PREselling - What Is An "Open To Buy" Frame Of Mind?
This is a question that Rick asked in the
Sitesell forum recently (you can read the entire thread here), and here's a post I
made as part of the discussion...
It's been interesting watching several threads recently where a lot of people
are saying things like "I've sent 1000/1200/1600 visitors to Sitesell and
haven't made an Solo Build It sale".
As several people have mentioned, it's
certainly important to understand the mindset of the people who arrive at any
site you are promoting as an affiliate, and there are a number of factors that
make a huge difference to your conversion rate when selling anything.
recently built a site with a partner in a very competitive niche selling a high
end coaching product, and we did very well in the first few months from organic
search traffic, article submissions and Google Adwords ads.
example, had just over 300 unique visitors in January 07 and made over $16,000
in gross revenue (90% net - the average product price was $4000).
Once we had
the sales process sorted, we launched an affiliate program and some of our
affiliates drove some pretty significant traffic to the site trying to get it to
convert. In fact, affiliates drove another 14,000 visitors to the site over a
short period of time.
Not one affiliate sale. I was getting
the same "I drove 4561 visitors to your site and I didn't make a sale; your
program sucks" messages from my affiliates as I've seen in the forum recently,
so I was concerned that something wasn't working correctly in the system.
On checking our traffic stats, I found that virtually ALL of these high
traffic supplying affiliate's visitors were coming from Ken's traffic source
group 3 Above - Traffic Swarm, paid to surf programs, and the like; just garbage
traffic that had no interest in clicking on an Adsense ad, let along buying a
Organic search, articles and PPC work, along with many
other methods, but it takes WORK.
That's the stumbling block for most people
because compared to getting paid to surf, it's 'hard'. I'm not saying that
Sitesell's affiliates are all doing this, but I was amazed at how many of ours
Another thing that continues to amaze me is people's reluctance to
focus their site's Most Wanted Response on building a list. Nearly every big
earner online (and many offline) uses lists (their own and joint venture
partner's) to sell their products and services.
Sitesell uses their lists very
effectively to communicate various offers and information to us as Solo Build It owners
and affiliates. If you watch what successful people do (as opposed to what some
of them TELL you to do), you learn a lot about what works and what doesn't.
Carefully building a list of people, and then nurturing a relationship
with those people over time, is the single most important business building
activity you can do. If you do it right, many of the people on your lists will
come to know, like and trust you. Then you can make product recommendations to
them and because of the RELATIONSHIP you have, you will make sales.
PRE-selling is much easier when you have done it this way because of the trust
you have built up. Many times it just goes something like this by email -
I found something that I
thought you might be interested in. I used it and it doubled my email open
rate/helped me to lose 9 pounds in two weeks after Christmas/solved my dog's
barking problem overnight.
Anyhow, it might not be for you, but I
thought you may want to know about it in case it was If you're interested, check
it out here -
YOU PUT THE LINK TO THE SITE HERE
Let me know if
this helps John, I'd love to hear your thoughts.
You can do this once you have built the
relationship of trust between yourself and your prospects/customers, but so many
people focus on trying to PRE-sell a brand-new, first time visitor to their site
on why they should buy something, without first building that relationship.
No wonder it's a hard slog. It's just like that salesman walking up to
you as saying "Can I help you?" that was mentioned earlier in this thread. Your
response is often "Nah, I'm just looking (so leave me alone jerk…)" as the hair
stands up on the back of your neck and you feel like heading for the door…
Another thing that can help to build trust and help in your PRE-selling
efforts are testimonials from happy customers.
If you don't have any
testimonials of your own (and you should always try to get them from people who
order products and services on your recommendation, even if you are selling
affiliate products) do whatever you can to get them.
If you have a list (there's
that list again) and you see people buying a certain affiliate product, send out
a message asking for feedback from those who ordered.
testimonials you get back are good, use them on your PRE-selling page for that
product. If they are bad, start selling another product in that category. Your
reputation is precious, you don't want to risk it over a few bucks.
Another thing I've noticed is that some people build hundreds of pages
around keywords that will be a struggle to convert into sales.
You do need a
certain number pages built around 'generic' keywords to create the backbone of
your site, but if you focus on keywords that people are searching on when they
are ready to BUY a product or service, then you have a much easier job of
PRE-selling them right from the start.
As an example, the mindset of a
person who arrives at your site from a search for the keyword Pontiac GTO is
going to be much different to somebody who arrives from a search for Pontiac GTO
inlet manifold, Pontiac GTO tail light assembly or 1998 Pontiac GTO carburettor.
Specific searches like this are typically followed by a purchase of the
product if the price and terms are right. All you have to do is PRE-sell your
visitor on buying from you instead of somebody else.
Now imagine if you
owned a Pontiac enthusiasts newsletter (or even better, a Pontiac GTO owners
newsletter) and you sent out a message to your list about great deals on some
Pontiac GTO parts you just uncovered.
Why some of them are either going to want
to order something from you (because you are their 'guru'), or they will know
somebody else who is looking for Pontiac GTO parts, they'll tell them about you
(somebody else does the PRE-selling for you) , and your job of selling just got
a whole lot easier.
So, the steps that
have worked for me are -
1) Focus every site's Most Wanted
Response on building a list of targeted prospects (and then creating various
lists of customers who ordered different products) so I can build a relationship
with the people in my market.
Most of the top online (and offline) business
owners focus on this as one of their main objectives (you can't go anywhere
these days without seeing a squeeze page with an irrestible offer above it).
Watch what others DO and then follow their system.
2) Spend my time
PRE-selling the benefits of joining my list rather than trying to sell products
or services to first time visitors. You will earn a lot more money over time if
you have taken the time to build that relationship and bond with your readers
3) Focus the majority of my site's content pages on BUYING
keywords whenever possible. On every one of those pages, I again try to get my
visitor to join my list as well as share my knowledge of the product they
searched on. If you do this right, you'll get a newsletter subscriber AND a
4) Follow up regularly with both prospects and customers. I
had a lady this week who has been on my Sitesell list for THREE YEARS who
finally ordered Solo Build It. You never know…
Hope this helps,
P.S. Ried said earlier "Only recommend those things that
you'd recommend if there were no profit at stake."
This is absolutely
John Reese now tells his readers that he will be making a
profit if his readers purchase through the link in his messages. Full disclosure
If you are honestly providing value, it will help your sales
because people want to deal with honest business owners and if you have already
built that relationship with your readers, you can really do very well by
providing honest solutions to people's problems.
END OF POST
I hope this short rant of mine helps you to make more money with your online