Six quick wins to convert web visitors to clients

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Alex Tucker, who leads the PracticeWEB marketing team, reveals six areas of focus that accountancy firms can increase the volume of leads and sales generated from their websites.

Speaking with Chris Hughes in a live webinar this morning, Tucker outlined the following simple and practical ways to convert web visitors to clients:

1. Optimise your ‘about us’ page - This is where prospects go to evaluate you and they will have thousands of accountants offering similar services to choose from. Avoid using generic text and differentiate your firm. Be credible and approachable, showcase your team and its talent/specialisms, and add your direct contact details, Tucker said

2. Mobile friendly - Taken from 2013 stats, a massive 15% of web traffic is now mobile, meaning a ‘responsive’ website is essential to extend your reach. Google also recently revealed that 90% of people move between devices to accomplish a goal, so it’s important your site is easy to use on any device

3. Trust symbols - Clients need to feel at ease and prospects are less likely to get in touch with you if your website doesn’t create trust. Don’t hide away your accreditations of practice and partners on your site. Also make it clear if you’re part of any associations or networks. You can build trust visually and through content

4. Social proof - Tucker said drew on some stats that 92% of people trust word-of-mouth recommendations and 63% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a site with ratings and reviews. To show how many people you’ve helped, write detailed case studies and use named testimonials. Anonymous recommendations are likely to be perceived as written by your practice. Be authentic and remember that social proof lives offsite too

5. Think about forms - These will turn anonymous web visitors into sales leads. Determine the level of information and qualification. It’s important to experiment with this a bit: More fields = more friction and more friction = fewer leads. However sometimes fewer leads = better win rate

6. Call to action - perhaps most importantly, the call to action is the ‘conversion point’ where the visitor makes their decision to contact you or sign up for information. It’s the difference between conversion and exit. Avoid using “submit” or “click here” as a CTA. Be specific, positive and tell them what to expect.

In terms of practical next steps, check Google Analytics, review your web performance, check benchmarks to make tweaks.

When it comes to benchmarks for lead generation and sales, Tucker explained that on average, professional services firms turn 5% of web visits into enquiries. Of those enquiries they will convert 50% into proposals, and they will win 30% of those proposals.

Therefore, you will need more than 60 visitors for each new client.

As conversion rates improve invest more time in promotion.

About Robert Lovell

Business and finance journalist

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    05th Nov 2014 17:40

    make it clear if you’re part of any associations or networks

    Affilica's experience concurs with item 3 above. Affilica’s research shows that corporate clients (when choosing their accountant or lawyer) do actually ask if the short-listed professional firm is a member of a group. Corporate clients have a jungle instinct about stand-alone firms (percieved as autocratic, whereas a group member is perceived to be answerable to the group and hence bound to deliver better). The selection process broadly cover these areas:
    1. Do you have the Technical Specialisation that we need?
    2. Do you have experience of our Industry sector?
    3. Do we have easy Communication and cultural affinity?
    4. Are your Fees affordable i.e. not minimum £10,000?
    Then comes the X-Factor question: 5. Are you a member of an active international group?
     http://www.affilica.com/ourpresentation.pdf demonstrates this point.
    This is how it is for corporate directors who avoid being blamed/fired/lose bonus for appointing the wrong type of firm of accountants or lawyers. The sole trader client on the other hand does not live in the corporate culture. So, those professionals who operate a "bee hive" firm (offices where staff work most days of the week) do look for corporate clients since they are more lucrative; the stand-alone usually falls at the last post in the beauty parade since they are not in an active international group. However, being in an active international group entails paying subscription and the stand-alones are not used to that. That is how the cookie crumbles, to use an American phrase.

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    03rd Nov 2014 17:36

    I'm not

    sure some of my clients would appreciate their detailed cases plastered about the internet. You would certainly have to get permission from them.

    You've actually re-enforced my belief that word of mouth is best. 92% that says it all.

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    05th Nov 2014 14:18

    Hi John

    I would certainly get permission from clients before publishing any details  at all. Case studies should be specific around the benefits gained or the problems solved but never reveal any confidential details. 

    Referrals and recommendations are of huge importance, and studies have shown that referred clients can have higher value than clients sourced by other means.

    It's worth noting that while a high percentage of people value the advice of their peers when it comes to who they do business with, web presence does have an important part to play in this process as this  is rarely the sole influencing factor in a purchasing decision (especially on of high value or importance). This is especially important where clients may receive several different recommendations.

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    05th Nov 2014 16:20

    @Alex

    Not with you. Your article says you should use "named" testimonials otherwise they might not be believed, yet then you say not to reveal any confidential information. Surely the clients' name is of a confidential nature?

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    06th Nov 2014 08:51

    @john
    You can certainly find out my name without too much trouble

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    06th Nov 2014 12:48

    Good points well made, but now everyone has a web site is every one on an even keel and back to square one.

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    11th Nov 2014 12:34

    Andrew

    Just because everyone has a website doesn't mean we're back to square one - there is so much you can do to make it stand out from the competition! 

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    04th Feb 2016 06:51

    Accountant Lead Generation
    All these six areas of an accounting website are of great significance as these enhances accounting leads and clients. Thanks for passing such beneficial information.

     

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    12th Feb 2016 10:14

    Toronto Accountant
    All these six areas are worth implementing on an accounting website. These will surely help in converting web visitors into clients.

     

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