Small Changes Big Results with Data Driven Marketing
How a handful of small changes increased lead click-through on the website by 300%
There is not a marketer worth their salt that does not want to use their website to educate and capture leads. For years we have focused on getting traffic to the site through SEO and paid social platforms. And once we got the traffic to our site, we struggle to:
- Know if the visitor did anything;
- to know how far down the page a visitor scrolls; and
- to identify which links visitors click.
Of course, we all know if the visitor filled out a form because form data is immediately sent to sales and/or marketing for follow-up.
As SMBs, we often rely on word-of-mouth and referral business to sustain sales. But there is a point where sales will flatline and the need to generate new business will have to go beyond your ability to hold events (which are expensive and time-consuming) and push email campaigns for follow-up.
- Drive more qualified traffic to our site.
- Create a clear conversion path for each visitor.
- Make changes and measure those changes to increase the number of visitors who click and engage online (with the goal of converting that visitor to a lead.)
This is the story of how a handful of slight changes resulted in a 300% click-through rate in less than 60 days.
When it comes to websites, many business owners believe that “if you build it they will come”. But that’s not the way it works. Most B2B websites are designed for aesthetics. They are beautiful and interactive. But they are not necessarily designed to take the visitor down a specific lead conversion path and they certainly do not come designed to get visitors to buy, take action or provide you with their contact details. These types of action take planning and purpose.
The New York Times reported that psychologists and economists study of choices concluded that an overload of options may paralyze people or push them to make no decision. And so it is with our websites. We give visitors an interactive experience with too many choices and the visitors ends up leaving, never having taken action.
There is an important reason why the website is a marketer’s best tool for finding qualified leads. First, your website works around the clock. It is up 24 hours a day, always available to engage prospective buyers, whether your staff is available or not. Second, any lead who types in a keyword to find information has intent; intent to learn; intent to buy; intent to take action. Any potential prospect who types in a keyword phrase into Google and comes to your website is most likely a more qualified lead for your products and services than most of the leads you will find at an event, a trade show or a lead list. These web-generated leads are gold and your ability to take them down a specific path to get them the information they are looking for is the differences between push and pull marketing; the difference between building trust with a potential client and “pray and spray” marketing techniques that rely on lots of information to see what will resonate with the buyer.
DATA DRIVEN DECISIONS
The business owner in our story has a website that showcases her products and services. This owner has been successful through word-of-mouth, referrals and driving traffic to the site through social platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest. The website was designed from an aesthetic point of view (which most websites are because they are designed by designers who love a beautiful site) and when you entered the site you were immediately greeted with moving pictures from past portfolios and varying call to action offers.
What Winc Analytics was able to unearth using Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager was the fact that, while the website had a good amount of organic traffic, it also had thousands of visitors who came to the site and left having not clicked or scrolled beyond more than 50% of the page. Of the visitors that came to the site more than 62% were new visitors, (never having visited the site before) and 43% had conducted an organic search (having come to the site through a keyword search). This owner had thousands of visitors who never went beyond the front page, who rarely scrolled “below the fold”, and who ignored most of the offers on the page.
Our first step was the set goals and decide which actions we wanted the visitor to take and to which page we wanted to take them. This is an integral part of creating a clear path or funnel to the desired action. As we did our analysis, we noted that the top navigation was not configured to set visitors on the path our client wanted them on, based on our understanding that website visitors read page content in an F-shaped pattern (for more, see this piece from the Nielsen Norman Research Group).
But on this client’s site, the first item on the top navigation bar was “How it Works” followed by “Services”, etc. While this was a simple observation, it was key to our creating the desired path for visitors. The “How it Works” page explained how the process worked rather than what was included in the product/service so the visitor was coming to the page and learning how the process worked before the understood what the product was and if they wanted this product to begin with.
Of course, the more pages a visitor must click before getting to the product page, the less likely it is that the visitor will arrive at the product page and take action. In this case, it was just as simple as understanding how people engage with the website and making changes to the layout to make the links to the product pages more prominent.
Another change we made (and tested) was the placement of our services on the Services page. Originally the owner had written beautiful paragraphs about the product. The visitor was forced to scroll through a long page of text before viewing the different product options. Using Google data, we were able to determine that visitors were not scrolling far enough down the page to view the different product offerings and this too needed to change.
The first change we made was to move the “Services” link to the second position on the navigation bar, just after the link to the Home page, increasing the likelihood that visitors would click on the Services link. Based on the simple rule of website usability which states, “don’t make users work,” and knowing how the brain processes information, it was the logical next step to take. (You’ll be shocked at the results… keep reading.)
And it worked.
In our research phase of the project, we also discovered that blogs drove the highest amount of organic traffic to the site. So, we decided to add product offers and links on the blog page to direct the visitor to the Services page.
We also took small steps to make the links more obvious. We changed the color of hyperlinked text and added an underline to indicate that the word or phrase was clickable. You may be
thinking to yourself, “that is obvious,” but most modern WordPress templates no longer add the underline to the link and there are many instances where the link goes undiscovered.
Finally, we cleaned up the Services page by placing product options and images at the top of the page to allow visitors to compare products right up front. We also provided visitors with a link to read more information if they were interested.
The real reason why we invest in SEO and CRO is for results.
- Our goal was to increase traffic to our Services page and we accomplished that with nearly a 389% increase in the number of clicks from the Home page to the Services page.
- Unique pages (such as social platforms, blogs and referral sights) driving traffic to the Services page have increased by 250% over the last six months
- Lead to Conversion ratio has also increased from one to two leads every quarter to eight leads a month.
Small changes, while they seem insignificant, make a big difference. The next step for this client is to A/B test the webpage with different colored CTA buttons and offers to determine which offers get the greatest amount of traffic and conversion.
Bottom line: By using the data collected in the client’s Google Analytics, along with Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) techniques, we were able to get more of the client’s prospects to take the actions we wanted them to take, engage with the “money pages”, and become leads and customers.
CRO is never a one and done and this business owner is only beginning to reap the benefits of her investment.
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