There are several key factors in accomplishing the goal of turning your website into a lead generation machine. Each one is important in its own right, and when combined will enable you to deliver high-value leads and a measurable return on investment.
The goals of your Web site need to be tied to a measurable ROI. In the past, goals such as “educating my target market” were fine, but today you really need to be thinking about delivering a positive ROI. Measurable goals, such as a specific number of leads per month, need to be set prior to site launch and then assessed over time.
First, let’s start with your image. A proper image results in credibility. The lack thereof can impact your ability to land large sales and to compete against your competition. Ask yourself, “From a scale of 1 to 10, how closely aligned to reality is my company’s image on the web?”. For example, if your product or service is enterprise level, and your website makes your company look like a startup, potential buyers may hesitate in buying from you because of perceived risk/lack of credibility. Image can make your company “look larger than life”, adding to your credibility when it comes to larger sales.
Compare your website to your competition’s. Does their site make them look like they have “their act together”, while yours makes you look like you’re “not ready for prime time”?
If you answered the above questions by saying something like ”The site is old, and it doesn’t accurately reflect our brand/positioning in the marketplace.”, then it’s time to start thinking about redesigning your website. Companies are paying more attention to and investing more resources into their image on the web because they understand how image establishes credibility and influences buyers.
To arrive at the appropriate image for your company, interview internal and external stakeholders and ask them questions such as:
- How are we currently positioned in the marketplace?
- How do we want to be positioned moving forward?
- What is our unique value proposition?
- What is the most important factor in identifying our company?
- When you think of our company, what emotion is inspired?
- Who is our target market?
- Why do people buy our product?
Colors, fonts, and the overall design and look and feel of your website are vital elements of brand identity that should support and reinforce the brand. Done correctly, all your messaging and visual elements will together project a cohesive brand.
Content, too, impacts the image you portray on the Internet. In addition to having fresh content on your site, one way to stand out is to provide valuable, compelling content on your Web site. Generally speaking, content that addresses your target market’s pain points and that answers the question “how can we help you?” is deemed to be more valuable than content that is focused on the features of your product or solution. This type of content will make it easier for your target market to view you as a trusted advisor and as an expert on the issues confronting their business. This content creates credibility and aids in the sales process.
Adding content to your Web site on a regular basis that establishes you as an expert or thought leader relative to your target market’s pain will turn your Web site into a destination.