Converting PPC Visitors Into Customers
Last month we started off by stating, “If you are reading this article while having a glass of wine (a beer or even a cup of coffee) you can be sure that the store where you purchased the wine knows how many bottles are left on their shelves and how many bottles you have purchased, via your membership or club card.
Do you know with the same precision, where each of your Pay Per Click (PPC) keywords ended up and which resulted in revenue for your company?” In this months article we will continue the discussion on why to optimize your web pages for each of your PPC keywords, which will result in increased revenue for your site.
Fine Wine and Your Keywords
Imagine a store that sells fine wines. The store manager decides to offer half-off on her favorite premium Chardonnay. She expects to sell many bottles of this wine because it is such a good value for a quality wine. Her wine store is extremely large and literally offers hundreds and hundreds of different types of wines.
The premium wines are all found in a special section near the back of the store. The store manager assumes that new and existing customers will find their way back to Chardonnay location. Unknown to her, after the ad runs many customers come in look about the store and cannot find this sale item and rather than ask they simply leave or pick-up something else.
The store manager might not even know that many people have had a hard time finding the sale item because when she looks at her inventory report it shows that there have been quite a few additional Chardonnay sales as some people have found the wine. Then one day, as the manager is walking near the checkout lanes. She overhears a customer who has bought a bottle of red wine, saying that, “I came to buy a case of that Chardonnay but I couldn’t find it so I picked this Merlot for tonight.” The store manager walks over to this customer and replies, “It is where it has always been, and then points to the location of the Chardonnay.” The customer thanks the manager (thinks to herself, “How am I suppose to know where it is located?”) but responds, “Oh thank you. I don’t have time right now, maybe be next time I am here…”
The store manager recognizes a lost sale.
Make It Easy For Customers
Immediately the store manager begins to correct this error and decides to “tune-up” the store by moving the featured Chardonnay to the front of the store and adds a display sign. Now as the customers walk in they can easily find the special sale. The manager notes that while the sales of the Chardonnay were good when it was in its normal location; that the sales actually tripled when the Chardonnay was moved to the front of the store.
Now what does this story have to do with your web site? The same way the store manager moved her Chardonnay to a convenient, visible location, is what you should be doing with your PPC keywords.
Is Your Special Item at The Front Of Your Store?
Between search engine rankings and PPC entry pages, every web page on your site is a front door. Visitors can enter at any page as their first page so you must have every page tuned and optimized. When your customers arrive at your web site you need to make sure that they find EXACTLY what they’re searching for on the page they first see AND they do not have to click to answer their basic questions. You are paying a premium for keywords and getting customers to come inside your store. Yet, if you make it difficult for them to find what they are looking for, they will leave without what they want, and your advertising money has been wasted.
One of the most common mistakes we see is mortgage companies make all their PPC keywords go to their loan application page. If someone is searching for “Florida VA loan” or for “Idaho mortgage” they are seeking information on that product before they go your application form. Make sure each PPC keyword links to a specific page on your site relevant to the customer selected keyword.
Six Clicks of Separation
You can use your web site statistic logs to see if you are really meeting your customer’s expectations. In example, you can determine that a visitor typed in the keyword “Portland home loans” and arrived at the main index page (click one), then clicked on the map of the US to arrive at the Oregon rate information web page (click two). Then the visitor visited the page “Portland home loans” (click three). Subsequently the visitor next went back to the Oregon page (click four), then to the homepage (click five) and then clicked on the application form (click six) because there was no link to the application page on any page except the main page.
By following a customer’s path through your site, you can gain an understanding of what your visitor is seeking and if your web site is easily providing that information.
One Degree of Separation
Six clicks on a site is a recipe for poor sales. All these clicks are more than most customers will endure at a mortgage company site. As you are aware, it takes just one click to visit your site and one click to leave. Your site should offer exactly what your visitor expected when they click on the PPC keyword.
If you look at your log reports and focus on the “Exit Page” report, you may be surprised to see which pages actually is the last page a visitor views before they depart. By reviewing these exit pages, you can rework the content and information and attempt to convert a departing visitor into a customer.
Many sophisticated mortgage companies are performing an in-depth path analysis of visitor flow to better understand the expense, and revenues, associated with their PPC campaigns. This allows companies to actually spend $5-10 per click and make MORE money per visitor because they have provided the exact content sought by the visitor.
We will discuss this topic in next months article, “Converting Pay Per Click Into Revenue Per Click.”
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