What if your Inside Sales Manager gave your Website an Annual Performance Review?

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What if your Inside Sales Manager gave your Website an Annual Performance Review?

June 15, 2014 by

Like many online businesses, at Apptegic, we have an Inside Sales team and we have a website.  Both are selling. Its a symbiotic complementary relationship where the prospect is moving between the website and the Sales team as they move down the funnel.  

We are used to comparing our websites to another company’s websites and our Inside Sales teams to another company’s Inside Sales teams.   That is useful.  But what if we all evaluated our websites against our Inside Sales team.  How would our websites rate?  Would they measure up?

What follows is what I think would be a typical review:

 

1) You have got the knowledge to communicate effectively to a prospect at each stage of the buying cycle.  Great job mastering this.

Stage

Tactics

Inside Sales

Your Website as Sales Person

Unaware

Grab Attention

Initial email with pithy subject and  phone call with releveant message

Great landing page

Great home page with tagline, image, video

Aware

Educate on pain they have and solution you have

Nuture emails with  relevent content. 

 

Case Studies,  References, Blogs, White papers, Webinars

CTA: Get on mail list. blog  rss

Interested

Match pain to your solution

Online meeting asking the right questions, discussing right solution, demo

Detailed features pages.  Competitor comparisons.

Online demo

Connection to Sales people

CTA: Sign up for demo

Desire

Establish BANT, Remove objections instill urgency

Build relationship, ask questions, provide answers, motivate, sell

Freemium, Free trial

Short term discount, money back guarantee, buy now,

Happy customers, testimonials

Purchase

Make as smooth as possible

edoc sign, no surprises

Online purchase,

 

2. But you have to listen more than you talk.  You have to sell consultatatively.   Tailor your questions and comments to the prospect.  

Many people prefer not to talk to a salesperson but rather to leverage the website.  This gives the website as salesperson a leg up.  People go to it, seek it out.   But, the website-as-salesperson squanders this good will by:

  • You always saying the same thing regardless of the prospects stage.  The home page is always grabbing attention, its up to the visitor to find the resources section. The website needs to become a consultative seller.  
  • You are scattering repititive calls to action across the interaction.  Often the website will show the same call to action that the prospect had already seen and responded to before.  Many times you present a call to action for a much earlier stage than where the prospect is currently.    

Overall, dealing with the website-as-salesperson is better than dealing with a bad sales person but its not like dealing with an excellent sales person who is a guide.

 

3. What I want you to work on is being more responsive.

So how could the Website as Sales person do a better job?  By making the website more responsive to the person who is visiting in terms of their interest and stage.    You can do this in two ways:

●      Watching the visitors’ behavior and dynamically adjusting website content and messaging based on this

●      Asking the visitor  a few key questions to gain insight and then adjusting the website content and messaging  based on this

A few basic principles:

●      Don’t keep showing a call to action that has already been accepted or that is past the user’s stage. 

●      Have a series of relevant content that is presented to the visitor and move through it, if the visitor has already downloaded it

●      Tailor proposed call to actions and present content to the stage, attributes, and behavior of the visitor

 

4. Here are some practical ways that you can be more responsive to your prospects:

Don’t just have content for each stage.  Identify each prospect’s stage and give them the appropriate web experience to them

 

Stage

Behavior

Change web experience

Unaware

Came from Stumbleupon

First Visit from Search Engine

Highlight explainer video

Highlight home page

Aware

First Visit from Bookmarked site

Second visit or more

 

Welcome back.

Ask what is their interest

Give brief tour

Highlight content based on what said

Highlight one CTA that is a low barrier to entry to get name. Once that is accepted, have next CTA ready.

Interested

Onsite for > x minutes or > y clicks

 

Third Visit or More

 

Downloaded some collateral

 

Highlight more content like what they looked at before.

 

Highlight stronger CTA (pop up a subscribe to demo)

Desire

Fourth visit or more.

 

Multiple visits to pricing page. or time on pricing page

 

Started to fill  in sign up form

 

Signed up for demo.

Highlight buy now CTA

 

Highligh talk to a person options

Purchase

Beyond this step in the purchase funnel

 

 

Likewise, identify each prospect’s role, pain, and interest.  

  • By the kinds of pages and content they visit
  • By asking them right onsite

And then tailor the content displayed based on role, pain, and interest. 

 

Conclusion

All in all website, you are precocious.  You have a ton of content for every situation.  That’s great.  If you could just learn to listen and respond to what your prospects are telling you by their behavior, you’d be a great member of my Inside Sales team.  

 

 

 

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