Lead generation from your website is your most important (and challenging) marketing skill. Actually, it’s a culmination of several different skills: you need to master content creation, sales, design, psychology, and classic marketing if you want website visitors to consistently convert into leads on your site.
If you’re looking for more leads from your website traffic (and who isn’t?) then optimizing, improving, and taking action by implementing the strategies and tactics listed here is a must.
Converting leads today: How the game has evolved.
Early on, website history traffic wasn’t fully understood. Most websites were managed by a webmaster and the business behind the site didn’t see it as a primary lead-generating tool. Those days are long gone.
Make no mistake: lead generation from your website is one of the most effective and economical ways to grow a business.
Companies that do well today dedicate serious resources (time, money, and skilled labor) toward their website on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
Because your ideal buyers find you because of your website. And getting quality traffic from relevant sources isn’t easy.
When you do manage to own a successful, cream-of-the-crop website, the rewards are massive: high converting website traffic, which translates to more leads, additional sales, and increased revenue for your business.
The Ultimate List of Lead Generation Strategies and Tactics for Your Website
From content to design this list has you covered with actionable items you can use TODAY.
Website Lead Generation
If you’re new to website lead generation—or looking to brush up on the basics—these strategies, tactics, and tools will help you get your website off on the right foot. You’ll understand how to build a strong foundation from the ground up for online lead generation and website success.
- Convert traffic into leads with a market dominating website
Most websites just don’t work for businesses—they are simply displays of design skills, past work, services, and a contact page. But you can change all that with a market domination mentality. Market domination mentality is when you focus on creating a strategic and buyer-focused website that is built to grow your business. By building strong and effective landing pages (see Section 3), providing potential customers with information they want and need (see Section 2), you can slowly build up your website to become market dominant. This will lead to an increase in traffic that you can then convert into leads using a variety of methods (see sections 4, 5, and 6 on Forms, CTAs and Offers).
2. Don’t sell people, educate them
People don’t want the hard sell. They expect to be educated. Buyers use the internet to find information about products and services before they contact suppliers. These same buyers are more informed, earlier in the buying process. Take this opportunity to transition from the old “features and benefits” of sales and facilitate an educated decision. There’s a reason why you’ve heard this statement from the leaders in business growth—from Vern Harnish’s Scaling Up to Michael Gerber’s E Myth Mastery—because it’s what you should be doing.
See below for the tools needed to provide your website traffic with the educational content they expect.
3. Give fewer choices
Sheena S. Iyengar from Columbia University ran a market study on purchasing behavior centered around discovering if the common belief that more choices are better was actually true. Her findings, stated in summary, uncovered that participants with fewer options had higher satisfaction with their selections, while participants with greater choices experienced choice overload. I recommend that you read her research study or, better yet, watch her TED talk, The Art of Choosing. One example: providing just one clear and contextual CTA on a page vs. multiple scattered CTAS will result in better performance.
4. Understand how search engines work
Search engines and social sharing are the fuel of your website. Outside of the technology and marketing space, most people do not understand how search engines work. Read this article to learn how search engines evaluate content, what you can do to rank pages like Wikipedia, and the importance of backlinks in the search world. Once you understand how Google brings you organic traffic, you can align your organic traffic to both their persona and buyer’s journey with calls-to-action and email captures to turn these visitors from search engines into leads.
5. Optimize your About page
Your About page needs to appeal to your customer, as well as impress, build trust, and make them want to know more. The more they know, the more they like, and the more likely they are to engage you or become a customer. It’s one of the most important pages on your website. Recently, HubSpot released 12 critical elements of a homepage. Although the article is about creating a homepage, you should include all of the same elements, with the addition of your own personal business story and what makes you remarkable.
6. Have a responsive website
Responsive websites enable your target prospects to visit your site on any type of device: PC, laptop, tablet, or mobile phone. That said, a quality mobile experience shouldn’t be an afterthought. With an ever-increasing percentage of traffic coming from mobile devices you must make sure you’ve specifically focused on how responsive your website appears in mobile. This focus on mobile requires a different skill set than traditional web design, requiring a “progressive enhancement” process of building on the mobile interface until it’s a fully functional desktop website. Making your website available to all users equally, with quick response times no matter their device, will lower your bounce rate and provide a higher chance of generating leads.
7. Make your website fast
As internet speed increases, web pages have grown bigger. But at the same time devices have gotten smaller. The technology landscape has changed, and will continue to change, quickly. Therefore, your website needs to be speed optimized. Google is doing their part, introducing an open-source initiative called Accelerated Mobile Pages project that strives to improve the performance of the mobile web.
Your website back-end performance directly impacts site speed and search engine ranking. This includes web servers, their network connections, the use of CDNs, and the back-end application and database servers. You need to understand the ways you can improve your site with CDNs, by optimizing your code, optimizing database queries, and making sure you have fast and responsive web servers.
To test your website speed and receive recommendations on improvements, use the following 4 tools: Webpage Test, PageSpeed Insights tool, GTmetrix, and Pingdom. Each tool will provide similar and different recommendations to improve your website load time.
PRO TIP: Sometimes you simply need a better server to host your website.
8. Make your phone number prominent
If your business has the infrastructure in place to answer and direct incoming calls, make sure your phone number is prominent. By prominent, we mean highly visible. A KissMetrics use case indicated that with the addition of a phone number there wasn’t a large increase in phone calls but conversions did increase.
Adding a phone number builds more credibility for a business and trust with your visitors. By offering a contact number, you can provide the user with a sense of security and make it easy for them to reach out if that’s their preferred method of communication.
PRO TIP: Avoid images of your phone number. For lead generation, make the phone number text and your smartphone will automatically make it a clickable link to dial.
9. Track website leads that call
With a prominent phone number you’ll want to make sure you’re tracking the incoming call leads from your website. Call tracking software allows you to capture a trackable number and know the source of the call without having to ask. This data allows you to discover which pages, ads, campaigns, and keywords are driving phone call conversions. Services like CallRail will track, record, and provide analytics on call activity. It can also integrate into your PPC, SEO, and offline ad campaigns, maximizing the ROI of your marketing and website.
10. Strike up a conversion with online chat
Live online chat is a powerful tool. It opens a dialog between you and your prospective buyers in real time. Once a chat is initiated, your website visitor can ask questions and interact with a member of your customer service team or a sales person via a text message box on the screen. A Forrester Research study showed “Around 44% of online consumers say that having questions answered by a live person while in the middle of an online purchase is one of the most important features a website can offer.”
11. Lead generation with product videos
Using video to explain your product or service to attract new attention is known as video marketing. Using it for lead generation is simply taking it to the next level. Add a video next to your lead generation form to demonstrate the value of the gated offer. Make it clear by providing an introduction to what awaits the visitor after they sign up with your form. By making your offer on your landing pages more enticing with video you’ll generate more leads.
Example video on Fivefourclub.com
12. Step forward with pop-ups
Should you use annoying pop-ups? Yes.
If what you offer can really help your visitors, you need to get the solution in front of them. Pop-ups work. It also breaks the website flipping cruise control that visitors can get stuck in. While it’s true that some of your visitors will find them annoying, the benefits far outweigh the losses. You may kick yourself for not using them earlier to generate leads. If you’re still unsure, check out Crazy Egg’s blog where they listed case studies showing impressive results from using pop-ups.
PRO TIP: Exit intent popups can grow your leads and E-commerce revenue by anywhere up to 10%.
13. Add real photos
You should add real photos of yourself, your team, you building/office locate to your website. Our tests have shown that visitors respond more to a familiar face over a generic stock photo. Using real photos of your team, your facility, and even your customers, puts a human face to your business, which helps build trust and strengthen the bond between an unknown prospect and your company. Keep in mind, stock images aren’t the issue—irrelevance is. A general rule for graphics and photos is: an image’s value is solely based on the value it communicates.
14. Add testimonials and guarantees
Are you using guarantees and testimonials effectively? Probably not. Which is a shame, because it’s a critical part of showing proof that you can do that which you offer. Add client testimonials, quotes from experts, and excerpts of media articles to establish your authority. Combined with an irresistible guarantee, like offering a full refund if your client is not satisfied, you’ll build the trust and reputation that many new clients require.
15. Avoid site templates
To grow and generate leads you need to be remarkable. Purple Cow, by Seth Godin, states an important role in today’s world: The only way to cut the hyper-clutter of products, marketing, and advertising today is to innovate something new, unique, and remarkable—like a purple cow. Site templates are typically designed by industry or functionality and not your specific buyer’s journey.
16. Make your conversion funnel visual and optimize it
Thinking about your conversion funnel is only the start. You need to map it out. Visualize the path so that you can sketch out specific sequences that users are taking to becoming paying customers. Your funnel should align with your business model. For example, these metrics would be used to measure the various stages in your funnel:
- Early: Social media shares, email list sign-ups, return visits, fans, followers, new visitors, inbound links
- Mid: Time on site, leads
- Low: Orders, revenues, sales, average order value, repeat purchases, customer referrals
Once your conversion funnel is visually mapped out with your current conversion metrics, you’ll be able to see any weak points in the funnel. Typically, conversion issues will stand out and a few optimizations can have a great impact on the number of leads generated.
17. Align your website content to the context of your buyer’s journey
Simply put, the buyer’s journey is everything that happens leading up to a sale. Can you see how aligning your website content with the process of your buyer’s journey would be important?
As I mention in the next tip, your website should have a goal. Part of that goal should be to understand which pages are suited for each stage in the buyer’s journey, as well as each buyer persona. Take each page of your website and blog content and identify what persona are you speaking to and where that persona is at in the buyer’s journey based on the type of content you’re providing.
18. Know your goal first
In order to create a highly effective website, you have to understand exactly what you want that site to accomplish. You need to determine this end goal well before you ever start writing copy or designing page layouts.
If your goal is to increases sales, your site will need to be extremely intuitive/user friendly and include highly effective CTAs in highly effective locations (more on that later). If you’re aiming to build your brand, you should include an active social media program and real-time user-engagement features that work to build a community around your brand and/or products.
Whatever your end goals may be, creating a sitemap (an outline of all of the content your site needs) is a good way to make sure your site ends up with the ability to achieve them.
19. Use emotion and rational copy
Boring copy is about as effective as a blank page. Your copy needs to engage your visitors and make them feel something. When you evoke emotion as visitors read through your copy, you’re speaking to them on multiple levels. Your ability to tap into a feeling can mean the difference between a conversion and their moving on to visit one of your competitors.
You’ll also want to speak to them in rational language. In other words, your content should make the reader think to themselves, “that makes sense.” The combination of emotional appeal and rational reinforcement makes for powerful copy that will have a greater effect on the efficacy of your site.
20. Break long copy with CTAs
Long copy can become boring copy very quickly, no matter how engaging it starts off. Most attention spans are rather short and a long page of copy can be intimidating or, worse yet, sleep-inducing. What should you do?
The obvious answer is to shorten your copy, making it as engaging and useful as you can in fewer words. Barring that, you can break up that monotonous long copy with CTAs. After all, you’re writing that copy for a reason. You want to clarify exactly what benefits you’ll be able to pass on to your customers.
Some readers may not be ready to convert until they’ve read every last word of copy. Many others may be ready much sooner. Give them the opportunity to do exactly what you want by including CTAs throughout your long copy. The regular use of CTAs will dramatically improve the results you’re seeing from your long sales pages.
21. Provide a FAQ section
The trouble with being an expert in your business is that you know the answers to the simple questions that can hold up the buying process for the rest of us. You may have forgotten to answer the questions on your site or they may be buried in a mountain of copy that was skimmed.
The number of user questions that you’re able to answer in a clear and concise manner is directly related to the number of sales you’ll be able to salvage from otherwise frustrated visitors.
Some people will have questions that you could never think to answer, but more still will continue to skim over answers as they hurry through your site. Providing a FAQ section will give those skimmers a place to find the answers to those questions that doesn’t require them looking back through all of your copy. It’s basic customer service that takes little effort on your part but can yield big rewards. And, as new questions come up via customer interactions (calls, emails, social media), you can include them (and their answers) in your FAQ section.
As you know, online attention spans are short. You need to be doing everything you can to keep frustration to a minimum in order to keep your visitors on track to accomplish what they’re there to do.
22. Automate your marketing
The multiple facets of running a business can make life hectic at times. Wouldn’t it be nice if you didn’t have to worry about marketing on top of everything else?
I recommend automating as much of the marketing and lead generation process as possible. Your business should have a unique marketing strategy to suit your individual needs and achieve your specific goals. Once you figure out just what those goals are and how you’re going to accomplish them, automate these processes with an excellent marketing automation software like HubSpot.
HubSpot will help you to create a strategy that involves all of the things you need to do to accomplish your goals and set them on autopilot.
23. Track scrolling and clicks
Tracking tools abound in the digital marketing world. You can track just about everything a visitor does on your site, which is extremely helpful when it comes to optimizing your site.
Two things you NEED to be tracking are scrolling and clicks. Scrolling will tell you just how much of your pages are being viewed, and clicks will tell you where people are doing well and where they are getting stuck. Crazy Egg offers a cool heatmap tool that shows you where visitors hover (their mouse) and the areas they avoid. Your copy, images, and the overall layout of your site may seem appealing and user-friendly to you and your staff, but you need to be tracking the impression it makes on your site visitors. Simple changes may have a dramatic effect on the way they engage with your products, sales pages, and brand as a whole. Having this data will empower your lead generation.
Utilizing a Blog to Generate Leads from Your Website
Companies who blog receive 97% more links to their website. Yes, 97 percent! If you’re new to SEO, that may not mean anything, but let me be the first to tell you, links are a good thing. You need to be blogging, and blogging is all about content.
Creating valuable content is incredibly important if you want to build the type of website that generates leads for your business. How do you make the most of your blog? Read on…
24. Create a comprehensive list of best practices, resources, or tools
Rather than going on and on about what a comprehensive list of best practices is, let me make this simple.
You’re reading one!
This is the perfect example of a list of best practices, resources, or tools. I’m giving you a comprehensive list of every way you can go about generating leads from your website. This type of article can boost your readers’ overall knowledge of a subject very quickly as they develop a trusted relationship with your brand and receive the subtle influence that moves them further along their buyer’s journey. This also helps to position you as an expert, without pushing any product.
Giving your visitors everything they need to aid them in their pursuit of a solution to their problem adds up to one thing—value. You’re providing them with a powerful tool to guide their hand as they go about their decision-making process.
25. Publish and optimize evergreen content
Evergreen content is that which is so informative, valuable, and engaging that it stays relevant for a much longer time than your average blog post. The best blogs provide content that is so useful that their posts continue to rank for several months or years after they are published. These supremely valuable posts typically generate traffic for much longer that your “this is what I did today” posts.
You can create evergreen content for just about any niche, so consider an article’s longevity before you sit down to write. What can you write about that will be relevant, useful, and engaging in a year’s time? “Fall Scarf Trends for 2016” won’t matter after a few months, but “A Timeless Guide to Boot Pairing” will rank for much longer.
While you’re planning out your blog topics, make sure your list includes evergreen content and don’t forget to optimize your post so Google finds them relevant.
26. Use blog posts as a downloadable offer
Have you recently created an incredibly awesome post that is full of helpful tips and delivers tremendous value? O.K., so that may be a little over the top, but we should all aim for creating content like this, right?
The reason I ask is because when you create awesome content, you can leverage it as a free, downloadable offer. Plenty of people won’t have seen it when you posted it to your blog, so turn it into a stand-alone product (ebook, guide, etc). Use this highly valuable content in your email marketing, or offer it up on social media as a free giveaway.
These types of posts are a great way to receive extended value. You get the traffic-boosting qualities of a killer blog post, plus the buzz-generating, trust-building qualities of a downloadable offer.
27. Blog consistently
Google never stops reading your content. It uses your blog to decipher what your site is about and how relevant it is to the people making search queries related to your field. In order to stay relevant, you need to post valuable content on a regular basis. Plus, the more quality content you have, the higher your site will rank as a whole.
According to HubSpot…
“Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got almost 3.5X more traffic than companies that published between 0 – 4 monthly posts.”
Not to mention, any regular readers of your blog will appreciate your consistency. They’ll see you as an industry authority and look to you for informative content on a more regular basis.
28. Build power posts
Here’s my nod to Brian Deen of Backlinko. A power post is more than just a blog post. It’s a stand-alone resource, full of valuable content and compiled in a way that makes industry leaders want to share and readers want to keep reading. Power posts take time and effort to create, but they can be extremely valuable if done right (read our recent example).
Google keeps updating its search algorithm in an effort to provide users with the most relevant results possible. Each update makes its search capabilities more and more “human.” Google can determine the intent of a search and does its best to pair it with the results most relevant to that search.
Can you see how a power post would be more likely to be selected as one of the most relevant results to a search? They’re highly informative and relevant to your ideal personas, and Google ranks them well.
29. Dive deep into your buyer’s tough questions
The best thing you can do to stand out as an expert resource and earn the trust of your buyer is to answer their toughest questions. If there is a problem or question standing in the way of their converting, answer it.
Determining your buyer’s tough questions/problems and providing them with the resource that answers/solves them puts you in a powerful place. What does this all mean?
It means that when you’re creating content for lead generation, you must be thinking of how you can best help your customers. Think about the problems you might encounter if you were in their position and how your expertise can provide them with the answers they need to solve these problems.
Look to your Facebook comments, customer emails, social media feedback, or anywhere else you do customer service and take note of recurring problems that people are facing. Then create content that addresses these problems.
30. Create quizzes
There is a reason I love blogs. They’re so versatile and their marketing capabilities seem endless. For instance, creating quizzes on your blog can serve as a method of lead generation.
Create a quiz that gets people to interact with your brand in a fun way while they tell you about themselves. As you well know, the more you understand your customers, the better you can market to them. Quizzes give you the opportunity to personalize the value proposition while asking for information in return.
Your membership-based snack box ecommerce business could pose the question, “What kind of snack lover are you?” The value your customer receives is a more customized service and final product month after month. You have the opportunity to receive a load of information about your customer that you would have otherwise missed out on.
You can ask your readers all sorts of things if you do it right. A great way to proposition your audience into taking a quiz is by offering a discount coupon (20% off with code…) or any other special offer that’s enticing enough to motivate people to take the time to fill it out.
Since quiz takers want to see their results, we’ve seen email opt-in rates as high as 50% when results are gated.
31. Use the keyword(s) in the first and last hundred words
This one should be pretty straightforward. Be sure to include the keyword(s) you’re targeting in the first and last hundred words of your posts. You’ll also want to include it 5-10 times throughout the rest of the post depending on its length.
This keyword density (shoot for around 2%) is just right. It’ll help Google to determine your post’s relevance and keep you from appearing like you’re keyword loading in a spammy way. Google doesn’t like that. Instead, they’re doing everything they can to find the most genuinely relevant articles. Stick to this formula and you’ll be doing your posts a favor.
32. Use images to break paragraphs
Pages full of seemingly endless content look like a headache to most readers (not to mention boring visually). It doesn’t matter how excellent your copy is, line after line without end won’t get read. Break up the monotony of your content with relevant images (demonstrations, charts, graphs) that help the reader to navigate through the story you’re telling. They’ll read more, be more engaged, better understand what you are saying, all of which translates to them being on your site longer, and thereby giving you a better chance to capture them as leads.
Don’t take it personally, but most of your visitors aren’t going to read everything that you write. Make your content skimmable by including images that help explain what you’re writing about. Make sure your formatting does the same.
Test the skimmability of your own posts by reading just the headers and looking at the pictures. Do you get the gist of each section?
Generate Leads with Landing Pages/Squeeze Pages
Landing pages are an old-school online marketing tactic that still works amazingly well. However, you can’t simply create dozens of landing pages and expect to get results. Here are some incredible ways to help you create high-converting landing pages.
33. Follow these BEST practices
The best way to make the most of your landing pages is to follow landing page lead generation BEST practices, like these:
A. Be clear – You have a short window to make a clear point with your copy. Don’t say anything you don’t have to. Instead, make sure you get your point across in a way that takes fewer words and makes immediate sense to the reader.
B. Avoid clutter – You may already be noticing a pattern, and for good reason. Landing pages have to work quickly to achieve their goals. The last thing you want is a visual mess that makes it hard for visitors to focus. Instead, work toward directing the eye toward the most important features first. Your offer and CTA should stand out and all of your other features should be included in a way that doesn’t steal attention.
C. Format like a pro – By now you get the picture. You want a landing page to be as easy on the eyes as possible. That means formatting your content in a way that makes it visually appealing and, more importantly, easy to read and discern your most important points.
D. Back it up with social proof – Testimonials, Facebook comments, or awesome tweets about your brand can go a long way toward securing trust, and it’s this trust that will help drive more people to convert on your landing pages.
E. Use contrasting colors – Your landing pages need to stand out from your site. Use colors that contrast your normal color palette. Moreover, your important details (think CTA) should stand out above all else.
F. Include a logo – Adding a logo to every landing page ensures that visitors don’t forget just where they are and who’s bringing them this exciting offer and valuable content.
34. Consider every page a landing page
Just because you don’t call a page a landing page doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be treated as one. The same principles that apply to a landing page apply to your main pages. That means your site visitors have to be able to understand exactly what that page is offering from the moment they arrive on it.
Landing pages are designed with the end goal in mind. They’re built to convert. Each of your pages should do the same. They need to be focused and directive, moving your visitors toward a conversion rather than sitting around loading them up with copy they likely won’t read.
35. Have a minimum of 15 landing pages
According to a report from our friends over at HubSpot,
“Companies see a 55% increase in leads when increasing their number of landing pages from just 10 to 15.”
To fill your sales funnel (TOFU, MOFU, BOFU), you need to use different lead captures in each stage. You can offer low-pressure, straightforward offers at the beginning (awareness stage) of the buyer’s journey and address the multiple personas of your ideal buyer with multiple landing pages.
As you move buyers toward the consideration and decision stages, you’ll be able to offer the appropriate content, again appealing to multiple personas. By the time you create multiple pages for multiple personas and multiple types of content at each stage of the buyer’s journey, you’ll easily have 15 landing pages (or many more).
36. Follow a specific landing page format
A. Write killer headlines – The headline is your opportunity to tell readers exactly what it is you’re offering in a quick sentence. Everything you’re presenting needs to be summed up in this short burst of attention-grabbing information and it needs to be clear and easy to understand.
B. Clearly state the benefits – The value of your offer is entirely wrapped up in the user’s perceived benefit. That means you need to focus on telling them how this product is going to change their life and solve their problems before you begin to tell them what it includes or how to go about downloading it.
C. Clear CTAs – The right CTA can make or break your landing page, so make sure you’ve got yours dialed in. They need to be clear, relevant to your offer, and stand out visually against the rest of the page.
D. Show intimate knowledge of the customer’s problem – Whatever it is you’re selling, it solves a problem. You need to set up the problem scenario for them to showcase your intimate knowledge and understanding. After all, if you don’t know their problem, how can you solve it? It shows people that you may actually be able to help since you know so much about what doesn’t work.
E. Tell your story – Your personal experiences with an issue or problem are very powerful. Before-and-after tales are some of the most powerful content that you can include because it shows your firsthand experience with firsthand problems. You’ve been there and are where you are now, so you can help others do the same.
F. Show the price – Don’t just slap a number on and walk away. Explain how your price is so much lower than the actual value they’ll receive from your product or service. Talk about all of the additional features and add-ons that come along with it and boost the perceived value far beyond the actual purchase price.
G. Guarantee – The beauty of the guarantee is that it eliminates the risk involved in doing business with your brand. If you offer a solid guarantee and things don’t work out, they’re safe because they can always ask for their money back.
37. Use images of the offer
The age-old adage of a picture being worth a thousand words is true, or it probably wouldn’t be age old. The value of images in your marketing may seem obvious, but we see landing page after landing page being created sans image.
Images begin a dialogue with your visitors before they ever begin to read your copy and can emotionally engage them more easily. Be sure to include an image of your offer to increase the likelihood of a conversion. That being said, there are cases when images just don’t work, so test your landing pages with and without. If one image doesn’t boost your results, try swapping the image before you ditch images altogether.
38. Use videos to explain the offer
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth even more. Videos of your offer may be able to generate conversions without visitors ever reading your copy. Videos put everything your visitors need to see in one place.
Deliver the headline, the offer, the benefits they’ll receive, and the CTA in a simple video and you’ll be making it really easy for them. More importantly, you’ll make it easy on yourself as you watch your landing pages convert visitor after visitor.
People prefer to watch rather than read. Plus videos keep visitors on your page longer, allowing time for your message to make an impact.
A study by Eyeview found that videos on landing pages can increase conversion by up to 80%.
PRO TIP: Include yourself or your team in your video to boost your viewers’ trust.
39. Make landing page text concise and scannable
A busy or cluttered landing page is an inefficient landing page. When a visitor lands on your LP you only have so long to communicate your message before they lose interest, no matter how enticing the offer. So what do you do?
Make the offer and CTA clear immediately upon arrival. The copy needs to be clear and formatted in a way to make it easily scannable. Pair it with an image or video to make it even easier on the viewer and you’ll see your conversions increase.
Test your landing page. Can you tell exactly what’s being offered and what the CTA is calling for in the first 5 seconds?
40. Make the BENEFITS stand out
Don’t just state what it is you’re offering. Be clear about the benefits a person will receive when they take you up on your offer. Tell them how you’ll solve their problem or answer their need in a straightforward manner.
Be sure to convey these benefits in a way that stand out as the first thing your visitors see. Highlight them in a way that ensures they can’t be missed and are the focal point of the landing page.
For example, if you’re offer is a weight-loss nutrition guide, you shouldn’t just tell them that it’s a guide to lose weight through improved nutrition and call it a day. Instead, talk about how following the guide will make them look and feel, other users’ past experiences, and the 24 super simple and delicious recipes that will “make them rethink the meaning of the term ‘health food.’”
41. Present to both the impulse and reason of your target
Remember when we talked about writing both emotional and rational copy for your site? The same goes for landing pages. Your copy should stimulate emotional impulses while appealing to their sense of reason. When you hit your visitors on both levels, your landing pages will have a much stronger impact and, in turn, more success in your lead generation efforts.
“People buy on emotion then justify their decision with facts”—for more on how to write to appeal to both, check out this great resource.
42. Remove external links
You already know that you want to remove any distracting factors from your landing pages. You want your offer and CTA to stand out. Both external and internal links only serve to get in the way of an otherwise straightforward landing page.
The same rings true for your main pages. Internal links can be helpful to navigate throughout a large site, but external links should be removed. The core idea of generating leads from your website is that a user gets everything they need from your pages. There should be no need to go offsite for anything. If there is, that information should be included in your site content.
Generate Leads by Utilizing On-Page Forms
Website forms may seem like a simple thing, but they’re often overlooked in lead generation. You need to make sure your forms are converting the highest percentage of site visitors possible. They’re gathering valuable information that you’ll be able to use in future marketing, so take them seriously! Here are some ways you can make your forms convert easier and better.
43. Redirect landing page form submissions to a thank-you page
When someone has taken the time to complete a form, make sure you say thanks. Once the form has been submitted, redirect them to a thank-you page that tells them how much you appreciate them opting in. You can use this page to reassure them that their information is safe and summarize the types of information they’ll be receiving as a part of your mailing list.
Tip: When someone converts, try sending them a special offer (discount code, coupon, etc.) as an extra special way to say thank you for their interest in your brand.
44. Place forms on pages not just landing pages
Your visitors may be in the habit of clicking out of landing pages, no matter the offer. That doesn’t mean they should be counted out altogether. Instead, make sure you include your offer on your main page(s).
They may take the time to check out your site and decide that your valuable offer is something they’re interested in after all. Make sure the forms are engaging, clear, and concise, just like your landing page forms.
45. Form requests should match the perceived value of the offer
The amount of information you request from your forms should match the value of what you’re offering in exchange. For example, if you’re asking for a list of information 9 items long, you better be willing to give them the goods for it. Don’t think anyone is going to take the time to give your ecommerce sneaker boutique all of their valuable information in exchange for “The Ultimate Guide to Tying Your Shoes.”
Instead, ask for less and/or give them more value. Try asking for the 2-3 most important items and send them “The Sneaker Junkie’s Guide to Rare Finds.” It’s something your target audience will love and will be more than willing to trade for a few lines of personal info.
The more information someone gives the better, but the more you ask for the less likely they’ll be to complete your form. This is especially true as you begin to ask for information that people regard as being personal, like birthday or zip code. If you ask big, your offer has to be big. You could ask someone about their health and weight-loss goals, their interests in nutrition vs. fitness, and their biggest obstacle to self-improvement. In exchange, you’d need to offer up your “11-Day Power Detox” or “28-Day Healthy Life Reboot.”
46. Use smart forms
Be smart with the information you gather from your visitors with progressive profiling. By asking specific questions about their wants and needs, you can personalize your marketing approach to target them on an individual level.
Let’s say you own a gym. You’re trying to sell more gym memberships and get new members in the door. You have a website where you give valuable guides, meal plans, and exercise routines away for free. All you ask are a couple of questions each time someone wants to download one of your guides.
A new visitor arrives at your website and downloads a meal plan; her name is Sandra. In order to download the first guide, Sandra needs to fill out three input fields on a form: name, email, and her biggest struggle when it comes to working out.
Sandra comes back to your website next week and downloads a workout guide. This time, you ask Sandra two other questions she needs to answer in order to download the free guide: her workout goals and the single thing holding her back from reaching her goal.
Sandra’s profile is building up with valuable information she is providing. You now use this information when marketing to her specifically.
Next time you send Sandra a marketing email, instead of being broad and general with your messaging, you’re able to be specific and use the information she gave you.
Instead of writing: “We here at Fitness Company have personal trainers that work with you one-on-one so you can reach your goals,” you would write: “We here at Fitness Company take personal training seriously. We know that you struggle with losing the baby weight after having your first child. We have a personal trainer that has a class for new moms looking to get back into shape. We will work with you to reach your goal of being the same dress size you were before having a baby.”
Doesn’t that sound like a marketing message that will be much better received?
47. Use localize form language by country
Even if you don’t do business in other countries (yet), it’s worth adding language localization to your forms, apps, and even the entire site. It’s a very simple process and if you do business in other parts of the world, your customers should be received in their native language.
The world is becoming increasingly smaller and more and more people are crossing international borders to do business online. We always urge you to stay ahead of the curve and this is an excellent way to do just that.
48. Include “subscribe to blog” checkbox
Your form can serve multiple purposes with the simple addition of a “subscribe to blog” checkbox below the information fields. Making it this easy means more subscribers, which means more leads continually connecting with your brand and your content.
More connection with your content leads to the establishment of a trusted relationship that makes them more prone to buy from you. Do I really need to go on?
Calls-to-Action (CTA) Necessary to Generate Leads
Looking to dabble into persuasion and design? Here are some of the things you need to know about calls-to-action to get that ever-elusive click.
49. Use CTAs everywhere
As I mentioned above, when thinking lead generation, every page of your website should be treated as a landing page. That means that every page should present your visitors with a CTA or multiple CTAs. Stick them in the header and footer and in various important parts of your copy. Use icons, images, and special formatting to help make them stand out. After all, your CTA is telling your visitors what you want them to do, so make it easy for them to figure out.
50. Use CTA colors that pop against your site’s color palette
Your CTA needs to grab your visitors’ attention, so make sure the colors you use for your CTA pop against the color palette you’ve selected for the rest of your site. You’ll want to select colors that a bright and engaging, but not off-putting. Try testing different color options against one another to determine which colors are the most effective and drive the most conversions.
51. Images rather than text only
We already know that images are often far more powerful than text, so use them to enhance the efficacy of your CTAs like you would anything else. You can include attention-grabbing images and pair them with your strong CTA in order to create a powerhouse that is sure to drive more conversions.
The image will drive the viewer’s eye toward what is one of the most important parts of any form or page, the CTA. There is no chance that your visitors will know exactly what you want them to do and the image you choose can further compel them to do so.
52. Add CTAs to each blog post
You’re providing your visitors with valuable content with every post you publish. The beauty of the blog post is that it helps you to establish your authority and expertise without feeling pushy or salesy. That being said, the engaging content you’re creating doesn’t have to be entirely passive.
Your blog posts are establishing trust, and you should be capitalizing on the trust you generate with each blog post. Include CTAs in each post that are relevant to the topic being covered.
For example: If you’re writing a post about getting your body ready for summer to promote your gym, it’s a good idea to include a CTA to “Shop our nutrition store now!” or “Consult with a trainer for FREE today!”
53. Add CTAs inline contextually on your most relevant website pages
As your visitors read through your copy they may reach a point where they are ready to take the next step. It’s up to you to provide them with a push in the right direction. At relevant points on most pages, be sure to include a CTA that helps them move forward in their journey. You’ve seen CTAs in a sidebar or at the bottom of an article, but don’t be afraid to add the CTA in the middle of an article when the context of the CTA matches the copy around it.
54. Provide a compelling offer in the CTA
A CTA should include a compelling offer that clearly conveys the value your visitors will receive. For example, we don’t just tell our visitors to “Call us today” or “Contact us now.” Instead, our CTAs tell our visitors to “Schedule a FREE Strategy Session.”
Doesn’t that sound better? This way they are clear on what they get: a chance to consult with one of our expert Digital Marketing Consultants and the valuable opportunity to determine what it will take to set and realize individualized goals that allow them to grow their business and achieve a new level of success.
55. Use personalized CTAs (Smart CTAs)
When you use personalized CTAs you’re able to grab your reader’s’ attention far more effectively. Smart CTAs, as they are called, are a HubSpot tool that allows you to target your visitors on an individual basis.
For example, when someone visits your site that has already downloaded your initial offer, they are shown a CTA for a second offer. That way you’re maximizing the impact of your landing page instead of wasting the impression. You can set up your Smart CTAs so that as the visitor downloads an offer, CTAs for a second, third, fourth, and so on appear as they return to your site. This is especially useful if you’re creating lots of valuable blog content that keeps people coming back to your site time after time.
Generate Leads with Offers/Conversion/Lead Magnets
Nothing beats a useful offer to give your website visitor value before they buy. Offers are one of the most important pieces to get leads from your website. Here are some important strategies and tactics from the “trenches” of digital marketing you can deploy on your website.
56. Entice your ideal buyer with offers
Offers are the perfect way to “try before you buy.” The pressure is off and your ideal buyers get to take your company for a test drive. So what happens when they convert and take you up on said offer?
Well, if you do it right (see below) your offer establishes trust with your brand and generates a whole host of information that you can turn around and use to for future marketing. Think of offers as a single cog in your long-term marketing machine.
The information you receive from your offers can be used as a way to continually revise and optimize your marketing strategy. The more you learn about the people you’re selling to, the easier the process gets.
57. Make offers compelling and useful
Content marketing only works when your offers are compelling and useful. Your content can’t be boring, unoriginal drivel. You can’t produce offers just for the sake of having an offer. You need to deliver something new and refreshing.
The world is full of content, so publishing a reformatted list of other people’s ideas probably won’t be enough to engage your visitors and get them to convert. Instead, seek inspiration from other sources as you may, but put your original touch on whatever you offer.
You’re the expert, you know your industry inside and out, so create something you know your customers will want. Put yourself in their shoes and brainstorm. Create a list of things that would strike your fancy if you showed up on your site for the first time. Make at least a few of them. Test your offers to see which generate the greatest responses.
Create something that you would expect to sell, or something that you might even feel motivated to pay for from another source, then turn around and give it away for free. It’s that kind of content that ends up generating tons of BUZZ around your brand.
Remember, you need to present your offer’s value in a straightforward manner that makes it easy for your visitors to understand just what they’re getting and how they’ll benefit.
58. Create offers that solve a problem at each stage of the buyer’s journey
The buyer’s journey follows the stages of a lead’s problem. Your job is to create powerful content that helps them to solve it for each stage of their journey as a part of your lead generation strategy. For example:
Awareness Stage – ebooks, guides, research reports, informational pieces
Consideration Stage – comparison papers, expert guides/reviews, podcasts, videos, webinars
Decision Stage – product comparisons, trial downloads, live demos, case studies
As you can see, the level of pressure and involvement is way down at the beginning of the buyer’s journey. Introductions are made and awareness is created by informative blog posts, books, etc.
As you move further into the buyer’s journey, your lead is aware of the problem and begins to look for solutions. Comparisons are made, expert reviews are considered, and more specific information is gathered.
By the time your lead reaches the decision stage you can start to increase the intensity of your content and be more direct. They’re comparing you to a few other choices and you want to prove yours is their best bet by offering free trials, demos, and case studies.
59. Create a worksheet that simplifies a complicated process
A great way to ensure your visitors find your offer valuable is to help them through a complicated process with a step-by-step worksheet. Think of processes related to your field and break it down into an easy to follow diagram that doesn’t require expert-level training to understand.
For example, say your law firm specializes in patenting new products and ideas. You could create a downloadable worksheet that uses simple terms and helpful imagery to explain the process one step at a time.
By creating these simple worksheets you’re helping your visitors solve a problem that would otherwise take a lot of complex instruction to comprehend. You’re able to showcase your expertise while gaining their trust and that puts you a whole lot closer to earning their business.
60. Provide a formula or recipe for solving your target’s problems
Just as I explained above, solving your ideal customer’s problems is a surefire way to move them through the buyer’s journey toward a conversion. Just like a law firm creates a worksheet that simplifies the process of obtaining a patent, you can create formulas that help solve your target’s problems in the same way.
For example, your yoga studio might create a guide called “From 60 to 0: Everything You Need to Eliminate Stress in 7 Days.” In it you could include an increasingly stress-free list of routines that take the user through each day. They progressively include more rest, meditation, healthy eating, positive thinking, and well, yoga.
You’ve shown your new leads how to solve a major problem that they may have been dealing with for a long time. In doing so you’ve demonstrated your expertise, earned their trust, and gently demonstrated the benefits of your services.
61. Aggregate a list of examples or experts for people to learn from
A great way to provide value to your target is to provide them with a list of ways to further enhance how they go about solving their problem. This could be a list of expert resources that you take the time to curate in order to help them further understand a difficult concept or gain perspective from multiple sources.
It could also be a list of the experts themselves. After all, content marketing is about providing value above all else. You can showcase your own expertise by highlighting other ways people can go about solving their problems or finding information that will aid in their decision-making process.
As an industry leader, you’re presenting your visitors with all the options to make the right decision.
Remember: You’re only after the customers that fit into your target market because those are the customers that are going to be best served by your business.
62. Use “challenges” for lead generation
A good rule of thumb; always make your free opt in better than someone’s paid offer. For example, you can make a 30-day challenge. To entice people to participate, it must be beautifully designed, have great photos. This outer appearance is needs a frame. The frame is built off of delivering value through email sequences. Don’t overwhelm people with too much information. Keep it simple and easy for your visitor to achieve a “transformative” win. Transformative could mean; health, productivity, nutrition, walk 10,000 steps every day, no caffeine, take a photo every day, post a Facebook Live video daily, or start a blog.
63. Host a giveaway
I don’t need to tell you that people like free stuff. In fact, people will take just about anything if it’s truly free. Have you ever lined up at a fair or farmer’s market to spin one of those “wheels of fortune” just to walk away with a tote bag? You certainly didn’t wake up that morning saying to yourself, “I sure need a new tote bag.” But you were happy to have it and that business had a line of people waiting to engage with their brand.
Generate your own buzz via an online giveaway offer. You’ll create the same energy and excitement around the giveaway process. The difference is that you’ll be giving away something that is genuinely awesome.
Your gym could give away 8 personal training sessions or 6 months of free membership. Your fashion ecommerce store could give away an entire outfit, professionally styled for this season by your experts.
You get the picture.
Whatever you sell, you have the power to offer something awesome to your target and create an exciting buzz around your brand. You can post your giveaway on your blog, email details to your list, share it on Facebook, and start a hashtag/repost campaign on Instagram.
Imagine how much awareness a great giveaway can generate if you promote it in all those places.
64. Invest in the design of your offer
Content marketing has become extremely popular because, well, it works. What that means is that you have multiple businesses out there offering similar content. Make sure that yours stands out by having it professionally designed.
Not only will it look better and be more clearly understood, the professionalism it portrays will garner a higher level of trust from your leads. A professional designer can create graphics and additional features that provide a higher level of value.
Furthermore, a poor presentation may let down an otherwise stellar offer. If its looks don’t match the quality of your content, very few people are going to give it the time of day. The saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover” is a great piece of advice, but few people actually follow it. Help your content make a great first impression by having it designed by your agency or a professional designer.
65. Use gated videos as offers
A gated video is one that requires a form submission to download it; an exchange of information for content. Why would I recommend that you use gated videos as offers? Because that form boosts the perceived value of your offer and, in turn, will boost the download rate of your expensive, time-consuming video.
According to content marketing expert David Meerman Scott, gated content typically receives 20 to 50 times the downloads as ungated content. In today’s society, when something is given away for nothing people assign it a lower value. Add a minor (but free) barrier to entry and its perceived value skyrockets.
66. Make it interactive
Boost your lead generation and conversions with an interactive lead magnet. HubSpot uses their website grader, and you should create one that suits your business.
Your accounting firm could create a plug-and-play budget planner that helps people to organize their finances. Just make sure it works and works well. An interactive tool that helps people answer difficult questions or solve important problems should be easy to use to avoid user frustration.
PRO TIP: A quality tool is something that others are more likely share and is an industry resource, so take the time to make yours worth using and include features that others may have missed.
Every one of these 60+ items can have a major impact on the effectiveness of your lead generation. Based on your site, niche, and company, some of these items will increase leads more dramatically than others. Overall, it’s critical that you implement a few of the tactics listed in each section.
Remember, you don’t have to do every item on this list. Start small. Start with one per section. Make sure that over time you build out a more sophisticated, predictable, scalable, and repeatable lead generation process from your website.