I was talking to a new client last week – let’s call him “Jerry.”
Jerry owns a midsize home improvement company in the southeast. He’s about five years in and has done well … but he wants to take it up a notch. So he hired us to create paid search campaigns for his company.
Jerry and I had a smart, strategic discussion about his business and how adding paid search to his mix would accelerate its growth. We were making great progress – that is, until I asked, “What’s your offer?”
“To tell you the truth,” he said, “I didn’t think it mattered much.”
Your Offer Pulls the Homeowner Through the Conversion Process
Jerry is not unusual. For many home improvement companies, the offer is an afterthought – a hastily chosen discount or incentive that’s dropped in at the last minute. It may or may not even be consistent with whatever else is going on in the field or on the company web site.
That’s a mistake: The offer is one of the key drivers in motivating a homeowner to take action and set up an appointment.
First, because the offer is what catches (or doesn’t catch) the homeowner’s attention. Everyone likes a deal. So give them one.
Second, because you’re selling a high-priced item, one that requires a substantial investment. A strong offer teases homeowners to move forward with you in their buying process. Now.
Third, because your offer is what separates you from the pack – those competitors who appear to be selling similar services.
A few suggestions to make your offers as effective as possible:
#1: Your Ad and the Landing Page Need to Work Together
The ad is what motivates prospects to click; the landing page is what puts them in your appointment book. The two are links in the buying process and need to work in concert.
So if your ad says, for example, “Save $1,000,” that same savings needs to be clearly highlighted on the landing page. Be consistent.
Remember, if you tease them with an offer in the ad, you need to pay it off on your landing page. Keep the links in the buying process intact.
#2: Your Call to Action Needs to be Powerful
Did you flinch at the $1,000 offer in the example above? I’m not surprised, many home improvement companies do, relying instead on much weaker motivators like “free estimate.” (No… no… no… a thousand times no!)
But remember, with paid search – and unlike radio, TV, newspaper, direct sales and nearly every other marketing channel – the potential buyer doesn’t just see your ad when doing a Google search. He or she sees your ad right next to similar products being offered by competing companies.
If yours is the most compelling relative to the others, guess whose ad gets clicked most frequently (and vice versa)? You have to stand out from the crowd.
Are you giving away some profit as a result? Sure. But if you want the leads which bring the sales, you need to put something of real value on the table. Raise your prices if you have to.
#3: Your Landing Page Needs to Get the Job Done
Your landing page is the homeowner’s decision point: Fill in the form and request an appointment … or click away and keep looking.
Not only does the form need to be simple to fill out, it needs to prominently and powerfully reinforce the ad offer that prompted the click in the first place.
Also, always include a deadline (e.g., “Offer good through December 23rd”) and consider adding an additional sweetener on top (e.g., “0% financing on all new installations”).
Remember, if the homeowner doesn’t convert, not only have you paid for a click, you have lost a sale.
Your Offer is Your Conversion Engine
Your offer is anything but trivial. It creates excitement, separates you from the competitive herd and, most important, drives potential buyers to take swift action.
Make sure your offers are coordinated, powerful, and create urgency in your buying process. Then watch as your leads roll in and your sales skyrocket.