How to transform web data into leads

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For anyone obsessed by their website statistics (as I am), you will know that the majority of people who interact with your site do not become leads (unless you’re spectacularly lucky). In some industries, a conversion rate of 1% is welcomed, meaning that 99% of visits do not end up as a lead.

Some of these visits could, potentially, represent significant value. They have not, however, got in touch with you. You may not have made the shortlist, or the project may be temporarily on hold. They may just have forgotten about you!

In a B2B context, it’s relatively easy to find out which organisations have been on your website. Google Analytics, for example, can relate some IP addresses to business names, and let you know who has been looking at your site.

There are solutions that tie IP information to databases and provide phone numbers, main contacts, linkedin information and more – but more importantly, they let you know which pages your visitors looked at, what search phrases they used to find you, and even let you ‘score’ a web visit.

For example, if a company has looked at your site 5 times, looking at a minimum of 10 pages each time, having Googled a keyword you value highly, you would have a pretty good idea they’re interested in your services. The fact that they have not yet enquired, however, would imply that they might need a push. Or a pull.

Gathering the data is now relatively simple. The question is – what do you do with this data? If you’re looking at hundreds of organisations who have been reading your content, how do you sort out who to contact first – and what to say?

1 – Score your web visitors

The first step is to assess the quality of a web visit. You don’t want to waste your time contacting people who have only viewed one page. Set up triggers that allow you to identify a quality visit to your website. This could be a number of pages viewed, containing specific sales-focused pages. It could just be a visit from a certain keyword. Understand what matters to your business, and build alerts for your sales teams for clients or leads they’re already pursuing.

2 – Segment and categorise your visitors

It’s important to understand different visitor types before you contact them. Group your visitors into the groups of services that you provide, so that any messaging to them is appropriate and timely. You may want to segment them into priority groups – or your visitors may already fit into existing segments. Understanding your web visitors can also throw up some information about existing customers, and their future requirements.

3 – Right message, right time

If you’re picking up the phone to call someone at that organisation, be aware that you can’t find out the name of the person who was on your website. So, find the contact you would usually talk to, and without mentioning that you know they were on the website, craft a message in line with their website activity. You know that there is a need in the business for your services, but it’s important to be seen as someone providing the right message at the right time, almost by coincidence.

Many businesses I’ve worked with who have used these technologies have implemented two key strategies to enable better management of their pipeline.

1) CRM integration

It goes without saying that web visit information is something that should go straight into a 360-degree view of a customer or prospect. The added knowledge that an existing customer is looking for additional services gives you the opportunity to initiate the conversation yourself. Therefore, CRM integration is vital. MS Dynamics and Salesforce certainly allow this kind of integration, but ensure that the workflow suits how you work – do you want to alert sales teams? Do you want to create lists for telemarketers? Design everything around your processes.

2) Telemarketing hand-off

The transition from data set to actionable telemarketing is a delicate one. Why are these organisations on the list? What are their principal areas of interest? Will a single script be enough?

The final approach depends very much on your proposition, but the hand-off between marketing and telemarketing requires care. Ensure that there is sufficient, at-a-glance data for a telemarketer to get a quick overview of the prospect and their web history. Match any previous conversations against historic telemarketing data, and above all – stress that they don’t say “we know you’ve been looking at our website!”

Ultimately, telemarketers will love you for providing this level of data. You should see increased call to conversation ratios, and increased conversation to appointment ratios. And all of a sudden, the visitors who don’t enquire become a channel all of themselves.

Gareth Cartman
Gareth Cartman is Director of Digital Marketing at Clever Little Design, and blogs frequently on tech, marketing, customer service and Human Resources.

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