the business of sales, even those that aren’t physically selling something. The purpose of your site may be to generate leads or, as in the case study below, increase pupil intake. This article will give you enough insight that you can review your site through a new conversion based approach.
Keep in mind that your website is one of your best sales tools and, ultimately, sales are all about targets. So, what are your goals?
Believe it or not, your main target is not just to increase traffic. Traffic doesn’t necessarily mean sales and your end goal is always going to be sales, and no salesperson should work without targets!. For example, If you had a salesperson on staff would you rather they made 1,000 calls a day or 15 sales? The answer will always be sales. So when setting targets for your site, you should be thinking of the KPI’s (key performance indicators – a measurable value demonstrating how effectively your company is in reaching its key business goals) that matter and not the usual vanity metrics that everyone else uses.
Once you have defined your metrics, you need to set up tracking which will measure your progress. If your main aim is leads, then you need to log how many people contact you. You can measure click to calls from mobile, people clicking on email addresses, forms, chatbots…. the list goes on. Google analytics and tag manager give you a vast amount of actionable data which will allow you to drive changes in your marketing strategy.
Armed with all of this new information you can now view your current website with a fresh perspective. Always bear in mind how you would measure it if it were an actual sales person because once you do, you can then start to segment the most profitable areas for your company and invest more time in increasing these.
To give you an example, we dealt with a client recently with a website. Very much a selling site but they didn’t view it that way because they were not in the business of sales.
The client in question was a school.
|This particular school was very resistant to the idea that theirs is a selling website. After all, they’re not selling goods or services, or are they?|
The answer is a very resounding YES!
Their product is their school, they’re selling the premise of a fantastic education for all the pupils within the school, and their customers are pupils and parents plus others, but these are the main focus for the website. And there are three distinct stages of the buying process that need to be addressed:
Prospective Customers – pupils/parents looking for a school – need to be sold on the idea of attending the school
Current Customers – pupils/parents attending – have bought into the school dynamic
Past Customers – pupils/parents – ambassadors who can vouch for the school
Each of these groups has different needs, goals, and objectives and, as such, need to be communicated with on different levels. Each also has different KPI’s to show that the “salesperson” is doing their job.
We now have the school on board, and they are working closely with us to stamp their brand all over their website to drive in more ‘customers’.
One of the major benefits of a website, if used correctly, is its reach. Your site can reach and target more people and businesses than you ever could without it. No salesperson can reach as many people in the same space of time as a website, and no amount of phone calls can connect with as many businesses on such a wide scale.
Essentially, your website is as much a part of your sales team as any member of staff.
So, who are you reaching out to with your website?
If you’ve read our last article and implemented it on your website, then you’ve already answered this question yourself. If you haven’t, then take some time to read ‘The Power Of Defining Your Customer’. Trust me, it’ll be five minutes well spent.
Next, you need to understand their wants and needs.
The entire reason your customer is motivated to visit your site is that they have a want or need that they think you can satisfy. It’s this that leads them from visiting your site to buying your product so, as your strongest salesman, it’s the job of your website to resolve your client’s issues, provide and even exceed the level of value they expect.
Here are some things to bear in mind:
- Customers come to you with the expectation that the product or service you provide will solve the problem they’ve reached out to you for. Does your site give them enough confidence to take the next step?
- Have you defined what that next step is?
- Are you measuring?
Once you’ve got yourself into the mindset that your website is your best salesman and, having set goals and targets, then you have something to aim for, and it becomes easier to measure where you see your business going and growing as long as you keep it realistic. You can shoot for the stars tomorrow, for today focus on successfully making the most of your website.
Vanity metrics – Things that you can measure which don’t matter and can be changed easily and manipulated. They don’t necessarily correlate with the numbers that signify the success of your business