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September 26, 2016 Graham
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So your website is generating a fairly steady amount of leads thanks to your digital marketing efforts. But for the past 2 weeks or so, there has been a dramatic slump in leads coming through website sales. It can be an extremely daunting experience, no matter if it’s your own site, or that of a client.

But take a deep breath, these things happen and there is probably a perfectly good explanation for it… More often than not, the solution is not all that far away.

I’ve put together a few quick things you can check when a website you work on suffers from a dramatic drop in enquiries or sales.

1. TEST THE FORM AND CHECKOUT PROCESS!

The team here at WATB regularly test forms on our own and on our clients websites. Why? Because if a user cannot submit their details or make a payment, they are not going to become a sale!

Be sure to test on different devices and if there are any problems, that could be the reason for your dip in enquiries or sales. If the forms are working, make sure you learn of any other changes which have been made to the website which could have impacted your users.

2. CHECK YOUR TRAFFIC SOURCES FOR CLUES IN GOOGLE ANALYTICS

Organic Traffic – Has organic traffic dropped recently? That could indicate a penalty or another issue with rankings. Check Google Search Console for any messages from our friends at Google and use keyword analysis tools to assess any drops in rankings. Here’s a checklist for SEO’s to help troubleshoot loss in rankings.

Paid Traffic – Has paid traffic dropped recently? Have a check what’s going on with Adwords to ensure that budgets haven’t been restricted or destination urls for the ads have been changed. If you’re not in charge of the Adwords budget, be sure to find out who is.

Referral Traffic – Relying on Social Media referrals for enquiries? Check social referrals are still performing and start investigating any unusual behaviour.

Here is a guide on how to check website pageviews and more using Google Analytics.

3. WHAT’S HAPPENING IN THE WORLD?

External events can heavily influence user behaviour and sales. From something as simple as a sunny day to a major political movement such as the Brexit Vote in the UK, potential customers can be distracted or put off making purchases due to events outside of your control.

Depending on your clients’ industry, there could be a wealth of external influences on how users behave on the site. Some examples include:

  • Weather changes from a heatwave to a natural disaster distracting users.
  • Political events and economic factors such as policy changes or exchange rates reducing demand.
  • Technology changes such as a browser no longer being supported. This a large factor when it comes to being a web design and marketing agency as technology changes rapidly.

4. ARE THERE ANY ISSUES WITH YOUR WEBSITE HOSTING PROVIDER?

Although the visitor stats from Google Analytics will help show if the website has been down for a period of time, you may want to double check with the hosting company if they have noticed any issues. Some hosting providers may be the cause of lost customers as you site becomes slow, or not able to load at all. If this is the case, it could be time to consider upgrading a hosting package, or moving providers.

There are plenty of ways to monitor your website for uptime such as Uptime Robot: https://uptimerobot.com/

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