Generating more eCommerce leads doesn’t have to be a challenge if you implement the right strategies. But before jumping into lead generation, keep in mind that a well-designed plan and organization are required.
The main reason why most eCommerce fail lies in how unprepared they are for the journey. Therefore, take the time to review your plan and set your business properly. Once done, you can start focusing on your lead generation process.
The process will require more than just traditional strategies but rather both online and offline ones. SEO, advertising, blogs, referrals, and much more play crucial roles in your lead generation results and if the leads are qualified or not.
To help you with the process, let’s follow some steps + the strategies you should include in your plan.
Determine Who Is Your Ideal Lead
A deep understanding of your ideal lead will help you streamline your marketing efforts and bring in more sales-qualified leads. Although you may have an idea of the characteristics, motivations, and pain points, it is important to create buyer personas using data, not assumptions.
You can start creating buyer personas using qualitative data from competitor research, industry reports, or site analytics. This can be combined with quantitative research from customer interviews and online discussions about your brand and products.
After you have all the data, you can map the characteristics of your ideal leader by considering factors like:
- Their income.
- Education level.
- Hobbies and interests.
- Pain points.
- Anything that seems valuable for more sales and according to the targe you come up with.
A clear picture of your ideal lead will help you target your marketing campaigns more effectively, create better blog content, and offer irresistible promotions or offers.
You may discover that your products or services need to be modified in order to serve your customers best.
Create Unique Content for Your eCommerce Leads
If you take the time to do your research and find your prospects’ passions, what interests them, and what they are craving, you can create amazing content to engage them.
Every store must focus on a niche in this highly competitive market. Thus, we are guessing you have decided yours already.
Based on the niche, research what people are asking, what they need to know, and how you can help them find the information.
When you do this, you will be able to engage qualified leads thanks to the value you offer. It is essential to create, prepare and distribute unique content for your target audience in order:
- Get their attention.
- To intrigue them.
- Boost your popularity.
- Establish good relationships with them.
Now, your content doesn’t need to be focused on blogs only. Content can be much more. It can include, but not be limited to:
- Blog posts and guest blogs.
- Quizzes, How-to’s, etc.
Just keep in mind that using different formats can be beneficial. In addition, it is important to know how to share the content for this lead generation strategy to work.
Generate Leads Via Online Communities
Nothing is better than having an online community of loyal customers and potential ones joining continuously. Thus, what about utilizing this option?
Different platforms allow you to build communities. Facebook Groups are the most popular, but Telegram, Medium, and Reddit are also options.
These are the most effective places to generate leads. But, it is difficult and exhausting to build online communities. To see any results takes time. It is worth it in the end, though.
Remember to be 100% value-focused when building your online community. Your loyal customers should be given that honor. They will do it for your company.
This strategy covers many factors, but these are some quick tips to help you build online communities.
- Advertise to promote your Facebook Group.
- Ask Influencers for their opinions about your group.
- Pay attention to the name of your group – using focused keywords to name your group will increase organic members.
- Give as much value to your customers as possible.
- Participate actively in the discussions.
Make Sure to Build Your Social Media
You can’t do anything in today’s digital world if you don’t have an active Social Media presence. However, there’s another problem people fall into: What is the point of having a social media platform if people don’t know anything about you?
While social media is a vast subject, there are some key points you need to keep in mind when growing and maintaining your social networks.
- Be consistent: Post every day if possible. But be careful not to be too spammy.
- Post the content that your target audience loves: Share your website content (blog posts, infographics, videos) with your target audience.
- Be aware of the time you post: This is especially important if you’re targeting globally. However, we would recommend sticking to local customers in a time zone.
- You must always reply to messages and comments, regardless of whether they’re positive or negative. If your social media profiles don’t get “socialized,” you won’t get a lot of interaction, engagement, and of course, no leads at all.
The idea of this strategy is to pay attention to your profiles.
Do you have social media? Work on it and promote it. Don’t you have it? Start creating your profiles and optimize them. You need to pay attention to this over many other lead generation strategies.
Get Backlinks & Boost Your SEO
It is clear that many eCommerce owners have no idea what backlinking is. If you are included, let’s summarize it:
Backlinking refers to when a large and respected website links back at you. This will increase SEO, which is the main reason why it is crucial.
After all, this will help you rank higher in search engines for certain keywords. In addition:
- You will receive a lot of traffic.
- This will allow you to share your content with a wider audience.
- Your DA (Domain Authority) and your ranking will improve if you have more backlinks. Your rankings will improve the more backlinks that you have.
- You can’t simply ask your local news websites to link to you. Before you reach out to websites, consider many factors, like their traffic and current authority in the niche.
On the other hand, there are many ways to get backlinks. Here are a few:
- Guest blogging on industry-related sites.
- You can request that a website you find mentions your competitors in return for discounts or products.
- It is possible to form partnerships and exchange connections.
Utilize Cookies as Much as You Can
This tip is even more important for eCommerce professionals than any other industry: Make use of your visitors’ cookies.
Every visitor to your website can be considered a lead in a very real sense. You can target visitors to your website on Facebook and Instagram using only the cookies they have received when they visit your site.
These cookies allow you to retarget people who have visited your store before, people who by definition have shown interest in your product. Retargeting someone on Facebook can make it possible to close a sale in just a few clicks.
Cookies can be broken and blocked by many people and eventually expire. However, they are still an effective lead generation tool, allowing you to take advantage of e-commerce fast sales cycles.
Special Discounts and Deals
Your store can benefit from leads as they make investments in your business. It’s a smart idea to give back something valuable to potential leads as a result.
You can offer discounts to anyone who gives you their email address. You could offer discounts, free shipping, or an add-on in exchange for their email address.
Although pop-ups may not be very popular, free stuff is. A great way to get leads is to offer a freebie or hook a visitor up with them.
You can trigger this type of email-for discount lead generation activity using a variety of Shopify apps, such as Product upsell, Justuno Conversion suite, and Pop Up Window.
Or depending on what platform you used to build your eCommerce or online store.
Utilize the Email Addresses
The goal of the previous strategies leads to getting your prospects’ email addresses is possible, and it will be key for the next one.
If you want your lead generation process to work properly, you will need to keep in touch with the people who decided to sign for the offers, content, etc.. When done, you need to pass your leads to the sales team.
Overall, eCommerce lead generation is different from other industries. All you need to get a visitor’s story is an email address. This sends you directly into their inbox with offers, products, or content.
It is important to get an email immediately in order to reactivate customers who have abandoned their baskets prior to making a purchase. If they are abandoning their baskets, they can be considered leads.
You can push them to the finish line if you have their email address. Make sure your email capture campaigns comply with GDPR.
In the case you used Shopify as the main platform for your online store, it allows you to customize the rules and messages for your abandoned cart-
Email marketing is affordable, if not completely free, thanks to the freemium email software. Because the recipient has already given you their email address, you don’t have to pay per click as you do with search or social ads.
They also have indicated some willingness to interact with your brand. Thus, they won’t mistake your email for spam.
Ecommerce marketers worry about emails ending up in Gmail’s “Promotions” folder. This is not something to worry about.
Emails that are placed in the promotions folder are less likely to be a nuisance to your leads. Plus, it’s not like Gmail hides promotional emails. They can be filed away. Your lead generation email campaigns won’t be destroyed by the promotions folder.
Take Care of Your SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Lead generation strategies like offering discounts or collecting email addresses won’t work if your store has no visitors. SEO is vital to generate traffic that can take you to get more qualified leads.
Ecommerce lead generation has a huge advantage. You can utilize lead generation magnets with should product descriptions and metadata. Y
In addition, SEO involves more than the usual keywords and descriptions of your products. You also need to consider factors like optimizing for websites.
Mobile website browsing has exploded in the last five years, and it is still growing. Optimizing your website for mobile is a great way to increase your lead generation.
It means that your buttons will be clickable on a variety of screen sizes. Content is easily readable, and scrolling is seamless.
You can test whether your website is user-friendly by allowing real users access to your user test. Invite five to ten people to your office and ask them to do simple tasks on their smartphones.
To ensure a smooth operation on both desktop and mobile, make sure that the purchase process is included in this list of things to test.
Partnering with influencers or affiliates from similar brands can increase lead generation to an audience you weren’t able to reach before.
It can be difficult to choose the right company to partner with since you want to ensure that the affiliation does not have a negative effect on your brand. However, just take the time to do your research and choose some partners with some authority already.
Although partnerships can be formed in many ways, they are most likely to work when you choose to work together with someone on a project. You and your partner will also promote the project to your own audience by mentioning each other if necessary.
If you want an example, just look at Red Bull and GoPro who have had a wonderful partnership since 2016.
Red Bull ambassadors use GoPro equipment for footage of their daring feats. Red Bull drinkers with similar interests were inspired to buy GoPro equipment to record their stunts, and others wanted to drink more Red Bull instead of other energizers.
You need to find something similar depending on the niche of your eCommerce.
Lead Data with Marketing Automation
Marketing automation allows you to capture lead information from multiple channels and automate the lead nurturing process.
It can also assist you with tasks such as creating landing pages, running email campaigns, collecting data from multiple touchpoints, and so on.
Marketing automation is only as effective as engaging leads with the right message at just the right moment. You can personalize your message by learning more about their behavior.
These are just a few of the many ways marketing automation can help your eCommerce company reach the next level:
- With cross-selling and upselling, the average order value (AOV) can be increased.
- Subscribe to a service that will keep existing customers happy.
- For a growing list of contacts, use lead magnets and newsletters.
- Create personalized emails that are based on customer segmentation.
- Run proven automated marketing campaigns.
In addition to all these aspects, there’s something to keep in mind: Different people may be interested in different products or offers.
Hence, your communication should be tailored to your customer’s interests, likes, and dislikes. Marketing automation will allow you to gather all the information you need to create these segments.
If a customer recently bought a pair of shoes from you, you can email them with discounts or create a pop-up display on your website. You must segment your customers based on their purchasing habits to be able to generate leads.
These are some tips to help you master personalized outreach with the use of the automation software:
- Personalize how your homepage appears to customers.
- You can create a personalized product page that is based on your geographic location.
- Create campaigns based on users’ behavior.
- Your customers will appreciate the personal emails you send.
- Based on recent purchases, offer personal recommendations.
Create Your Lead or Sales Funnel
A lead funnel describes the steps potential customers will take to convert into the quality leads you
are trying to get.
Your lead funnel guides, persuade and wins new purchases for your eCommerce from the first contact to sale. It can seem complicated when you consider all the different ways a person can learn about a company (word of mouth, online, etc.). But it is quite necessary to go over the alternatives.
In the beginning, you can focus your sales efforts on 1-3 key customer segments.
You can create a lead channel. Once you have created it, you just need to keep going with it until new leads start coming in on a regular basis.
This is how your funnel could look: You send emails to potential customers or buyers and show them an offer or specific incentive based on the stage of the funnel they are.
If interested, they will ask you how they can access the products or go to the link and tools you’ve left behind to simplify the access and process.
Although there are many successful sales funnels, it is important to design one that suits your business.
Others might focus on how you attract the clients, how you get meetings when you offer services. However, for eCommerce, you need to focus on how to convert the prospect into lead and then a customer.
You Always Want Quality, Not Quantity
Targeting qualified leads is the best way to secure customers for your online store.
However, something most people believe is that the more leads they get, the better. However, if the leads you generate are not high-quality, your store won’t get anything from them.
Focusing on the quality of the leads will result in fewer people. However, you already know that they will be more willing to purchase your products. This is because they are interested in you and not just trying to find something else.
Before you can decide whom to pitch, you will need to create your ideal customer profile, as we mentioned before. This means we are now back at the initial step.
Here, we will add some questions that you can ask to help determine your ideal customer profile to lend you a hand in the process:
- What type of product is your ideal customer looking for?
- How much is this person willing to pay for the product?
- What is the income of the ideal customer?
Set Your Customer Referrals Program
You can find quality leads quickly and easily by betting on referrals.
Referrals are key to getting people to your business. This is basically people recommending you to others.
Clients don’t often recommend you to other people out of goodwill. You will need to offer incentives for them to refer you.
Referral marketing programs can be automated for small businesses and incentivize strong relationships-based sales leads to your funnel.
Before you can start, you will need to conduct an internal survey of your leads. How did they get there? Why did they choose to purchase the items with you?
These answers will assist you in choosing the best program structure.
Participants should find referral programs as simple and straightforward as possible. It’s easy to send an email to the participant with a link or a Facebook post, and it is efficient.
Anything that can be used in conjunction with existing sources of lucrative lead generation will work.
It is crucial to explain clearly what the referrer means. You can offer some codes for discounts or a freebie when purchasing a specific item if you’re just getting started.
For referring people, you could offer cash rewards or gift cards as well. The payout can be set, but it should be motivating enough to get people to act.
Add a referral analytics program to your campaign. This will let you see how many clicks and shares each link has and provide valuable insights to help you improve your program.
The Local Lead Generation Process for Your Business
All right! So, everything is about building properties and generating leads. But how does the process actually take place? Are there other steps I need to know?
The steps I mention below are what students from our local lead generation program follow to generate leads for businesses like yourself. So I’ll help you see what we do. And how if you join our program, you can simply generate leads for your own business (unless you want to start a side hustle and build a laptop lifestyle business).
Essentially, our lead generation can be divided into four steps:
The first is prospecting. You need to take the time to do market research on a niche (industry) and determine how many phone-driven businesses are there.
Keep in mind that this is local research as you need to know how many companies need leads. For example, you may search for “plumbing services Youngstown OH.”
You will find dozens or even hundreds of businesses trying to get themselves in front of the customers by ranking on Map Listings, organic results, and even Ad.
The second step, building. When you find a niche (plumbing, tree services, a software company, real estate…), you will need to start building your digital properties. You don’t need to be an expert in HTML or coding. It can be easy with the right tools.
The third step is now taking time to rank your lead gen website. With the site done, you need to work on SEO strategies and start dominating those Google search results. If you’re new to SEO, it stands for Search Engine Optimization.
To keep it simple, it consists of the entire process of growing a company’s visibility on search engines like Google and generating organic traffic. And remember this, local lead generation is part of the strategies.
Moving on to step four, once you rank the site, you will start getting your ROI and profits. You only need to rent it out to a local business interested in the leads the site generates. You can offer a couple of free leads to their move on with the actual pay per lead.
To review steps 1-4 above, I described it to a normal student who is building a lead gen business to help local service providers generate more calls. But replace the student with you as the business owner. And replace sending the leads to a business to simply siphoning the leads to your personal business.
By the way, fun fact, about 20% of our students in our local lead gen program are actually business owners who went through the program. And they use the skillsets we teach to generate leads for their own business.
An Example of Lead Generation: Home Advisor
You must be thinking, “if lead generation sounds so good so far, how come I haven’t seen any company?” That’s the thing; there are many out there. You just don’t know they are dedicated to it.
HomeAdvisor is one of the best examples you can find on the Internet as it is a top lead generation company that has spent millions building its brand but also earned even more zeros for this same reason.
They started small as everyone else but invested in building their brand awareness to make people who are looking for home services go to their website and find what they need. They are over 75% of people’s first choice when they need those services.
If you don’t get HomeAdvisor that much or need a refresh, users need to submit their information to request a service and get a professional or expert who can provide it.
HomeAdvisor’s job is to share your information, which makes you a lead, with local companies so they can contact you and offer the service you’re requesting. For sharing this lead information, HomeAdvisor gets paid by the companies. This happens for every single lead they send to multiple businesses.
Business owners who don’t have marketing skills or don’t even know how to have any online presence will always rely on those pages to list their services. They will save time and effort, but companies like HomeAdvisor can make them spend lots of money as leads aren’t exclusive (one lead is sent to multiple companies after all).
Using Facebook Ads aka Paid Ad Platforms: Do They Generate Leads?
They DO generate leads. If not, no one would use them.
However, you need to remember two facts:
- Paid ads or platforms can be expensive.
- They don’t generate “natural” leads.
Whenever someone sees or clicks in one of those ads, over 80% of them did it by accident or are trying to close/report it.
Why? Because they aren’t looking for those services. At least not at the moment.
What those ads do instead is interrupt their time on the platforms. Users aren’t there to find companies or businesses unless they are searching for a specific company’s user, and for that, there’s a search bar. This is why it is hard to convert them to actual customers who will show interest in the companies’ services. Also, you’re limited by a budget.
When using lead generation, everything is organic. You aren’t forcing others to pay attention to your business but rather being there when they need you. This is why Google’s organic traffic will always beat paid ads, and the reason companies continue investing in it, which is a lot cheaper as well.
What Is Local SEO?
Don’t worry… I didn’t get it at first either. Following the short explanation, local SEO focuses on scaling businesses’ visibility on search engines. However, this is only for those who serve their communities face-to-face.
What does this mean?
Experts and professionals like painters, plumbers, and dentists (but not only them) offer their services to their local customers. Why? Because they can’t deliver them unless they are located in the same area of their customers.
To make sure those businesses get more leads, you need to rank them locally by claiming the business listing on Google to place them on Map Listings. Local SEO also involves online reviews, citation management, and how you manage your entire online presence in the local area.
If you are going to bet on lead gen, you need to adapt yourself to today’s world: The Internet.
Keep in mind that although traditional channels and methods like billboards, warm calls, and pamphlets still work, they aren’t part of your tools. Whenever someone needs a service, they go to Google and search for it.
“Dentist in Miami” or “plumbing services in Orlando,” etc. And you can keep coming up with services or professionals people need and look for. Thus, you need to make sure you’re using Google to get the companies in front of their clients.
Users will always click on the first search results (those near the top), and many of them will be either Ad links (people paid to place their websites there), Map Listing, and then you get websites. Almost all of them are your goal and where you should always aim to place yourself.
Can My Business Utilize a Local Lead Generation Strategy?
If you want customers, you better know you need it. Following the previous explanation, lead gen is all about placing businesses in front of their customers, choosing them over their competitors.
Put it simply – it’s all about closing deals and having clients for those companies to make money. The main difference with the usual methods companies use for this is how lead generation approaches different channels to get them in the right place of the market to get customers.
Those channels are all focused on the Internet as most people are searching for products but also services across the net. The issue is that the Internet is way too broad, and businesses don’t know how to place themselves. They usually try, but they get one common result: losing money and time.
How Powerful Are Organic Leads from Google?
For companies looking for customers, it’s everything. For you? Pretty much the same. When you build a business with digital properties, you get to make thousands of dollars a month.
This isn’t a “get started today and get rich tomorrow” thing, but it is HIGHLY scalable, and ROI + positive results are guaranteed. Learning a fairly decent and very needed set of skills to create your digital properties and start ranking them on Google is required.
I have invested in several online businesses over the years, and if there’s something uncertain, whether you will get your ROI or not, even more than the actual profit.
However, this business moved my earnings from five figures a year to a month in ONLY passive income while sitting comfortably at home.
On my laptop. Anywhere. Anytime.
You can look at one of the first sites I built back in 2016, and it continues making me over $1.000+ every month. The best part is that I don’t need to touch it or the rest I’ve built over the years, just like this digital property.
What Makes Lead Generation SO Alluring?
Here it goes: you can work from home.
The main issue with regular business opportunities is how much you need to invest in staff, equipment, or rent to have a place to sell your products or offer your services.
We all know the hassles of traditional businesses that involve regular expenses, which are extremely high. Can you afford it? I don’t think so, and even if you can, is it worth it? Now, it isn’t only about the money. You also need to put in a lot of work, and it isn’t only during the first couple of months or years. Usually, it is as long as you continue running it.
You can save yourself those headaches and bone-breaking tasks and expenses with lead gen since it is more about generating leads with digital channels—mainly websites.
Websites can be VERY cheap to build, and with many tools online, you get to do it in a couple of hours instead of days. Any virtual or digital business is scalable and won’t need constant maintenance.
So, let’s summarize this:
- You save money in regular expenses with traditional and most online businesses as what you need is yourself and digital properties (websites).
- You can bet on passive income.
- There’s no need to hire more people to get started.
- You can generate leads in multiple industries, which allows you to work on any niche you want.
How Can I Get Started in the Local Lead Generation Program?
Anyone can start and learn. That’s the beauty of this business model. I knew nothing about SEO, Map Listing, and everything I’ve mentioned so far. It is all about learning the skills, gaining experience, and deciding to take the step.
Remember that this business model will never get old as business owners are always looking for leads. They need to do business and scale their companies. Why not do the same while helping others and still making money?
You can start with this local lead generation course highly recommended for anyone wanting to grow in the business. It is a close training that will take you through each step and make sure you are able to get your ROI, profits and take control of your life.
You will be added to an incredible lead generation family ready to help you 24/7 when asking questions on the group. Anyone is welcome who’s willing to put in the work. Click here to watch the lead gen webinar.