A Guide to Turning Website Visitors into Customers

While your business website may get lots of hits, getting paying customers should be the main focus

A Guide to Turning Website Visitors into Customers

The success of any marketing strategy is nearly always defined by the Return on Investment (ROI), which is usually measured by the amount of business generated. In the case of a website, business comes from turning visitors into customers.

Many people seem to focus on traffic and rankings rather than whether or not visitors are being converted into customers. Sometimes they are not even aware that conversions can be tracked or how to do it.

Identify goals

The first thing to do is to determine what you want each visitor to do when they visit your site – do you want enquiries, newsletter subscriptions, or in the case of retail sites, sales? Set goals for your website which can be measured, for example, the number of enquiry forms completed; telephone calls generated; PDF downloads, social referrals; subscriptions, and so on.

Next, define how best to encourage each visitor to meet those goals. Compelling page content and simple navigation paths are important together with strong calls to action in appropriate places. Forms and shopping carts should be kept as simple as possible with no unnecessary steps or boxes to be completed.

Implement tracking and measure results

Once the goals have been set, tracking needs to be added to the site to monitor the process and record when conversions occur. The latest statistics packages can gather an enormous amount of very useful information. For instance, it is possible to identify the referring sources for conversions – are any customers converting from that directory site that you paid to be on? Perhaps they are coming from pay-per-click adverts (it is even possible to tell which individual ads are generating conversions) or maybe from organic web listings?

Tracking can also reveal which keywords are proving most effective, and even the country where the visitor was based. If you send out emailshots with links to your website it is possible to tell whether any conversions have resulted.

Where a poor conversion rate is seen, tracking software can be used to help determine whether there are any weaknesses in the site. Analysis of visitor navigation paths might show visitors dropping out after visiting a certain page on the site, or if asked to complete a long form considered too time-consuming for the apparent benefit.

Alternative versions of the same web page with differing content can be set up in order test different calls to action, known as A/B testing. The results are then compared and used to modify the content accordingly. This approach is particularly successful when monitoring email marketing campaigns.

Different fields on enquiry forms can also be trialed to work out the optimum approach to encourage increased form submissions.

When it comes to determining whether the website is generating any telephone calls, this can easily be achieved by setting up a highly cost effective 0844 number that seamlessly forwards to your main number, and then reports on the number of incoming calls. Additional 0844 numbers can be set up if required to track calls separately from different advertising mediums or perhaps to trial conversion rates for different landing pages or sections of the website.

Web Results Direct, an Internet marketing specialist with more than 10 years’ experience in making websites deliver, provides small business advice on turning website visitors into customers.

If you would like to find out more about any of the methods described above including setting up an 0844 number, please do not hesitate to contact Web Results Direct on 01483 429222 or by email.

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