In business, every position has a defined role. Sales people sell. Customer service ensures customers are happy. The product development team improves the product. And the list goes on and on…
But what about your website? Have you clearly defined the role of your website in your business?
I would argue your website is simply another member of the sales team. That means it’s responsible for selling, or converting website traffic into leads and sales. That also means you analyze your website’s performance like you would review a sales person’s performance.
If someone, or in our case your website, is struggling in sales, then here are 3 key questions to ask that will help you pinpoint the problem.
1. Are You Talking To The Wrong People?
In sales, it’s absolutely critical that you focus your time and attention on qualified prospects. Otherwise, you’ll quickly get frustrated and burnt out talking to people who never end up buying from you.
The same thing happens with your website every single day. If you’re getting 1,000 visitors to your website each month and no one is turning into leads and sales, then the first question to answer is, “are these visitors really qualified prospects?”
If you dig into Google Analytics and see that half the traffic is international and you only sell in the US, then it shouldn’t be a surprise that your conversion rates are low. Or if you see that the majority of your traffic is from a funny, mostly unrelated video that was shared on social media, then again, you shouldn’t expect that traffic to be converting.
In other words, the first step to assess low conversion rates is to confirm you’re talking to the right people. If you’re not, then there’s no sales trick in the world that will help you.
2. Are You Presenting The Wrong Message?
OK, let’s assume we know your website visitors are in fact qualified prospects. Next, we need to check your message.
A great sales person knows there is no one-size-fits-all sales presentation. Instead, you must match your presentation to your audience. If you’re selling to a room full of mothers, then your presentation will be different than if you’re selling to a room full of college boys. You may even dress differently in order to connect more closely with each audience.
Now take a look at your website. Are your webpages presenting a message that matches each type of visitor? With digital advertising you can control this more easily using unique landing pages that precisely match the targeting of your ads.
With your organic traffic, I recommend offering options for your visitors to self-select so you can then direct them to unique pages that match the audience. For example, you could add buttons on your website that say, “Click here for women’s XYZ” and “Click here for men’s XYZ” so you can tailor the next page for each gender.
3. Are You Confusing Your Prospects?
Finally, if you know you’re talking to your ideal prospects and you’re presenting the right message, then it’s possible you’re overly complicating the sale. This is especially true with digital marketing where your prospects can click away in a split second if they ever get confused.
When you’re selling face-to-face, it’s easier to pick up on clues (like glossed-over eyes) and then switch course to get the sale back on track. But with your website, your clues are not as obvious. In fact, they are buried in Google Analytics.
One clue is to review the top Exit Pages on your website by going to Behavior > Site Content > Exit Pages. Those are the pages where your visitors are exiting your website.
Why are they exiting? Again, if you know the visitors are qualified prospects and you’re presenting the right message, then chances are good those visitors are exiting because they are confused. Take a close look at those pages and wherever possible, simplify the layout and copy.
Remember, your website’s role in your business is to generate leads and sales. If you’re not happy with your website’s results to-date, then it’s time for a performance review using the 3 questions above. When you fix these issues, then all of your other digital marketing results will in turn improve as well.
On August 20, 2015 at noon Eastern, I’m presenting a step-by-step, Introduction to Google Analytics training. During this live webinar I’ll walk through how to properly set up your Google Analytics account so you can report on your key digital marketing metrics… make smarter marketing decisions… and increase your traffic, leads and sales.