Many SMBs that I come across are in need of more business, yet they do not have the infrastructure in place to effectively convert incoming leads into new customers. A potential customer calls but gets no answer. The prospect leaves a voice mail but never hears back. An email is sent to the business but receives no reply. As a consumer of local service businesses, I am amazed at how often my outreach goes unanswered.
Even more frustrating is the fact that in today’s world most SMBs spend hundreds of dollars a month on online marketing and SEO to compete for leads, yet those generated leads continue to fall through the cracks. This is a commonly overlooked issue for SMBs and it is just as important as the generation of leads.
So, who cares about missing out on a few leads every day?
Let’s do a simple calculation of the lifetime value of your customer using the formula below:
(Average value of a sale) X (average number of transactions per customer per year) X (average number of years a typical customer is retained)
An easy example would be the lifetime value of an auto maintenance and repair shop client who spends $250 every 4 months for 3 years. The lifetime value of that customer would be:
$250 X 3 visits a year X 3 years = $2,250 (or $750 a year)
Are the gears turning yet?
So what can you do to capture more of your incoming leads? Create clear avenues for your potential clients to easily request an appointment.
-Have one phone number for prospects to reach your business. If the prospect gets sent to the company voicemail, make sure to let them know that you set aside a specific time each day to respond to voicemails.
-Install an appointments widget on your website (or have us install one for you) so that your potential clients can request an appointment and type out a detailed message about their service needs. Some of your prospects may be more content sending their appointment request this way, especially after business hours.
Lastly, make sure that responding to the previous day’s phone and email inquiries is a top priority. Build that process into your everyday business functions. If your current workforce cannot handle the extra work, consider the cost-benefit analysis of hiring an additional administrative employee.