Two Easy, Surefire Methods of Preventing Low-Quality Website Leads
A website lead is not a lead is not a lead.
Though it's exciting to receive leads through your website, quality is so, so much more important than quantity. It does little good to boost your incoming website leads by 150%... if nearly all of those leads are unqualified and low-quality. In fact, that would do far more harm than good.
Low quality leads are energy-sucking time wasters.
Unless you're the rare bird who feels comfortable flat-out ignoring inquiries and leads that don't match your expectations, low quality website leads demand some form of response, followup, or (in the worst case scenarios, when they're disguised as good leads), time-consuming exploration.
Reducing the number of low quality leads generated by your website saves your time and energy while also limiting the frustration of spending your limited time on prospects that have little to no likelihood of becoming customers.
Two surefire ways of reducing those low quality leads
The secret to reducing the number of low quality leads your website sends to you is simple: make it easier for your prospects to self-select and weed themselves out.
Help them realize "Ah, this company/service/product isn't for me, so I won't even reach out."
Help them eliminate themselves from the picture before they reach out and make you take time and energy to do it for them.
You can easily help your prospective customers self-select more effectively in two ways.
- Strategy #1: Describe the customers who are a great fit for you.
- Strategy #2: Share some form of information about your pricing.
(Whether one, both, or neither of these methods will be effective for you depends entirely on your type of business and who your target customers are.)
Examples of Strategy #1
Ann Kendall of Vine Street Communications in Denver does a brilliant job of painting a picture of the types of clients who are a great fit for her:
Ann even takes "painting a picture" of her ideal clients a step further by sharing characteristics of her ideal clients. She sets expectations and gives potential clients who would likely not match up well with her another opportunity to politely excuse themselves before they contact her:
Example of Strategy #2
Before you start arguing that you don't have set prices or packages, or that you don't wish to box yourself into a corner or set inaccurate expectations by putting information about pricing on your site—hush up and hold on for a second.
If you receive website leads who waste your time and who have expectations that are way off when it comes to pricing, sharing some form of information that allows low-quality prospects to weed themselves out can have a huge impact for you.
Information about pricing need not be specific or exact. It can be rough. It can be somewhat vague. It can be in the form of a massive range. It can be shared in the form of absolute minimums or averages. Nearly any information that helps low-quality leads realize they'll be wasting their time and yours if they reach out is better than no information.
Forty Seven Media, a truly exceptional web consulting company in Knoxville, TN, has a "Questions about pricing? Start here." link located right smack dab on their Contact page's contact form. The information potential clients are shown (see image below) when they click that link helps them instantly sort themselves into one of 2 categories: either A) Hell no, they're not within my budget so I'm not going to reach out, or B) Hmm, this is still a possibility. Low-quality leads fade away instead of filling out the form, which would require time and energy to read, think about, and reply to.
Create a super-powered, low-quality-lead-repelling force field by painting an exceptionally clear picture
The clearer the picture you paint for your potential clients, the fewer low-quality website leads you'll receive. Period.
And you can paint a clear picture when your content shares...
- your expectations
- who you work well with
- information about pricing
- results prospects can expect
- a glimpse into your personality, working style, or methodology
When you paint a crystal clear picture for your potential clients, you help them determine whether it's worth their (and your) time for them to reach out.
Take a look at an exceptional example (see image below) of entrepreneurial consultant, Erika Napoletano, doing exactly this. The image below is taken from a page in her site selling a "Buy Me a Coffee" consulting session with her.
Expectations are set. A crystal clear picture of the experience (before, during, and after) is painted. Pricing is clear. It's clear what type of person will benefit from the session. Her quirky, sometime-polarizing personality is conveyed through direct wording and the occasional curse word (allowing the prim and proper types to bow out before picking up the phone).
Picture = painted. Low quality leads who wouldn't be a good fit for her/this session = disappear into the shadows. This all helps prevent Erika's time and energy from being wasted.
It's your turn
How can you paint a clearer picture for potential customers and help low-quality leads from reaching out and contacting you (therefore wasting your time and energy and potentially spoiling your normally-sparkling and happy mood)?
Assuming you read this article and didn't immediately skip down to this last section, you now have 2 potential strategies and some excellent examples to help you answer that very question. Time to stop reading and take a step toward preventing time-wasting, low quality leads from reaching out.
You can do it.
And I assure you: you'll be tickled pink once you do, as you'll quickly start noticing fewer low-quality, time-wasting leads. Then the challenge will be figuring out how you wish to spend all the extra time you'll have on your hands.