You may have heard sales and marketing people talking about the sales-funnel; this is the journey that each user will take, for example from their first search in Google, to picking up the phone or sending an email.
The trick to keeping enquiries high is to look at each stage of the sales process individually so that you have a minimal amount of people dropping off at each stage, and therefore have the maximum amount of people enquiring at the end.
The first tool your prospective clients are likely to search for you on is a search engine. The trick is to put yourself in their shoes and think about what they will search for. For our business for example, is this likely to be “web designers in Salisbury” or “Salisbury web design”? They are both subtly different. Of course our clients could come from further afield and search for “Bournemouth web design”, or perhaps use a generic term such as “online marketing”. Look at different variants of search terms and see where you place. Ideally you’d rank number one, but if you’re not on the first page of Google you could be instantly losing 90% of your enquiries.
Secondly look at your website with an open mind; this doesn’t just mean your home page, but each individual page as people may get sent there by search engines. Is it clear who you are and what you offer? How does the website look? If a user thinks your website looks home-built, dated, or cheap, what does that say about your business? Look at it another way, if you turned up to court and your solicitor had jeans and a t-shirt, and you have his/her contact details on a home-made business card, would you feel confident? Why should your website be any different? This is the first, and possibly last thing people will see about your business - if it isn’t up to par, or doesn’t give the right impression, it’s probably losing you custom.
Next you need to look at the content of your website. By this I mean the text that first catches your eye; the detail, the images, everything. “Webbed Feet UK is a web design company in Salisbury that was founded in 2001 by Aaron Whiffin and Alex Hopson, we set up this company after graduating…” let me stop there. Do you care? Probably not if I’m honest. We differentiate ourselves not by selling websites (every man and his dog can do that), but making and marketing effective websites that actually make a profit for our clients. Our clients come to us with the problem that they need more enquiries, and we present them with a bespoke solution that will get these for them. This is what we offer, and this is what our website should say. So think of your customers and rather than tell them what you do, think of why they need your services and how you can help them more than your competitors.
So you’ve managed to attract a visitor to your website, and almost convinced them to buy your product or service. Now they want to find out more… so make it easy for them. If you have an online shop, don’t hide the ‘add to cart’ or ‘checkout’ button, and if you sell services make sure you entice the user into getting in touch. These are called ‘calls to action’ and need to be clear, concise, and give people a reason to enquire. Also make sure that you have every contact method available; you may prefer contact forms because they’re convenient and gather all of the information that you want, but your users may prefer to call you, send an email, or talk on social media. So even if you don’t like phone calls, ask yourself if you’d rather turn down an enquiry or answer the phone.
With most web design companies this is where their involvement ends, but not with Webbed Feet UK . We like to look at the whole sales-funnel and, using our case study example above, the user still hasn’t made an enquiry…
People are impatient, and if they want an answer to their query, (a solution to their problem), they’ll want it immediately. This is especially true if people use the telephone. The issue is that in some industries it’s a very common mistake that phone calls go unanswered and emails are delayed. By not responding quickly, or even immediately, you will unfortunately lose customers and all of the hard work will have gone to waste. We recently ran a case study for a firm of solicitors, and out of ten separate enquiries, (split between email and phone), only three responded. That is a 70% loss of enquiries. For larger companies setting up call diverts or copying emails to a secretary, or for smaller companies forwarding emails and calls to a mobile phone are easy tasks, which make a huge difference.
To summarise how the sales-funnel works, assume we have 1,000 people a month looking to buy your product or service. If you’re not on the first page of Google then perhaps only 100 (90% loss) of these will click through to your website. If your website looks mediocre you may lose another 30 (30% loss) visitors immediately, and average content may results in loss of another 21 (30% loss). If you lose a further 5 people (10% loss) through poor calls to action, and you only answer the phone half the time (50% loss), you’ll have 22 enquiries. Wow! 22 enquiries a month isn’t bad right? Well no, that may be good, but you’ve also lost 978 enquiries. If you could capture these you could potentially have 44 times as much business!
Making small improvements to each stage of this sales-funnel can make a large impact to your enquiries; even a simple task such as answering the phone could literally double your business overnight. By looking at each component in turn you can transform your revenue.
Of course this is something you can do yourself, or get people outside of your business to help. Even better you can ask a web design or online marketing company to help – this is what we do!
If you’d like us to take a look at your website and sales-funnel and see where it can be improved, then please get in touch with us and we’ll be glad to help.