5 Essentials:  Why Anonymous Website Visitor Tracking is a Necessity

(Not just a ‘nice to have’ option)

Anonymous website visitor tracking is now a necessary

While you are reading this, it is very likely that a potential customer is visiting your website, examining your offering, and comparing you to the competition.  There is also a very high likelihood that this prospect will leave your site without identifying themselves to you.  At some point in the future, if that prospect feels your offering will fill their need, they will come back to your site and fill out a form.   As any seasoned sales professional knows, at this point the only chance you have of winning the deal is if you are the low price leader.  Unfortunately, there are quite a few misconceptions about how valuable it really is to know who has been visiting your website.   Listed below are some of the reasons why companies feel they don’t NEED to identify anonymous visitors to their website.

Myth: If they’re interested, they will fill out a form.

Studies show that only 2% of website visitors identify themselves by filling out a form.  As stated above, these are usually visitors (40% and growing) that have already decided what they need and now they are price shopping.  It’s very possible that they haven’t matched the right solution to fill their need and you may have completely missed any competitive advantages that you offer.  If your sales team can engage with the prospect as soon as they show the first sign of interest (when visiting your site) the odds of providing the right solution and setting yourself apart from the competition greatly increas, resulting in a much higher probability sale.

Myth: I know all the visits to my website based on my marketing campaigns.

Yes, marketing campaigns can generate visits to your site, but how many people are visiting your site based on a google search?  How many of your targeted prospects decide to visit your site without clicking on the provided link from the email you sent?  When you compare your google analytics to the size of your campaign clicks do the numbers match up?  It is likely that you are missing out on potential prospects if you are relying only on clicks from your marketing campaigns.

Myth: I need to know the name of the person on the site, not just the company.

Unless the visitor is coming from a click on your marketing campaign, this information is not available.  The value of knowing the person is also debatable, as most sales professionals want to get to the economic decision maker in a company, not necessarily the person who’s been assigned to do the research.  Knowing that a company has an interest in your offering and gaining insight into what that company is looking at will give a sales professional the necessary information to leverage direct communication with the decision maker.  The alternative is knowing nothing until the researcher inquires about price or fills out a form.

Myth: Our sales team can’t convert the prospects they are currently getting, so additional prospects don’t make a difference.

There are a couple of things to consider with this statement.  First, you need to consider the sources of the prospects you are currently receiving.  Are they just randomly generated from lists?  Are they based on email opens with no clicks?  Second, you need to consider the current process you have in place for following up on prospects and whether it is being followed.  There are multiple studies that rightly claim that a consistent call pattern with good messaging are key to engagement, regardless how good the prospect is. However, starting off with a prospect that shows an expressed interest (visiting your site) will logically yield higher results if the sales team follows a proven process.

Myth: I have a defined market and know all the companies, I don’t need additional company prospects.

For those with a tightly defined market segment, say Fortune 500 companies, this is a valid argument.  It would be reasonable to assume that marketing will be extremely targeted, personalized and frequent, and that the sales team has a very deep understanding of the organization’s structure, challenges and needs.  However, with a small target market it is likely that every potential prospect represents a very large revenue opportunity, and knowing a prospect has visited your site and looked at specific solutions, should be a great interest indicator, providing additional information that the sales person can leverage and follow up with quickly.

These are just some of the more common myths why marketing and sales professionals look at anonymous visitor tracking as a “nice” to have instead of a “need” to have.  Your particular reasons will undoubtedly vary, but if you want to determine the NECESSITY of tracking your anonymous website visitors, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is my company challenged with meeting their growth objectives?
  • Is the quality of marketing qualified prospects being continually challenged by sales?
  • Is there a large gap between the volume of site visitors and marketing campaign interest?
  • Are my prospects engaging with my sales team when it is too late in the sales process?
  • Does a prospect who visited my website show a higher interest level than one who did not?

If you answer yes to any of the above questions, then I would claim you NEED to start tracking your anonymous web visitors and just as importantly, you need to develop a process and actually use the information you collect.

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