Do sales seldom happen on your site?
Do you often scratch your head and think:
“Why aren’t visitors buying my wonderful products and services?”
Well, scratch your head no more! Because recently I asked some of my favorite bloggers, copywriting mavens, entrepreneurs and all-round fabulous people to offer their expert advice on this all too prevalent problem.
Here’s the question I asked:
My sales landing page is getting plenty of views and visits, but no one is buying my product. What can I do to get people to buy?
There were some wonderfully insightful answers, along with replies that remind us all, to do the small things well. Read on to see what our experts said about how we can all increase sales on our sites.
Then, I’d love to hear your pearls of wisdom in answer to the same question in the comments below.
CHRIS MARLOW, AUTHOR AND AWARD WINNING COPYWRITER
Refer back to the 40/40/20 rule popularized by Freeman Gosden many years ago.
40% of your success comes from the quality of your list. So make sure you’re attracting the right audience.
The next 40% of your success comes from your offer. Is it good enough? Did you test it?
And the final 20% of your success comes from the copy. Is it as strong as it can be? Did you test headlines? What about price tests? And guarantees? Did you ferret out all benefits and meet all objections?
If you cover all your bases and you’re still not converting, you have to ask yourself if you missed the mark on what your audience wants. Before all else, make sure your audience wants what you have to sell, before you create it.
CORBETT BARR, FOUNDER AND EDITOR OF EXPERT ENOUGH
If no one is buying your product, you don’t understand your customers well enough. You need to know the answers to several important questions about your audience as it relates to your topic/product.
What do they need help with? What have they tried before? What are they skeptical about? What keeps them up at night? How can you make their lives MUCH easier?
Your sales letter’s job is to engage your visitor and make it clear that you understand him well. If you can read your customer’s mind, you’ll make sales.
DIANNE HUFF, AWARD WINNING B2B CONTENT MARKETING WRITER
I would say TEST, TEST, TEST.
Test graphics, test the copy, the call-to-action test the color and placement of the submit button.
Google Web Optimizer is free and makes it easy to test.
Follow Dianne on Twitter or learn more at DH Communications.
ED GANDIA, AWARD WINNING AUTHOR AND IT SOFTWARE COPYWRITER
When a landing page doesn’t convert as well as expected, most marketers first assume that the problem lies with the copy. There has been so much talk about headlines and copy over the years, that this is where most of us focus our attention whenever a problem arises.
From there, attention often shifts to list quality. We start assuming that maybe the list is just not very responsive. In other words, it’s their problem. They’re just not seeing how incredible the product really is. What’s wrong with these people?!
But in my experience, the biggest problems don’t lie with the copy or the quality of the list. They lie with the quality of the offer—the product itself.
Most product development practices are severely flawed. Just because we think the product is great doesn’t mean our prospects are going to immediately see value in them. And just because we somehow know that this product is something our prospects really need doesn’t mean it’s what they want.
At the end of the day, people buy products and services they want—not necessarily things they need. As marketers, we need to spend more time with customers and prospects to better understand what they really want. We need to know what drives them, what their core desires are. Because at the end of the day, that’s what will drive serious sales conversion.
Follow Ed on Twitter or learn more at EdGandia.com.
ELSPETH MISIASZEK, EMARKETING COPYWRITER AND BLOGGER
If leads aren’t converting, you probably don’t have a strong enough call to action.
We need to tell visitors what to do once we’ve got them on the page. Do I click here? Call now? Email the speaker?
I could go on, of course, and expound on this in detail, but that would be the basis.
HEATHER SLOAN, FINANCE COPYWRITER AND BLOGGER
If you want better conversions, firstly consider: is it clear and compelling enough?
Is it a logical first step for the client?
Is it appropriate to push a sale at this point in the relationship, or would it be smarter to push a first step, such as a free report or analysis?
Secondly, look at the creative make-up of the page. Every element of the landing page should drive conversion. The headline and copy need to sell THE OFFER and nothing else. Don’t let anything distract the reader from the offer. Keep the form short, simple and above the fold.
Make the benefits of conversion crystal clear.
IAN J. STEVENSON, VP SALES at STRAIGHTNORTH.COM
Here are a few things that could be going wrong:
1) Wrong keywords driving the wrong kind of traffic
2) Lack of trust/credibility on the page – people do not feel comfortable buying
3) Pricing is wrong
4) Merchandising on the site is wrong
5) Technical issues with the website performing a transaction
Learn more about Ian and the team at StraightNorth.com
IVAN LEVISON, AWARD WINNING DIRECT RESPONSE COPYWRITER
Can’t turn prospects into buyers?
The problem could be price, or skepticism, or inertia. It’s hard to know.
One thing you can try is make an intermediate offer. In other words, instead of going immediately for the sale, allow the prospect to download a “must read” guide (or some other deliverable) that will allow you to capture their contact information.
Then you can market to them through an automated “drip” campaign.
Learn more about Ivan Levison at Levison.com
JAMES TENNANT, UK MARKETING COPYWRITER AND BLOGGER
1. Get great copy.
Reading great copy for customers is like being part of a great conversation. If you can grab attention and hold it, you’ve won half the battle.
2. Converse with potential clients through social media.
Get to know them and build relationships. Those relationships are the foundation of a successful business. Don’t always talk business, be casual, interesting and genuinely intrigued about the lives and interests of your potential clients, they’ll greatly appreciate you for it.
Don’t market at people (advertisements etc.) The world is changing.
JON WUEBBEN, AUTHOR AND CONTENT MARKETING EXPERT
The first thing to do is look at the copy itself to check that its benefits are rich and compelling, that it has a clear, strong call to action.
Next, look at the offer (you must have something you can give away for free, this is very important).
Lastly, look at the design of the squeeze page – is it user friendly or confusing?
KARON THACKSTON, AUTHOR, SPEAKER AND SEO COPYWRITER
First, check your SEO. Are you bringing in targeted traffic from your search engine optimization (SEO) campaign via carefully chosen keywords?
If you aren’t positioning yourself before the right audience, nothing you say within your copy will be persuasive.
Next, relate to your target customers in their preferred communication style.
Lastly, clearly present your unique competitive advantage in a way that allows your site visitors to see you as the obvious choice.
KEVIN WALSH, FREELANCE COPYWRITER AND BLOGGER
If you’re not converting visits into sales, then either you’re:
1. Selling something nobody wants (go back to the drawing board)
2. Solving a problem that nobody has (find another problem)
3. Telling a bad story (change it)
4. Telling a good story badly (tell it better)
5. Sounding like everybody else (develop a distinctive voice)
6. Talking about yourself (instead of your audience)
Not passing the ‘why should they care?’ test (change that pronto) or a combination of any or all of the above.
Go back to basics. Get round the other side of the (virtual) desk and put yourself in your client’s Size 9s.
Now what does the world look like?
Follow Kevin on Twitter or learn more at Copyunlimited.com
LIZ CRAIG, FREELANCE WEB WRITER, PROOFREADER AND BLOGGER
John Caples is right. But I’ve found that no matter how cleverly you write a headline, if the offer is not targeted to the reader, and if it doesn’t promise relief of some pain they are having, there’s no sale.
It’s helpful to have a measurable guarantee of performance. In some cases, that might not be possible, but it is the strongest push to respond to an offer.
MATT AMBROSE, FREELANCE COPYWRITER AND BLOGGER
People are naturally skeptical of the claims they read online. So it’s vital toadd third party endorsement to build trust in your offer.
Test results, testimonials and reviews are three ways you give your sales page a third party seal of approval, which will help to convert skeptical visitors into buyers.
MIKE SANSONE, CONVERSATION CONDUCTOR, SPEAKER AND BLOGGER
Since traffic is coming to the landing page, there may be one of a few things to check on the page itself.
Is the next step (the sale) clearly marked and above the fold?
Does the offer match the link or image that brought them to your page?
Is there a benefit statement in the headline of the landing page?
As soon as they reach your landing page, in a blink of an eye: make it easy to take the next step, reassure them they are in the right place, and why it’s great for them to continue on.
I hope you got a lot out of these amazingly insightful quotes from the experts. More in-depth quotes on this important subject will be coming your way very soon.
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About the author: Celine Horan
Offer my copywriting services to the Professional Speaking industry. Help Professional Speakers write good copy for themselves AND grow as a Toastmaster, wife and friend.