Website Mechanics: How to Get Customers to Buy

Website Mechanics

You’re not using your website properly…

Don’t worry. It’s not just you.

 

The vast majority of small business owners are making the same mistake that you are, and it’s a shame really, because it’s not their fault.

 

It’s just that no one has educated them what a website is really supposed to do.

Let’s back up a little and explore the problem..

 

Before the Internet existed, virtually every business in the world had a brochure (many businesses still use brochures).

A brochure is essentially an 8.5 x 11 piece of paper folded to make six sides, and you have that much space to essentially “sell” your company to whoever holds the brochure in their hands.

When the internet came along, business owners basically moved their brochure to the internet.

I’m not saying that was a bad idea. It’s just not very effective based on what we know today.

A website is NOT a brochure!

You’re using one of the most powerful tools mankind has ever created to accomplish something that can be achieved by an 8.5 x 11 piece of paper!

But the internet is a powerful engine, and if used properly, can do so much more than simply house your brochure.

 

In fact…

over the years we’ve discovered that the way people use the internet is actually very different than the way they handle a brochure.

 

If you don’t take that into consideration, then there’s a good chance you’re not getting nearly the number of new customers from your website as you could.

 

A couple years ago I wrote an article about The Sony Store and how one of their reps didn’t understand the customer buying cycle.

 

The customer buying cycle is possibly the most important thing business owners need to understand about marketing in order to have a successful website…

The process is relatively simple:

Website Marketing Funnel

Before someone can buy from you, they must first have a desire for what you have (people after all buy emotionally then justify that decision with logic).

Prior to this they must be interested – and in order for them to be interested they must have awareness about the product in the first place.

 

The problem with a brochure is that it’s small and static. You only have so much space to say what you need to say, so you talk only about the benefits of your core product and try to get people to take action.

This works well if someone already has desire and just needs that extra push to purchase. But studies have shown that this kind of “Hot Market” usually only accounts for about 1% – 2% of your total market.

That means that 98 out of 100 brochures never get acted on.

 

Interestingly, we now know that 98 out of 100 web visitors leave without ever taking action…

 

The evidence is clear…

If you try to push someone who’s just heard of you to buy your core product, then while you will likely get SOME sales, you’re certain to lose more than you get – and the ones you lose (those people who bounce off your website) are likely to be lost forever.

 

BUT!

If you use your website to meet your audience where they are in the buying cycle, then you can see your conversions increase dramatically.

– You can use your website to create awareness about your company.

– You can use your website to get people with some awareness about your company to become interested in your product or service.

– You can use your website to fan people’s interest into desire, and

– You can use your website to facilitate desire into purchase decisions.

This process over the years has become known as Content Marketing ( #contentmarketing )

 

Some time ago I wrote an article entitled “Stop Wasting your Marketing Budget on Your Website” (for which I took a fair amount of flack) where I explained that a website is not a marketing tool but is a sales tool, and encouraged small business owners to stop investing so much money into fancy websites.

Well the evolution of content marketing reveals this to be true.

 

After all, you invest a lot of time, energy and money into driving traffic to your website, and if it’s not equipped to convert leads into customers, then that’s going to be time, energy and money wasted!

I recently earned my certification as a Content Marketing Specialist because I could see just how powerful a tool it is for online marketing if done properly.

 

And what content marketing really reveals is that there are only 3 reasons to have a website in the first place:

1) To provide value to your audience (that over time will build their interest and desire for your product or service)

2) To collect leads (I’m blown away how many business owner don’t even have an opt-in form on their website!)

3) To sell something (This is the case predominantly for businesses who take orders over the internet)

 

If you’re using your website to simply “inform” the world about your existence but you’re not delivering value, collecting leads and /or selling something, then you’re practically slashing the wrists of your marketing efforts.

 

So if you’ve been using your website wrong, don’t stress about it. It only takes a few small changes to begin turning everything around. Let me give you some simple action steps you can begin employing right away:

 

1) Add a blog to your website

If you’re going to take advantage of a content marketing strategy, then that content needs to live somewhere. It’s not necessary to make sweeping changes to your core website – at least not immediately. It’s probably a great site. But if you don’t have a blog, now is the time to get that up and running.

2) Write interest pieces

When I say write, I’m really referring to any type of content whether that be articles, videos, pictures, infographics…

There’s no right or wrong as to the type of content except to say that you want to produce content that your target market is likely to respond too.

Remember though that these are “Interest” Pieces.

We’re not selling our product here. We’re sharing relevant information that can begin the process of creating awareness about who we are. This is the kind of content that will actually get clicked on, liked and shared on social media sites and begin driving content to our website.

3) Build your e-mail and retargeting lists

These interest pieces that you’re writing will also enable us to begin building lists of people who are potentially interested in what you sell.

Due to the nature of the interest pieces your posting on your blog, there’s a good chance that people visiting your blog are your target market, and we know that they now have AWARENESS about you and your product (Remember the model above?).

By using your blog to help build your e-mail and retargeting lists, you’re ending up with a large list of your target market who already have awareness of who you are and whom you can continue to advertise to on an ongoing basis.

If you’re unsure about how Re-Targeting works, download The ESSENTIAL Guide to Facebook Retargeting for a complete breakdown.

Get CustomersGet The ESSENTIAL Step-by-Step Guide to Facebook Re-Targeting Here

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What’s important to remember is that at this point, you’re not trying to sell your core product. You’re delivering value and building your lists…

that’s it!

4) Advertise to your e-mail and retargeting lists

Now you can begin promoting yourself to the receptive audience you’ve build.

I often advise my clients to start off by promoting small offerings and sending information that can help move your prospects from the INTEREST phase into the DESIRE phase of the sales funnel, but the bottom line is that you now have a list of people that you can market yourself too that are pre-disposed towards buying from you you.

This means that your conversions will be higher than ever before.

 

Obviously, a strategy like this takes time and effort, and sadly most small business owners won’t pursue it because it’s too far a divurgence from what they’re used to.

But if you’re serious about increasing your online leads and sales, then this is the strategy that’s working.

 

Small business owners can learn how to do this. It’s really not complicated, and a resource like our ESSENTIAL Guide to Facebook Retargeting can help with this.

If on the other hand you want or need more hands on assistance in setting up your online sales funnel, I invite you to set up a No-Obligation Meeting with myself to explore ways we can help you take advantage of this incredibly powerful marketing technique.

 

Tyler Zeck is the author of Is Radio Still Relevant?, Founder of the Marketing Mentorship Academy and the creator of The ESSENTIAL Marketing System for Small Business. As an inspiring leader and in-demand speaker, trainer and coach, Tyler has worked closely with business owners from a broad spectrum of industries to help educate, equip and inpsire them to achieve greater success in their organizations. Through one-on-one mentoring, online courses, and his monthly video training, Tyler is on track to help thousands of business owners to create lasting success and realize their dreams.