If you sell (or plan to sell) a product or a service using the internet, you already know that the key to success is to drive as many people as possible to your website. Let’s take Joe the plumber as an example: Joe has read that the internet can be a great client referral source, so he has created a website to advertise his services.
Joe has also got involved in several home renovation forums, posting useful tips and advice. He opened social media accounts at Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, asking and answering questions, sharing links, and so on. He even paid for a monthly SEO services campaign, so the website traffic started to increase significantly. Several months later, Joe is still scratching his head, trying to understand why none of his hundreds of website visitors has converted to a client. If this sounds familiar to you, read on to discover what you can do to improve the conversion rate significantly, turning your website into a vigorous customer churning machine.
Let us start by discussing about the law of reciprocation, the powerful force that makes most of us eager to repay the people that help us or give us something. Let’s imagine that a distant relative, for example your grandpa’s cousin, gives you a call to congratulate you on your birthday; this will put a pressure on you, making you (well, not necessarily you, but most of us) do the same thing for that relative you’ve never discussed with before. Basically, we were designed in such as way that we feel the obligation to return the favors.
How can you use this to your advantage? The answer is simple: offer a free, valuable sample. Just take a look at the right side of this page; there’s a link to my “SEO Basics: Tips for Business Owners” e-book, which offers useful information and can be downloaded without opting in to a mailing list, etc. The key to success is to offer something that’s really useful: an e-book, a CD, a coupon, etc. This simple technique is very effective; most supermarkets are using it each day (think product sampling).
Another important tip that can skyrocket your conversions has to do with consistency; it is much easier to get your existing customers to continue to pay you on a regular basis than it is for a total stranger to become your customer. If one of your website visitors decides to become your customer, chances are he or she will continue to be your customer for a long time – this is how the consistency rule works.
How can you make this work for you? Diminish your customers’ risks and calm their fears by lowering the entry barrier – this will help you turn many more website visitors into clients. If you are selling (let’s say) a $100 / month lead generation service, offer a $1 trial version of it for the first month of service. Who would refuse this offer, when a single lead could generate much more money than the dollar that was paid for the trial? And if your service is that good, the customers will gladly pay you $100 / month – you have created a business relationship with them now. Use inexpensive trials, free product samples, and so on; the method works very well.
The third tip has to do with trust; people tend to buy from reputable companies. Use testimonials to make the people more comfortable with the idea of giving their hard earned money to a stranger. Call or email your existing customers and ask them to provide a testimonial, be it a video, an audio recording or a simple text paragraph that talks about the quality of the products or services that they have bought from you. As a general rule, video testimonials are the best, especially if the client is representative for your target audience. Not sure what your target audience is? Then try to get as many different testimonials as possible; some of them will match your website visitor’s profile for sure.
Are you a likeable person? Most people are much more likely to buy from likeable persons. I don’t really like it, but this is how it works; just think at your favorite actress / actor and you will see that in 99% of the cases you are thinking at an attractive person. The good news is that the customers also tend to buy from people that are similar with them, no matter if we are talking about looks, nationality, etc. You might not necessarily be a likeable person (I know how it feels ) but if you have made some friends using social media, forums, etc, you should ask them to recommend your products or services; chances are that some of their social media friends like them, so they will check out your offer.
Are you an authority in the industry? Do you have more knowledge and (most of all) more recognition than the other 10,000 e-book authors that you are trying to compete with? We have been taught to respect and obey authority since we were kids, and this works very well when it comes to client acquisition as well. Would you purchase a book on pregnancy written by a nurse, or one written by a highly regarded medical doctor? The same thing applies in the online world; the visitor to client rate will increase significantly if you are going to be perceived as an authority in your field.
So what can you do in order to increase your authority? Write a book and publish it. Hang out with the specialists in the field, take pictures with them and post them online. Go to school, learn something new and get a title. Getting a testimonial from one of the industry experts is also a fast way to boost your authority.
Use this advice and your website visitors will convert in greater and greater numbers for sure, increasing your revenue. Don’t forget to ask for a testimonial whenever one of your customers is really excited about your products and services. And if you liked this article please give in to the law of reciprocation by clicking one of the social media sharing buttons below. Thank you!