5 ways your website can help you fill your sales pipeline

Finding more qualified prospects to fill the top of your sales pipeline is the best way to accelerate the growth of your company. Any action I can take to bring in more leads on a consistent basis, well, that’s action worth taking!

how to fill sales pipeline

You have a website. Everybody does. How hard is it working for you? Do you regularly get calls or emails from prospects who have been to your website? If not, here’s 5 Ways your website can help you fill your sales pipeline.

1. Be clear about what you do, who you do it for, and the difference you make in their lives and business.

Make sure that when your ideal client lands on your website it’s clear to them–in the first minute–that they belong there. You need to know the signals that will let your ideal client know that you help people just like them. For some folks it’s easy; if an accountant has chosen to focus only on churches, her message is clear. How do you make sure your ideal client knows that they are in the right place as soon as they land on your site?

Not only will this clarity magnetically attract your ideal clients, it will also discourage prospects who aren’t ideal. And this is doing you a favor, because people who aren’t your ideal client steal the time you could be using to find and serve the ones who are!

Example: BizEase Support Solutions

sales pipeline

What do you think BizEase does? If you are a speaker or coach, what tells you this is the right place to be?

2. Demonstrate your expertise. Show, don’t tell.

When I am at a party meeting new people, I start to notice people falling into two broad categories. The people I notice first are those who are driven to tell me how impressive they are. They talk about their travels, their important job, their accomplished children, etc. Then I start to notice another group of people. This group is often quiet initially–they aren’t banging a drum about where they work or where their kids go to school. Instead, I discover these things as I talk with them. They don’t trumpet their accomplishments, but I experience their intelligence and wisdom through the quality of the conversation we are having. And that conversation isn’t even about them! These folks are always returning the subject of the conversation to me–it’s like playing catch! I enjoy talking to these folks much more than those from the first group.

That’s the experience I want to have on your website. I don’t want your website to announce how great you are and shove your signs of success in my face (though, when I want to verify your bonafides, I should be able to find them). Instead of puffing up yourself and your company with a bunch of buzz words (which you think will mean something to me, but they likely won’t), impress me with real stories of the problems you’ve actually solved for clients just like me. You don’t have to work so hard telling me how great you are; because when you show me, I see your expertise in action. Stories and a demonstration of your knowledge will not only stay in my head, but they make me more likely to become a prospect.

Example: Digital Third Coast

sales pipeline

What tells your story better than a whole page full of client case studies with real numbers? Don’t miss the video too. There is no greater salesman for you than a happy client! Let them speak!

3. Invite people in. Collect email addresses — and actually use them.

If prospects feel at home, and they get to experience your expertise, then they want to stay connected. Give them an easy way to do that by putting an email subscription form on every page of your website. Make it prominent, and make it simple. Just add a little text to let them know what to expect when they sign up. Better yet, offer them something of value that they can get in exchange for that email address.

Once you have those email addresses, make sure you send something to them! A simple monthly update that points folks to the best stuff you are reading and writing–material that gets right to the heart of the problems your ideal clients are stuck on–will build trust and make them part of your tribe.

Example: Kneen & Co

sales pipeline
There’s nothing fancy here, but the call to action is clear. I know what to put in the box and what I’m going to get.

4. Ask them to raise their hand.

When people know that they are in the right place, and see that you are helping them, they might just want to hire you! Make it easy for them to do that, too. Don’t make folks go to a contact form, or “Contact Us” page. Put your phone number on every page of your website.

Make it easy for folks to call you! Have a spot on the sidebar where you tell people what to do if they want to work with you. That could lead to a form that emails you, or even to a page that sells a package right on your website. Just make it crystal clear, and easy.

Example: Assessment Pros

how to fill your sales pipeline

Assessment Pros have their phone number on every page of their site, and in the side bars, they have two different calls to action to prompt you to take action to reach out to them.

ways to fill your sales pipeline

5. Build relationships with your referral partners.

A good referral partner is a precious thing. That respected associate who serves an audience that overlaps a lot with your ideal client, but isn’t in direct competition with you, who is willing to send their clients and prospects to you (and if you can reciprocate, even better!) can be a continual source of well qualified leads.

Give them some space on your website too! Maybe they publish a blog post on your site a few times a year; maybe you co-create an eBook or video together that can be on both of your sites. Finding a way to get your partners to help you create the content on your website makes the job easier and helps you cement the bonds of that important relationship.

Example: Ask it Forward

Go to a conference, ask all the smartest folks there to answer one question and ask one question. Edit it all together and you have a fascinating piece of co-created content.

If you are doing all of this, and your website still isn’t bringing in new prospects, maybe you aren’t getting enough traffic, or you aren’t promoting your blog posts effectively. It can be done. Your website can be an effective part of your sales strategy.

What does your website do for you?




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Photo credit: seeweb

Brad Farris

As principal advisor of Anchor Advisors, Brad Farris has experience leading businesses & business owners into new levels of growth and success. Through his work with over 100 Chicago area small businesses he has experience in guiding founders and business owners through the pitfalls and joys of growing their business. Prior to joining Anchor Advisors, Brad spent over 10 years managing business units for a family-owned conglomerate with sales of $2 million to $25 million.  When he's not working, Brad enjoys cycling, cooking and the NFL. He is married with 5 children and lives in Chicago, Illinois. Connect with him on Google+, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Comments

  1. Terry Green says:

    You rock Brad … thanks so much for the wonderful surprise of seeing my website in your article!

  2. Is the sales pipeline another word for “flipping the funnel”? 😉

    • Well, yes, and no…

      Seth Godin’s book “Flipping the Funnel” was about helping your customers to get good at sharing your genius and attracting new clients — so the bottom of the funnel attracts the new top of the funnel.

      In this case I’m using Sales Pipeline to mean your new business process. It starts with prospects that you qualify and then make an offer to and they buy (or they don’t). The pipeline is the “customer journey” from awareness to consideration to purchase.

  3. Brad – thanks for using our website as an example – what a wonderful surprise. I appreciate the exposure and the positive encouragement we are doing some things right.

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