One of the first and most important tasks of any web site owner is to capture at least the name and email address of every visitor possible.
You must make this exchange of information relevant to the niche topic of your web site and also none threatening to the prospect so that he/she doesn’t hesitate to question why you would want to know personal contact information.
You want to be able to communicate with your prospects and customers and send them follow-up messages. You want to keep your business in front of the prospect, but you must have their permission and blessing to do that.
Often web site owners will offer a premium or freebie to the visitor in hopes that the exchange of the personal information for the freebie will be seen as a “fair trade” by the customer.
But too often the freebie has no relation to the business or product of the owner. If your business web site is about cardio exercise, what good does it do to give a freebie about the ten best ways to travel through Europe on a bus?
It becomes little more than an obvious “bribe” to get the owner the information he wants. Customers see right through this kind of offer.
A better way to capture the needed information is to offer something of added value to the products or niche of the web site. It might be a free e-book on the topic of the site or a free informative report on some aspect of the business.
Here’s another alternative: ask the prospective customer to leave his name and email address with you so that you can send him a free and very valuable personal cost estimate, or an analysis of his need for a product, or a white paper on the trends of the industry, or a study that was recently done in the niche.
All of these freebies are scholarly; they are research based, and will be perceived as worth much more than some generic free information that could be picked up most anywhere online. If you can personalize the freebie information to the prospect it will be seen as even more valuable and worth the exchange of information.
All these premiums are directly related to the topic of the site and will add value to the customer’s visit to your business as well as give the customer good information which could lead to a recommendation of specific products to purchase while there.
You can rightfully claim that you need the prospect’s name and address so that you can send a copy of this freebie to him as soon as he registers at your web site.
The products that I mentioned (the analysis, the cost estimate, the white paper, etc.) are all digital information products that can be authored by you or a free lance writer at very little cost and be delivered to the customer without cost as an email attachment or free download.
If you decide to deliver by download, don’t give the download URL at the web site or you will never get the prospect’s email information. Simply tell him that you will send him download instructions upon receiving his registration.
This strategy works very well because the prospect believes (and rightfully so) that you are giving him something of great value that you don’t want openly available for anyone; you’re limiting this “gift” for your very best customers and not the general public.
Since the information is directly related to your niche in some way, the customer gets to immediately satisfy his hunger of niche information just as soon as he gives you permission to contact him.
To your online business success!