Sales! That’s the lifeblood of every business. If you ain’t making sales in your business – and you need to be making lots of them – then I really don’t know what you’re doing.
For you to generate sales on your website, you need to automate your sales process. The sales process is a series of logical steps gotten from buyers’ psychology that shows the steps a buyer takes before making a purchase.
In this article, you’ll learn how to automate this sales process and turn your WordPress website into a sales powerhouse.
Awareness is the first stage of your sales process. For your customers to buy whatever it is you’re selling, they have to first of all know that you exist. The goal of this stage is to drive lots of qualified traffic to your WordPress site, and by qualified, I mean traffic from people that fit into the criteria of your target audience.
There are so many ways and channels through which you can reach your target audience. The most widespread include:
- Search engine and social media ads: Google and Facebook have duopolized the online advertising market and for good reason – they are effective. Google ads let you target your audience by their search intent while Facebook lets you target your audience by their interests.
- SEO: SEO involves optimizing your site to rank higher in search results, especially for Google; content marketing involves consistently creating relevant and useful content that adds value to your target audience and drives them to take a certain action. By combining both of them, you’ll have relevant content that ranks high on search engine results. Some WordPress plugins that can help you achieve these are Yoast SEO (for optimizing your WordPress site), SEMrush (for analytics), Ahrefs (for SEO analytics), and Grammarly (for spelling and plagiarism checks).
- Social media reach: Social media has become a huge part of our daily life. With 2.45 billion users on Facebook, 1 billion+ users on Instagram, and 330million monthly active users on twitter, social media gives you access to a huge audience that you can (and should) tap into. Some WordPress plugins that can help you with your social media reach include Shared Counts (for add social media share buttons to your site), IFTTT (for automated social media share) and Buffer (scheduled media posting)
- Guest blogging: Guest blogging involves creating writing for other blogs in exchange for a linking to your own site. It is one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your site, especially if you’re serving a niche and you have expert knowledge in the field. You should, however, make sure that you only blog for relevant sites where your target audience visits.
If you’re starting out, I’ll advise you to execute these methods one at a time. To get better results, you can combine all of them.
Now, you’ve been able to get traffic to your WordPress site. The next logical step will be for you to convert your website visitors to leads. To do this you need to create a lead magnet
A lead magnet is a form of digital, downloadable (piece of valuable) content that you use to“bribe” your website visitors in exchange for their email address or other contact information. This can be an eBook, a video, PDF checklist, white paper, report, etc.
To be able to do this, you need to install a lead capture WordPress plugins like OptinMonster and integrate it with an email service provider like Mailchimp. Integrating with an email service provider helps you create an email list that you’ll use to manage your leads and run email marketing campaigns.
Your efforts in creating awareness and lead generation (should) point to one thing alone – sales. But the problem is that people don’t like being sold to, rather, they want to buy. Not everyone will want to buy from you the first day they see your product/service on your website, possibly because it’s not really a pressing need for them, but more likely because they don’t trust you yet.
And that’s the task you have to take on – to build trust with your customer. One of the most effective ways of doing this is nurturing your email list with valuable content that they can apply and get immediate (or almost immediate) results. You can promote your products/services once in a while directly in their email.
For your sales to be effective, you need to have a great copy that describes in detail, how your product or service is going to solve your customer’s problems and a call-to-action that compels your customer to take immediate action.
On the backend, you need to have an eCommerce plugin like WooCommerce installed. If you don’t want a full-fledged eCommerce solution, you can install shopping cart plugins like WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart. If you’re selling a digital product, you might want to use eCommerce plugins that are designed specifically for selling digital products like Easy Digital Downloads. You also need to integrate payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe to enable you to accept payments on your site.
According to an article by Harvard Business Review, it’s anywhere between 5 to 25 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to retain an old one. Also, Paul Farris in his book, Marketing Metrics, stated that the conversion rate of old customers is between 60 -70%.
And it all boils down to the word I mentioned before – trust. You see, if you want to take the smart route, you need to upsell upgrades to your products and cross-sell complementary products to your already existing customers. You can do this by sending promotional emails to those that have made a purchase on your site already. Be careful, however, not to overdo this as this might backfire.
Just because you’re trying to make sales on your WordPress site does not mean you should do it on your own. How about you “employ” your customers to make sales on your behalf?
You can do this by creating an affiliate program for your customers. If a customer buys a product from you, chances are that that customer has a friend or colleague that might need what you’re selling.
If they use your product/service and they love it, they’ll be glad to tell their people about it, and even more so if you incentivize them to promote it to their network of friends, family, and colleagues. Those in their network will gladly buy because they trust (oh, that word again) them, and with this, you’ll be tapping into a wider market in a less expensive way.
Some WordPress plugins that can help you set up your affiliate program include AffiliateWP, Post Affiliate Pro, Affiliates Manager, etc.
Your sales actually start from the awareness stage up till the point you actually make sales and each step of the process should be executed effectively. The process I just showed you is to be followed sequentially, however, to get the best ROI, you need to prioritize them and allocate resources to them in this order: Retention, Sales, Lead Generation, Referral, and Awareness. You can take what you’ve learned, implement it, and start seeing results for yourself.