Responding to Web Leads

In Local Marketing by Marc

Responding to Web Leads

How to Convert More Web Leads to Revenue

Studies on Responses to Web Leads and Effectively Following Up

Since many local businesses continue to struggle with achieving the response times and expectations of local consumers needing their services, we decided to share some of the results from recent surveys to help these local marketers better understand what local consumers expect when handling web leads.  Marketing Charts recently published the results of a consumer survey entitled “Phone Response Times Impact Consumer Brand Preferences” which shared some very interesting thoughts and areas lacking in local marketing and follow up on web leads.

First, the area we were most interested in was sales conversion rates for web leads.  It is still amazing to find that many local businesses still have challenges in this area whereas they will spend more marketing budget in local marketing and advertising campaigns, yet lack the ability to effectively respond to local consumers demand.  In this particular study, 84% of the respondents indicated they would be either likely or very likely to do business with a brand that responded in less than a minute.  Through this study, it shared that consumers were 58% more likely to do business with companies that respond in shorter timeframes as opposed to waiting over one minute.

With local businesses, marketing and advertising are only as effective as the response and follow up process.  Far too often, consumers wait for local service providers.  In fact, very recently we witnessed a story by a homeowner who was seeking services for his home.  An appointment was scheduled for a Saturday morning at 10am with the request that “he and his wife both had to be there” for the provider to come on Saturday – sales guy wanted to make a sale.  Fair enough, all worked out until 10:10am when there had been no confirmation call, no email follow-up and no way to reach the office of the provider (it was Saturday and the office was closed).  Soon after, the sales guy calls to say he is still 30-40 minutes away.

Now these situations cannot always be avoided, but what can be avoided is the communication with the consumer.  The initial response by the local services company was decently quick (call within an hour of receiving web leads), yet the follow up and ongoing communication was weak and thus the sales guy did not get the sale.  In fact, it is quite possible that this particular company has to see many homeowners to make a sale as their conversation ratio is probably pretty low – just imagine their customer service after the sale.

In another interesting study conducted by an MIT professor with Lead Response Management, it was interesting to see the days and times of day that are best for following up on web leads.  In fact, there were several interesting results of this study and here are five that interested us most.

  • Wednesdays and Thursdays are best to make contact with web leads by almost 50% over the worst day,
  • Thursdays are best days to contact web leads in order to qualify them by almost 20% better than the worst day,
  • From 4pm until 6pm is best for calling to make contact with a web lead by more than 110% over the worst times,
  • From 8am until 9am and 4pm until 5pm are the best times to call to qualify a lead by over 160% better 1pm until 2pm which is the worst, and
  • Your odds of contacting a lead by phone decrease over 10 times in the first hour and after 20 hours, the results show that the calls hurt more than they help.

Social180 provides marketing services to local businesses with a focus on search engine marketing, business optimization and helping local businesses generate more web leads. We manage over 100 websites and over 100 social properties on Google+, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

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