Leads, Conversions & Sales From My Website: Fact or Fiction?

Robert HoldemanWebsite Tools, Website Traffic

Isn’t the real question, when it comes to your company website – “does my website create income for my business”?  Well, how many leads does your website produce every month?  How many sales?

Not sure?  Go ahead, take a few minutes to check on it.  It’s OK… I’ll wait.

[insert theme from Jeopardy here]

Now that you have a number, anywhere from 0 to infinity to “I don’t know”, naturally, your next thought is “how can we do better”?  The answer to that question will be different depending on the number.

If you don’t know the number, there are some things to consider before even beginning the work to improve your results, so we’ll start there.  Without going into great detail, here are the main steps to get and track leads from your website:

  1. Track Your Website VisitorsGoogle Analytics tracking code must be installed on all pages of your website.  This gives you the ability to see the numbers and make comparisons over time to determine what works best for you and your business.
  2. Website Forms – Include one or more online forms to allow your visitors to open a path of communication with you.  It could be a simple email sign-up for a newsletter or anything from a basic Contact Us form to a more complex one designed to draw more required information out of your visitor, such as a Request-A-Quote form.  And be sure to include a redirect to a Thank You page after submission, so you can simply count that traffic to get the number of leads received.
  3. Calls-to-Action – Be sure you have powerful calls to your website visitor that will encourage them to make that connection with you via your forms or by phone.  Multiple calls with both graphic and text links on all your web pages are important.  An example of a call-to-action coupled with a good enticement for your visitor might be to offer a free whitepaper on an aspect of your industry in exchange for their name and email address, allowing you to contact them later via email.
  4. Receive & Respond – Ensure the submitted form is received by the right person for follow up and a response is made in a timely manner.  This sounds simple, but you wouldn’t believe the number of clients I have worked with who did not realize that leads were being missed because no one currently employed there was receiving their submitted forms!
  5. Implement Manual Lead Tracking – If you have not yet done so, make sure that all members of your sales team have a way of recording where their leads came from and that you total the monthly leads by source.  While online forms are the easy way of tracking direct web leads, your website will also generate leads that contact you by phone that can only be tracked by humans.  Your sales staff should ask where they heard about your company and if the response is the internet or an online search, then you can attribute the lead to the website entirely.  If they get a different response, let’s say referral from a colleague or media ad, then they should ask if the caller has seen your website.  If the answer is yes, then that should be counted as at least a partial web lead, since your website helped (or did not hurt) the sales opportunity to happen.

An even better way to track phone leads from your website is to have a unique phone number on your website that is published no where else.  This would make it even easier to track website leads, since any calls to that number will have been from the website.

Here’s a simple worksheet that can serve as a starting point if you don’t have a lead tracking process in place – either an Excel spreadsheet or a pdf document. A copy should be placed next to each phone where sales calls are taken, with hash-marks used to record lead sources.

If you do know the number of leads your website is generating, then you have already taken the first step.  If the number is 0 or anything less than you want, you probably want to know more about the steps after #1.

For that you’ll have to wait for next week’s post.