This post is part of a series sponsored by FMG Suite.
Every business has a website, but does it actually generate new business, or is it more of a digital brochure, simply offering contact information and directions to the office? This is one reason independent property and casualty insurance agents neglect their websites: they don’t really believe that a website generates new business. However, by implementing one key essential, you can turn your website into a lean, mean lead-generating machine.
Courting Site Visitors
It’s helpful to compare a website to a courtship. Each website visitor is being “courted” by the property and casualty insurance agent through the videos, content, and graphics that appear on the website. Like a first date, the homepage of the website offers clues about the character and operating style of the insurance agent. A good homepage gives a great first impression, but that is only the beginning.
Like any relationship, a website “courtship” won’t move forward without an increasing level of commitment. In the context of a digital relationship, this commitment is generated by asking the visitor for certain things, via “forms.” Forms are boxes that offer something in return for the visitor’s contact information.
As visitors read your content and watch videos, questions may come to mind. You should offer an opportunity for those questions to be answered on every page of your site. Don’t bury your question form on the back page by your contact information. Put question forms everywhere, and make it easy for your visitor to give you the information you want — his or her contact information.
The goal of your website is to gather contact information so that you can reach out to prospects.
Do this in a three-step process:
- Offer information: Your question form should offer an answer to the visitor’s question or concern in return for contact information.
- Make it easy: Complex forms that require even 30 seconds of someone’s time are counter-productive. Beyond the box where the person can ask a question or request a quote, ask for the name, email address, and phone number. Period.
- Be quick to respond: Have an office process in place that offers a quick response to every website inquiry. You or an assistant should take a few minutes every day and attend to this detail.
Taking it Offline
Every visitor that takes the time to fill out a form is a warm lead; this is someone who is interested in you and in a particular topic. You are halfway to an investment decision with this potential client. Don’t leave it to cool down until they have forgotten why they filled out the form! Using forms on every page of your website and responding quickly to them is a key to converting website visitors into loyal clients.
Website marketing is like online dating. You can get to know each other, identify common concerns, and establish a great deal of rapport, but you won’t really get anywhere in the relationship unless you meet in person. So ask for the visitor’s contact information and respond immediately with a meaningful interaction. Then place that name on your contact list and make sure that monthly newsletters and other email marketing go out to that person on a regular basis, all with additional opportunities to ask questions and receive answers.
Finally, at any point in the process, use a prospect’s question as the impetus to pick up the phone and begin a personal conversation. That is the final link in the chain that leads from the first website visit to a client relationship.
Adding Forms to Your Website
Now that you know how essential forms are to your website, how do you go about implementing them? First, build your website with a marketing provider that specializes in your industry. A specialist, such as FMG Suite, can provide forms specifically for property and casualty insurance agents, including “Have a Question?” and “Request a Quote” options.
There are also a number of apps and services, such as Wufoo, that allow you to create your own form that you can add to your website. In order to do this, you will need to be familiar with basic HTML in order to add the form to your site.
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