Sales Funnels – How are your going to make money with your website?

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Content Marketing, Online Marketing, Small Business

SalesFunnel - How are your going to make money with your website?A huge mistake often made by small businesses is not having a sales funnel. In fact, the phrase “sales funnel” is not even discussed when small businesses talk about websites, marketing, offers, etc. I’m amazed to see how many businesses are leaving literally thousands of money on the table by not creating smart systems in their online marketing strategies to get more prospects and customers contact information, deliver strong irresistible offers to generate revenue.

In fact most web designers never ask this very important and critical question: “How are you going to make money with your website?” After all, they went to design school, not business school, therefore it’s hard for them to think strategically on how you can use your website or landing page to generate more revenue.

The goal of sales funnels is to convert traffic into paying customers. My mission is to educate businesses on why and how they should build a website that is part of their overall marketing strategy and helps them increase their profits. I can’t tell you how many people have told me, “Carlos, I wasted $10k on a website that does nothing for my business”. Very often business owners end up with a “brochure website” that sits there doing nothing.

I believe that your online platform is an investment in your business that should quickly pay for itself. I see too many businesses spending time and money on things that don’t matter. Things that create more expenses but not revenue. I’m talking about things like: SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Social Media, Paid traffic, email marketing systems, etc. I’m not saying these things are not important. They are important but each and every one of them has its time and place in the marketing process.

Until you have a sales funnel (a website or landing page) that’s successfully working to convert visitors into leads and sales then you are wasting too much time and money and no amount of marketing or traffic seems to give you the results you want. People come to your site and nothing happens. More people come to your site and still nothing happens.

Keep in mind that today’s buyer has virtually unlimited access to information. They have the power to find and discover products at their own pace and make their own decisions on when to purchase. They do this mostly online. This means that your website has become your single most important marketing asset and that’s why your website needs to be part of your sales funnel process. So what is a sales funnel you might ask? A sales funnel is a plan to allow a person to become aware of your company, learn about it, and make a decision on whether not to buy.

The purpose of a sales funnel is

  1. Capture your prospects contact information such as names, emails and/or phone numbers
  2. Build relationships with your prospects by providing real vale before asking for anything in return
  3. Sell great products and/or services

Most people don’t want to share their email addresses. You have to have an attractive proposition or what we call an Irresistible Offer, that will help your audience solve a specific problem. Here’s where you have the golden opportunity of providing real value, establish trust and build relationships. Does this mean that you will have to wait several weeks or months before you start generating revenue? Absolutely no! If your product or service solves an immediate problem, your customers are willing to pay for it and your website does an excellent job in presenting that product or service so you convert those prospects into customers and generate more revenue then you have an effective sales funnel!

Here’s a quick example of a sales funnel:

Let’s say I’m a travel agent and have my own website where I offer basic information about me and my services. I have a contact information form, my phone number and button that says “call me for more info”. This approach might get me a few leads. However, doing it this way means that I’m just waiting for people to pick up the phone and call me. Here’s how I could turn this basic informational website into a sales funnel:

  1. I create a fee report of a topic of interest for my audience that likes to travel.
  2. The title of my report is “5 Things You Can Do Right Now to Save 50% on Your Next Family Vacation”.
  3. I place the report on my website and give it to anyone that provides me with their name and email address.
  4. I promote the page where I have the free report by mentioning it in social media, driving traffic to my site via Facebook or other social media sites and emailing the page to anyone I think might be interested.
  5. People go to my site, give me their name and email address to access the free report.

Now, I have a list of prospects. People that might be interested in my travel agency services. My next step is to convert those prospects into buying customers. Here’s how I would do it:

Every week I send an email with more special reports, hotel specials, vacation ideas, last minute cruise deals, free travel, etc. Keep in mind the goal here is not to bombard your prospects email list with offers and “buy more from me” but combine helpful content with strong and irresistible Call-To-Actions. This is where you build relationships. Now, you are being strategic and intentional about using your sales funnel to build your customer list and generate revenue. This sales funnel becomes a critical par of your overall marketing efforts.

Do you have a sales funnel for your business, how is working out for you and what would you add to this post?

To Your Success!
Carlos Morales

What to Focus on for Local SEO in 2015

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Marketing, Online Marketing, SEO

local-seo-imageCheck Out What You Need for Local SEO in 2015

Local SEO has evolved over the last several years from a fairly simple proposition to one that is a little more involved. While that may seem “harder” on the surface, what it actually offers is a lot of opportunity for those who are willing to do what’s necessary to get their sites to rank well locally.

Toward that goal, we’ve listed several best practices you’ll want to be aware of when it comes to local SEO for 2015. Some might not be new to you, while others will. Bear in mind, it’s a stew, and all of it works together to make it tasty!

2015 Local SEO Best Practices

Increase your site speed – Google loves a speedy page load, and besides, people simply won’t wait for your slow pages to load.

Optimize for Mobile – With half the traffic on the Web these days originating from a mobile device, it’s insane to ignore this any longer. Make a responsive mobile version of your site today.

On-page SEO – Make sure your title tags, descriptions, internal links and website schema are all representing your business the way they should.

Get more Reviews and Citations – Reviews are starting to overtake citations, but for now both are still important.

Acquire high-quality links – Make it your business to get the best links you can, from relevant high authority sites and high traffic sites. This is best if it originates from your content.

Give your content a local flavor – As much for visitors as for anything, ensuring that your content appeals to the local audience is a good idea.

Geotag your images – Geo-tagging your images with local geographic information tells Google what it needs to know, and greatly improves your chances of showing up accurately in Maps.

Encourage social signals – In addition to likely being a search engine signal, social media can become a far-reaching evangelist for your brand.

NAP data – As always, making sure your business information is consistent across ALL your platforms is a must. You should probably start right here!

Local SEO in 2015 may be a touch more involved than in years past, but the rewards for getting it right are also greater. Don’t let it wait another day!

Why Should I Buy From You Right Now?

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Content Marketing, Marketing

Why Should I Buy From You Right Now?Why should I buy from you right now, instead of buying anything else from anybody else next week or next month?

That’s your Unique Selling Propostion or as I’d like to call it your Unique Irresistible Offer. If you have a great answer to that  question, you can charge more money, invest more money into marketing or develop new products or offers for your audience, etc. If  you have an awful answer to that question, you’re in trouble before you even begin and there’s no headline or copywriting in the world  that can save you.

You might think you have an Adword, a Facebook Ad Campaign problem or a copy problem but most likely you have a Unique Irresistible Offer problem.

Selling to the right person is more important than all the sales methods, copywriting techniques, and negotiation tactics in the world. Because the wrong person doesn’t have the money. Or the wrong person doesn’t care. The wrong person won’t be persuaded by anything.

Having a Unique Irresistible Offer get rids of the wrong person, prospects, customers or clients. When you have a bad Unique Irresistible Offer you’re constantly fighting downward price pressure. You fight with other people in terms of prices and delivery. You feel the need to justify how much you charge or what your product or service does. You have to knock on lots of doors.

If that’s you, then there’s something you’re not promising, something you’re not guaranteeing or not communicating specifically enough that’s keeping you from being unique and keeping you from making more money.

There are four questions your Unique Selling Proposition or Unique Irresistible Offer Should Answer:

1) Why should I listen to you?

2) Why Should I do business with you instead of anybody and everybody else?

3) What can your product do for me that no other product can do?

4) What can you guarantee me that nobody else can guarantee?

What Can You Make “UNIQUE” about you? Think of these examples:

1. Your product is unique. It has guaranteed result. It’s tailor made for X kind of person. The user has a guaranteed “experience”

2. The market you serve is unique. Your focus is middle schools only or businesses with 15 employees or fewer.

3. Service. Guaranteed delivery in 24 hours or less. Guaranteed personal access to you. Guaranteed 24 hours support.

4. Your Price is Unique. You may have a premiun price. There are guaranteed add-ons that other competitors don’t offer at your price or which let you ask a higher price.

When you have a Killer Unique Irresistible Offer, you have the following: – Your products and services are easy to describe and fun to show off – Customers line up to buy from you – Writing ad copy is a lot easier – You raise your prices and get no resistance

– You dictate the terms of every transaction and your customer willingly follows.

So there you have it. Accept the challenge to be different. Take the time to create your Irresistible Offer before you do anything else in your business. Your uniqueness in the marketplace is what your right customers are looking for!

I challenge you to create your Unique Irresistible Offer right now or if you would like me to help you craft it for Your Lead Generation System, apply for a complimentary “Lead Generation Blueprint Coaching Session” where we’ll help you design a FREE marketing strategy for Your Business.

Click HERE to apply For a Complimentary Consultation. No strings attached.

I’m excited to see if we can help! 🙂

 

So What Makes Up Google’s Ranking Algorithm?

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog

So What Makes Up Google’s Ranking Algorithm?

Ranking highly in Google’s search results is considered the Holy Grail for marketers and website owners hoping to generate organic traffic from non-paid sources.

While of course there is always a cost to getting your pages in a position to get seen on Page One of Google, it is a very large piece of the traffic pie, and not to be dismissed.

So how do we know what is a part of the algorithm and what isn’t?

You’re right: it’s a closely-guarded secret at Google, but empirical evidence using all the frequent updates Google is fond of foisting upon us, (Pandas, Hummingbirds, and Penguins) has left clues that are valuable in deciphering what works and what does not.

What follows are 13 ranking factors that are no doubt important to the equation. We know there are well more than 200 in all, so this list is by no means exhaustive, but it will give you a good place to start!

13 Ranking Factors for Google Search

Keyword in page title tag – This one is still very important, and helps Google determine exactly what your page is about.

Length of content – Tests are showing that longer form content, between 1000-2000 words is winning spots on Google Page One far more than any other, particularly if that content is rich in LSI and related content.

Page loading speed – A huge factor, both for search engines and visitors, as studies are showing that we now sport an attention span of 8 seconds, 1 second less than a goldfish. So, if you page loads slowly…

Keyword in URL – If at all possible, it’s a good thing to have your primary keyword for the page in the URL.

Video and Images – Videos and images tend to keep visitors on your page longer, which translates to better rankings. Especially true if you have YouTube videos there.

Outbound authority links – Linking to authority sites in your market is a good sign to Google. Domain Trust and Trustrank – Closely related to the above point is Trustrank, measured by looking at the reputation of the sites linking to you.

TOS and Privacy Pages – Making sure you have these in place it goes a long way toward Google seeing yours as a viable entity.

Contextual links – Links in the body of your content carry far more weight than in other places on your page, such as the sidebar or footer, no matter who they’re from.

A natural link profile – A link profile that’s grown naturally, and not filled with high PR links all sporting the same anchor text.

Social signals – There’s little doubt now that Google considers social signals when determining where to rank your page. Social is here to stay.

Page over-optimization – Making too great an effort to sculpt your own page rank by over-optimizing your pages can have a detrimental effect.

Too many ads – Having an abundance of ads that lead offsite to affiliate offers and other products is a no-no, especially above the fold on your home page.

Does Your Website Suck? What You Absolutely Must Know Before Building or Re-designing Your Website

Written by Carlos Morales on . Posted in Blog, Online Marketing, Social Media

What You Absolutely Must Know Before Building a Lead Generation WebsiteYou’ve got a website, maybe a website that you spent quite a bit of money on and yet day after day you are waiting for a whole bunch of customers to walk into your business to buy what you have to offer or you’re waiting for a whole bunch of people to give you their email addresses so you can start promoting your product or service.

But wait. Nothing happens.

You are sitting there and your website becomes an expense more than asset. In other words you are just paying to have an online brochure that no one is seeing.

You are probably blaming Google because your site is not showing when people are searching for you or your web developer for not creating a site that all of the sudden was going to bring customers or your prospects for not understanding what your business offers.

But once you start asking why your website is not doing anything, then you start examining the reasons and start looking for solutions. If you have a website (even if it’s very basic) or you’re thinking about building one, start by implementing these basic strategies because they’ll make a huge difference on your overall business marketing strategy!

1) Have an Offer – but not just any offer. Have an Irresistible Offer. An offer that is so good that people would feel foolish to pass up. It could be a huge discount, a free service, free product, etc. Make it very appealing to your target audience. Bring a solution to your audience’s concerns, questions, problems or demands.

2) Have an Opt-in form – this is a form where you ask your visitors to give their names and email addresses so they can receive the Offer you have for them.

3) Have a Call to Action (CTA) button on every single page of your website – the purpose of this CTA is to ask your visitors to do something in order for them to receive your offer. This could be a “Download Now”, “Get Your Offer”, “Give Me Access”, “Give Me My Discount Now”, “Send My Info Now”, etc. This button needs to be very accessible. Not hard to find. The goal is to build a list of people interested on what you have to offer. This is the revenue generator because now you can promote your product or service to people that are looking for what you have.

4) Social Media Presence – Your website is just one of the vehicles you have to increase your customer base. It’s part of your overall marketing strategy. It’s your starting point. But you also must be building your credibility and authority by being present where your customers are. I can guarantee you that at least a portion of your target audience is in one or two social networks. The question is: Are you there also? Are you communicating with them? Also, by being present and active on social media you help the search engines find you.

If you implement these 4 strategies your website will go from being dormant, a nobody to a very active lead generation tool. These basic strategies are so simple and powerful yet ignored by thousands of businesses.

I just finished a pdf in which I go into more detail about these strategies. It’s a FREE report titled “The Real Truth: What You Absolutely Must Know Before Building a Website Yourself and How To Make it Successful”. It’s a MUST read if you are planning on using your website as a lead generation tool that converts leads into buyers.

What do you think of these strategies? Have you implemented them? What other strategies have you used?