by Charlie Cook

“What's the most important function of your web site?” Most small business owners will explain, “To tell people about myself and my services.” This sounds like the right answer, and it's the one I hear most often. But it's wrong!

Build a web site focused on yourself or your products and it is doomed to fail from the start. No matter how hard you work to promote it or make it look impressive, it won't pay for itself, ever.

What is the primary purpose of a web site? Keep reading to find out.

There are 3 key steps in the web marketing process. Understand the purpose of each and you'll be able to bring in more new business with your web site. You need to attract prospects, convert them into qualified leads and then convert leads into clients.

The problem for most people is that despite their best efforts to collect thousands of leads, they only end up with a few clients. Sound familiar?

Your marketing is like New York City's water system. In upstate New York they use reservoirs to collect rain. This water is then piped down to New York City and finally when apartment dwellers turn on the tap, they've got clean drinkable water. The only problem with this system is that for every ten gallons of rain that falls into the reservoirs the city only receives eight to nine gallons of water.

What happens to the missing gallon or two of water? It's lost through an antiquated leaky piping system.

Is the same thing happening or worse with your marketing? Are you losing the majority of your prospects due to an antiquated marketing and follow-up system?

If you are, don't despair. There is a simple solution. You can use the 3 key steps below to help you plug the leaks in your marketing system and get new business pouring in.

The 3 key steps to improving your web marketing

1. Get More People to Your Site

Your first objective is to get the greatest number of people to visit your site. If you use pay-per-click ads such as Google Ads, take a look at your clickthrough rate. Are you getting at least 1.5 to 2% of the people who see these ads to visit your site? The purpose of any and all of your web advertising is to get people who might be interested in your services to visit your web site.

If your ads don't prompt at least 1.5% of viewers to respond, test alternative headlines and subheads. You'll have the most success with headlines and subheads that focus on your prospects' problems and concerns.

In my experience with my own sites and my clients' sites, changes in the wording of headlines and subheads makes a huge difference in response rates. You can double the number of people who click on your ads – and double the number of potential clients visiting your web site – by changing a few words in your ads.

2. Convert More Web Site Visitors to Leads

Let's say a hundred people a day visit your web site. How many leads do you generate? With the right copy (headlines and text), sales offer, and page layout, you could motivate 15 to 25% of the people who visit your web site to contact you. Instead of a handful of inquiries from site visitors each week, you could have dozens.

At the beginning of this article, I asked my client John what the main function of his web site is. This is it.

The primary purpose of your web site is to get the greatest number of visitors to email you or call you with their contact information.

Your site may be the best looking site in the world, but if it doesn't motivate your prospects to contact you, you've lost them and won't get their business.

Few people buy products and services the first time they visit a web site. Most look at dozens of options. Unless your site is as well known as or, your prospects won't remember your site's URL ten seconds after they leave for another site.

Before another prospect leaves your site and forgets your business, start using your free offer and your site layout to prompt at least 10-20% of all site visitors to contact you.

3. Convert More Qualified Leads to Clients

If you've taken the first two steps above, you'd have more people responding to your ads and more people contacting you. You've probably guessed; the next step is to follow up and convert the greatest number of prospects to clients.

Depending on the type of business you're in, your follow up process may include a phone call, a mailing, a series of emails, or some combination of these. Whichever system you use, you want to increase the percentage of people who buy your products and services. It sounds obvious to both you and me, but this is where 80% of new business is lost.

Is your web marketing system leaking more than New York City's water system?

Take this Quick Quiz

1. Is the clickthrough rate for your pay-per-click ads 1.5% or better?
Yes or No

2. Do 15 to 20% of all unique visitors to your site contact you?
Yes or No

3. Do you have an automated system for following up with leads generated from your web site that generates sales from 4% or more of your prospects?
Yes or No

If you answered “No” to one or more of these, you're in the same boat as most business people on the web. Your web marketing is full of leaks and with a few changes you could be collecting a lot more leads and converting more of them to clients. Discover how to get a better response to your ads, get more people to contact you. Your sales could skyrocket within weeks.

The author, Charlie Cook, helps small business owners and marketing professionals attract more clients, whether you are marketing in print, in person or online. I personally use Charlie's book, Insider Secrets to 15 Second Marketing and highly recommend that you do the same.

The article above was reprinted with permission from Charlie Cook. 


3 steps to selling more with your web site, Charlie Cook, Marketing, Marketing for Success, marketing system, most small business, new business, small business owners, web marketing, web marketing process

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