Why You Should Build Interactive Tools to Increase Sales

Why You Should Build Interactive Tools to Increase Sales

The average American sees up to 10,000 ads and brand messages every single day. Sounds a little overwhelming, right? That’s because it is.

After seeing this many ads every day, viewers simply stop noticing them—meaning they aren’t engaging with them. As a result, you miss out on sales opportunities.

You need to go further to engage your target audience and convert them by personalizing the whole marketing experience through interactive marketing tools. Here’s what you need to know.

What Are Interactive Tools in Marketing?

Pretend for a moment that you’re looking for new hair color. It’s tricky because you’re unsure which colors suit you, and you could use some personalized help.

Finally, a website catches your eye because there’s an interactive tool designed to help you pick a hair color. All you need to do is input some simple details, such as your skin tone and eye color, and you’ll see a list of compatible hair dyes.

The outcome? You purchase a hair dye. In other words, you just went from a potential lead to a paying customer, and it’s all thanks to that interactive website tool.

Essentially, this is precisely how interactive tools for marketing are meant to work. And this particular example isn’t imaginary—you can check out Boots to see what I mean:

If you go through the sequence, you’ll find a list of compatible colors. Then, when you click on a color, a link pops up to take you straight to the right product:

How’s that for convenience?

With just a few minutes of interaction, users get helpful, meaningful results—and you may make a sale.

Examples of Interactive Tools

That’s just one example of interactive tools in a sales context. However, you can build many interactive tools and discover at least as many ways you can use them in your marketing strategy.

Here are five common types of interactive marketing tools we can use in different ways.

Virtual Try Ons for Interactive Marketing

This one’s similar to what we just worked through, but it’s not quite identical—we’re taking it one step further.

Embedded “quizzes” like the one we just looked at rely on customers clicking on certain answers. The algorithm then presents people with solutions matching their answers.

Conversely, virtual try-ons use augmented reality or simple image captures to let people use selfies to “try on” everything from makeup to glasses.

The benefit? Customers know whether the product suits them or not, so they’re more likely to buy. Briefly, here’s how they work:

  • Someone visits your product page.
  • They tap the “try on” link, which activates the user’s phone camera.
  • With augmented reality, the user places the product on their face to see how it looks.
  • If they’re happy with the appearance, the prospective customer moves the product to their basket and goes through checkout.

It’s not just limited to beauty products or accessories, either. For instance, platforms like Amazon allow their users to “place” furniture around the room to see if they look good in their home. The same technology applies.

Interactive Measurement Tools

Customers sometimes find buying products like shoes online challenging because it’s hard to determine what size to get.

That’s where measurement tools come in. Let’s break down Nike’s Digital Foot Measurement Tool as an example.

  • Customers shop through the Nike app.
  • They decide on the shoes they want and opt to “try them on.”
  • The camera scan’s the person’s foot to get measurements rather than using augmented reality.
  • Once the scan is complete, the app tells the person which size they should choose.

It’s easy to see how this may lead to more sales and, happily, fewer returns.

Interactive Calculators

Calculators are useful interactive tools for your website and can be used in more ways than one might think, including as:

  • Nutritional calculators
  • Pricing calculators to help potential customers build customized product “bundles”
  • Financial calculators to help people select the right financial product for their circumstances

Whichever sector you’re in, there’s a good chance you can use an interactive calculator to personalize the user experience.

For example, say you run a kitchen supplies website, and you want people to buy your recipe books. They’ve asked questions about how healthy the recipes are.

A nutritional calculator can help them out and, in turn, encourage people to spend more time on your website and potentially have more trust in your brand.

7 Reasons You Should Use Interactive Tools to Increase Sales

We’ve explored what interactive marketing tools are and how they work. There’s still a fundamental question remaining: Can these tools increase your sales?

The answer is: Yes! Here are my top seven reasons why interactive tools in your marketing strategy can increase sales:

1. Interactive Tools Boost Engagement Levels

Customer engagement is vital, but it’s hard to stand out from the crowd. Here are two reasons why:

  • The average person spends almost two and a half hours a day scrolling through social media. In this time, they’re exposed to countless marketing messages, from banner ads to PPC.
  • We’ve become “conditioned” to ignore banners (a phenomenon dubbed “banner blindness.”)

Don’t worry, though. This time is where interactive tools have their chance to shine. 66% of marketers report an increase in engagement levels after introducing interactive content to their marketing plans.

Ultimately, increased customer engagement is a pretty effective way to generate more sales in the long-term, so it’s worth using interactive tools in your content.

2. Improved UX Using Interactive Tools May Convert Customers

Conversion is what marketing is all about, and interactive tools could help you do just that. Let me show you how it’s working for JINS, a prescription eyewear provider.

As a forward-thinking company, JINS wanted a new, innovative way to increase conversion rates and improve customer experience. Their solution came via virtual try-ons for glasses.

All someone needs to do is turn on their camera and upload a selfie to the platform. Once that’s done, the user chooses which frames they’re interested in and puts them onto the selfie.

Here’s what it looks like in action. On the left, we have the selfie, and on the right, the actual frames after the customer made their purchase:

Potential customers now have a quick and accurate way to gauge which glasses to buy! According to JINS, conversion rates have drastically improved since they added this interactive tool.

3. Interactive Tools Allow Customers to Feel Confident in Large Purchases

Like I said earlier, this is not just about trying on hair colors or checking out fashion accessories. This technology is about making big purchases, too.

Take Target, for example. Users upload a picture of their room and place a true-to-life copy of a furniture piece in the space. They can also download the Target app and try out the augmented reality version instead, which is a little more engaging because you can move the product around the room. Amazon does this with many of their products in their app as well.

This feature allows users to check if the furniture or other large item fits their space before purchasing it, which means they’re more likely to click “buy” and less likely to make returns.

4. Personalized User Experience via Interactive Tools Can Increase Conversions

Do you see a pattern of personalization forming? Interactive tools allow us to personalize marketing like never before. Here’s why it matters from a sales perspective:

These stats tell us two things:

First, customers crave personalization. They want to feel valued by companies.

Second, they’re more likely to become loyal customers if there’s a personal touch to your marketing efforts.

This is a no-brainer way to build brand loyalty and increase your chance of future sales.

5. Interactive Tools Increase Lead Generation

I’ve touched on this already, but it’s worth emphasizing just how effective a lead generation strategy using interactive tools can be from a sales perspective.

Firstly, there’s an SEO angle. If you can attract more social media shares and inbound links, you should generate more traffic. Additionally, if people spend more time on your website and there’s a lower bounce rate, your search engine ranking can improve. Social shares may boost your SEO ranking by over 20%, too. (You can check who’s linking back to you with my free backlink checker.)

The upshot of interactive tools catching people’s eyes is that there could be more organic traffic and better quality leads because the people you’re attracting are already looking for your product or service.

Let’s think about this from another angle, too. The data you’re capturing from prospects as they use your tools may help you figure out what your customers want so you can improve your products and services.

Consequently, you can generate more quality leads in the long-term, all without much extra effort from a marketing perspective.

Sounds great, right?

6. Automate Your Marketing With Interactive Tools

Yes, interactive tools can help you automate your marketing efforts, and the tools do much of the work for you. The algorithms detect what the customer wants and make recommendations or offer solutions based on this information.

This can help you increase sales and make alterations as needed because you can:

  • Check your metrics to ensure the tools are working how you want them to
  • Make changes to the UX based on what you’re seeing
  • Compare performance across different interactive tools and invest time, energy, and resources in the ones performing most effectively

7. Interactive Tools May Draw Traffic to Your Website  

Without traffic coming to your website, there’s little chance you’ll make sales. Again, interactive tools can help you out here. Here’s why.

Firstly, 47% of people use ad blockers now, so there’s a chance some potential customers won’t even see your marketing if you’ve focused efforts on those. Interactive tools help you sidestep this problem.

Secondly, 79% of successful marketers say interactive tools and content encourage people to return to their websites. It’s not just about creating new content, either—you can use the same content time and time again when you have interactive tools.

Think about it. If a customer loves the eyeglasses they purchased from you the first time around, they’re more likely to return to your online shop. There, they’ll use the same virtual try on tool they used before to check out different pairs. You didn’t have to try to impress them with new interactive tools, promotional emails, or any other marketing strategy—they liked what they used the first time and engaged with it again.

How’s that for a cost-efficient way to solidify a lasting relationship with your customer base?

Conclusion

Why should you build interactive tools to increase your sales? Well, as we can see, they’re not just a reliable way to generate leads and improve conversion rates, but they’re cost-effective, too.

They’re not especially challenging to deploy, either. It’s easy enough to find interactive tools you can tweak to suit your needs and embed them on your website. If you want more help with introducing interactive tools into your marketing strategy, check out my consulting services.

Have you tried interactive marketing tools yet?

How To Leverage Content To Build Trust

How To Leverage Content To Build Trust

Your content plays an important role in building trust. It affects how people perceive your brand in obvious as well as subtle ways. In this post, we’ll look at different ways you can leverage content so that your audience trusts your brand sooner and is willing to buy from you.

Both trust-building and content creation are ongoing processes that will help you get results in the short and long run. Here are the different content types you need to create to build trust continuously and to create a solid brand image.

Publish blog posts regularly

Have you ever visited a website and then wondered why they haven’t posted any content recently? Visitors to a site will notice if a website does not update their content. This can create discomfort because it indicates a lack of activity and will make users wonder if the business will respond to them.

This makes it important to create blog posts regularly. Whether you post a blog post once a month or every week, the important thing is to do it consistently. And you can also update your create evergreen posts by adding edits and making the date field show when the post was last updated. Google notices when your posts are updated too and this impacts how well your content ranks on search engines.

Stay on top of your social media posts

Just like your blog or website, you need to create and post content regularly on social media. If you’re starting out or are a small company and don’t have a large following yet, it’s still important to keep posting content often.

Even if you get most of your leads from other places, your social media content still matters because your activity level implies that you are likely to respond to queries from your audience.

So, create posts on a daily basis if not multiple times a day. And make posts that use natural conversational language so that your audience feels like you’re talking to them directly and in a friendly way.

Respond to comments

Along with your blog and social media posts, visitors to your site or social media profiles will explore comments people leave. It is critical to reply to comments that users make on your posts. When your audience sees that you respond to comments, they’ll feel assured that you listen to people. They’ll expect you to similarly respond to customer complaints, which will make them comfortable.

It’s important to create responses that are personalized, informative, and that sound authentic. Canned responses like ‘We appreciate your feedback’ alone will make your audience feel like you’re not really listening. Try to speak to your readers in a natural tone of voice and have a conversation instead.

It’s small touches like these that create a good image of your business.

Keep your emails out of the spam folder

One powerful way to make sure that your content builds trust is to make it ‘spam-proof’. Today, email service providers take spam protection seriously. Steps like making sure that your email copy doesn’t have any spam trigger words will ensure that your content doesn’t land in the spam folder.

It is also vital that you send email content only to people who have explicitly agreed to receive content. Sending newsletters with helpful content to your email list helps you build a relationship with your audience. So, it’s important to ensure that your email arrives in their inbox.
Make sure that you configure your email settings correctly and authenticate your email so that it lands in your user’s inbox. This step can be difficult to do and it’s a good idea to use a plugin like WP Mail SMTP to help you. You can also get a white glove set up done for you in case you need additional help.

Leverage user-generated content

Your audience expects marketing messages to portray your company in the best light. However, if customers and other audience members engage with your business and leave positive feedback, then your leads are more likely to trust you.

User-generated content consists of posts, reviews, testimonials, and other types of content created by your audience or customers. Content on forums, pictures on social media, discussions, ratings and similar material can be leveraged on your website or social media.

Ask your customers for testimonials and add them to your website with the customer’s headshot, company name, and position.

Use a social media feed tool to integrate social feeds into your website so that you can share posts created by the public in a feed on your site pages.

Highlight the number of users your product has or feature positive reviews left by happy customers on your landing page.

Steps like these add social proof to your site, creating compelling arguments in favor of your business. Visitors to your site and people researching your brand will trust you sooner and buy from your business.

Create FAQ pages

An FAQ page makes it convenient for users to find critical information. It also shows foresight on your part. As you carry out your usual business activities, take note of challenges that your users face or common questions people ask about your solutions.

Address these issues with an FAQ page so that users can quickly get the answer they’re looking for and make the decision to buy from you.

This type of content subtly conveys a large amount of information about how prepared and aware your business is. The effort and research you do to create content that helps your users by providing just the information they need will speak volumes about your reliability.

Back to you

To build trust, you not only have to explicitly promise your users that you’re reliable, you also have to back your claims by carrying out ongoing content creation activities.

We’ve covered several ways that you can build trust through content. You are certain to come up with more ideas of your own that will lead to a stronger brand image. So, focus on your content creation and management to win over your audience.


Syed Balkhi is an award-winning entrepreneur and online marketing expert. He is the co-founder of OptinMonster, WPBeginner, MonsterInsights, and WPForms.

ClickFunnel Alternatives: 4 Landing Page Funnel Builders to Build Your Pages

ClickFunnel Alternatives: 4 Landing Page Funnel Builders to Build Your Pages

For quite some time, ClickFunnels has been the landing page builder that dominates the market.

Recently, however, there have several reports and complaints of ClickFunnels users having issues with regards to data duplication/omission, integrations, security, as well as landing pages taking too long to load.

Due to this previous situation, people online have been asking if there are landing page builder substitutes that can size up to the capability of ClickFunnels (or perhaps do more than that).

I have done my own personal research to identify the four most optimal landing page builder alternatives to ClickFunnels. 

Subscribe Funnels vs ClickFunnels

This is a WYSWYG (what you see is what you get) landing page builder designed most especially for non-programmers who are marketers/advertisers, eCommerce people as well as eCommerce direct response marketers (advertisers/merchants).

It can also be quite useful for simply anyone who needs to curate their own website/landing page at the quickest pace. 

Subscribe Funnels takes away all the complexities that have something to do with creating a website. After all, it’s not just all the coding that’s the problem. You also have the design to worry about.

If you are an affiliate marketer, you know that without an attractive design, you could end up with a landing page but without conversions. Luckily Subscribe Funnels supplies with pre-made templates already.

Here is an in-depth review of Subscribe Funnels.

What You Can Expect From Subscribe Funnels

  • Add JS, HTML, or CSS code into your page
  • Choose from Subscribe’s image library to add to your lander
  • Make your landing page SSL ready
  • Optimize your images automatically
  • Webhooks integration for notifications
  • Create a mobile-friendly landing page
  • Set up an automatic response email for your leads
  • Create a thank you page for visitors who complete a transaction
  • Choose from a selection of Subscribe Funnels fonts for your landing page

Unbounce vs ClickFunnels

This is, yet, another WYSWYG landing page builder. Unbounce, on the other hand, provides you with modern-styled templates for the industries of SaaS, books, consultancy, lead generation, eCommerce, and many more. 

Unbounce is among the first few companies that pioneered landing page builders. The main focus of this platform is to help clients create high-quality and creative landers. It’s not so much for creating funnels, but it will be really useful for expressing creativity and optimizing landing pages for conversions. 

What You Can Expect From Unbounce

  • Free AB Testing where you can apply weights to your landers
  • Integrates smoothly with automation tools and popular email-services providers
  • No need to shop for sticky bars, opt-ins, and pop-ups (they can be integrated using the sole platform)
  • You can add dynamic content and parallax
  • Creative templates from third-party sources like ThemeForest

Unbounce Cons:

  • You can only split test landers created using Unbounce
  • You can import other themes into the platform
  • There are reports of lost data
  • You can’t add custom classes to the buttons. You will have to apply the code in the HTML to do so. 
  • Not well-suited for multi-pages
  • The basic plan does not include the AB testing feature
  • Limited template options
  • Has only one social media integration: Facebook

LeadPages vs ClickFunnels

LeadPages calls itself “the most effective, affordable way for small businesses to connect with an audience, collect leads, and close sales”. In terms of value provided to clients, LeadPages sit at the same level as Unbounce.

The key difference is their target audience. Unbounce’s typical customers are big enterprises, agencies, and digital marketers. On the other hand, the aim of Lead Pages is to help small businesses to create websites, pop-ups, landers, and alert bars, among others, as a way for these ventures to reach people.   

What You Can Expect From Lead Pages

  • Advanced features such as automatic SMS messaging and countdown timer
  • Gated content feature
  • Smooth data migration from one app to another
  • Low and affordable price regardless of how advanced or basic the features might be
  • Integration with major social media channels including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest
  • Advanced alert bars and pop-ups

LeadPages Cons:

  • AB testing is  not available in the Basic Plan
  • Layout, spacing, spacing, and alignment can be complicated to do maneuver at times (according to user reports)
  • Sluggish drag-and-drop builder
  • You may experience a lack of rows and columns due to lack of control over the layout
  • Incorporating customer fonts can be a challenge

OptimizePress vs ClickFunnels

OptimizePress was the original landing page builder theme for WordPress. They were on the market way before any other landing page builder came on. With the changes to website and marketing strategy, they have rebuilt their platform from the ground up.

This platform basically lets you create any kind of optimized page on WordPress whether it be a blog site, sales page, secure membership portal, launch funnel, landing page, and many more. Its target audience is typically creators, marketers, and coaches. 

There is a live editor that lets you create and customize a page in real-time. Apart from that, there are about 30 templates that you can customize to meet your individual standards. You can also play with approximately 40 custom elements such as feature boxes, arrows, multimedia, arrows, testimonials, and many more.

Apart from the Optimize Press platform, there is also a plugin version that is compatible with every kind of WordPress theme. We at ADvengers use OptimizePress to create funnels and optins!

What You Can Expect From Optimize Press

  • Pages are all responsive
  • One of the better live editors on the market, easier as well
  • You can create launch funnels quickly and easily
  • Always being updated by popular features in demand
  • Great Support from Facebook Groups and via eMail

Optimize PressCons:

  • Not quite a full funnel builder but it is always being updated.
  • Missing Features on Checkout like Upsell Bumps
  • Header and Footer Section only allow JS scripts

ClickFunnels is no doubt an amazing platform and has a great marketing strategy behind it. It is no wonder they are number one but their growth also stunted simple aspects of their landing page editor which is why there is a need for a more robust system.

These are the alternatives to ClickFunnels I think are worth looking into. We use OptimizePress and have used Subscribe Funnels prior to as well.

All are great at certain aspects of creating a funnel or a landing page, you just have to decide what is important for your growth.



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