Real-World Case Study: Why Your Website Should Mirror Your Offline Sales Pattern
by Chad Lane, Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer.
After working with many clients on both their marketing and their websites, we made a remarkable but simple discovery: A company’s website should parallel the pattern of their face-to-face sales process. This discovery was very useful when we updated the website of a client selling custom-designed tables in the $3,000 price range.
The client was trying to sell his tables with an Amazon-style online store. However, no one is going to click and buy a $3,000 table like they would a stapler or toaster oven. And because no one was buying, the website was essentially wasted real estate.
When the client came to us for help, we interviewed him extensively to find out how he sold his tables. He surely wasn’t getting any leads from the website. We learned that he’d been visiting people at trade shows for years. His natural enthusiasm and ability convinced people to buy from him.
When COVID closed down the trade show industry, the client transitioned to networking and talking to people wherever he could find them. But his website didn’t utilize this successful pattern. It just offered the tables on a static webpage.
Paralleling the Company’s Sales Success
We built this client a new website that would take his successful pattern online. His new site was designed to do one thing: capture leads along with enough information to stimulate a productive conversation. After all, this was the exact way he had been selling his product in person.
First, the site needed to convince the prospective customer about the expertise of the builder. They needed to know that this was a person who could make their dreams come true. Images of his custom-designed products plus rave reviews from customers did much of the work. Then we needed them to get in touch using a newly designed contact form.
The contact form asked the prospect to upload pictures of their house so the client could see their style. He needed a photo of the area where they wanted to place this custom table. They were asked to describe the table they had in mind—size, type of wood, shape, function and so on. Our client needed enough information to dive right into that productive conversation with this potential customer.
This form served another function as well: it caused the prospective customer to imagine that custom table in his own home. It got the prospect’s juices flowing, you might say. A fast followup call to the prospect hit them right at that peak of creativity.
One thing this client knew inside and out was how to communicate with an interested prospect. This was what he had been doing at trade shows for years. With this updated website, he had a way to continue his successful sales pattern with the leads acquired through the site.
After a Site Is Launched
After we launch a new site like the one above, we follow up to ensure it brings in the client’s target prospects. We monitor the site’s traffic to determine how many people visit compared with how many contact the company and how many eventually buy.
In this case, we were building a site that needed to engage people’s interest in contacting the builder about his custom tables. We monitored the pages they landed on first, which pages they went to from there and which pages they exited from. We could then adjust those pages for the best results.
A website is a changing, dynamic thing. It’s not something that you launch and leave. It needs to be monitored and adjusted until it gets the result you want.
Applying This Philosophy to Other Businesses
This pattern can definitely be used for other products and services. A medical business offering elective services could model their website after the initial interviews done with prospective patients. First, the website would need to engage the interest of the patient by assuring them of the expert results achieved by this facility. Testimonials and images work well here.
The contact form then finds out what procedures the prospective patient is interested in, how soon they are thinking about taking action and so on. Now the website parallels the in-person sales action of the group. When the rep calls the patient, they already have plenty of information with which to start the conversation.
It’s a simple concept but one that is key to so many businesses, especially in these days when there’s not as much face-to-face contact. I know with absolute certainty that some websites should be doing a better job of capturing leads. If this is something you need, complete this form and we will get back to you in one business day.