TIP: Even if you follow all of our tips to the letter, if you send the wrong traffic to a page it will have poor conversion rates.
Today’s post is inspired by a friend of mine that I had lunch with today. We were talking about marketing, branding, and email marketing. He started to tell me a story about a situation where he was trying to figure out why his email marketing campaigns had such low conversion rates. We talked about the landing pages and the goals, and there was nothing wrong with the model – it was for a free sign-up.
When running an email marketing campaign, if your conversions are low, make sure the integrity of the list you are using is good. That means, make sure the list that you use is clean and up-to-date. One way to do that is do a random sampling of the data itself. Your open rates should be around 5-10 percent. Any lower, you need to be analyzing the data, and the first thing you should start with is looking directly at the email addresses.
So, talking to my friend today, he said that’s exactly what he did. The reason he did this is because he was looking at the list and noticed an email that was one of his customers. He also happened to know that particular individual hadn’t worked there in 5 years. So, he took a couple more email addresses, looked them up in Linkedin, and also noticed that those people were no longer with the listed companies. He then decided to take a deeper look at 100 (of the couple thousand or so emails) on the list and found that 87 percent of them no longer existed. This was why his list was not converting. People were not clicking on his free sign-up because they were not getting the email or it was addressed to the wrong person.
In this case my friend had purchased this list of email addresses. Obviously he wasn’t very happy with that and called the higher-ups and got reimbursed, but was very shocked that the data wasn’t being scrubbed. We only recommend purchasing/renting email lists under certain circumstances and for particular types of offers. Purchased/rented email lists will typically have very low conversion rates, but in this case it was a free sign-up so it made sense. The low barrier of commitment yielded a higher likelihood of conversion.
Lesson learned: If your conversions aren’t happening, make sure the traffic going to your page is the right traffic. Our example above is one unique to email, but whether you are drawing traffic through email, pay-per-click, organic, direct mail…whatever, if the people coming to your page are not your target audience then odds are they will not convert no matter how good your page.