In today’s digital world, more consumers than ever use the internet to research and make decisions on products and services. How your organization handles website lead conversion is vital to your short and long-term marketing strategies.
Website and landing page forms are the building block for lead conversion on your site. We’ll walk you through how to effectively implement a winning contact form strategy in this article.
Do you know if your website is using contact forms effectively? See if your website is generating enough conversions by using our free and simple website lead calculator.
Website visitors are the first point of contact in many digital marketing campaigns. Each person that comes to your website has the potential to convert to a paying customer. This means attracting visitors to your website (and engaging them once they arrive) is your first step to success.
Most marketing strategies combine organic and paid lead gen components to bring visitors to your website and landing pages. Whether your team uses SEO and content strategies for organic traffic, creates traffic through social media, or invests budget for Google ads or other digital advertising assets, the goal is the same: provide insightful content and engaging offers to bring visitors to your website.
If trying to decipher inbound marketing and lead generation strategies for your B2B mid-sized business makes your head spin, Whittington Consulting can provide the insight your organization needs for profitability with inbound marketing services.
Generating New Contacts
The expected average page view time on your website will vary depending on your product or service. This metric is often industry-specific. However, a good rule of thumb is the 15-second rule. HubSpot reports that 55% of visitors spend less than 15 seconds on your site, although Crazyegg has settled on a more generous initial view time of 50 seconds. Either way, you have a very small window of time to convince a website visitor that your content is relevant to their search, and engaging enough to continue their time on your site.
This window of time is critical. Website traffic is key to acquiring new contacts for long-term nurturing AND for immediate lead conversion. Generating new contacts right off the bat can help maintain interest and collect valuable information that your organization can use for future marketing and sales leads.
So, how can you generate new contacts? Using effective lead capture forms can bring your company results.
Lead Capture Forms
We have all been on a website with a “Contact Us” form built into pages when you want to request more information. Unfortunately, these landing pages are typically buried within the website and make visitors hunt for them.
Impatient visitors will give up searching between those critical 15 to 50 seconds, essentially letting potential customers leave your website without capturing lead information. This scenario is where an effective lead capture form comes into play. These website forms collect contact information from visitors, helping to create a potential client database for future leads. Sometimes these lead forms are a clear signal to buy and can result in a sale call, free trial, demo, or even a purchase. A free trial sign-up form or a form fill that allows visitors to book time on a sales rep’s calendar are good examples of website visitor form fills that generate marketing or sales qualified leads.
Your contact forms should be easy to find, simple to complete, and spark interest. You can also create a pop-up form that encourages visitors to take advantage of a limited-time special offer. Other enticing strategies include signing up for digital coupons or specials, which creates a prospect email list for your organization to nurture into eventual sales.
Your company’s lead generation marketing strategies depend upon effective landing pages to generate interest in your product or service. An engaging landing page captures visitors' attention and increases the chances of your visitors then filling out a brief form.
When designing your landing page’s contact form, ensure it is visually distinctive from the rest of the page and preceded by the benefit you offer. For instance, use a headline like "Schedule a discovery call and receive a bonus strategy session for free." This clarity gives your website visitors a reason to provide you with their personal information.
It is also helpful to include a few testimonials from satisfied customers. If you have reviews on social media, Google, Yelp, G2, etc. (this will vary by industry), include a selection on your landing page to add perceived value and increase your sales pipeline.
As with any marketing activity or campaign, measuring your conversion rate is integral to your lead generation process. We’re in an age of data-driven marketing after all.
Begin with a goal in mind before you analyze your results. Ideally, you should always start your campaign planning with clear goals and key performance indicators that align with those goals. Be sure to set a relevant and realistic goal as you analyze existing results.
Some questions to help set these goals may be:
- What number of new customers do you need to be profitable on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis?
- On average, how many of your leads ultimately convert to customers?
Using your conversion metrics, you can calculate how many leads your team needs to generate on a monthly basis.
High conversion rates will help create a successful sales funnel using qualified leads from these simple forms. If your industry has lower conversion rates, your team will need to concentrate on both the volume of leads and work on conversion rate refinement as well.
Alternatively, if your sales team is unable to adequately prepare for discovery or decision calls from the form information collected, experiment with adding new fields. This is the perfect opportunity to set your team up for success while also refining your criteria for qualified leads. Use Google's website optimizer to test different strategies and collect corresponding data to support the best option.
Every form, especially those designed for generating new contacts, should deliver an outstanding user experience. If visitors face an intrusive or unnecessary form, they are not likely to engage by entering their contact information. You’ve encountered these forms; the 22 questions a software company asks when all you want to do is sign up for a webinar, or a landing page with four forms laid out in a confusing manner.
Lead generation forms should be:
- Relevant and easy to understand. Be sure that your forms identify their purpose and make sense to website users within the context of the page they’re on.
- Mobile-friendly and responsive. Forms should be easy to view and complete on a mobile device or tablet. In addition, text and graphics should be legible even on smaller screens.
- Placed intentionally. Design your pages with the form field far enough down the page for comprehension and context., or housed within a side column. However, they should not be underneath unnecessary text or graphics that distract users from entering their information. You want users to understand the nature of your content and the reason for filling out a form as they decide whether to share their contact information. Your form placement should follow the Goldilocks rule: not too hard to find, not too isolated to lack context.
- Polite and informative. Be sure users receive a thank you message with the next steps clearly explained. This can be an inline message, a custom confirmation page, or a follow-up email. Good communication after a form fill completion instills trust with your potential customer.
Website traffic is only one factor in your digital lead generation strategy. Increased website traffic is a positive sign, but lead conversion through form fills or other behavior while on your website is critical to accomplishing your marketing and sales goals. Effective contact forms will work to accomplish this conversion.
We’ve explored best practices in this article, but would you benefit from advice specific to your organization?
Consider the value the professional services of a lead generation consultant, like Whittington Consulting, can deliver to your digital marketing campaigns.
As a trusted B2B lead generation agency, we see opportunities every day for our clients to improve their inbound marketing strategies and earn a higher return on their marketing investment.