Most small businesses settle for websites that don’t actually work—when, in fact, your website should be the hardest working web property in your entire marketing strategy.
Your site should be rigorously optimized to capture traffic, generate leads, and close sales—anything else is simply not worth the work it takes to get it published.
Let’s review the 9 easiest ways to optimize your website in a way that encourages visitors to engage, give you their contact information, and fall in love with your business.
Your blog visitors are actively investing their time to read your content, which means that your blog is the perfect opportunity to capture leads who have already demonstrated an interest in what you have to offer.
Optimize your blog to generate leads by including a specific call to action at the end of every article along with a lead-capture form.
But, keep in mind that most readers won’t subscribe simply because you’ve asked them to. They need an incentive. That’s where the subscription+offer comes into play. While they’re reading your blogs, offer a content upgrade related to that article’s topic or theme.
This “gated content” is a slight upgrade from a blog. It could be a resource guide, case study, downloadable, or infographic. The key is to offer related content that expands upon the topic of the article itself.
For example, let’s imagine that you own a fair-trade coffee company. A visitor is reading your blog article entitled “Why Coffee Is Good For Brain Health.” You might include a content upgrade that’s a recipe book, “11 Unique Coffee Recipes To Try At Home” or an industry report, “How Fair Trade Coffee is Saving the Planet.”
Pro-tip: Use an opt-in pop-up that triggers whenever a visitor spends 30 seconds or more on a particular page.
Expand into new audiences by writing guest blogs for related publications. You’ll likely find that most companies are eager to get free content to offer to their readers in exchange for a few backlinks to a chosen website.
In the guest post, you can pepper in a few links to your website, landing page, or even a pop-up opt-in form. This allows you to casually redirect your partners’ readers to your site to gain more visibility and attract leads from a new audience.
Note: Make sure that you’re guest blogging with a relevant partner. This business should be in your industry with a similar audience, but you likely don’t want to write for a direct or indirect competitors. You’ll also want to make sure they will allow you to include links and lead magnets, so be clear up front about your goals with the guest blogging piece.
Most people love having fun with personality quizzes or lifestyle surveys. A visitor on your fair-trade coffee site might love to take a quiz: “What Kind of Coffee Are You?” Then, once all the quiz or survey questions have been responded to, require an email address where you can send the results.
You likely already have a capture form on your website: your ‘contact us’ page. This asks your visitors to input their personal info and include a message for questions, comments, or concerns about your business. Anyone who contacts you can become a lead if you take their email and nurture them appropriately. No matter why they’re contacting you, they care enough about your brand to make the effort to reach out. That creates an opening to impress them.
After a site visitor successfully submits your contact form, send them to a branded confirmation page with clear messaging that lets them know when and how you’ll get in touch.
Pro-tip: Put a small contact form in the footer of your website. This makes it easy for your visitors to reach you no matter where they are on your page. If they have a question while browsing your site, they can ask you about it withinseconds.
You want to grab people when they come to your site…and when they’re about to leave.
Splash screens are pop-up pages that occur right when someone lands on your website. The visitor either has to opt-in and give you their info or choose to click out before they can see the rest of the site. If they have the option in front of them and they’re incentivized with gated content, they’ll feel the urgency for the content and might input their info right away.
Exit pop-ups work in a similar way. When the visitor’s mouse leaves the page or screen, a pop up will ask them to engage again. For example, “Leaving already? Let’s catch up again soon. Get a free coffee recipe book emailed to you right now!” This gives one last-ditch effort to grab your lead’s info before they leave.
Check out more lead generation tools here.
Offer first-time visitors a free incentive such as a 10% off coupon that can be applied to their first order or a free sample of your best-selling product. This creates immediate engagement that gives a great first impression of your site and works to quickly transform visitors into leads.
Every site has a “404 page” in case a visitor accidentally happens upon a page on your site that doesn’t exist or mistypes a URL. Rather than just displaying an ‘oops message,’ use the 404 page as an opportunity to engage visitors and collect their opt-in information.
Check out these ingenious ways to use your 404 page to capture your visitors in a fun, engaging way.
Is your website or product getting ready to launch? You can use your website’s “coming soon” page to capture your leads. If they’ve already found your website, they’re likely eager and interested to connect with your brand. And you don’t want to lose customers who have that level of interest.
Encourage them to stay in touch by giving you their email. This is an easy “in” because you can request their information to alert them when your site or product goes live. This is a great lead generation idea so you already have a set of prospects to market to by the time your product is ready for purchase!
Learn how to use a “coming soon” landing page to generate leads here.
A website shouldn’t be static. Sprinkle a few lead capture forms throughout to put your webpages to work and start generating leads 24/7/365, even when you’re off the clock.