How mad would you be if all that money you are spending right now could bring you more clients, close more deals, and fill more seats?
Here's the deal. Before you start to drive traffic to your website using pay per click, advertising, direct mail, SEO, or anything else, you should really factor in how well your website converts someone visiting your website to take a specific action.
Have you ever been to a website that made it really hard to find their contact information or made it almost impossible to buy their product? What if they spend hard earned marketing dollars to get you to that site in the first place? You'd snicker and call them foolish. Don't be them.
Sales vs. Marketing and not confusing the two
Your website is part of the Sales process, not the Marketing process. Your website acts as a Sales person.
Website = Sales
Pay Per Click = Marketing
Search Engine Optimization = Marketing
Direct Mail = Marketing
Social Media = Sales & Marketing
Email campaigns = Marketing
You would use Pay Per Click (PPC), SEO, etc. to drive traffic but your website is what makes the visitor take a specified action once they are there.
Calculating your conversion rate without making your brain hurt
(X/Y) * 100 = Z
X = Number of people taking the action you want. i.e. Buying a product, Contacting you, Downloading a White Paper, etc.
Y = Total Number of people who visited the website
Z = Your conversion rate
We have a client that sends 24,000ish people to a website and they have a White Paper Download link on that page. That is the end goal because they don't sell on their website. They want someone to download it and call them. 1,800 people download that white paper.
(1,800 / 24,000) 100 = 7.5% Conversion rate
That means 7.5% of the people that get to that page download the white paper.
That is a good number to know because I can further extrapolate the data.
If I also know that 11% of the people that download the white paper contact us and then 50% of that 2% become a client that helps me decide how to spend my marketing dollars. I can then put a value to SEO, PPC, Direct Mail, and any other advertising I am doing.
What if I don't know my conversion rate?
The problem with not knowing your conversion rate is that you can overspend. You can spend more for marketing then it is going to bring in.
The good news is that you can setup software like Google Analytics to track this for you and it's free. As reminded by a childhood TV show, "Knowing is half the battle."
What can I do to increase my conversion rate?
There are many things you can do to increase your conversion rate. But the main tenant of conversion optimization is testing and measuring.
Here are a few things you can do to make sure your site is converting well:
1. Is the site architected well? Does the navigation represent the most important areas of your website?
2. Are there call to actions and are they clear? Do you want someone to call you? Email you? Can they tell what you do quickly by clicking a link?
3. Are your call to actions "above the fold?" Meaning, do they show up on the screen when the site loads without making someone scroll?
4. Does it work on mobile devices?
5. Have you tried to rotate the main banner photo to see if a different type of photo converts better?
6. Is it easy for someone to contact you? Do they have to hunt for your email address, physical address, or phone number?
7. Have you managed your social network accounts to make sure you're putting your best foot forward? People will look you up.
8. Are you targeting the wrong clients? Your conversion rate will tank if you have the wrong people visiting your website.
I said that your website was Sales right? You need a website that works as hard as you do!