Can you figure out a simple and easy-to-implement online conversion metrics strategy for your AEC business? I think the answer is relatively easy for residential service contractors, where the average sale is reasonably small and the volume relatively high. However, the data can be more challenging on a larger scale, especially when you measure the number of sales you achieve in a year at 10 to 15 or less — quite likely when your projects might be a million dollars each. Even smaller scale residential renovation contractors have these challenges.
Consumer product conversion modelling techniques are questionable to apply to our often customized AEC services, in my opinion, as are very large repetitive business systems modelling. (Your average sale might be $200,000 — but you have a squad of national sales reps and maybe generate a few hundred sales a year.)
Therefore, a proposed measuring stick for online success calculations that I observed on the Construction Marketing Ideas LinkedIn group — and linked through a Hubspot “squeeze page” for a white paper on marketing/conversion, rang to me as a bit too simplistic (and therefore something I’m not quite ready to give free SEO link juice, especially when the objective is to convert you to a $5,000 to $8,000 monthly paying client.)
But the concept can still give you some food for thought.
- Start with your objective sales goals. Say an extra $2 million a year. And you presumably have some idea of your average sale. Say $200,000, which would generate require 10 sales per year.
- Then figure out your lead to sales conversion ratio. You may convert one in five qualified leads to sales. That means you would need 50 qualified leads per year.
- The article writers suggest that only one in five of the leads you receive would be qualified. That suggests you need 250 leads per year.
- Finally, the article suggests that the typical conversion rate for an online (to generate a probably qualified lead) would be 2.5 per cent. This suggests that annually, you would need to have 10,000 website visitors per year or 833 a month.
The argument: If your site can be designed to attract 833 visitors per month, and you have an interesting offer (white paper, research report or something else to attract a worthy lead), you should be well on your way to pulling in the $2 million in additional sales per year.
Here, I run into the experiential challenge — as much as I’d like to say this website generates that volume of sales, it doesn’t — and it certainly attracts more than 833 visitors a month. The issue could be a faulty lead conversion strategy or a disjoint between what we sell primarily (advertising in print and online construction industry publications) and this blog.
Nevertheless, I think if you have a focused and clearly defined model and objectives, you can achieve the initial lead generation numbers outlined by the consultants selling their expensive retainer-based service. But I would like to see more evidence that they hold up through the lead/conversion cycle. I’m not sure we have discovered the holy grail yet.
I‘ve written some materials on metrics, which I can forward to you when you request them by email. And if you have your own success (or failure) measuring/conversion metrics story, please feel free to share it either as a comment or by email — as this is a topic worthy of further attention and research.