Turn Website Lurkers into Paying Clients

December 10, 2010
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Two years ago I wrote an ICS Web Exclusive feature titled “Your Web Site Needs to Sell Your Business: Here’s How.” Since the web is ever changing, we’re always learning new sales triggers to get homeowners to pick up the phone or e-mail for cleaning.

Many cleaners are confused as to why they aren’t booking jobs from their website. I sometimes speak with cleaners who already have the top rankings in Google or who are spending a fortune on pay-per-click, but are getting no calls.

They’ve got the traffic. But the traffic isn’t translating into sales. It’s a matter of the sales strategy on their website that needs help.

Three factors determine whether or not you will get sales from your site.

1. Traffic

Is anyone visiting your site? You can get traffic to your site with pay-per-click or from “organic” search engine ranking. See my October 2010 ICS article, “Getting Your Website to the Top” for lots of great tips on search engine ranking.

2. Website Sales Strategy

Once you get traffic, does the site peak their interest enough for lurkers to call or e-mail? This is where the sales strategy of your site comes in play.

3. Conversion

When they call, are you answering the phone? Are you answering e-mail estimate requests quickly? There’s a little button at the top left corner of every web browser called the back button. Web surfers love to use that button. If your prospect doesn’t see something to make them stop and take interest, they’ll be quick to use it.

It’s very important to include several key triggers on your main page. Include a few of these on your sub-pages as well. People who come lurking around your site may never call you if you don’t purposely design your site to make a sale. Use these strategies to make them stop dead in their tracks and take note of your company. 

"I'm Local!"

The first question on their mind is, “Are you local?” The web is a big place; you need to give your prospect instant confirmation they’ve found the right website. Some great triggers to show you are local:
  • Scream out your city and/or county name at the top of your site in large text
  • Include a picture of a well-known area landmark in your header
  • Your city name in your title tag
  • Your city name in the text of your site
  • Pictures of you or your vans at well-known areas of your city
  • Place logos of local media you’ve been seen on with the words “As seen on…”
  • Simple videos of you or your techs in front of city landmarks
  • Stories about how your company helps local charities
  • Post a locator map of the areas you service
After they know they’ve found the right page, they start to wonder if you’re the company they can trust to do their cleaning. This is where the selling really starts. 

"You Can Trust Me!"

This is the part where you show them you are a trustworthy company. If you can’t answer the question “Can I trust you?” with an emphatic “Yes!” you will lose. This is partially about putting details of your company on your site, but it’s also about showing what other people say about your company. Some great triggers to show you can be trusted:
  • Videos of before and after cleaning (even simple Flip Cam videos will do)
  • Video testimonials from happy clients
  • Handwritten testimonials scanned and placed on your site
  • Testimonials with the client name and area of town the client lives
  • Welcome message from the owner in video or in text
  • Pictures of the owner, techs, and your office
  • List of well-known companies or clients you’ve cleaned (get their permission)
  • Your strong, well-defined, written guarantee…with no weasel clause!
  • List the steps of your cleaning processes
  • Link your site to your Google Places page with client reviews
  • Link your site to your Angie’s list or other sites with client reviews
  • Put a “Join us on Facebook” graphic on your page linking to Facebook
  • Use certification and association logos. Explain what it means to your client
  • Contact us page with your phone number and physical address
  • Include a free report about something your company does remarkably well
Now you’ve got them really interested. But don’t stop there! Don’t let the lurker wander off. Tell them what to click. Tell them where to call and what to ask for when they do.

Call to Action!

Most cleaning websites have no call to action whatsoever. Adding any type of call to action is better than none, but a strong one can easily triple the sales of your site. Some ideas for calling your prospective web visitor to action:
  • Have a strong offer and call to action only for web prospect
  • Promote your offer with banners, graphics, and text
  • Put your call to action on every page of your site
  • Provide an email opt-in for your special offer, free report, and more info
  • Include an estimate inquiry form for those searching after hours
  • Use an exit pop-up to capture their email address or give an offer
  • Write lists of reasons why you’re different from your competition
  • Phone number large and at the top of each page (this is often forgotten)


Just by adding a few of the above sales triggers, some cleaners have doubled and even tripled the amount of calls they’ve gotten from their site. In fact, on my site, simply adding videos doubled the amount of calls I received. Remember, your website is an advertisement. And just like every ad you run, you have to use some salesmanship to make it sell.

The great thing about your own website is you don’t have a limit to the amount of space you can use. Color is free. There are no contracts to keep you confined. And you can change everything on your site within a few days. So get creative. In fact, put up a couple of websites and test out what sells best. This is some of the cheapest advertising you can do that gets results.

Yes, it will take time to get these things set up on your site. But once you include some of these sales triggers, your website will convert more lurkers into actual paying clients.

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