SUPPORTING LEAD GENERATION: WEBSITE PERFORMANCE AND CONTENT
The perfect design and effectiveness of a sales funnel is not enough if the accompanying website is badly indexed, slow and with a bad user experience. Here’s how to make your customer journey a success for everyone.
How many times on television have you seen a bag of money grow angel wings and fly away? You might have seen it a few times but even though the gag always made you laugh, it’s definitely less funny when it happens in real life. In fact, if it does happen to you, it can be the most annoying thing ever.
In reality, it happens far more often than it should. This can be particularly frustrating if it happens when you have used company resources and funds to support your products and services online, all to no avail.
Your offers are excellent, your solutions appreciated by established customers; in short, you are ready to respond to new requests. However, the long-awaited new customers don’t arrive and you might even lose some. That bag of money has suddenly gained wings and flown.
‘Why?’ is exactly the right question to ask at this stage. Try to have patience and awareness when analysing all aspects and related tools of your lead generation strategy (or strategies) to increase creation of new business opportunities.
We’ll first take a look at the sales funnel and then the performance of your website. In other words, we will evaluate the contents and their logical distribution within the site, then at how much those contents are visible and usable.
SALES FUNNEL AND LEAD GENERATION
We take for granted some basic things, aside from having the right marketing and communication. We’re already assuming that your products and services meet the two criteria of ‘best’ and ‘cheaper’: the two main drivers that determine a purchase and therefore conversion.
Having established that your products and services have the right quality, we must look at the design and content of your website to find the right price point. The sales funnel is called exactly that because it utilises the idea of a path that becomes increasingly narrow and without alternatives for the consumer or prospect, deployed from the moment you first capture interest until the final purchase decision.
As such, you must plan a coherent path that accompanies the customer on a journey of information and emotion. Along the journey, the customer will need content that is relevant to them and their journey, updated and presented in a clear and captivating way thanks to material such as infographics, sparkling copy, eye-catching videos and so on. In this sense, inbound marketing techniques are more effective than their traditional outbound counterparts in conventional media.
AWARENESS: To capture the prospect, you must first of all know who they are, where they are, what interests they may have and combine this with making yourself known. It is this awareness phase – the highest part of the funnel also known as TOFU (top of funnel) – that is made up of generic leads.
It is the moment when you introduce yourself and get to know each other. Maybe you like the customer but he or she goes away; this can be quite normal but make sure it’s not because the customer didn’t find you interesting and doesn’t remember you as a result.
INTEREST: If the customer stays, they are interested and maybe ready to move forward. Once again you have to make sure that they find what you are showing them to their liking. For the customer, it’s the most confusing phase: comparing your offer with that of the competition.
The specific landing pages for each product help a lot in this phase. It is here that you must provide all the information that convinces the user that you are the best and cheapest option in a clear and comprehensive manner. It is the intermediate part of the funnel, called MOFU (middle of funnel), or also the ‘messy middle’. Here, the lead generated needs to be constantly warmed up.
DECISION: The customer is deciding; special offers, demos, tutorials, chatbots, opinions of other customers: everything is valid at this stage as long as it is consistent and of quality. The goal is to demonstrate without a doubt that our product or service is best and cheaper. We are in the BOFU (bottom of funnel) phase.
ACTION: You’re nearly there. Here is the moment of purchase that must take place smoothly without pages getting stuck, payment delays with a blank screen (which creates anxiety) or endless waiting. Remember that online inattention starts after a threshold of about 20 seconds. We’ll come back to this later but in short, the customer must make the purchase and be totally satisfied. An extra piece of advice: there must be no hidden costs which are discovered later, or profiling of customers that may seem like interrogations.