Today we’re breaking down 6 of the best ways to optimize your site for lead collection.
Lead collection is one of the most important components of your sales funnel, and that means it requires some strategy.
In this post we’ll describe 6 strategies you can implement right now to start collecting more qualified leads.
Let’s face it:
Pop-ups are annoying.
We all hate getting interrupted while trying to read an article, search for a product, or explore a site.
Fortunately, there’s ways you can use pop-ups (appropriately) to generate leads—without annoying your website visitors!
Guiding question: at what points of my site are users most likely to give me their email?
Here are 3 examples of pop-up styles you can use:
Exit pop-ups appear when a user navigates to click away from your site.
Some of key elements of an exit pop-up usually some combination of the following:
Check out this example from Revolve:
Timed pop-ups appear after a user looks at your page for a certain amount of time.
Because it’s a timed pop-up…the key is timing!
If someone leaves your site after only a few seconds, they weren’t that interested in your product.
But if someone stays on your site for 20-30 seconds or more, they’re intrigued.
Show your pop-up too soon, and they won’t have time to explore your site.
Show it too late, and they might already be gone.
So what do you do?
Go to the data.
Check Google analytics to determine the average time visitors spend on the page you want to use a Timed pop-up. Then set your Timed pop-up for 10-12 seconds less than that average.
Successful pop-ups aren’t an exact science, so feel free to experiment with different pages and different timing.
Scroll pop-ups appear after a visitor scrolls through some percentage of your site.
Because they’re only shown after a user engages with your site (i.e. after they scroll), scroll pop-ups are considered more targeted than other types of pop-ups.
Pro tip: Test your scroll pop-ups based on different percentage increments.
For example, at 30% down the page you could include a broad ask: a free whitepaper in exchange for their email.
Then, at 70% down the page, you could include a more targeted ask: a newsletter sign-up in exchange for name, email, and company info. If someone makes it 70% down your page, they’re probably interested in your product or service enough to give you some info.
Referral programs reward existing clients for finding new ones.
They're a deliberate way to get people to spread the word about your business.
Referrals are also great for introducing new potential customers to your brand and for boosting customer retention.
In the meantime, here’s 5 important things to remember when you’re creating a referral program:
Everyone loves rewards!
Whether it’s 20% off an upcoming purchase or $15 a gift card, rewards are an essential part of successful referral programs.
Find out what your customers find valuable and enticing, then structure your program accordingly!
Create a program that benefits both the referrer and the referee (also known as the double-sided incentive).
This strategy pushes both parties to engage with your business. Everyone gets rewards, and you’ll get more people in your sales funnel!
Check out this double-sided incentive example from Shutterfly:
An incremental rewards system means you give out different (i.e. better) rewards the more referrals someone makes.
This strategy worked extremely well for Harry’s, a New York-based DTC brand that makes and sells grooming equipment. Using an incremental rewards structure, they gathered 100,000 emails in one week.
To earn the first prize, a can of shaving cream, you only had to make 5 successful referrals. 5 more successful referrals got you a free razor. With 25 successful referrals, you’d get a free shave set, and 50 successful referrals gave you a shave set with “the Winston,” Harry’s premium handle.
Think about offering different rewards for different actions. This encourages users towards one action as opposed to another, but still rewards them even if they choose the “other” action. This type of referral program requires you to think about which actions to prioritize and which actions are most important for growth.
None of these referral strategies are exclusive—feel free to mix and match, or find the best approach that works for your product or service.
White papers are detailed reports that either (a) provide a solution to a specific business problem or (b) explain a certain concept.
They’re a great way to establish thought leadership in your space.
According to Business.com, over 50% of advertisers reported that white papers were a “valuable” or “extremely valuable” source of leads.
Publishing a white paper not only lets you exchange information for leads, but it also establishes the expertise and credibility of your brand.
The best white papers typically follow a general structure:
Remember: white papers aren’t the only type of long-form content you can include on your website to generate leads!
Ebooks and webinars are two other types of long-form content that work well for building credibility and sourcing leads.
Blogs are essential—the question isn’t whether you should blog (you should), but how to differentiate your work!
Standard blogs work fine, but it’s important to think about other creative ways you can repurpose your blog content to make it more accessible to your audience.
For example: start Twitter blogging.
It’s easy to grow an organic Twitter following, and it’s more likely that people will discover your Tweet thread as opposed to your actual blog.
Twitter blogging also requires you to distill the main points from your articles and communicate them in simple, actionable language.
No matter how you blog—through Twitter, a newsletter, your website, or a combination—it’s important to understand what information your audience finds useful.
Then, feature that information on your website!
Drafting a white paper, putting some pop-ups on your website, and writing a few blog posts won’t be enough to guarantee a steady stream of leads.
You need to supercharge your lead forms.
Some best practices include:
Incentivize your visitors by offering them 15% off when they give you their email, include a gift card, or other rewards.
People don’t love giving out their email.
Nobody wants their inbox overflowing with spam emails from 50 different companies.
So make it clear what you’ll send in your emails (ex: new releases, coupon codes, opportunities for discounts, etc.) and when you’ll send them (bi-weekly, monthly, etc.).
Reiterate that you’ll never spam and clearly state the value your emails will add to your subscribers.
Make it easy for people to sign up to your listserv.
For example, it’s annoying to have to go find a confirmation email and click a link to subscribe to an email list. Don’t make your subscribers do that. Remove any and all points of friction that frustrate visitors trying to sign up for your listserv.
An effective marketing strategy rests on good relationships with your customers.
Relationships are built on trust.
Dark patterns undermine that trust—never use them.
They trick website visitors into doing something they didn't mean to do, whether that’s an email signup or even a purchase.
Optimizing your site for lead collection does not mean resorting to dark patterns. Your visitors will sniff them out, and they’ll avoid your site.
There’s no perfect formula for optimizing your site for lead collection.
But implementing some (or all!) of these 6 strategies will help you improve your site experience and drive more leads!