Here’s a question that’s probably keeping you up at night: How do I turn my site visitors into customers?
You’ve heard stories of other guys and gals who’ve had massive success online. They were able to provide a sustainable living for themselves—maybe even quit their day jobs and devote their lives to doing what they love. You want to experience some of that magic too. But how?
Automation is the secret that many successful brands use to grow their businesses and engage their leads. With the right automation systems, you can turn first-time visitors into sales-ready prospects. I’m going to share with you some of the best systems to do just that. Let’s get started.
What is an Automated System?
An automated system is a tool or collection of tools that act with zero or minimal human input. That sounds pretty cold and severe, right?
Let me put it this way: Automation frees up your time so that you can focus on what you do best—assuming that’s not scheduling appointments or sending out the same emails over and over again.
There are dozens of tiny tasks we do every day that rob us of our peak efficiency. Your time would be better spent building your business, not fielding FAQs or tweeting out your most recent blog post. However, these tasks need to be done if you want to run a successful business and turn leads into prospects.
So, what does automation have to do with converting first time visitors into sales ready prospects? Only everything!
You see, automation allows you to put certain systems in place so that when a first time visitor (lead) happens upon your website, they’re automatically escorted into your sales funnel. And you don’t have to do any extra work to make this happen. As long as you’ve set up the systems in advance, they’ll work pretty much in the background without any prodding from you. Sweet.
Wait, What’s the Difference Between a Lead and a Prospect?
I understand these terms can be interchangeable, so let’s get on the same page with a simple definition.
A lead is what I’ll call an interested party. They’ve wandered onto your site looking for the answer to their problem. They’re interested in what you have to offer in general, but they don’t have enough information about your brand to specifically want to do business with you.
A prospect is someone who’s moved past the introduction stage and is headed toward the sale. They’re more educated about who you are and what you do, and are also more engaged with your brand.
A prospect may even be a first-time visitor who’s looked around your site and learned about your offerings. This individual has actually taken a step toward interacting with you. Perhaps they signed up for your email list, opted into your free trial, or set up a free consultation call.
A prospect is firmly in the middle of your sales funnel and on the cusp of actually making a purchase. A lead, on the other hand, is completely new and may bounce off of your site at any moment unless you have the right automated systems in place to keep them engaged.
So, let’s take a look at which systems you should consider including on your site (or as part of your overall marketing strategy) to convert these leads into motivated prospects.
Here’s a list of additional automated systems I didn’t get a chance to cover in this post.
As its name suggests, Acuity Scheduling is a scheduling app—and it’s pretty awesome. The reason Acuity Scheduling belongs on this list is because you can actually embed it on your website and allow your clients to schedule appointments with you through it. This app syncs with Google Calendar. There’s no need to go back and forth via email—your availability is automatically accessible.
If you have a Squarespace site, here’s a tutorial on how to embed Acuity Scheduling.
ConvertKit is an email marketing service provider that I absolutely adore. It’s intuitive, easy to use, and so much better than the competition.
ConvertKit is more than just a tool to send out newsletters.
With ConvertKit, you can set up a broad set of automation rules based on an “if this then that” logic. For example, if a user signs up your email course, you can set it up so that they automatically receive a “welcome to the course” introductory email that you’ve prepared.
You can also use triggers in ConvertKit to easily move your email subscribers from one group or segment to another. For example, people who click on a link within your email to schedule an appointment with you may be moved over to a “sales-ready” group. You may send this group more exclusive, targeted content in the hopes of converting them from prospect to customer.
Having an email service provider is one step. The next step is actually promoting on social media to get people reading your blog and signing up for your email list.
But what if you don’t have time to post on social media?
I have the perfect solution. It’s called MeetEdgar and it allows you to upload social media posts that will then cycle through automatically during the schedule you set. MeetEdgar reuses your content to bring more viewers, which basically means you can never run out of content to post on social media! Use this tool to keep your social media community engaged.
SumoMe offers some of the best traffic building tools of all times. For automation, I love List Builder.
List Builder is a popup box that encourages first time visitors to sign up for your email list. These boxes are completely customizable and can be displayed when the visitor is getting ready to leave. It’s also mobile optimized so the List Builder popup looks good on smartphones and tablets.
Typeform may seem like a weird tool to include on a list of automation systems, but I absolutely love this option for segmenting incoming emails from your website.
Here’s how it works:
On your contact page, include a Typeform instead of just a “contact me” message box. This interactive form will help you filter emails based on their answers. You can set it up so that incoming emails are automatically routed to the right department.
Alternatively, with the help of a tool like Zapier, you can then send out an automated email response based on their answers within your typeform. For example, people who want to learn more about your services will receive one automated email response from you, whereas people who want to advertise on your site will receive another. Here’s a detailed tutorial on how to set all of that up.
Knowledge is power.
So, consider adding a robust knowledge base to your website, especially if you find yourself answering the same questions over and over again. A knowledge base is a library of information that lives on your site as a resource for your visitors. It’s like an extended FAQ section, and it can dramatically cut down the amount of time you spend answering the same questions.
Bonus points for it being completely automated since you’ve taken the time to ask and answer all of these questions yourself and place them in a self-service tool like HelpScout.
Want to learn more about automating your life? Check out these posts:
Don’t forget to download this list of additional automated systems I didn’t get a chance to go over in this post.