I have lost count of the number of free and purchased eBooks I have downloaded on the subject of Website Traffic, and not one of them so much as touches on the most important problem of all, never mind offer some solutions
Not so long ago, one self-appointed Internet guru published a free eBook on how he generated over a million dollars in sales on the Internet in one day, forgetting the months of preparation that went into the project beforehand. The sales figure was presumably attained by making 1,000 sales of a $1,000 product; but once again, while his free eBook goes into detail about the process it does not even mention the vital problem.
The real problem with Internet marketing is the one element that leads to the rapid collapse of numerous online business ventures, from the home-based part-time Website run on a shoe-string to the massive million-dollar Websites that come and go overnight. And it can quickly be answered with one simple question:
What is the cost per sale?
In simple terms, you need to know how many visitors to your sales page are required for each confirmed online order you take, and how much those visitors cost. In the million-dollar-day example, the author explains about the vast affiliate network that sent out his sales letter to their massive e-mail lists of potential customers. I do not know the exact figures, but I have read of people who profess to make millions online from an affiliate network of more than 55,000 and each with mailing lists that varied from 10,000 to 60,000 and more!
When you take the lower figure, it could indicate that they despatched some 500 billion e-mails with the sales letter for this $1,000 product, and yet only 1,000 purchased it. Now that is pretty lousy conversion rate of about 1 sale from 500,000 e-mails; although the actual figure will probably be up to 10 times better than that because of duplicate names across the affiliates mailing lists.
That example is fluffy, because we do not know the exact figures, so let us examine a genuine marketing program that I ran for a month last year for a group of garden decking companies.
I spent £1,067 on click advertising, which resulted in 238,827 impressions and 12,016 clicks. The landing page had an offer of a free eBook on garden decking, and it had a 9.03% conversion rate, which provided 1,085 qualified enquiries. They were qualified by admitting they are interested in garden decking and providing full address details as well as pertinent information on the type of deck they would like to own.
The final sales figures were 10.5% or 114 sales of garden decking, with an average sales price of more than £4,000 a time. The cost per sale was £9.36 in advertising, which is good in any language, and so I had a winner and it only took one month and just over £1,000 to test
Naturally, now that the Website is fully developed and uses the other 120 ways of obtaining visitor traffic, it attracts considerable ‘free’ visitors that make the conversion rates and cost per sale even more attractive. The important point is that with a 1-month test I was able to learn if the project was viable or not without spending a fortune in money and months of painfully wasted time and effort.
You can use this ‘missing ingredient’ to your own advantage when you start your next online business project. Write an excellent 1-page Website to promote your product or service, provide a good reason for visitors to leave their contact details, and a simple and easy form for them to complete. Write a strong advertisement that invites the reader to visit your Website, and do some test marketing.
If the tests do not work out, cancel the project.
You have to do many tests in most instances, because there are so many variables in marketing online; but once you finish your tests make an informed business decision and move on.
When the costs per sale are not viable, then neither is your business project, and you must waste no further time or money.
© Copyright 2007. Brian Hunt. All Rights Reserved.
Brian Hunt http://www.PowerBusinessPublishing.com/
The author of this article is Brian Hunt, who has been writing, publishing, and marketing books and articles on business and leisure related subjects for the past seven years. He is a highly successful person with a broad depth of sales and marketing experience in various fields gained over many years in business. In addition to his publishing business, Brian works as a consultant for selected clients wishing to expand their marketing presence online.