The dream of every business owner, content marker, or blogger is to convert readers into paying customers.
However, converting those readers to leads, let alone customers is a huge challenge. If you already own a blog, you’ll agree that there’s a lot involved in making a reader click on that “sign” button or affiliate link besides creating engaging content.
And if you are yet to generate any revenue from your blog, don’t throw in the towel yet. Because in this guide, I’ll help you convert your blog visitors into customers.
Let’s delve right in.
1: Find blog conversion opportunities
The first step to converting blog traffic to customers is looking for CRO opportunities on your site. This means knowing where most of your visitors hang around, how they interact with your pages, and what’s preventing them from converting.
And that’s where analytics tools come in handy. In our case, we recommend Google Analytics. It’s free and has undergone massive improvements over the years to give users detailed metrics of their traffic.
By using Google Analytics, you’ll discover the pages getting the most traffic on your blog, the channels that drive the most traffic, and your audience’s steps in your conversion funnel.
While creating your lead magnet, you want to make sure to put it on pages that receive more eyeballs. And so, understanding your traffic sources, demographics, and your reader’s behavior on your site will help you create an incentive that your audience will hardly resist.
Although Google Analytics gives you essential data about your audience, you are still without key metrics about your readers. How are your readers interacting with your pages? What regions are being overlooked? What are the best places to put your lead magnet?
This is where heatmap tools come in handy.
Basically, a heatmap tool helps you visualize how users interact with your website. You’ll know what sections on your page your readers pay more attention to.
For example, look at this heatmap screenshot generated from this website.
Image source: Crazyegg.com
Using the scroll metrics, you can see that a huge percentage of people hardly scrolled down the above-the-fold section. That means if you have your lead magnet located way below or midway on the page, users will not see it.
And for that reason, it would be wiser to move your offer up your page to where most of your readers are likely to see it.
Heatmap tools also show you what prevents your readers from signing up for your offer. Take a look at this click map image that was generated from the hotjar website.
Image source: hotjar.com
From this image, it is evident that a few people clicked on the call to action button. A large percentage of the visitors seemed to concentrate on the sidebar and watch the video instead.
Although the video did a great job of improving dwell time, it also distracted users from taking action immediately. The same applies to the sidebar section. It had some links that drove the visitor away from the page and prevented them from clicking on the CTA “Set up your heatmap now”.
Hypothetically, moving one of the website’s important pages on the sidebar and placing the video elsewhere will likely create a distraction-free experience for your visitors, which will make it more likely for them to convert.
When you combine Google Analytics data with your heatmaps information, you will build a system that helps you understand your audience better. And when you have more insights, you can create highly effective CTAs for higher conversions.
2: Turn your homepage into a landing page
It’s sad that some bloggers still use their homepage as the blog feed. Maybe to some, they are okay with it.
But for a young blog struggling to generate leads, I don’t think using your homepage as a typical blog feed is a good idea.
Most people who land on the homepage are not always searching for your latest posts. They want to learn more about you and your business. They want to be assured that they can trust you. And for that reason, your homepage acts as an excellent tool to convince them to take action immediately.
Besides, highly optimized landing pages can drive more organic traffic to your site. One study shows that 48% of the top-ranking landing pages on Google Maps and organic search query results are homepages. That being said, landing pages have the potential to drive high-quality traffic to your website.
Creating a landing page does not have to be complicated. Just look at this simple landing page by OrkDork.com from Noah Kagan.
Just the headline, a signup form, a hero image, and one single testimonial down the page. No sweat, no fancy stuff.
Either way, it can be a bit more detailed, enticing yet simple like this one from Ryan’s blog.
Ryan has even included logos of reputable publications where his site has been featured. Which helps establish his blog as a reliable platform to his visitors. To learn more about creating a great landing page, I recommend that you read this resource from Backlinko.
3: Make use of popups
Popups have their magic. They convert well. Sumo’s study of over 2 billion popups found that popups have an average conversion rate of 9.28%. That’s three times better than PPC advertising which has an average conversion rate of 2.35%.
So yes, popups can be annoying, but they do have the potential to generate massive leads if used appropriately .
The question is, how do you use popups to convert blog readers into leads.
Begin by offering an incredible incentive to your audience. It can be a case study, a free ebook, a free trial to your tool, a sneak peek at your paid online course, or even templates. The goal is to be less aggressive and offer something of value in exchange for their emails.
After that, avail the popups on specific pages. Don’t have the same popup on all pages. For example, if you have a popup offering readers free cold email templates, I expect that the popup should only appear on the pages related to cold pitching. Anything slightly different won’t personalize your readers’ experience, which will be nothing but a distraction to them.
A good example is how the folks at Coschedule use popups to create audience-specific offers.
I read one of their guides, “How to create an editorial style guide for more consistent content,” and was hit with this popup as I was about to leave.
These guys know that I’m probably a content creator or a content marketer reading their guide. And pitching their free marketing calendar tool is more likely to catch my eye. Genius right?
The second thing you need to create highly converting popups is timing. A popup that appears as soon as a visitor lands on your website will likely kill your conversions. How do you expect your reader to enter their email despite hardly having read anything on the page?
You can either use the exit–popups or delay your popups to appear after a reader scrolls to a certain percentage of your page or stays for a bit longer, say about 40 seconds.
Exit-intent popups help you convert leaving visitors. After all your readers are about to leave, so throwing in a popup will do you more good than harm..
I love how OptinMonsters use pop-ups to boost conversions. Moving my mouse cursor away from the page to the address bar triggered this popup.
4: Create an effective conversion funnel
A conversion funnel is your audience’s path from when they hear about your brand to making a conversion.
Take a conversion funnel in this scenario:
A reader found one of your blog posts on Google. He reads it for a solid 4 minutes and 33 seconds, was inspired, and ended up signing up for your email list. You send him a couple of emails and invite him to your live webinar. He likes the webinar and clicks on the affiliate link you offered through in-webinars CTA and finally bought the product you recommended to them.
The roadmap that the reader follows from clicking on one of your blog posts to buying the product is a clear definition of a conversion funnel.
How do you optimize your conversion funnel for higher lead acquisition and sales?
Firstly, you need to polish up the top of your business’ conversion funnel. The top of the funnel involves all the tools you need to spread the awareness of your business. Speak of blog posts, social media posts, guest posts, or even ads.
At this stage, your audience is not ready to convert yet. You should focus on building a connection by providing high-quality information: craft compelling blog posts, seductive social media posts, and guides. The biggest goal here is to create the first impression and build authority and trust with your readers.
Once your audience is familiar with your brand, entice them to take action. This is by providing a great offer. It can be a content upgrade after every post, a video, or a case study.
What’s next is to launch a drip-email campaign. At this stage, offer value to your customers by educating them and then pitching your offer at the end of the series.
I love how a blogger like Adam Enfroy handles his drip campaign. Firstly, he focuses on sending you educational and non-salesy emails.
Then when closing the series, he pitches his online blogging course (Blog Growth Engine).
5: Conduct A/B testing
It takes seven sales offers before an average customer decides to buy a product. While closing your drip campaign you just don’t provide an offer once and expect a huge percentage to make a conversion. You need to remind them. Draw them to make commitments by enticing them to take advantage of “free trials” and scheduling a demo.
But to achieve all that you need to understand where your leads fall off in your conversion funnel and then optimize the stages for higher conversions. Enter A/B testing.
A/B testing is an experiment that involves testing two elements against each other to know which one performs better.
Image source: AppInstitute
In marketing, A/B testing involves split testing of two different landing pages, popups, and email headlines to figure out what variant works better. For example, say you have a landing page that entices your visitors to sign up for your newsletter. But only 3% of the visitors who land on the page convert.
You decide to figure out how you can boost conversion to that page. So you create another version of the page, but this time, you tweak your landing page copy. And when you launch the page, your conversions improve drastically.
That’s how A/B testing enables you to uncover some loopholes that prevent most visitors from converting. Maybe to most of your audience, your landing page copy sucked. And tweaking it a little made everything smooth for them.
A/B testing also lets you know what is working and what is not. It does not necessarily mean running a split-testing experiment; the challenger will always win. In fact, it can be the other way round. And running an A/B testing experiment will help you rely on data other than instincts in optimizing your conversion rates.
Converting blog readers into customers
Turning blog readers into customers is a challenge even for experienced bloggers. To boost your blog sales and revenue, you need to go beyond writing compelling content, crafting great page copy, and building an email list. Besides, what’s the need of driving massive traffic to your blog, yet you can’t convert them to customers.
Hopefully, this blog post has taught you a couple of strategies you can incorporate into your blogging strategy. So do you have any questions? Or what’s preventing you from turning your blog into a revenue generation machine? Let me hear your thoughts down in the comments section.