How to Increase Sales without Having to Get More Traffic
Sep 03, 2012 5:00 AM - Posted by Brad Smith
Most people that come to your website will not buy anything.
Maybe they got the information they wanted and left. Or perhaps they were just killing time browsing around and discovered a link to your site.
Either way, the overwhelming majority of traffic you get (90%+) will not buy anything, and leave your site forever.
That’s a problem, because getting traffic to your website is difficult and expensive. Getting more traffic is always a top priority for businesses.
But if you look at how people buy or make purchasing decisions, then you’ll realize that most website visitors aren’t in the right frame of mind…
Why Your Website Needs a “Lead Generation System”
The reason Google AdWords works so well is that people express intent when they type in a phrase. They’re actively searching for something and – depending on the keyphrase used – closer to making a purchasing decision.
But the rest of your website traffic probably isn’t ready. Here’s how the typical buying cycle looks:
- Person doesn’t even know a need for your product or service exists
- Person experiences a trigger – either internal or external – that gets them to recognize an unmet need
- Person begins researching options and evaluating possible solutions to their problem (unmet need)
- Person identifies risk associated with possible decisions (i.e. lost time, money, etc.)
- Person evaluates specific decisions that will solve their unique need best
- Person takes action and purchases
- Person now evaluates purchasing decision and determines if it solved their need appropriately, or experiences buyer’s remorse.
Obviously, everyone’s different. And people will go through these stages at different speeds or skip ahead at certain times.
But for the most part, people landing on your website aren’t ready to buy.
In that case, you need to get the next best thing – their email address.
Because email marketing is the best way to consistently follow-up and nurture leads until they’re ready to buy. Having a systematic way to capture email leads on your website can increase sales for years to come.
And you can double the amount of incoming leads you get by simply increasing conversion rates by a fraction of 1% percent.
3 Steps to Increase Conversion Rates
Conversion optimization is used to tweak and improve elements of your site so it will convert more effectively.
But you can’t just change the headline randomly because it sounds better. Those small changes are a good start. But why did you want to change the headline in the first place?
Using a framework or strategy will help you make better decisions. And in conversion optimization, there’s a 3 step conversion sequence that will make sure you get better results.
Here are 3 steps you can use this week to increase conversion rates.
1. Identify the appropriate traffic sources and online marketing channels.
Look at all the sources or channels currently sending you traffic.
Not all traffic is created equal. Some of it will be high-quality traffic and you’ll want these people as leads.
But some of it will be lower quality, and they’ll almost never convert or buy anything one day.
Your goal is to identify each, and then put more of your resources (time, money, and energy) into the best performing marketing channels that you have.
And you’ll focus on creating offers and incentives for these specific customers.
2. Create targeted offers and messaging to appeal to each customer group’s psychographics.
Demographic information is great for getting an idea of who your customers are. But psychographics will tell you more about why and how they make purchasing decisions.
These include attitudes, values, behaviors, interests and opinions. So you need to dig a little deeper to uncover these motivations and underlying triggers.
Start by testing different incentives, based on your own organization’s objectives:
For example, affluent people won’t care as much about a 10% discount as price-concious customers will. So you need to match the incentive with your brand and target customer group.
This also applies to the different marketing channels.
So loyal customers in your email database might prefer free reward points, while new visitors to your website probably want a discount to make it easier to try your products or services for the first time.
3. Funnel traffic to your landing pages and test to maximize conversions.
You’ll need to match the source and targeted offer with a matching landing page that’s appropriate to them.
You can start testing landing pages and different page elements after you’ve worked through the other steps. Because at that point you’ll know exactly which different headlines or Calls-To-Action should work the best.
You can use a paid tool like Unbounce to test landing pages. But you can also use Google Analytics’ content experiments feature.
Basically you create variations of the same page, and these tools will automatically show them to different visitors.
That means you’ll be able to test each design, and the messaging or incentive, to find a winner.
Improving conversion rates should always be a top priority, because the potential ROI could be massive for such a small investment.
But you can’t just make random decisions on the fly and expect great results. You have to do the research, run small experiments, and try to align every step accordingly.
Once you get a system in place, it will generate leads and increase sales automatically.
It might take longer to get up-and-running. But doing the hard work in the beginning will payoff over years to come.
And your online marketing machine will be more efficient, because you’re getting more value from the traffic that usually leaves forever.