Online lead generation is essential for any serious business. A person who provides contact information on your website is a lead. A lead is a potential customer.
If you’re reading this, it’s probably because you have a website for your business … and you’re hearing crickets. The leads are barely trickling in … if at all.
Do you remember that old Kevin Costner baseball movie, “Field of Dreams”? There’s this famous line from the movie … “If you build it, they will come.”
Publishing a website is not like that.
Many factors play into whether your website will attract leads. In this article, you’ll learn the various possible reasons your website is losing leads.
So without further ado, here’s …
7 Reasons Your Website Is Losing Leads
Copywriting is basically all the words on your website. It informs readers they’re in the right place. And, most importantly, it gets them to take a specific action like filling out a lead form or giving you a call.
Throw out the guidelines you learned in English class. Copywriting IS NOT the same as “writing good”. It’s a blend of marketing know-how, understanding people’s psychology and writing in a disarmingly conversational tone.
You won’t become an expert copywriter over night. And the scope of this article is too small to teach you.
But, as a basic rule, you want your visitors to know these things about your business …
- What you do.
- Who you do it for.
- Why it matters.
- And why you’re the best person or team to do it.
Avoid using industry jargon. Use short sentences. Be clear in your messaging. And remember, less is more.
You’ve heard it before. People don’t read websites. They skim.
If a visitor can’t understand what you do by skimming, they’re less likely to stay on the page. This underscores the importance of writing good headlines (copywriting). Once visitors are sure they’re in the right place, they might dig further into your body copy.
This is also where your copywriting comes into play. Easy readability is essential. The simpler your sentences the better. And the less text you have, the easier it will be to skim and understand.
Mind you, this doesn’t take the pressure off your designer to organize your copy. No matter how much wording is on a page, it needs a structure. Web designers worth their salt will make your copy easy to scan and read. To do this, they’ll use sections, headlines, font styles, columns, images and graphics.
Finally, the use of white space is a key factor that many web designers miss. Too many visual elements are distracting and, if you’re guilty of this, are one of the key reasons your website is losing leads. It can be a huge turn off, causing visitors to bolt as fast as they arrive. So, if you do nothing else, be sure a cushion of white space surrounds your sections, headlines and text.
One major role of your website is to inspire trust with your visitors. Dated websites do the opposite.
An old website sends the message that your business is out of touch with the times. And this makes one wonder, “Are your business practices also tired?”
Most consumers today are quite web savvy. They know an old website when they see one.
Here are a few signs of an outdated website …
- It uses more than 3 colors. They’re probably neon-bright. They might even clash.
- No structure. A website with a jumble of words on a long page is a dead giveaway. See the section above, “Cluttered pages”.
- Old fonts. The fonts might be ugly and tired like Comic Sans, Impact or Bradley Hand.
- It’s not mobile responsive. This means the site doesn’t change its layout to fit mobile and tablet screen sizes.
- Dated photos. Old stock images are generally cheesy. Today’s stock photos are more candid, relaxed and even stylish. On another note, dark, grainy photos taken with an old smartphone are not acceptable!
Why you need mobile web design: If your website isn’t mobile responsive, you’re missing a huge lead generating opportunity. Mobile friendly websites get increased visibility on search engines. This means more visitors come to your website. More traffic equals more leads, conversions and sales.
Need more convincing? CNBC reports 73% of people will access the web solely with their smartphones by 2025. People decide to stay on or leave your website in a matter of seconds. If your website is hard to read on mobile devices, they will most definitely bounce.
Lack of Forms
Don’t make your website visitors work for information. This is an old online marketing adage that will stand the test of time. If it’s not easy to open a services conversation, or get answers to their questions, most people won’t bother.
Not having lead forms on every page could be one of the top reasons your website is losing leads. You want the forms to look nice. Of course! But most importantly, make them visible, and make them stand out. Your designer can do this by placing the form inside of a container. The background can be a different color than the rest of the page. Or, it might have an image behind it.
There’s a whole science to designing lead forms that convert. But that’s a blog post for another day. One of the most important keys though, is to limit the amount of information you request. The less information you ask for, particularly of a cold lead, the more likely you’ll be to get their details. That doesn’t mean you should skip asking for necessary information. If part of your strategy is to call leads, by all means. Include a phone number field. On the other hand, you might not need their eye color or birthdate.
You’re Not Testing What Works
Web design for leads is an art. Testing what works for your audience is the science.
Landing page best practices don’t always attract leads. For example, putting an email opt-in form above the fold is a gold standard. (The form is immediately visible before you scroll down the page.) Yet, Hubspot found they got 304% more conversions when they added a form below the fold.
A web designer who designs for lead generation will get you halfway there. The rest of the way to leads gold is testing and fine tuning what works. That said, it’s important to use tracking software like Google Analytics on your website. It will allow you to track what people are doing on your site. These metrics will show you the impact of your pages and forms. You’ll also see where you’re website is failing to keep and convert visitors into leads.
In the design phase, you might wonder if you should include a particular section on your web page. With Google Analytics, you can add or remove it to measure the impact. Does the headline on your form work? Collect data and then try a new headline. Should your lead form buttons be orange? Collect data and then change them to blue.
Fine tuning your website for lead conversions is a worthy activity. It’s also a vast topic. Here’s a helpful article about Conversion Rate Optimization. It will give you a basic understanding of how to test and optimize your website.
Not Enough Traffic
A “hungry” businessperson might never have enough web traffic. But getting 25 or fewer monthly viewers at your website isn’t going to cut it.
Like sales, the lottery and dating, lead generation is a numbers game. The more numbers you have to work with, the greater the odds of winning.
How much web traffic you need depends on these factors …
- your sales goals
- how many unique site visits equal a lead (a.k.a. Lead Conversion Rate)
- and how many leads equal a sale. (a.k.a Sales Conversion Rate)
Your Lead Conversion Rate is the percentage of total website visitors that fill out a lead form or give you a call. A high lead conversion rate lets you know your copywriting and web design are effective.
Your Sales Conversion Rate is the percentage of total leads that result in sales. A high sales conversion rate indicates your sales strategies are effective.
If you don’t already, start to track and analyze site visits with Google Analytics. Then, calculate the average number of unique site visits it takes for you to get a lead. From there, determine how many leads it takes to get a sale.
Calculate your conversion rates with these formulas …
- Lead Conversion Rate = Number of Leads / Total Unique Visits on Site X 100
- Sales Conversion Rate = Number of Sales / Number of Leads X 100
With your conversion rates in mind, you can work toward boosting web traffic and improving your website for leads.
Things you can do to increase web traffic include …
- paid advertising
- search optimizing your website
- improve page speed loading time
- have a mobile friendly website design
- publish regular blog content and free reports
- promote your content and free reports on social media
- write guest blog articles for high traffic websites
- invite others to guest blog on your site
This list of ways you can get more web traffic seems long, but it’s not comprehensive. As you can see, there are plenty of ways to get more site visits. Don’t let a lack of traffic be one of the reasons your website is losing leads. Choose a few of the options above and make a plan to work them into your marketing strategy.
Slow Loading Pages
Do you remember the days of AOL dial up? Slow loading web pages are seriously annoying. From food to information and everything in between, we’re used to getting what we want … and fast.
According to Kissmetrics, 47% of visitors expect a website to load in less than 2 seconds. And 40% will leave the website if loading takes more than 3 seconds.
In short, pages that load too slowly can actually be one of the reasons your website is losing leads. It seems like such a simple thing and you might not have even considered it. But people might favor websites over yours just because they’re faster.
If your site seems slow, check that it’s not your local network. You can tell if it is by trying to load another website. If it’s also slow then it’s your network.
To be doubly sure, you can test your page loading speed at GTmetrix. It’s free and fast. You’ll get a report like the one shown in the photo above. The report gives your website a grade based on how quickly it loads. It also includes things you can do to improve the page speed.
Your web pages might load slowly for a few reasons.
1. Bad web hosting. Sometimes websites are sluggish because of a slow server on the hosting side. Free web hosting is notoriously slow. A few of these are Wix, Weebly and WordPress.com (not the self-hosted version). Also, many paid web hosts have poor quality service. The old adage is true: you get what you pay for. Lower prices often mean poor reliability and low-quality service.
2. High resolution images. Large images take time to load. If you have a bunch of them, you can expect extra load time for every picture. Edit your file sizes in photo editing software to reduce load time.
The best pixel size for your photos vary depending on what they will be used for. A thumbnail image can be significantly smaller in pixels than an image that will stretch the width of a page.
- Thumbnail images might range from 250 px to 600 px in width.
- Text wrapped images, like the ones you see in blog posts, might range from 350 px to 650 px in width.
- And, for banner images, you might choose a file size of 1500 to 2500 pixels wide.
Summary of Reasons Your Website Is Losing Leads
Getting more leads from your website might require a total website redesign. Or it might be that you need to test and tweak a few variables.
Scan your website for any of the above lead squashing factors. It’s helpful to also have others review your site. Ask if your messaging is clear. Are your pages easy to scan and read? Does the site feel dated in any way? Is it obvious what to do next or how to contact you?
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