Have you ever gone on a quick supermarket run to buy one item but end up buying various knick-knacks that you didn’t need? It’s not your lack of self-control, but the supermarket making it very easy to buy from them. If you have paid attention to the billing aisles, you know what we’re talking about.
While this analogy may not directly apply to B2B customers, the underlying idea is to reduce friction and make it easy for customers to fulfill the intent of being on the website.
Today, the buyer is in the driver’s seat of the journey. It takes very little for them to lose interest and move on to the other things that catch their attention. Unfortunately, customers are dropping off even before they get to hear about the competitive advantage of the product.
A lead on your website has full interest and attention for your brand. Are you cashing in on the interest or is friction in your sales process dampening it?
Benefits of reducing buyer friction
Friction is any and all elements or processes that prevent your customer from clicking on the CTA. It creates a poor experience for the buyer and reduces the chances of converting visitors into customers.
Here’s how your business can benefit from smoothing out buyer friction:
- The prospect has a pleasant experience and the ease of doing business is established even before the sales team comes into the picture.
- Reducing friction in the early stages of the journey will accelerate the sales process and increase conversion rates.
- Customers form better relationships with your business and the brand perception improves.
- A business that is committed to reducing friction works constantly to eliminate complacency, thereby enjoying long-term customer loyalty.
How businesses can reduce buying friction
Understand buyer persona and their pain points
Studying buyer persona gives an insight into your customers’ psyche more intimately, which creates frictionless experiences for them. It also helps to streamline your marketing and sales process, thus ensuring that you’re only spending time on the leads that are most likely to convert.
With a clear picture of who you’re marketing to, it becomes easier to create targeted messages that address their pain points and position your product as the solution.
Forms are the first touchpoint to turn visitors into leads and leads into paying customers for your business. Poorly designed forms create friction and visitors drop out even before the sales team has had a chance to connect with them.
Keep users informed on what to expect when they fill out a form. Reduce the number of form fields and deploy smart forms. Apprise them of when to expect a reply and follow up proactively.
Automate sales process
The various steps in the sales cycle are time-consuming and labor-intensive, yet are a necessary part of the process. To improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your sales reps, automate the process where possible.
One such area that can benefit from automation is lead routing. Manual lead distribution slows down the pipeline activities as it is assigned on a case-to-case basis. Automated lead routing helps match leads and sales reps based on predetermined criteria. It saves time for the reps as they’re spending less time sorting through the leads.
Ease the process of booking meetings
The prospect shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to book a sales meeting. At times, the meeting falls through after multiple email exchanges, and a lot of time is wasted.
Allow prospects to schedule the meeting at a convenient time directly on your sales reps’ calendars. This also gives them the freedom to reschedule and cancel appointments.
Offer interactive tours on the website
Sometimes, words and pictures don’t do a product justice as much as an interactive tour does.
These tours on the website help ‘show’ than ‘tell’ prospects the value of your product. It also guides them through different processes, all of which are incredibly beneficial when it comes to attracting more leads and encouraging adoption.
Gone are the days when generic call-to-action buttons like ‘Talk to Sales,’ and Book a Demo’ worked. CTA optimization is a gold mine that is yet to be tapped by most businesses. We can see websites with too many CTAs, ill-timed CTA pop-ups, and inappropriate placement of CTA.
Leverage heat maps and study your audiences’ behavior before testing extensively to understand what works. This increases the number of CTA clicks thereby improving the conversion rate.
Salespeople in inbound teams should be spending time educating themselves and prospects about the product. But they are expending energy and time on tasks that have low value add.
Embracing automation frees up their time to execute activities that contribute to the top line. Sales is largely a people-to-people activity and training the team to develop human aspects such as empathy can help convert them into customers much faster.
When the website experience is tailored to the target audience and their unique journey, they are more likely to take action and move easily down the sales funnel.
Personalized CTAs, recommending relevant add-ons, and having a different page that corresponds to their stage in the buyer journey are some examples of personalization that reduces buyer friction. The data and inputs for personalization can be mobilized from the sales software, CRM, and analytics tool.
Reducing customer friction isn’t something that can be achieved overnight. However, frictionless experiences must be the new normal for every business. It’s the only thing a business can do to gain the longstanding loyalty of customers.
The tips mentioned in this article will even out as many customer friction points as possible, thereby helping you to build long-term customer relationships and increasing revenue in the process.