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SEO | Apr 19
Mara Calvello on March 24, 2021 (last modified on April 1, 2021) • 18 minute read
Your website is a thing of beauty.
You’ve worked tirelessly to create long-form content, create a design that pops, and build a menu that makes navigation easy.
Unfortunately, you can think that you’ve done everything right and still be let down by a low lead conversion rate. It can happen to us all, no matter the industry or the product we’re selling. If this sounds familiar, it’s in your best interest to try some new strategies to optimize your lead conversion rate.
Thankfully, we’ve called in the experts to share their tips for optimizing lead conversion rates. Let’s get started!
Lead conversion is the process of turning leads into paying customers. This process encompasses a variety of marketing practices to drive a desire to your customers so they want to buy your product or services.
The lead conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who come to your website and are captured as “leads”. This rate is often used as a way to indicate how successful your company is at attracting the right kind of audience and how well your website can turn visitors into leads.
To calculate your lead conversion rate:
Take your total number of new customers, divide it by your number of leads, and then multiply it by 100.
So, as an example, if you have 100 new leads that resulted in sales from customers and 45 new qualified leads, the math would look like:
45 divided by 100 = 0.45
0.5 x 100 = 40%
So, in this example, the lead conversion rate would be 40%.
Let’s consider another example. Your website generates 25,000 visitors each month. Of those visitors, you capture 1,000 leads. The lead conversion rate would be:
1,000 divided by 25,000 = 0.04
0.04 x 100 = 4%
So, how do you know if you have a good conversion rate or not?
A lot of it will depend on your industry. That said, across industries, the average landing page conversion rate is usually 2.35%, yet the top 25% are converting at 5.31% or higher. In an ideal world, you want to break into the top 10% — these are the landing pages with conversion rates of 11.45% or higher.
So, when analyzing your conversion rates, anywhere between 2% and 5% is considered average. 6% to 9% is considered above average. And anything over 10% is good.
Now that you have a better idea of what a lead conversion rate is, and what’s considered a good percentage, it’s time to try some new strategies to give yours a boost.
According to experts, there are 15 ways to optimize your lead conversion rate to see success. These tips are:
Starting things off, if you’re looking to optimize your lead conversion rate and see more success, consider minimizing, or shortening your funnel.
Ben Sailer at CoSchedule recommends, “Minimizing friction in the funnel and eliminating as many steps as possible between a visitor arriving on your site and taking a profitable action. This can be as simple as removing unnecessary form fields, or even eliminating forms entirely and getting visitors into trials or demos more quickly (depending on the purpose of the page and whether it’s one a visitor would arrive on when they’re close to making a purchasing decision already).
Explaining this tip further is Natasha Rei at Explainerd. Rei elaborates to say, “For me, what influences lead conversion the most is the hello email aka initial email after the lead fills out the contact form. In the initial email, we have to send and promote the products we have with correct copywriting. This email really affects a person’s mood in determining the purchase of our products. Our writing style must be friendly so that they are willing to continue in the sales funnel until they become customers.”
Another tip from the experts is simple… simplicity.
Jerome Williams at JWorks Studios Digital is a fan of keeping it simple and shares, “The truth is, the simpler you can present relevant content, the easier it is to keep people engaged. When people open your email or on your page, show them the buttons you want them to click. Front and center. After they’ve read enough of your content and are ready to spend, they already know where that button is! It works.”
Also a fan of simplicity is Brian Stewart at ProsperoWeb, LLC. “The key to increasing lead conversions, in my opinion, is to remove distractions from the landing page. The landing page should be easy to read, understand, and navigate. If anything isn’t absolutely necessary, leave it out. Only provide the information that your guests need. You want your visitors’ attention to be solely on your offer,” shares Stewart.
Another tactic you can try as you go about optimizing your conversion rate is to create automated campaigns with a personal touch.
For this tip, Natalie Slyman at Benchmark Email recommends, “One of the most effective ways to improve lead conversions is by creating automated and personalized email marketing campaigns. Using certain qualifiers to segment your leads and then sending each segment personalized emails that address their needs and pain points is a great way to educate, nurture and convert to customers.”
There are certain factors that make some companies… forgettable. And if your company or its website is one of them, forget about having a lead conversion rate that leads to any type of success. Because of this, it’s important to stand out amongst your competitors.
William Cannon from Signaturely Digital explains further to say, “Your company is invisible if no one can find you on Google, Yahoo, or Bing. You’re invisible if people find you for keywords you think are relevant, but your prospects don’t use those keywords. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’ll go unnoticed. Make sure your company isn’t lost in the crowd.
It’s difficult and time-consuming to get Google and other search engines to rank the website sites. Content marketing, social media marketing, website design, blogging, and conversion rate optimization are all examples of similar techniques. Each of these areas must be closely integrated, and you must track your rating and organic visitor metrics regularly to see what is working and what isn’t.”
*Editor’s note: Utilize the SEMRush position tracking dashboard with Databox to monitor changes in your website’s ranking in the search engines.
Another way to optimize your lead conversion rate is to take the time and effort to nurture your leads.
Stacy Caprio at AcneScar.org has some advice regarding lead nurturing. “The most effective way I’ve found to improve lead conversion rate is to have one-on-one online conversations with customers who are interested in purchasing. I’ve found many people are unsure which products are the best fit for them, and they are unsure how they work or how to use them, and when you answer all their questions one-on-one, they grow to like and trust you and are much more likely to make a purchase as compared to any other type of marketing contact,” shares Caprio.
Michael Lawrence from Direct Liquidation also makes a good point by adding, “Improving lead conversion rates has to do with more than simply identifying better, more qualified leads to start targeting.
We’ve found that it’s better to take some time to truly understand your customer base by tracking how they interact with your site based on the marketing campaign that led them there.
Do they only view one product page? Do they read your blog? Once you can tap into what leads are wanting from your site, you can use that information to create better marketing campaigns, and, in turn, improve your lead conversion rates.”
Lead nurturing is also a great way to get to know your audience better so you can serve them targeted content. Nora Leary at Ironpaper recommends this strategy and elaborates to say, “One of the best ways to improve lead conversion rate is through targeted content. It’s crucial to make content align with the buyer’s journey, so in the awareness phase, you can’t go for the hard sell.
At this point, buyers are just becoming aware of their problem so education is key. It’s vital to track how content performs rather than throwing it out and hoping leads convert. Are people incentivized? Do they find the content relevant and valuable enough? If not, then tweaks should be made.”
You can also make the most of lead nurturing when you incorporate what your audience needs into your sales copy. Erika Tebbens from Erika Tebbens Consulting elaborates on this more to say, “Try to really understand what your target audience is struggling with and use that in the sales copy. The more you can clearly articulate that you understand what they’re experiencing and that you know how to help, the faster it will catch their attention and build trust.
Also, people buy from authentic people they can trust have their best interests in mind. Sound like a real, empathic human and not someone who clearly just wants to make a buck.”
Another tactic you can try as you optimize your lead conversion rate is to make sure your content sounds as natural as possible, so your audience knows that your brand is relatable.
Ben Heinkel at Ethical Clothing shares more on this by adding, “One important factor is being able to tie your service or offering into your content in the most natural way possible. Instead of popups and huge colorful CTAs that have ever decreasing success because of ‘banner blindness’, try to introduce your product or service as a solution to a problem you are tackling within your content and then make it easy for the reader to find out more, enter your marketing funnel or request a demo.”
It’s also in your best interest to keep track and understand how your content is performing as you optimize your conversion rate.
“Every business has content out there, but without tracking the performance of this content you’ll have no idea which one is generating sales. Using tracking tools like pixels and UTMs help you identify what content is converting for each step that leads to the sale. We use these tracking tools to track our sales funnel progress for our subscription-based service so we’ll know where the traffic is coming from and if it leads to a final transaction,” shares Darren Litt from Hiya Health.
Once you have a handle on this, take the time to optimize your high-traffic landing pages for better lead conversion.
Julian Goldie from Goldie Agency recommends, “Targeting high-traffic landing pages is the best place to start. You can double, or even triple, the conversion rate on these already common pages by performing a series of optimization exercises. This is by far the quickest, simplest, and most effective way to improve the lead generation of all the suggestions in this blog, particularly if your site already has a decent number of visitors.”
One thing you may forget to try? Lowering your prices. It’s an easy tip that most people tend to overlook.
Melissa Kelly at Virtual Team Building Entertainment makes a good point by saying, “For many industries, the easiest way to increase lead conversion rate is to decrease your prices. Some percentage of your client-base is likely price-sensitive or elastic, and so reducing your prices should result in more of them buying. If you don’t want to decrease prices permanently, then you can start with an easy to access discount instead.”
Optimizing your lead conversion rate can be tricky, so in order to make it a little easier, make sure that your team is utilizing the right software to do some of the heavy lifting.
Melanie Musson at TopQuoteLifeInsurance.com elaborates by saying, “Integrating your CRM software with marketing automation helps improve lead conversion rate because it helps deliver focused ads. Relevant ads draw in leads that convert at a much higher rate than generic ads. A/B testing on landing pages can also help you increase your conversions. Identifying which changes make the most difference will allow you to build better landing pages.”
Editor’s note: Another software that could help is Databox — particularly our mobile app that allows you to track your most important metrics and KPIs from any mobile device. Check it out now.
When it comes to your lead conversion rate, one tried and true tactic is having some fun with your call-to-action.
There’s no right or wrong way to go about this, but Carl Johnson from Best Wines Online recommends, “It’s like a puzzle, where every piece has got to fit in. I can say that the most important pieces are content and call-to-action (CTA). Content is king. Without it, you won’t have anything to attract visitors or make them stay on your website. But without CTA, the content will remain as text on a dead page with no visitors.”
Martina Cooper from BHMR also stresses how important your CTA can be to your lead conversion rate. “If you believe in your product and you think that your potential client would be better off with your product, you need to give it your all and make the process as easy and obvious as possible. Hook your target audience, agitate the problems that your customers are having & provide your solution on a golden plate along with the usual social proof, scarcity, and urgency.”
Finally, David Nilsson at ConvertedClick recommends thinking outside the box with your CTA copy. “ Take the time to improve your CTA copy. Most businesses use a cliched CTA like ‘Subscribe’ or ‘Sign-up’. These no longer work and have been overused. Get creative and think something out of the box. Unless you offer something unique, your CTA won’t drive leads. Start your CTA with the word ‘Yes’. For example, ‘Yes, I want results’ or ‘Yes, I want a discount.’ These work much better than generic CTAs and drive instant attention.”
Your audience is a unique group of people, so if you want to keep them coming back for more, try segmenting your audience to serve them personalized ads.
Rohan Kadam from Vital Feedz elaborates by sharing, “In my experience incorporating personalization in ad messaging is a more effective way to achieve better lead conversion rate. The way to achieve ad-personalization is by segmenting the audience in the right way based on their persona and engagement level.
Google Analytics can help monitor audience engagement levels and further help in building audience segments. Once audience segments are ready, they must be targeted with highly personalized ads and this can be done using remarketing on Google Ads or Facebook platform. I have used this exact approach to increase my lead conversion rates from 11% to a staggering 73%.”
*Editor’s note: Make the most out of the Google Analytics website engagement dashboard to measure overall engagement of your website’s visitors.
Once your website receives a lead, how long does it take your sales team to follow up? And when they do, what do they say? The art of following up with your leads can make or break your conversion rate.
Connor Hewson from Assured Marketing stresses the importance of following up. “I encounter hundreds of lead generation strategies daily working with a number of clients in various industries. The best way to improve the conversion rate on the leads generated is to properly time any follow-ups you’re sending to prospective clients/customers.
Mastering the art of following up is difficult and can involve a whole load of trial and error. But every business can slowly (and with hard work) find their best practices for converting the leads they have.
I find for my business that the best way to follow up is to first send a prompting email to the prospective trying to gain that commitment early, then if you’ve had no response from this, we’ll give them a call the next day to try and check-in. If we still haven’t gained commitment, we move to a weekly email simply updating them of how our business is doing and wishing them well with theirs. Eventually, if they are truly interested in what we do we will always be their first choice because of the informal relationship formed over this period,” Hewson shares.
Also understanding the importance of following up is Arthur Iinuma from ISBX. Iinuma adds, “Lead conversion rates are seen as the responsibility of marketers, but sales reps also have their part to play. How quickly sales follow up a lead and how skillfully they approach the conversation can have a significant effect on conversion rates. Sales should generally follow up within a few days, when your brand is still in the customer’s mind, but not so fast that the customer feels pressured.”
Unsure about the window of time in which you should be following up? Nikita Agarwal at Milestone Localization recommends, “The best way to improve lead conversion rate is simple- contact them in 30 minutes or less. If you collect their number, give them a call. We do mostly B2B sales and when we email or call a lead as soon as they submit their inquiry, they are less likely to contact our competitors.”
Something else to think about is that maybe your lead conversion rate is so low because your website is targeting the wrong keywords. If that’s the case, you’re not only wasting time but money, too.
Filip Silobod at Link Supply recommends, “Bringing traffic through the right keywords. There are keywords that regularly have a higher conversion rate than others. Your job is to find out what those keywords are. They can be niche or more general keywords.
Use PPC to target those keywords with search ads and you will see the exact stats for each keyword. E.g. bounce rate, the conversion rate for a keyword. Keep focused on those that convert and less on those who don’t.”
Charles McMillan at Stand With Main Street also stresses the importance of keywords for a good conversion rate. “Familiarize yourself with SEO. Keywords are important to reach the audience, too. It is what places your content appear on specific feeds so make use of it. Almost all businesses make use of it and you might as well do, too,” adds McMillan.
If your organization isn’t utilizing live chat software on its website, it could be missing an opportunity to increase its lead conversion rate. Gilad Rom at Huan elaborates, “Adding live chat to our website has been the most effective way to improve our lead conversion rate.
Live chat is a great way to offer value to customers who need more information before making a purchase. With live chat, we can answer questions and deal with issues quickly and efficiently, which often results in customers wanting to make a purchase. Live chat has increased our lead conversion rates by 20%.”
How much do your customers know about your brand? Or how about its product or service? To amp up your lead conversion rate, make sure that all of their questions are answered and they’re well versed in what is being offered.
For this, Aqsa Tabassam at Nomiuns recommends, “The best selling is through educating them about your product and services. Be available to answer any question so that committed customers can better understand your brand and feel comfortable choosing from your product and services. The best way to educate your customers is through emails. The emails can begin by educating the prospects about your business and then keep on building trust through automated emails, answering the most frequently asked questions in the form of messages. Reading the informative emails will then push the committed customer in making the purchase.”
If you’re unhappy with your lead conversion rate, there’s never been a better time to roll up your sleeves and implement these 15 tips! No matter the size of your organization or the industry you’re in, there’s always a way to think outside the box and try new strategies to increase your conversion rate. The sky’s the limit!
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