In the same way that supermarkets increase sales by putting the flowers at the store-front and the milk and bread at the store-back, your website could be generating more enquiries if you follow some key ‘optimisation’ principles. Here’s 3 to think about…
1. Make the enquiry about the customer and their problem, not about you and your service
It might seem obvious, but if a web visitor is shown one of two options to enquire, e.g. a contact button that says ‘contact us about our XYZ service’ or a button that says ‘Help me answer my question about XYZ’. The latter will generate more enquiries every time. Research suggests that only 4% of web visitors are ready to buy, so thrusting a sales-oriented message at them too soon could turn them off.
2. Vary the call-to-action location and the reasons for the customer enquiring
A web page with several calls-to-action spread across the page will generate more enquiries than a page with only one call to action. It’s therefore good practice to first consider all the reasons a customer might contact you, then break those reasons down into calls-to-action that you can work into your web page layout in different locations so no matter what point on the page the visitor has scrolled to, they will have a (new and different) call-to-action in sight.
A logical approach might be to add calls-to-action to your website’s header, the upper-body-copy-area, the lower-body-copy- area, and footer. If the design of the page is carefully considered, this number of calls-to-action actually adds to the page’s design aesthetic, and certainly doesn’t look overkill.
3. Include a visible in-page form
Over the years, I’ve run quite a few tests of in-page contact forms (i.e. a visible form on the page rather than a button on the page). The results are always the same – the page with the form always wins.
One such test sent Adwords traffic to two pages on a website – both pages were identical except one included a visible in-page contact form, the other used a button which then launched a contact form. After 6000 visits, 3000 sent to each page at random, the page with the in-page form outperformed the page with the button by 100%. i.e. twice the volume of enquiries. There is an art to making sure the form is presented in the correct way (e.g. it must be in the body content area, not the sidebar) but it’s certainly worth trialling.
It might seem that these changes could only have a minimal affect on enquiry volumes, but for a website that is gaining 2000+ visitors per month, it is perfectly reasonable to expect a 30% increase in enquiries after some careful optimising. Well worth doing.