When you think of “a conversion”, what goal comes to mind? For most of us, a sale is the ultimate goal, so it’s no surprise that sales and conversions are inextricably linked to each other. But even though a sale might be the end goal, it’s almost never the first thing a new potential customer does when they visit your site.
Yet they’re still converting, even when a sale doesn’t take place. Paying more attention to these types of conversions can not only help you win over more customers in the long run, but also deliver valuable insights that you can glean from your existing data — insights you may never have considered when focusing solely on sales. Let’s take a closer look.
The first step in any good funnel is to introduce prospects to your solution. Oftentimes brand awareness campaigns like these are done via pay-per-click solutions like Google Adwords or Facebook Ads. In the case of Adwords, you have tight integration with Google Analytics, so you can easily see which ads worked, which ads didn’t, and what kind of actions the user took on your page.
But these platforms really only scratch the surface of the conversion potential that’s happening behind the scenes. To really dig deep and get the gold nuggets of impactful data that makes a real difference in your campaigns, you need a robust analytics solution. Kissmetrics is one such tool that allows you to not only see things that you can also find in Google Analytics (like “How many people clicked this ad” and “how long did they stay on site afterwards?”) but also answer more meaningful, conversion-propelling questions, like “How many new users did we gain as a result of this campaign?” “When did users go from our onboarding email funnel to becoming full-fledged customers?” “Which email encouraged them to do so?”
If you’re truly data driven, you can even have the system crunch the numbers and figure out the average cost to acquire people who downloaded your white paper, for example. Either those leads will pay off, or you’ll find that you need to revisit your free offer to create something of greater value.
These are the kinds of insights you simply don’t get by looking at pure sales-focused conversion data.
Getting the prospect’s email takes the conversation from web to email, and even though it’s a small win, it’s still a type of conversion nonetheless. The visitor is saying, in essence, “I’m interested in what you have to offer, and would like to know more.”
All too often, marketers seize upon this opportunity to blast users with all kinds of information — which can be overwhelming and disconcerting, and lead to them regretting their choice and unsubscribing. This is the time where it pays to look closer at the data in your email automation program. Most platforms will give you simple data such as clickthroughs and open rates – but again, we want to go deeper.
For example, are you tagging users so that you can follow where they go (and how long they stay) after they click an email link? What criteria do you have in place to identify and separate the eager, ready-to-act prospects from the freebie “tire kickers”? And what are you doing to warm up the tire-kickers into becoming ready-to-act prospects?
Fortunately, you can use a tool like Kissmetrics Campaigns to not only automate your email, but provide behavior-based segmentation so that you can know, with far greater precision, who’s taking the actions you want them to take, and who needs a bit more hand-holding?
Behavior-based marketing is more than just a buzzword, and it goes well beyond the traditional $Firstname “personalization” that many email marketing platforms offer. Want to segment emails based on whether or not a user opened or clicked through a previous email campaign? With Campaigns, you can, leading to a whole new level of one-on-one engagement with your prospects.
When customer data goes into the CRM (customer relationship management) program, oftentimes the ball gets dropped. No matter which platform you use, your CRM system and marketing automation system need to work together harmoniously in order to output actionable data that delivers a return on investment — and the real sales numbers you crave.
While Kissmetrics isn’t a CRM platform specifically, it does mesh nicely with existing services that specialize in lead generation and customer tracking, including:
Details on how to integrate Kissmetrics with your existing shopping cart, SaaS or CRM can be found at the list link above, and once you follow this simple process a wealth of data will open up to you, effortlessly blending marketing and sales information so that you get detailed snapshots of user behavior from the start of the funnel to the end.
Here, you’ll be able to see which customers took which actions, and who needs a bit more nurturing to take that all-important next step.
Focusing solely on sales as conversions can be disheartening at best, since very few people will ultimately make it through your funnel even on the best of days. It can be discouraging to focus on such a small percentage when instead, you should be looking for lots of little wins.
Bounce rate on your lead magnet page is lower as a result of more targeted ads? That’s a win.
FAQ pages have an unusually high time on page? People are getting their questions answered. That’s a win.
Downloads of a new white paper resulting in more high end, enterprise-level customers? That’s a win.
To be sure, right now a lot of the information out there can seem scattered and uncoordinated. Marketers still have a great deal of data sifting and filtering to do. But new advances in both tools and technology are helping not only comb through the data, but deliver meaningful, relevant information which in turn helps entire companies work together as a cohesive unit – and focus on conversions beyond the sale.
Are you focusing solely on sales when tracking conversions? Or are you looking at other types of “little wins” as well? How is this approach working for you? Share your success stories and triumphs with us in the comments below!
About the Author: Sherice Jacob helps business owners improve website design and increase conversion rates through compelling copywriting, user-friendly design and smart analytics analysis. Learn more at iElectrify.com and download your free web copy tune-up and conversion checklist today!
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