Accelerate business performance with improved conversion rate

In a previous blog post, I introduced you to Brad Sugar’s simple formula for accelerating business performance:

Leads x Conversion Rate = Customers
Customers x Average Dollar Sale x Number of Transactions = Revenue
Revenue x Profit Margins = Profit

Sugars says that if you improve all five areas that you can influence, (leads, conversion rate, average dollar sale, number of transactions, and profit margin) you’ll dramatically improve your business.

In this post, I’m going to give you some ideas for increasing your conversion rate:

  • When you identify the benefits that your product or service offers, keep them consistent. Consider this a branding exercise and always come back to those benefits in the same way.
  • Record every objection that a prospect throws at you when you are presenting your product or service. Yes, write down every single one. Group them together then clearly and proactively answer those objections in your marketing. Make this effort a continuous effort so that you are always dealing with objections before the presentation.
  • Survey your customers to see what were the key elements that convinced them to buy from you. Survey many of your customers and gather that data together and assume those are your strengths. Build on them.
  • Review the questions you ask or the qualifications you require of someone before they buy from you. Do you really need all of them? Can you reduce the amount of questions or qualifications so that it doesn’t sound like an interrogation?
  • Some of your prospect marketing and communication will be generic. But make sure it’s not too generic. As much as possible, offer a customized experience.
  • Design your later-stage prospect marketing so that it assumes the customer is going to buy. No, I’m not necessarily advocating an “assumptive close” sales technique. Rather, I’m talking about communicating with the customer beyond the sale. In other words, don’t make it seem like you’re working up to a sale; rather, make it seem like you are building a foundation for a long relationship. Show the customer that you have a vision for your mutually successful relationship that lasts long into the future.
  • Review each of your customers to determine how long they were in the sales funnel and what they received from you (i.e., for marketing and communication) and what they eventually bought. Notice any correlations? For example, did the customers who were in the sales funnel longer and received marketing documents W and X buy more from you than the customers who were in the sales funnel a shorter period and received marketing documents Y and Z?
  • Make sure that all of your prospect communication and marketing has a clear call to action, and that it is the same call to action. Consider your call to action a branded event and put it at the end of everything. Keep it consistent across all media and messages.
  • Forget trying to convert a prospect on Twitter. Please. It’s not that they won’t convert, but rather that you need to move them closer into your sphere first.
  • Have a friend or family member go through the process of buying from your site. Watch how they interact with your site to see what they encounter and what potentially trips them up.
  • If your sales process involves some customized communication (such as an RFP or a face-to-face communication, for example), provide your prospects with as much material as possible that is carefully branded with your name on it. In other words, get your name stuck in their heads long before they become customers.
  • Outline all the steps between becoming¬† a prospect and becoming a customer… then double those steps. I don’t mean make it more complicated, I mean make each step insanely easier. Make each step a baby step, and one so simple and “brainless” to perform that the prospects launch themselves along the pathway towards conversion.
  • Don’t underestimate the value of momentum. Don’t let any part of the process get held up on your desk. If things tend to get tied up with you for whatever reason, solve it somehow — hire an assistant, create a flow chart so you can give a faster answer, publish your price chart. Whatever it takes.
  • Collect objections like kids collect baseball cards. Love it. Be a detective to uncover every objection. Don’t dread them, embrace them because they are the keys to future sales.
  • Avoid a binary option: Yes they will buy or no they won’t. Instead, offer degrees of purchase such as the full purchase, or several partial options.
  • You can have all of the greatest looking marketing content in the world, but if you don’t build trust or value, it’s all worthless because no one will buy from you. Demonstrate trust, demonstrate value, and you will convert customers.
  • Have a plan for those who don’t immediately buy from you. Don’t just keep them in the prospect loop and don’t let them fall out of the funnel. Instead, create a separate series of steps that will allow them to continue hearing from you but with targeted information and not the generic stuff you’re publishing for prospects.

Published by Aaron Hoos

Aaron Hoos is a writer, strategist, and investor who builds and optimizes profitable sales funnels. He is the author of The Sales Funnel Bible and other books.

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