Inbound marketing is one of the most effective ways to increase leads for your business. When you utilise inbound marketing, you can expect to see a conversion rate of up to 12%, which is twice the conversion rate of outbound marketing.
Inbound marketing happens when your customers come to you, because they’re ‘pulled’ to you, compared to traditional marketing that involves reaching out to them with ‘push’ marketing. Due to the fact that inbound only attracts customers who have shown commercial intent or interest in your product, they are the best source of new business as they’re likely to convert. If you can gain their trust and interest, they’ll be easy to pull in.
So how do you build that trust? It’s all about giving the customer what they’re looking for and putting yourself out there as an expert in your industry. This can be accomplished through your website, but it can’t just be any website. Much like a recipe, you need to include all the right ingredients to get the perfect end result and master inbound marketing.
1. Start with Social
Social marketing is a good way to get people to your website. People can discover you through social media, and gradually build a relationship with your company. Having a social media presence inspires more trust and makes you look more authentic. In fact, 82% of consumers report they trust a company more if that company has a strong social media presence.
That isn’t the only reason that social media works. It can also help you with a strategy called ‘closed loop marketing.’ Closed loop marketing is all about leveraging insights to ‘close the gaps’ in order to understand what marketing activities are working, and which ones aren’t. As social media is likely the first place a customer will find you, it is considered ‘top of the funnel’. This, combined with the excellent analytics available for Facebook advertisers, means you’re able to get a real understanding on what interests your target market and what doesn’t. By simply changing the content or image of your social posts you can see a drastic change in the amount of people who click though to your website. All this information is key when establishing the trust and authenticity that you need to master inbound marketing.
2. Leave An Impression With Landing Pages
Keyword targeted, attractive landing pages that load quickly are an important part of getting people to, and keeping them on your site. In a way, they’re the face to your online store. Just like a brick and mortar store needs to make sure the front of their shop is attractive, you need to make sure your online presence is attractive and gives a good first impression.
There is a fine balance between making landing pages keyword rich, and making them attractive. While your landing pages need to be targeted to a keyword, they also need to be naturally and organically written. Remember, when it comes to keywords on your landing pages, it’s quality over quantity every single time. If your content looks like it’s keyword stuffed, people will leave. If your page loads too slowly, people will leave. If your page isn’t attractive, people will leave.
Getting people to your website is only half the battle. You want people to stay and you want to convert them to customers. The average customer only spends 15 seconds on a website, meaning that is all the time you have to impress them. Make those seconds count.
3. Manage Customers With A Great CRM
CRM is short for “customer relationship management” and it’s a software system designed to help you understand your customers and give them a more personalized experience. A good CRM will automate sales and marketing by integrating with the technical side of your website (called the ‘back end’ of your website). CRM’s also provide excellent data on the consumers ‘purchasing journey’ such as where they came from, what they’re interested in or their demographics – and by using this information, you can target the right customers and convert them from visitors into buyers.
4. Add Some Automated Marketing
The key to automated marketing is making sure it doesn’t seem automated. Messages that start with “Dear sir” or “Hi There” just don’t work. Instead, you can catch the customer’s eye by having an automated program that will do things like track what they do on your site, and then send personalized messages to them based on their data. For example, if a customer adds something to their cart, but doesn’t check out, then your system could send a cart abandonment message that reminds them that this item is in their cart. When automated marketing is personalized for the customer, you can see better conversion rates. If used properly, automated marketing can more than double conversion rates.
5. Create Strong Calls to Action
A call to action is a statement that makes a customer take a certain action, and links to a landing page, where the customer can buy something, download something or get more information.
The key to calls to action is making sure they make sense and are contextually relevant. Far too many people use something like “click here” as their call to action, which too generic. It doesn’t tell the customer where they will be directed to when they click, and it doesn’t give them a reason to click. Customers are intelligent enough to know when they see a hyperlink, it’s going to redirect them. Better calls to action might be “start your free trial now!” or “contact us for more information”, with each link taking the customer to a landing page where they can complete that specific action.
6. Fine Turn Your Forms
Forms on your website allow your customers to get in contact or find out more information from your company. They can fill them out, and give their contact information, then send that info to you, giving you yet another lead.
One important thing to remember with forms is to make them as convenient for the customer as possible. Don’t demand too much information from the customer. Give them a choice of contact times and above all, keep it simple. In one study, a company was able to go from a 5% form conversion rate, to a 12% form conversion rate, simply by cutting down on the number of required fields. Another thing that is important to note is that most people prefer to not give their phone numbers, and requiring the submission of a phone number can reduce form conversion by 5%.
7. Deliver Quality Content
Good quality content isn’t just keyword rich. Its useful content that gives your customer something they didn’t know before. Regularly putting out content won’t just get customers to your page via keywords. It will also turn you into an industry expert that customers trust. Customers are more likely to buy from someone they know and trust, and regular, well-written, useful content is a great way to build trust. By writing good content, you’ll also be more likely to be accepted by content aggregating sites. Reputable content aggregating sites will expose your content to a wider audience, and they will allow you to link back to your website, helping with your site ranking.
8. Consider eBooks
The eBook market is expected to account for nearly one-third of all books purchased by 2019. With more and more people reading eBooks over paperback or hardcover, companies can’t afford to not offer their own. eBook creation is relatively easy and there are lots of programs that can be used to allow users to download these eBooks. Simply creating a downloadable PDF file that gives valuable information and advertises your service, can make you a trusted resource with customers who will boost your ongoing sales.
The key to a good website isn’t just about getting traffic- that’s only half the battle. It’s about attracting qualified visitors who trust you and buy from you. By following the best practices of inbound marketing and making sure you are a valuable resource to customers, you can build a relationship with them and as a result, boost your sales.