Digital Marketing Case Study – Office Furniture Supplier Increases Leads by 300%
Digital marketing has been a popular topic in the last 5 years or so, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. Still, there are some businesses that don’t think it’s worth the time and money, wrongly assuming that digital marketing is “just a buzzword.”
Deciding whether or not digital marketing is worthwhile comes down to individual companies. However, the majority of small businesses that run the numbers and utilize successful methods discover that digital marketing is the key to greater customer retention and increased returns.
Some of the most prominent advantages of digital marketing revolve around affordability and a quick return on investment. Not all aspects of digital marketing will be in a price range small businesses can afford, but social media marketing, blog content, in-house videos, and customer reviews are all highly affordable. More importantly, these are forms of digital marketing that small businesses can use with ease.
That being said, small companies often shy away from digital marketing because methods don’t always work. Digital marketing is highly subjective to customers and their habits, and businesses won’t always get strategies right the first time. Unfortunately, many firms choose to listen to stories of failure rather than stories of success.
If you’re a small business owner who isn’t yet using digital marketing, now is the perfect time to start. There are many tactics that can make digital marketing a more prominent, useful part of your strategy. Herein, we share just one of the success stories we’ve noted since working with a furniture retailer in Johannesburg.
IXAXA Office Furniture is an office furniture retailer based in Isando. They are one of the leading office furniture suppliers in the country and boast a state-of-the-art showroom and offer expert advice.
Their product range includes items such as office chairs, ergonomic office chairs, office desks, restaurant furniture, office filing solutions and office reception furniture.
Before we came into the scene, IXAXA had been around for almost 10 years and built a good customer base, but with the general economy downturn they had noticed a drop in their inbound leads. A drop in inbound leads can be a huge downfall for any business, it’s the cheapest and easiest sale you will likely ever make. The customer is already interested in the product, they’ve done their research and are ready to speak to someone about finding a solution to their problem.
Office furniture is very much an event-based buying activity and therefore an outbound approach to getting meetings was probably not the best approach. For this reason we concentrated all our efforts on building their inbound leads and appointments. They were previously getting around 150 leads per month, equating to roughly only 6 leads per weekday. We knew the potential was far more than that. So we took a multi-faceted approach which saw the boastable results they are now currently enjoying the benefits of.
So, how’d we do it?
Increasing Inbound Leads – Google Paid AdWords
When we took over IXAXA Office Furniture’s AdWords campaign, we had two main goals:
- Increase the number of leads and appointments
- Decrease the cost pert lead/appointment.
We set their campaign up to maximize keyword relevancy by creating a massive number of Adgroups (almost one to match every key-phrase). Ideally in any campaign you would essentially have one adgroup for almost every keyphrase, to be able to serve the user the most relevant results. There is always a way up between time invested and expected results but the principle works something like this.
Massive number of Adgroup example:
Let’s saying we are bidding on the general topic of office chairs. Going through the search term report we would see that there was a sufficient volume of search for the keyphrases cheap office chairs, best office chairs and second hand office chairs.
Now a normal campaign would have an adgroup for Office Chairs which would include all of these keyphrases. The advertiser would then serve up ads trying to catch all searches so it would look something like this
Although this is very relevant for the searcher it is not SUPER relevant. When we created our huge list of Adgroups we could then serve each searcher perfectly with THE MOST relevant ad.
i.e. when someone searched “second hand office chairs” they would see an ad like this:
and when someone searched “best office” they would see an ad like this:
We then started adding our list of negative keywords by using the search term report each day. Just by being pedantic and obsessive about negative keywords we managed to eliminate almost 20% of wasted clicks in the next 3 months.
Increasing Inbound Leads – Targeted Facebook Advertising
Because the outbound approach for something like office furniture is a bit tricky, we decided to attract the “low hanging fruit” on Facebook by employing smart remarketing. We were already generating a lot of search traffic to their website and therefore we wanted to capitalize on non-converting traffic in Facebook at a second bite of the apple. This allowed us to attract an extra 30 leads per month.
Increasing Inbound Leads – Conversion Optimization
When we started working on IXAXA’s website, we analysed all visited pages using Lucky Orange to see which pages were not resulting in leads. This programme allows an authorised user to track the movement of any buyer, searcher or visitor to come to their website and see where the user was experiencing problems, where they hesitated or left the site altogether. This tool has opened a new world of possibilities; not only does it allow you to change formats which are in fact not user-friendly (as much as we’d like to believe we have the easiest site in the world), change contact form requirements, product placements etc., but it also allows you to track changes you have made.
For example, instead of wondering why your new pricing page is not garnering as many leads as previously, you can physically monitor aggregate website visitors to see their movements. If two, three, four people all left your site after trying to view pricing on an item, or get more info on it – you now know you’d need to change that specific pages layout to make it friendlier to anyone who uses it. Once the changes have been implemented, continued monitoring allowed us to continue to polish the page, until it was at a point where a) the user ended up buying a product or requesting a quote and b) did it in half the time it initially took them.
Furthermore, we discovered FOUR “zero-conversion-pages” which visitors would come to but would then never land up resulting in a conversion. These are essentially four pages of your website which are active, but are literally serving zero purpose. This insight allowed to neaten the pages, add the correct type of pop-up forms to accumulate contact details of searchers, and eventually land more leads and sales.
Increasing Inbound Leads – Sales Enablement
There is a huge opportunity when one considers how many leads reach out at the beginning of their search journey, but are not ready to buy at that stage. When optimising a site, one needs to be highly aware of the various stages of the buyers’ journey (LINK). You may get a lead from someone who has literally never searched for your product before, you might also get a lead from someone looking to compare quotes but is not entirely sure of the industry as a whole, or you could get a lead from user who is highly experienced and knows what they want, when they want it and at what price they want it. Typically, a new lead would visit the site, not leave their contact details, but they might return to the site a few days later after having researched the topic a bit more. But how would you know about it?
We installed piece of tracking software which would alert us when a previous lead had come back to the website. There are no hotter leads than a lead which was once doing their investigation and then came back to confirm a detail.
But, we didn’t leave it there. Educating your client son how to seal a hot lead is almost as important as getting that lead in the first place. We trained the client on how to actively monitor inbound leads, what type of information to share with them once they had ascertained which point they were at in the buyers journey, and lastly, how to ensure either an appointment was set, or that the client was sent the information they requested within the shortest possible amount of time.
Timing is everything and knowing this info is key in the sales process.
Pro tip: Phoning your inbound leads in 10 seconds or less might be the one simple change you need to implement to see dramatic sales increases. Nobody likes getting a call to sell them something 24 hours after they considered buying it…
Increasing Inbound Leads – SEO
There is no question that SEO is a long term game, but the sooner you start, the sooner you reap the rewards. We started out writing 3 articles every week; these articles were focused around long-tail keywords and keywords with buying intent. As we previously mentioned, you can garner leads from any stage of buying intent, but when you structure your keywords (whether paid or organic) around the intention you wish to see your searchers demonstrate, you’re likely to see better results, and more relevant ones at that.
For example, instead of using keywords such as “where to buy office furniture”, we would have opted for an optimised article with keywords like “Best office furniture supplier”, or “custom office furniture supplier”. Using keywords like this – i.e. – ones with buying intent, means the article or paid keyword would attract the right type of customer from the start. This helps eliminate “bad fit” leads further down the line, ones which you have taken the time and effort to call and advise, but were only looking for a specific brand you may not stock, or products that may not fit their criteria.
Every week we see an increase in traffic as more and more of our content is ranked and best of all the content is made to convert and therefore every month we see more and more organic leads which is a powerful asset which just continues to grow. SEO does take at least three months to “get off the ground”, but the beauty of SEO is versatility and evergreen nature. A prime example of this could be that you have perhaps had a blog published on the “Best Office Chairs 2017”. Instead of going ahead and writing a whole new blogs, structured the same way but just with more updated content (which Google will likely penalise you for, in contravention of their Best Practice Guidelines (LINK), you can simply return to that article and update it to reflect updated products, links and pricing, as well as changing your title to “Best Office Chairs 2018”.
Furthermore, writing blogs which may seem counterintuitive to someone new to the game has proven to be fruitful. A blog on the “Worst Office Chairs” garnered leads from large corporates, as the blog mentioned what you should look out for in a “bad” office chair, what to opt for instead, as well as optimised links to “the right office chair”. Being transparent and upfront with potential leads allowed us to assert authority in the brand and industry and helped build trust to a level where people who may not have been interested in purchasing are now aware of how the suppliers product may benefit them.
Increasing Inbound Leads – Website Page Optimisation
Nope, we’re not speaking about Conversion Optimisation here. Optimising the web pages, especially the most visited ones, can reap major benefits for any client, whether they are e-commerce based or not. Having a page that is a one-stop shop, such as pricing pages, requires as much concise information that may answer the searchers intent as quickly as possible, in one easily digested format. If the client does not advertise pricing, ensure you setup an easily understood contact form which requires no more than four prices of information. The most necessary information is typically their name, contact number, e-mail address and query intent. Making query intent a “bullet-form” selection list will also drive more leads to submit their info; instead of typing out their query, they can simply check it off from a list. One more step in this methodology of increasing inbound leads is to add a section (also “checkable” in format) as to when the customer may be interested in buying.
- I want an ergonomic office chair
- As soon as possible
- I just want a quote
- I want the chair in the next month
- I want the chair in 2-3 months
Garnering this info allows you to gauge what stage your buyer is before you even speak with them! If you know your lead is interested in buying an ergonomic chair soon, you may have a special running on a range of chairs suited to them. You can use this as an invaluable sales tool to “lead your lead” to becoming a buyer. The easier it is for them, the easier it is for you.
Increasing Inbound Leads – Outreach Campaigns
Until now, the client had focussed on optimising their website to accumulate inbound leads through PPC, AdWords and SEO. Sometimes, marketers focus only on the type of optimisation that would bring them leads with minimal work. Keeping in line with minimal work, but thinking out the box, we gathered contact information for every lead generated over a month. This list was then categorised into “not interested”, “interested but not ready” etc. Creating an e-mail campaign for each would be a waste of time and energy, so we focussed again on searchers with buying intent.
These searchers have already come to your website, and clearly not found what they were looking for (or perhaps found it, but at the wrong time in their buying journey). Targeting a specific group of interested buyers with the right type of e-mail campaign assisted us in getting IXAXA to reach their 300% lead improvement.
For example: an interested buyer from 14 days prior can be sent an e-mail campaign promoting an item he or she had shown interested in, perhaps at a discounted price within a limited time period, or allow them further info to get them to buy. The “further info” could include things like blogs or videos which will help keep the channel of communication open between you the supplier and your potential customer.
Yes, e-mail campaigns can take a little while to setup, but when using software such as MailChimp, you can easily see the level of engagement previous leads are offering. A lead is not a dead lead until you give up!
Inbound Lead Generation is Multi-Faceted; by investing heavily in lead generation, sales enablement, SEO and campaigns, we were able to generate 3 times as many leads in just over 6 months. Also the sales team was able to view the complete lead journey at any stage, which resulted in a far better and far more effective sales call each time.
Other sales enablement tools like returning lead notifications also provide a great source of “free hot leads” which allow for a better sales experience from the sales person’s side as well as the customers.
Need more info, or keen to find out how we can do the same or similar for you? Fill out the form below to get in touch with us today!