How do I increase conversion on Internet leads?

How do I increase my conversion rate on the lead I purchase? This is the top question I am asked on a daily basis. So, I thought I would post directly to that question.

These are common best practices and will be reiterated by any successful sales organization and lead provider; however, the difficulty is having the discipline (or the lead management solution) to consistently enforce these best practices.

Be Informed

Know what is going on. You need to know your market, your competitors, and what is causing people to have a need for your product(s). If you have a large number of products educate yourself and simplify your presentation by segmenting products by potential consumer needs.

In addition to understanding what you are selling make sure you read and watch popular culture. Consumers want to feel like their is a human on the other end of the sale. So, read the front page, the sports page, the entertainment page. People love to talk about the weather–make sure you know what it is outside of your cube.

Contact Quickly

Consumers, especially Internet consumers, in this age of high connectivity expect immediate responses. Unfortunately, on the sell-side of the equation consumers also expect to transact at their convenience.

Consequently, you need to immediately respond to each new lead receipt with an immediate message to the consumer that you are attempting to contact them. This is easily done with an introduction email and phone call (voicemail). This introduce your company, you, and your ability to meet their needs.

Be Diligent

Although we all want to be one call closers this is not a reality. In fact most consumers close somewhere between the fifth and tenth call. If you are only calling on those fresh leads each day–you are losing deals to the competitor.

This happens for a myriad reasons: people are busy, needs can be complex, final decisions may require a spouse, etc.

Ask Questions and Listen

This seems intuitive, but how many times have you heard a sales person so revved up on their canned pitch that they are talking past the potential customer. Make sure you start with questions and a needs assessment and close with confirmations of these needs. This is guaranteed to increase your closings!

Take Applications

An application and quote is free. Take and give them often. Consumers are looking for the price and commitment. Withholding the price so that “the customer doesn’t shop me” is bunk. If you don’t tell them the deal they are guaranteed to go to the competitor. Consumers want convenience, not games.

If you are still worried about shopping, use the application and quote process to build trust. Educate them on all of the tricks and hidden fees or gimmicks the competitor is going to pull and when they do they will run back to you and be a trusting customer and referrer for life.

Bottom Line: Follow-up, Don’t Lose Customers, Satisfy Needs

As your pipeline gets large it gets harder and harder to manage this bottom line. That is why I generally recommend a managed pipeline of no larger than 100-150 leads. This ensures that you are able to contact every consumer in your pipeline at least once every 48 hours, assuming you are hitting my recommended call velocity of 60-80 calls per day. The management of the pipeline, call backs, and annotating consumer needs all point to the need for a capable lead management strategy that keeps all of these best practices consistent, enforced, and managed.

Enjoy increased closings today!

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3 responses to “How do I increase conversion on Internet leads?

  1. I have found a direct correlation between response time and increased conversion rate. I receive leads through email and LeadAlarm.com has helped me respond to the lead quickly. As soon as I receive the email lead from one of my lead vendors, LeadAlarm calls my cell phone and reads the lead out loud, and then all I have to do is click 1 on my phone to call that lead.

  2. Bob, you are correct response time is one of the three top factors in lead conversion. I have outlined these three factors as: Time Delays, Lead-to-Sales Matching, and Non-response. No doubt your affiliation with LeadAlarm focuses your perspective on that time delay from customer inquiry to initial response, but it is just as critical to make sure that the lead gets followed up with and tracked from that initial call to closing. This is particularily important because as much as we all want to be one call closers your statistics will show you that actually most leads close on the 5-7th contact not the first, particularly when it is on a cell phone without any resources like credit report, product tables, and rates sheets at your disposal to communicate a pre-qual offer.

  3. Where can I find reliable automotive lead conversion data for Internet/Email, Walk-in/Fresh-up and Phone-up opportunities? I’d like to benchmark our stores with data from a reliable sources, i.e. NADA, etc

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