Let me start by stating the obvious. Leads must convert into customers. Period. If you are generating leads on your website or buying leads, then figuring out how to take the visitor from browsing to buying can be a challenge! No matter where your business is conducted (online or offline), here are some pointers on turning LEADS into SALES.
1. Make Sure Your inquiry response time doesn’t stink.
You need to contact your sales leads as soon as possible. Let me rephrase that. If at all possible, contact your leads immediately after receiving an inquiry. The longer they wait to hear from you, the more likely they will end up working with your competitor. I cannot stress this enough. You will be amazed at how much potential clients appreciate an exceptionally fast response. This means you need to set up an automated response for the inquiries and you need to CALL people back. Notice the emphasis on the word, ‘call’. Just sending someone who is looking for homes online an autoresponder email is NOT going to earn you a high conversion rate. You need to follow up with call and a tailored message with a something you can offer them.
Tip- Write your autoresponder to appear as if it actually just came from you and not some canned message. Include a call to action such as an offer of value. This can be a list of local school ratings, relocation package, or a list of just-listed properties.
2. Make sure you have a CRM and follow-up in place.
The typical Internet lead takes 8 months to convert. You may hear that number vary but not by much. The fact is, 1% to 2% will convert in the first 3 months, 3% to 4% will convert in the next 6 to 12 months, and an additional 1% will generally convert between 12 to 24 months. With that in mind, you need a good CRM (customer relationship manager) that is easy to use, and easy to track. Whether you are getting 25 inquiries a month or 250, you will soon find yourself with a lot of people you’re trying to keep up with. Very few people are going to receive an email from you once or twice and then buy. It does happen, but that is a rare occurrence. You must have a follow up system that is automated and allows you to create drip campaigns. Following up is more than just a handful of emails over a few months. You need to send out communication over a span of 1 to 2 years. Read my article on ‘8 Email Campaigns You Should Set Up Right Now‘ to help get you started here.
3. Ask for the sale, offer something of value, and make it easy to say yes.
If you have your own website, many “gurus” suggest that you leave off any sort of sales message. Their logic follows that the consumer doesn’t want to be sold. It might be true that consumers don’t want to be sold, but many sites fail to ask for the sale at any point. Really? Do you think that is any more effective? Instead of thinking of it as sales, think about is as providing a service. Instead of sales language, offer items of value in exchange for their contact information. Additionally, people should not have to dig around your site to find out how to contact you to buy a house, or get their home listed. Have you looked at your website from your visitor’s perspective? Does your site include solid call-to-actions and make it super-easy to reach you? On a mobile device, can a potential client click on the telephone number and reach you?
What other ideas do you have to improve converting your website visitors into sales? Please share them here.