Making the path to enquiry straightforward (2)

Yesterday I looked at the routes which prospects might take in making an enquiry which featured a stop-off in Google. Today I’ll look at the requirements for making their passage easy when they don’t come through the search engine.

As a reminder, here are our four paths for the final time:

The information chain

The third column of arrows are people who come straight to your website as a result of seeing an advert or some other promotion, including PR. If whatever caused them to come through is on the web or in an email, you’ll be able to set up the link to be able to see its source, which is helpful in ROI analysis. What you can also set up is a landing page which corresponds to the offer, and makes visitors feel comfortable that they’re in the right place. Naturally, it’ll have a good call to action too.

If whatever sent the people direct to your website is in print, you need to do your utmost to get people to the right page. Creating short redirected links which they might consider typing in is a big help. But for the many people who’ll just type in the domain (home page), a clear link there is important too. For example, a large company exhibiting a small part of its range at WidgetEx’13 might create a special page on its website linking to just the relevant products, and call that page www.bluewidgetcompany.co.uk/we13 (or use that as a shortcut to the page). Then it would promote that link at the show. For prospects who still might only type in www.bluewidgetcompany.co.uk there would be a clear link (incorporating the show’s logo) on the home page.

As for our fourth group of people, who are alerted to your company “offline” and who choose to contact you without going through the website, the normal rules of good customer service apply. How courteously are telephone calls answered? How quickly are emails replied to? Anecdotally, I’d suggest things aren’t as good as most companies would like to think they are.

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