When it comes to creating revenue and keeping your cash flow positive, one oft overlooked item is generating new leads. Keeping that sales pipeline full is one way to stay ahead of the competition. In today’s marketing environment, it is important to understand and implement how your Web site can play an important role in this process.
Your Web site should be more than just an information repository about your company and the services it provides. Information on the Internet is not meant to just flow one way. The site can and should provide the user with important information, but it can also be a tool by which they submit information to help you in your marketing efforts.
In other words, if your Web site can get the prospective client to willingly fork over contact information – name, company, e-mail, phone number, etc. – then you have a potential new lead. This can be done through a variety of methods, whether for obtaining a free white paper, or asking getting email addresses to sign up for an eNewsletter. The key is that the user does it of his own volition.
So what’s the key? How can you turn your Web site into a lead generating machine?
It helps to remember the following:
1) Site traffic and leads are NOT the same thing. Your site can get 5 million hits a day, but if you’re not obtaining contact info, you’re not obtaining leads. Your site should have some mechanism built in where the users are prompted to input their information into a form, or its all for naught. Brandon Cornett, a writer for ISEdb.com, puts it this way.
“Let’s imagine you have a lemonade stand beside a busy highway,” he writes in an article for ISEdb.com. “But your stand is located on a narrow shoulder of the road where there’s not enough room for cars to pull over. All day long, cars whiz by you at 45 miles per hour, but nobody stops. You have an endless supply of traffic, but your lemonade stand is a failure because nobody stops.”
“If your Web site has plenty of traffic but no form of lead generation, then most of your traffic will pass right by … like those cars passing the lemonade stand.”
2) Not all leads are good leads. For every five people who give you their phone number, there’s a good bet that only one of them are worthwhile, legitimate leads. It’s important to be able to identify the diamonds in the rough before throwing “the rough” by the wayside.
Don’t waste time following up on leads that obviously aren’t feasible. If you only serve your local community, then it’s probably not a good idea to spend money pursuing a customer in Beijing.
Know who your customer base is, and take time to review each lead and determine how it fits into that profile before pursuing it.
3) Make your site educational, not just advertorial. People aren’t going to fork over their e-mail address if they think you’re just going to pelt them with advertisements. You have to provide value. Free online publications, such as white papers, case studies, e-books and other materials work really well.
“Don’t just sell – educate,” writes Bob DeStefano in an article for Industrial Distribution. “Compliment your product and service information with valuable educational information that helps your customers do their jobs better. Pack your site with ‘how to’ articles, best practices guides, training videos and other educational content. This will turn your Web site into more of a resource center that your customers and prospects will trust and visit on a regular basis.”
The key is that your site visitors know that this information comes at a price: their contact info.
corecubed is really great at helping clients win new leads via business Web sites. Call us or email us today to find out how!