6 Foundations for Lead Generation
As command central of your digital operations, a website does many things. A website can be a source of information for potential customers, a portfolio of your work, and a way to connect with customers no matter the time. A website can also link everything else you do on the internet together, from your blog to your social media accounts. The most important job of a website, however, is generating leads.
A “lead” is a person who may turn into a customer. In terms of your website, they are the people who have somehow provided you their contact information. Contact information could be an email address, phone number, or physical address. When people provide their contact information, it means they are interested in your business on some level. Many people become leads when they sign up for your newsletter because they want to continue receiving the type of content you produce. People might also offer their phone number in exchange for something free, like a discount or eBook.
Not just any website will produce leads, however. A website that does not produce leads will be a waste of time and valuable resources. To ensure your company’s website is generating leads efficiently, implement the following six foundations into your website’s design and management.
1. Valuable, SEO-Friendly Content
Your website content is one of the primary ways to rank highly in the search engines and produce leads from non-search engine sources. Content comes in a variety of formats, but the most important ones for your website will be the on-page copy, articles, and relevant videos. Other content formats, such as eBooks or shareable graphics, are important for many reasons, but they are secondary outlets when it comes to lead-generation directly pertaining to your website.
To ensure that content is producing leads, you need to optimize all of them for the search engines. For written content, this means inserting relevant keywords where they naturally fit the content to help search bots understand the content. It also means utilizing H2 headers, bullets, numbered lists, and concise sentences. For video, that means making good use of metadata, using closed captioning, and incorporating short paragraphs of text beneath videos to describe them. All content needs to be both engaging and valuable to your target audience.
2. Simple, Intuitive Website Design
It may be tempting to go for all the bells and whistles when it comes to your website design, but less is more. Complex designs are faulty for a few different reasons. Primarily, complex designs are usually very difficult to navigate. Too many design elements can also make your page loading times lag, which reduces the number of leads produced by a website.
A simple, clean website is best. Utilizing ample white space can make your design look clean and attractive. Small pops of contrast in your color scheme will naturally draw the viewer’s eyes to important elements (like headers or contact forms). Keep the number of navigational links to a minimum, and provide contact information (such as a form) on each page. This will help make getting in touch with your company easier on the customer, as well as keep it at the front of their mind as they browse.
3. High-quality Graphics and Video in Moderation
The use of high-quality graphics and videos can greatly enhance both the effectiveness and visual appeal of your website. Using them in moderation, however, is the key. All videos or graphics need to be relevant to your target audience and the information provided, and you should be picky when it comes to what makes it to the final design. Too many graphics or videos could slow down your page load times.
The right videos and graphics, however, can greatly enhance any written content. These formats are also shared on social media platforms much more frequently than written content, which means they have a significantly higher chance of going viral. Videos are the most shared content format modernly.
4. Obvious Subscription Points
You want people to subscribe to your other channels, such as your company’s email newsletter and social media pages. Your customers do not want to subscribe to you badly enough to hunt down that information.
If you want your website to bring you an ample amount of cross-platform leads, you need to make all subscriptions points obvious. Use an email subscription contact form on all your company’s main pages, or perhaps even in the sidebar or footer of your website. Include social media buttons both in your company’s website header and (if applicable) in the footer, also. When you utilize call-to-actions in your blog posts or articles, always use links or embed contact forms to make taking the desired action easier.
5. Effective Landing Pages
Landing pages are the number one way that your website will garner leads. Landing pages are also one of the main ways that companies make mistakes, which cost them a significant number of leads. The simplicity and ease of creating landing pages can lull website designers and marketers into an unfounded sense of ease. There is, however, an art to creating landing pages.
Effective landing pages need to be simple and make use of clear, concise wording. A single graphic or design element should be used, preferably just above or directly to the left of the contact form. The contact form should be limited to three or fewer entries. Contact forms which require too much information are less likely to be filled out. Also make use of words that create urgency, such as “now,” “immediately,” and “limited time.”
6. Utilize Mobile Optimization
People today access the internet via mobile devices more than they do through traditional computers. A mobile device is most often a cell phone, but it can also refer to tablets or electronic reading devices. With so many accessing the internet through these devices, a website that isn’t optimized for mobile users will never get the same attention or leads as one which is.
Many website hosts offer the ability to create a mobile-friendly version automatically. Other times, it is necessary to create a separate website for mobile usage. The most important thing to remember is that brevity is vital on mobile websites. Everything should be shortened to the bare necessity, and this includes any blog posts or articles.
If you implement the six foundations listed above, your website should continue producing leads at a rate which makes the invested time and resources worthwhile. Remember that many of these foundations require momentum to produce significant results. With patience and continued effort, each foundation will eventually begin producing a significant amount of leads for your company, and those results will only continue growing over time.