We’ve finally arrived to where I’m going to explain how you’re going to make sales online!
This is the most important part of the guide, because sales are everything.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how great you are at acquiring customers, reaching new markets and expanding your product range if you’re not selling.
Even customers – the lifeblood of any organization – are only valuable to your business because they generate sales!
That’s why it’s important for us to get 100%, beyond-a-reasonable-doubt, clear-as-day clear about online sales right now.
How Sales Are (& Aren’t) Made
Most beginner marketers have the stereotype that people only need to see a product once before making their buying decision.
The idea is, a user sees your website or your ad… Considers your offer… And either buys your product or doesn’t.
I’m about to explain why this is a disastrous way to think that will destroy your business, if you let it…With the help of facts and statistics.
Fact #1 – it can take as many as twenty interactions to persuade a prospect to buy your product – and 80% of sales take at least five follow-ups/e-mails/site visits before a conversion happens.
In other words, most consumers need multiple pitches to buy whatever they’re being sold… But most marketers give up after making a single pitch that doesn’t result in a buying action.
This means that the average marketer leaves the majority of money on the table – and the same fate awaits you if you do business with the expectation of making immediate sales.
What you want to do instead is…
Build The Email List, a.k.a The Most Important Part of Your Business
You may have heard that “the money’s in the list” before – but what do people mean when they say that? And what is a “list” in this context, exactly?
Let’s start by defining what a list is in the context of online marketing.
A list consists of leads who voluntarily left you their contact information – or whose contacts you purchased from a third party that, hopefully, got the data legally. Note: I absolutely do not recommend purchasing email lists from third parties, they are not nearly as effective as building relationships with your customers and having them voluntary provide you with their contact information.
In the past, a list contained the physical addresses of past, current and potential customers. Today, it usually consists of their names and email addresses.
What a list does, at the basic level, is it gives you multiple opportunities to get in touch with individuals and businesses interested in your product.
This is how you squeeze every last sale out of your marketing efforts – while building a list of people you can market similar products to in the future.
The common wisdom is that every active lead on an e-mail list delivers an average of $1/month in sales. This number should give you an idea of how valuable a list can be; especially given that hundreds of people have 6 and 7-figure lists!
Of course, not all lists are created equal. A “cold list” that you bought, and whose members don’t know you, is unlikely to be responsive – and therefore has less, if any, value.
On the other hand, let’s say you have a “hot” list that trusts you because you’ve provided value through e-mails, giveaways, blog posts and other marketing messages. A list like this will be worth significantly above average, because its members are keen to buy from you.
So in other words, the money’s not just in the list – it’s in your relationship with that list. Provided the relationship is good, you’ll find that…
The List is The Most Valuable Thing You Have
I’m still talking about the list because I want to emphasize that it’s the key to making fat sales month in, month out for as long as you want. Here’s why.
All of your digital assets can be taken away at your moment’s notice.
Your domain can be blocked and blacklisted from search engines like Google.
Your social network pages can be shut down. Even if this isn’t true, rumor has it that Facebook has changed its algorithm to minimize the organic reach of user-run pages.
Your products can become outdated, lose traction or become irrelevant.
In other words, everything that makes you money can be lost or get taken away…
Except for your list.
That’s right: no matter what Google, Facebook, Apple or anyone else decides to do tomorrow…
No matter what happens to your product or your physical business…
You’ll always have a long list of ready-to-buy leads.
The only thing you need to do is – continuously build your list and maintain a great relationship with it.
That’s why my advice is: don’t get attached to different platforms and marketing methods. At the end of the day, it’s all about the list: the surest, most proven way to generate sales, no matter what’s going on.
And here’s how you’re going to get yours and use it to generate sales…
Building a Profitable List Using Your Funnel Website
Building and using your list is dead simple. You only need 4 funnel pages to do it – and I’m about to break them down for you right now, starting with…
The Landing/Opt-In/Squeeze Page
This is the first page someone sees once they enter funnel at the top. At this point, your goal is simple: to get their e-mail address or phone number and convert them into being a lead for your business.
The best way to do this is by offering an ethical bribe to your page visitors. In the digital marketing space, these bribes are called lead magnets because of their ability to attract people towards becoming leads and joining your list.
You’ve already seen many such ethical bribes in the past. In fact, this book is one of them; a lead magnet for my business! Business owners who read this book and need help with their marketing reach out to me frequently for help and they work with me monthly to run marketing for their businesses.
Two key points for your lead magnet are:
- Don’t make it too long. You want to give people a taste of your paid offer – not so much information they’ll feel overloaded and tired.
- Make the material high-quality. If what people see at this stage is sub-par, they’ll never buy from you, so it’s real important you impress them as early as possible.
The Tripwire Offer (& Sales Page)
Once someone’s got your free offering, it’s time for the first conversion: a low-price product, with high value and irresistible offer known as the tripwire.
Why do we need a tripwire?
To convert a lead into a customer – and to give a taste and demonstrate that whatever you’re selling is valuable.
See, in this day and age, most people have been burned by internet scams. Customers are scared of getting duped, scammed or simply receiving a crappy product…
But most people will give a tripwire, priced at $7-$17, a chance – especially if they developed some kind of relationship with you, received few e-mails and consumed a valuable lead magnet from you prior.
Once you’ve made the tripwire sale, it’s time to…
Sell the Core Offer
Once someone’s on your list and has purchased your tripwire offer, it’s time to get your core offer in front of them – repeatedly, if necessary.
The beauty of structuring the sales process like this is that by the time the core offer makes an appearance in your customer’s journey, they already trust you. The risk of them saying “no” out of hand is nil…
Which means you can charge a premium price and still make more sales than you would otherwise.
Once this stage is over, you can safely move on to…
Selling the Profit Maximizer
Your core offer should have a price tag that makes it realistically affordable for as many people as possible.
That way, there’s space to offer a profit maximizer afterwards – and get an extra sale from your top prospects; i.e. those who can afford, and have a need for, whatever you’re selling.
A profit maximizer should be more expensive than most people can afford… But affordable enough that at least some of the people buying from you will opt for it.
Great examples of profit maximizers are those that compliment your core offer. A done-for-you service, installation, other products that go together with your main product, extra warranty.
To illustrate how these 4 pages might work together, let’s imagine Keith’s Boulangerie again.
As a lead magnet, Keith gives everyone who joins his e-mail list a free coffee coupon.
As a tripwire offer, Keith sells great black coffee at the low, low price of $1.49.
As his core offer, Keith offers a fancier latte-sandwich combo for $4.99.
Finally, as his profit maximizer, Keith sells a fancy-schmancy Caramel Coffiato – Lox sandwich combo for $9.99.
The great thing is that Keith can use his own funnel website, his Facebook page and his brick-and-mortar business to run this funnel – which maximises the number of sales he’s going to get!
Regardless of how far a user makes it in your customer journey, they should always end up on a “thank you” page – and in your lead list.
Once you’ve created a similar kind of sequence, all you need to do is drive traffic to it – and watch your list virtually build itself.
What’s important is what happens after you’ve maximized the sales you get from each and every new customer – because…
The Same Customer Can Make You Money Again, and Again, and Again, and…
Modern life is hard – and people are always looking for someone who can help them make the best possible decision.
When we’re choosing a car, we read car reviews. When we’re looking for a book to read, we tune in to Oprah – and if we don’t, then our neighbors do. When we’re about to hit the cinema, we go to Metacritic, or Rotten Tomatoes, or…
You get the idea.
To your list, you are yet another source of knowledge – and so long as you continue to offer them value and help on an ongoing basis, people will continue to listen to you…
And buy from you.
At some point, this means you’ll want to start remarketing to people who’ve already bought from you to make even more money.
You can do this with your own products, or using affiliate products that pay you commission for each unit sold.
The key is to…
Build Great Relationships With Your List
Like I said earlier, the money’s not really in the list – it’s in your relationship with your list.
It pays to have a great relationship with your leads… Which means you should work on it by sending relevant, valuable information as often as possible, up to 1-2 e-mails each week.
If you do this right, and pick a niche where you can continue to market your new products and services, your list will become a proverbial money-printing machine – and quickly, too.
The best thing is, you can use e-mail marketing to re-market old products – or once that need a sales push at any particular time. The chance is that your customer bought a notebook on your website and closed it and never even knew you also sell great looking, long lasting pens, leather wallets, business card holders AND that you offer business card design and printing services.
Once you get the hang of this process, you can repeat the cycle, selling your own products – or someone else’s – to your list again… And again… And again… Making new sales in perpetuity – and generating new clients along the way.
In closing, I’d like to share the most important (and valuable) insight I’ve had in several years of doing business online.
Here it goes: it doesn’t matter how great your knowledge or expertise is… How cool, superb and unbeatable your product is… Or how perfect your marketing is…
What really matters is delivering value, solving your customers’ pains – and having people pay you for it without a second thought.
That’s the fundamental paradigm of business. It hasn’t changed for thousands of years, and isn’t going to change anytime soon.
Everything else is just icing on the cake that ultimately begins with offering something your customers need and want.