04 Jan 2022 By: Natalya Bucuy
Ah, window shopping! What a fun activity, isn’t it? Whether it is browsing through the storefronts of New York City or checking out the mom-and-pop shops in your local town, sometimes the mere fix of looking at items on display is all you need.
Did you know that window shopping has been around for a long time? It all started during the Industrial Revolution.
“The widespread availability of plate glass in the late 1800s allowed shop owners to build large windows spanning the full lengths of their shops for the display of merchandise. This is when the notion of window-shopping was born.” (Kunle Campbell, Big Commerce)
Of course, the century-old tradition is alive and well today. And in addition to the good ol’ strolling along storefronts, technology has provided an opportunity for another version of window shopping – web browsing. Yes, those web surfers who visit your website and drive your landing page traffic numbers and excitement way up. They then leave with nothing but a digital dust cloud of your dreams crashing. These heartbreakers are the modern versions of window shoppers. And for online retailers and service providers, they can become costly losses. After all, those search engine and social media ads and content promotions do not come cheap.
Well, surely the brick-and-mortar shop owners of the past and present have some tricks up their sleeves to lure those window shoppers into the store. Similarly, experts in digital luring have also worked out some effective tactics of their own.
Here are 18 tips from marketing, sales, web design, and eCommerce experts about how to do convert website visitors into customers. Pick a few that work for your site and watch those mere traffic numbers turn into leads and conversions.
1. Make Your Storefront Shine
“A website visitor spends 10-20 seconds on a website before making the initial decision to stay or go. Many potential customers click away from a website based solely on website design. If it looks unprofessional, a red flag goes up. It could mean that the website hasn’t spent much on design and, therefore, doesn’t care to improve customer satisfaction. Or it could mean that the site is actually a scam.
To turn it around, check your website design. Make it customer-friendly by adding menus and social media tags. Add a lot of pictures and emphasize what you do when the visitor first sees your website. Include professional testimonies and product reviews.”
Jim Pendergast, Senior Vice President of altLine.
2. Marry Web Design with SEO
“Pay attention to design, content, user-friendliness, ease of navigation, and how you express your brand message through words and images. You can spend a lot of money on SEO to drive traffic to your website but if the UI or UX is not optimized then you won’t convert your leads. On the other hand, you can have an amazing website but no traffic. The two work hand-in-hand.
In my experience, it’s often best to get your website up and running and then analyze your visitors’ interactions to build a converting website. You will discover what your target customer journey, the main pain points, exit pages, and other user behavior patterns. Then, you can come in a fix everything for a better overall experience.”
Don Adams, General Manager at RegionalFoundationRepair.com.
3. Direct Traffic in The Right Direction
“The tip to convert website visitors into customers is making them take an action. Whether it’s signing up for a newsletter, making a purchase, or wishlisting something, it’s all about encouraging this person to take action.
Jordan Bishop, founder of Yore Oyster,
“Optimize your landing page to turn website visitors into customers. A landing page – named for where the customer ‘lands’ after clicking a link in an email or ad – is different from a home page. It’s a standalone entity and is created specifically for marketing. They exist as a call-to-action (CTA), and can greatly increase conversion rates once optimized.
Ensure the page is beautiful and caters to the aesthetics of your specific audience, then offer something of value (eg. free tips, a coupon, a free add-on item) to the visitor in exchange for their email. Access to emails means that a strong email marketing campaign can begin, and you’re on your way to converting visitors into customers.”
Kristaps Brencans, Chief Marketing Officer at On The Map
4. Keep Things Clean For your Guests (Even the Non-paying Ones)
“The quickest way for eCommerce shops to convert website visitors into customers is to focus on convenience. Make the purchasing process as easy as possible. The buying process transpires faster than most retailers realize, especially when it comes to qualified prospects. In most cases, customers want to accomplish their goal in just a few minutes.
For this reason, any delay would hamper the buying process and cause the prospect to hesitate. It doesn’t matter how far they are into the sales process. Many visitors even abandon their online carts altogether when faced with a laggy payment gateway—even if they’re already at the checkout process.”
Nick Drewe, Founder of Wethrif
5. Get the Inside Scoop from Browser History
“To convert website visitors into customers, do a more in-depth search of a customer’s search patterns. Even interests spread over a few years can tell you a lot about what they’re looking for. Get to know your customers by getting to know their history with your company.”
Cliff Auerswald, President of All Reverse Mortgage, Inc.
6. Take Attendance and Track Behaviour
“Identifying how many visitors become customers is very important for the success of your business. This allows you to quantify the success of your strategies. Monitoring online experiences can really help convert website visitors into customers. You should make an effort to identify how you could enhance their experience to keep them interested in your company. This can be achieved through studying and understanding customer analytics. Then, you can apply what you learn to your further digital strategies.”
Stephan Baldwin, Founder at Assisted Living Center
“CRM capabilities today offer us the ability to create a heat-map of clicks on each page of your website. These click patterns are quite useful in creating a clear visitor profile. Getting a grip on this profile can be a challenge, but we’ve found click maps a very useful component. For example, visitors who are new to your site will tend to intentionally avoid clicking links, and instead click empty spaces as they read and navigate your main page for the first time.”
Michael Dean, Co-Founder of Pool Research
7. Use Great Way to Friend People: Cookies (Yum)
“Cookies are the best way to convert website visitors into customers. Retargeting is the approach by which marketers can use valuable data gained through cookies to pursue their leads. Prospects who briefly visit your site and browse the jewelry section, for example, may later see that jewelry appears in their Facebook ads. That’s the power of cookies — and data itself — to drive results.”
Leanna Serras, Chief Customer Officer of FragranceX.com.
8. Show Them You Know Them
“You have just 10 seconds to communicate your product’s value to your typical first-time website visitor. The best way to catch your visitor’s attention is to create content that shows you understand their problems and explains how you are uniquely positioned to solve them.
For example, we know that our visitors wish to compare our product with similar offerings by our close competitors. To address this need, we created a product comparison table where we list 20 commonly requested features and compare our feature set with those of our five closest competitors.”
Brad Touesnard, Founder of SpinupWP
9. Provide Value Free for All
“Give visitors something of value for free. Paypal gave away free money to get people who signed up to use their site and sent money or made a purchase. Many cryptocurrency exchanges also gave away a small free amount of cryptocurrency. This is a sure way to get people engaged with your website.
Another great value you can give away is free and helpful information. That’s where your best blogging and other content efforts come in. Incentivize people who visit your website to give you some information so you can stay in touch. Nudge them towards following you on social media. Remember that people are more likely to do this if you provide them value.”
Shaun Heng, Chief of Staff at CoinMarketCap
10. Blog Your Heart Out
“You can convert website visitors into customers by sharing some valuable insights on your blog. Visitors might first come upon your site based on the blog material you have. And so, having valuable information that shows your expertise can intrigue them enough to view more of your website and the services or products you have to offer. Consistently providing blog content can help improve your chances of future sales. The visitors might not see anything they like now, but future items could spark some sales.”
Ben Reynolds, Founder of Sure Dividend
11. Make Them Feel Like the Only Customer
“Improve your customer service. Once you know your customers you will know what their needs are. Address those needs in the best way you can. One of the complaints we’ve heard from our visitors and customers alike was how difficult it was for them to contact us. Since then, just this year, we’ve implemented live chat on our site. People appreciate quick responses and having their questions answered. While we have online chat and email support, having a live chat salvages potential cart abandonments and conversions because they respond to time-sensitive issues.”
Ian Sells, CEO of RebateKey
12. Chat it Up
“One way to convert website visitors into customers is to have a chatbot or live chat option on your website. With these tools, customers are able to have their questions answered while their interest level is still high. It’s a great way to showcase excellent customer service before they even become customers and make a strong first impression. This helps to build trust in the brand or company and helps to convert prospects into buying customers. “
Zachary Hoffman, CEO at DigitalPR.com
13. Meet Them Where They Are – On Their Phones
“According to Analytics Usa, 51.1% of visitors to government websites were visiting from a mobile device. We have seen similar percentages across all websites for mobile traffic. Having the ability for mobile visitors to text your team via SMS is the new standard. Interacting with your visitors via SMS offers a new way to convert website visitors into customers and provide an optimal experience for those visiting from a mobile device. A good customer communication tool offers any visitor to your website the ability to text. And with our robust set of analytics, you can gain valuable insights that will help drive a more efficient mobile strategy for your teams.
Ray Tussing, Director of Business Development at LiveHelpNow.
14. Invite Them to Keep in Touch
“A good way to convert website visitors into customers is to have visitors opt into an email list where you can continue to draw their attention. You won’t get every site visitor to opt-in, but it will help increase your chance of getting more leads.”
Chelsea Cohen, Co-Founder of SoStocked
15. Ask Them to Stay
“One of the best ways to keep your visitors on your site is with exit-intent pop-ups. These cookies do exactly what the name suggests and create a pop-up window when a viewer goes to leave the site. This pop-up window is your last line of defense to keep this visitor and convert him or her. Build the pop-up ad to include personalized deals from items the visitor viewed, or at the very least, email signup where they can receive further deals and offers. The latter of these also allows your email list to grow by a hefty margin.”
Bryan Philips, Head of Marketing In Motion Marketing
16. Put in A good Word for Yourself
“Establish credibility on your home page. The place where you lose the most visitors is right on the home page. They view it for one second and then – click – they’re gone! One great way to entice visitors to stay longer and turn into customers is to include testimonials on the home page. The eyes will be drawn to the quotations and will begin to read them without much conscious thought. And so these quotations can do the work of enticing the visitor to stay longer. Make sure you choose the quotes that best represent your products and company vibe.”
Eric Thomas, Chief Solar Officer at Simple Solar Living
17. Play Games and Engage
“To increase the percentage of returning visitors and eventually customers, retain them with engaging content. Quizzes, for instance, are a great way to engage people with your site. If they can rely on your site to have new weekly quizzes, they’ll be more tempted to come back and eventually make a purchase. Another way to retain customers could be creating a high-value lead magnet, something that’s so high-quality that people would pay for it. Once they download the lead magnet, add them to your email list. Then, you can entice them to come back to your site.”
Tim White, Founder of milepro.com
18. Establish Trust Through Branding
“The primary difference between website visitors and customers is that the latter trusts you. Marketing strategies thrive on trust. From traditional print ads to modern-day SEO tactics, all marketing strategies are geared toward earning the prospect’s trust. After all, no customer would purchase from a brand that they distrust.
While earning trust takes time, bolstering your brand reach and reputation speeds up the process significantly. Prospects are more likely to trust a well-known brand. With that in mind, focus on broadening your brand reach and positioning your business as a recognized industry thought leader. Publish blogs, provide helpful tips, engage with your prospects, and, of course, provide freebies. Remember: no one likes stingy brands. You’ll be surprised by how well most customers react to freebies like promotional items, e-books, and store coupons.
Devin Schumacher, Founder of SERP