Before we talk any more about Inbound Marketing, I need to ask you a question: Is your website your star marketer? I mean, sure it ranks high in Google, features a nice design and is mobile responsive. But does it convert visitors into leads? Or is it sitting on the online shelf, collecting virtual dust?
If people are visiting your website and the numbers are steadily growing, then congratulations: you’ve made it half way. The real battle is converting those visitors into leads — so you can identify who these people are and start building a relationship with them. In this scenario your website becomes a key tool in converting web visitors from strangers to leads. Clever and well-crafted website offers help people make the transition.
What Is A Website Offer?
In its most basic form, a website offer is something of value that you are offering your website visitors. Common offers include free downloads, eBooks, webinars, vouchers and newsletter subscriptions. Typically they’re free, although the content is ‘gated’ meaning that people have to hand over their contact information in exchange for your offer. This transaction turns a stranger into a lead.
The Three Stages Of The Buyer’s Journey
Think about your last big purchase. Maybe it was a car, or a new laptop with all the trimmings. Chances are you didn’t walk straight up the salesman and said ‘I’ll take it’. Modern buyers are more savvy than that, taking their time research products and services and make careful choices based on their specific needs.
According to HubSpot, most potential buyer’s go through a typical 3-stage process in the lead up to a purchase, otherwise known as the buyer’s journey. Understanding these stages allows you to conceptualise the buyer’s journey as a framework to create targeted content for each stage.
AwarenessThis stage is focused on a problem or need. People are aware of a problem and start researching possible solutions. They are looking for information that provides education and insight into the various solutions. Information at this stage isn’t brand or company specific, it’s focused more on the problem or need.
Consideration This stage is focused on the solution. People at this stage have clarify around their problem and solution for which they are looking. They are weighing up different solutions, vendors, products and brands. They are looking for information that will educate them on your product or service and why yours is the best solution for their needs.
DecisionThis stage is focused on the vendor. People are looking for information that will give them confidence in knowing their vendor of choice can be trusted to deliver. Guarantees, testimonies, case studies, awards.
Not all prospective customers will be at the same stage at the same time, which is why its important to create valuable and varied content that resonates people at the different stages of the buyer’s journey.
Crunch The Numbers
When contemplating web offers and what you can give your visitors, the temptation is to jump straight in. However, analysing the data from your website will reveal your most popular blog posts and most highly trafficked pages, offering insight into the type of content your visitors value and where they find it. This data should inform the type of offer you create for your visitors, and where to place it on the website.
Create A Compelling Offer
The best offers are ones that connect with the needs and motivations of your prospective customers. To do this, ask yourself: What are their painpoints? What are their most common questions? What is their purchasing criteria? But more importantly, how can I create content that will solve their problems?
Publishing helpful and valuable content positions your company as a brand to be trusted and respected, and helps build a reputation as a thought leader in the industry. Even if people are still in the Awareness stage, when it comes time to buy they are more likely to turn to brands they know and trust.
By creating content that people love and consider valuable, people will be more inclined to give you their contact information because they trust you. This approach allows you to efficiently and ethically build a database of people who are interested in your company with whom you can build a relationship during the buying process.
Offers that generate leads:
White Papers and industry specific guides
eNewsletters and Blogs
Customised Training Quizzes
Self Assessment Tools
Free Trial Period
To convert more website visitors into leads read our guide on publishing content your buyers will love.