What is the most important “click’ on your website? I know what mine is – want to guess? (I’ll tell you at the bottom)
Calls to Action
It depends on the purpose of the website and the tools contained in it.
If you are selling a product – that’s easy. The “add to shopping cart” would be your #1.
But some sites don’t have products or carts or something to sell (at least initially). For them, their website is a way to deliver thoughts and ideas. A way to introduce yourself to your next client. Thinking of real estate in particular. Your call to action may be that you want them to pick up the phone, or fill out a form but that doesn’t happen at least not right away.
We all work with people we like. Part of sales is finding that common ground.
Open House Example: I walk into an open house and the Agent will tell me all about the house details but then start fishing for things we can connect on. The “Do you have kids? There is a great school just down the block” kind of fishing. He knows that if we find enough points to connect on – there’s a good chance he’ll be my Agent, if we don’t… I’ll walk out and move on to the next open house. I remember there was a report that the typical person came into contact with 17 agents before deciding on one to use! Does that mean 16 people sucked at finding connection points?
Probably not. There’s another item that has to happen. The buyer also needs to be ready. I walked into the first open house way before I was ready to buy. I was just beginning to formulate my opinions. I need to discover what I like and what I don’t like. Neighborhoods, kitchen counters, number of rooms, floor plans. I’ve heard it takes 6 to 9 months from the start of this discovery period to the ready to take action point. Nine Months? That’s like giving birth! Who has the patience for that? 😉
Back to the website. We want them to visit our website, read our valuable information, watch our local videos, search for homes, and learn a little about the real estate process. We know they might not be ready yet. Since we can’t reach through the monitor and ask them those fishing questions we ‘chum the waters’ with information hoping they will bite onto something we said or did. To effectively do so, we need to keep them coming back to the website to get that valuable information right? That makes us “Incubators“.
CLICKS FOR INCUBATORS
When you think of clicks what kind of clicks come to mind? For me it’s the Facebook LIKE button, or better yet, the Google +1 Button. These types of clicks are valuable in distributing your site to a wider sphere of influence than your own. We know the average person on Facebook has 130 friends. Every LIKE means my post may be reaching 130 people I don’t know. In the case of a Google +1, every click is a vote in Google search engine results. That’s a solid SEO Play. Social sphere clicks all have value in that way. They are NOT clicks for Incubators just better distribution.
The worst clicks I see are those that appear to foster a sense of endorsement. Klout has the +K. You can +K someone with just a click. Linkedin came out with their one click wonder, the Endorsement. With a single click you can endorse someone for a variety of skills they really don’t have! You can guess how I feel about that. w00t! Obviously, neither of these are clicks for Incubators.
So what would be a good click for an “Incubator’? Glad you asked.
We as Incubators, (I is one too!) need to continually pump out quality content (read that as chumming the waters). Yet we certainly can’t expect someone to keep coming back to our site to receive that fresh content. So what we need is a content delivery system. A way to deliver our content to the people we are incubating so that when they are ready to take action, we are there. Make sense?
One of those “content delivery systems” is RSS. It’s something that is built into every wordpress blog. The RSS from my blog is actually here. The problem is that most people don’t know what to do with a .xml file. So I push my RSS also to FeedBurner here. Using Feedburner, the “Incubatee” can sign up and get my content delivered fresh into their email inbox! I use RSS to subscribe to hundreds of blogs and get all that info delivered not to my inbox, but a Feed Reader. I regularly read (daily) 200+ posts from a variety of websites, yet hardly go to the site itself. As a side note… There’s talk of Google abandoning FeedBurner so at some point (soon) I need to migrate away from that to something like FeedBlitz. (and it’s much much better than Feedburner)
The other option we as Incubators have is the traditional Mailing List. It’s very easy to create a mailing list using companies like Constant Contact, AWeber, or MailChimp. Each of these services will give you the tools needed to create a form on your site. Get your “Incubatees” to drop their email into that form and build your mailing list. Now once a week or so you can send a “Newsletter” to all those subscribers. To be fair FeedBlitz will also function as a mailing list server. One of the cool things about using a mailing list is you’ll be able track the clicks. Let’s say you send out a newsletter to the list every other week. During that period you may have written a few blog posts. Your newsletter has a small thumbnail, the title and a few lines from each post with a “…read more”. You’ll be able to track open rates, click thru rates, and so much more. That’s kind of like asking your incubatees what kind of things interest them most and thats pretty cool stuff!
So there you go! Two options for the Clicks that Count on just about any website.
Oh yeah, and for me. My answer?