Industrial Marketing Blog

Is Your Industrial Website Leaking Leads?

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One persistent problem for many manufacturers and industrial companies is the small number of leads generated from their Websites. By default, they assume that the issue is the lack of traffic because of poor SEO. It is quite likely, that your industrial Website is attracting enough traffic but suffers from poor conversion. In short, you may have a leaky industrial Website. (See my earlier post, You’ve Got Traffic. Now What?)

Look at your Google Analytics, one quick indicator of a leaky Website is your bounce rate. Google defines bounce rate as “The percentage of single-page visits or visits in which the person left your site from the entrance (landing) page.” Anything over 60% is worrisome and you may have a leaky Website.

One caveat to the above rule of thumb – a page for downloading case studies probably will have a very high bounce rate but that doesn’t mean it is bad. If you are sophisticated enough with analytics, you can set up conversion tracking within Google Analytics to get a better handle on where the leads are leaking from your Website.

Often, I find industrial websites designed with no thought given to traffic conversion. The most common conversion mechanisms I see are a toll free number in a big bold font and a Contact Us or a lengthy RFQ form. While making your contact information very visible on your site is a good idea, it is not very effective in converting site traffic into named contacts or leads.

There is too much research evidence to ignore the fact that nowadays, engineers and industrial buyers don’t want to engage with sales people until they have done most of their research on their own using the Internet. These industrial professionals prefer self-service over talking to a salesperson until they are ready (aka, listening to a sales pitch early in their decision making process). Therefore, they will leave your site without taking any action if they can’t find what they are looking for within the first 15 to 30 seconds, if that long.

How do you overcome the leaking Website problem? I suggest that you create a digital self-service center on your industrial Website. It must provide relevant content that will help your site visitors make interim decisions and move them in a logical manner towards an RFQ or contacting your sales team. Your digital self-service center should be very visible right on the Home page and be accessible with one click.

It sounds simple enough, after all most manufacturers have lots of product information posted on their sites. I call that “post and pray” where the company has posted a bunch of datasheets on their site and praying that their visitors will read or download them. You have to put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think like him/her. Only then can you create relevant content for each step of their buying journey.

You have to shift your mind-set from “What we have to sell” to where your online content provides answers to “What do our customers want to do (solved)?” Only then can you create a digital self-service center that is capable of converting 50, 60 or even 100% more of your site traffic into qualified leads and sales opportunities. What I am saying here is exactly what many digital marketing gurus have said before me, “It’s not about you. It’s all about them (your customers).”

The questions you should be asking yourself are:

  • Do I have a leaky industrial Website?
  • Do I know which pages on my site need fixing?
  • Do I need a complete redesign of my site?
  • Does the content on my site address my customers’ pain points?
  • Do I have the right content for each stage of my customer’s buy cycle?

In this post, I have given you the “Know-what” and the “Know-why” about a leaking industrial Website. The “know-how” is my job. Visit my company’s website for help with industrial web design and for creating online content that converts. For more free help, read my previous post, “How Manufacturers Use 3D CAD Models and 2D CAD Drawings as Sales Enablers.”

Achinta Mitra

Achinta Mitra calls himself a “marketing engineer” because he combines his engineering education and an MBA with 35+ years of practical manufacturing and industrial marketing experience. You want an expert with an insider’s knowledge and an outsider’s objectivity who can point you in the right direction immediately. That's Achinta. He is the Founder of Tiecas, Inc., a manufacturing marketing agency in Houston, Texas. Read Achinta's story here.
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  1. Having spent the past decade helping industrial companies build lead follow-up programs and optimizing their web traffic to improve conversion, I can tell you that the biggest roadblock is desire. Once they get leads, they often don’t know what to do with them because of the relationship they have with their channel. To avoid channel conflict, they simply don’t distribute leads unless they have a clear definition of territories. As a result, they take an approach that makes it easy for the customer to get information and simply hope that they will ultimately go to their local distributor.

    There are of course companies that have found solutions to this and do it well. Here’s a link to one such resource:

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