Coudray explains how to use your Website to stand out from the competition and convert sales prospects into profit centers.
By Mark Coudray
When we look at the traditional sales cycle, for every ten new prospects, two are immediately rejected, two will immediately buy, and the other six will have to be cultivated. This is where the process typically breaks down—the cultivation site. We are all running so short, because we cut our labor costs back in 2008 and haven’t rehired, so our sales staff has resorted to one pitch after another. They’re hoping enough of their pitches will stick that they’ll get some new business.
The problem with this approach is your competitors are doing the same thing to the same prospects. The prospects recognize what is going on, and they have a field day with the sales guys, making them jump through endless hoops before they get the one paltry starter order that was deeply discounted in the first place so you could prove your abilities to the customer. It is a ruthless cycle—no fun for anyone.
Compare that to the online model of attracting prequalified, highly targeted prospects. A properly designed sales funnel with prequalified prospects will deliver first-stage conversions of 30-65% or more. The ongoing information-sharing process will deliver purchasing customers at the rate of 20-30%. To monetize this according to what we already know, let’s use a basis of 1000 visitors per month or roughly 30 per day to the Website.
Conversion opt-in at 30% is 300 per week, resulting in 60 new customers at 20% conversion. A customer is worth $2000 per year; to you, this represents $120,000 of new work per month. This is the low end, and these numbers are extremely conservative.
The key to these kinds of conversions is to develop a relationship with visitors and, in the process, establish yourself as an authority and expert. The initial contact and development should be almost 100% informational with no pitching in the content. You don’t want to come off as beating your chest with how great you are. The prospects see and hear that every single day from every single potential vendor.
Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to the magazine.