Sales representatives and marketing specialists are a bit like Hansel and Gretel. They leave little breadcrumbs and hope that someone will follow the path they’ve laid out. Unfortunately, their customers are more like Goldilocks and tend to try out everything before making a commitment. This disjointed relationship leads to fewer sales and lots of frustrations.

That’s where an effective conversion process comes in.

Conversion goals are the actions you hope visitors take before leaving your website. For many people, that entails having visitors purchase a product or service. Macro conversions play a direct role in meeting company objectives or producing revenue. There are also micro-conversions. These are the seemingly little actions that you want visitors to take, such as staying on the site for 10 minutes. Optimally, these micro-conversions will later lead to macro-conversions as well.

So how can you optimize your conversions? By creating a lead conversion process that is intended to effectively convert visitors into leads.

What is a Conversion Path?

It’s as basic as the conversion steps a visitor to your website takes in order to become a first-time customer. Just like any path, a lead conversion path can be convoluted or direct, concise or lengthy.

Elements of an effective conversion path

This is an appropriate place to channel the poet, Robert Frost: “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” In other words, everyone’s journey from being a first-time visitor to becoming a loyal customer looks slightly different. However, it is the role of the marketing department to ensure that certain pit stops are made along the way. Lead conversion steps might include:

  • Brand awareness. This is when prospects discover a company and visit a website for the first time. This may take place through an incredible offer or other marketing tactics.
  • Deliberation. Prospects evaluate your brand to determine whether it fits their needs and wishes. This is aided by impressive landing pages and remarkable content.
  • Conversion. This is the ‘aha!’ moment for website visitors, the point where they decide a product or service is exactly want they want. Having a strong call-to-action is imperative at this stage. Emails with a single call-to-action increase clicks by 371 percent and sales by 1617 percent, according to Ellie Mirman, Vice President of Marketing at Toast.
  • Appreciation. People love to be appreciated, and it’s no different with customers and clients. Be sure to include a generous thank you page or pitch after a sale is made.

Not All Paths are Created Equal

Sure, customers can make their own way to reach the lead conversion goal; however, not all paths are created equal. Attention should be given to ensuring the right path is followed — those paths that potential customers are drawn to and motivated by so that they transform from visitors to leads, and then from leads to sales.

When creating conversion paths, it’s important to fine-tune the steps so that they fit into clearly defined stages. Doing so makes it possible to zero in on approaches that promote engagement, retention, and sales.

Make amazing content.

Content is the fuel that drives the motor, and the breadcrumbs lead the way. Like it or not, content is everywhere. From the blogs posted to the emails generated, every word is a potential conversion path.

That said, having more content doesn’t necessarily mean sales. Quality wins over quantity every time. The right content appeals to your buyer’s persona. It should touch on visitors’ pain points and show how your product will alleviate those stressors. Notably, it should be interesting, relevant, and informative.

More than 50 percent of companies believe the ability to personalize content is crucial to lead generation. They are correct. Creating content that is personalized for your buyers can mean the difference yay or nay.

Make stellar call-to-action sequences.

Though you may have phenomenal content and an appealing landing page, if customers don’t know what to do with that information, you’re out of luck. Enter: Call to Action.

Advertise your product through call-to-action buttons that are strategically placed throughout the website. At the same time, don’t overdo it. Research shows that when provided with too many options, grocery store shoppers become overwhelmed and resist making purchases. Limit the number of call-to-action buttons so visitors don’t have to exert too much mental energy making decisions.

Keep in mind that every call-to-action button initiates the conversion path. Therefore, every call-to-action button should provide value.

Optimize the thank you page.

Thank you pages mark the end of the conversion journey. They are focused web pages that allow leads to download the offer promised through the call-to-actions. They can be used to clinch a sale, cross-sell, or up-sell customers.

Align your marketing strategies with your business goals. Not every conversion path needs to look the same. Consider your buyer’s persona to determine the best route to take.