In identifying these metrics, try to view the customer journey from every possible standpoint: start at the moment they know they have a problem, that all-important, action-driving moment when they are really feeling the pain, straight through to that moment when they have decided that you are the vendor they trust to alleviate that pain.
There are many points along the way where you run the risk of losing your customer, and they comprise some of the matters you will need to focus closely on in order to achieve maximum impact.
If you are measuring your success based on one type of conversion rate, such as how many customers you start with and what percentage of this group completes, you’re leaving money on the table. You will also not be any closer to comprehending why you aren’t getting the kind of results you want. Identifying micro-conversion points and knowing their corresponding CRs is the answer, as you will then have actionable data to work with.
In the end, it’s really about identifying the key metrics that will impact your efforts—and their results—the most. It’s also about knowing what you can change and going about that process mindfully in order to achieve the maximum influence for your efforts.
Converting a marketing-qualified lead into a sales-qualified lead
One thing that should always be considered in any conversation about conversions is how effectively you can acquire a sales-qualified lead from a marketing qualified lead.
It starts with a prospect taking an action of some sort. This could be requesting a call back, filling out your contact form, requesting a demo, or downloading a free trial version of your solution.
The next metric you would track is rate of conversion going from a sales-qualified lead to a SAL, or sales-accepted lead. The difference between these two lead types is very subtle. You have already had a conversation with the sales-accepted lead and it has been decided that your solution is what they are in need of.
The two conversion rate metrics that follow in the journey are in converting that lead to a proposal and finally, on to closing the deal.
In between each step there are any number of micro-steps, but these are the main, points you should consider as they will achieve the greatest impact. These will give you a good framework to work with in measuring the success of your funnel.
Having a good understanding of these points will help you build a better perception of where your process is winning and where it is going south. It will illustrate areas in which you might be too focused on the wrong types of leads as well. For instance, you might find you are quite successful in converting your marketing-qualified leads into sales-qualified leads, but you are largely unable to move them forward to the next phase, to be an accepted lead. If this is the case, you may be spending too much time focused on prospects that are, in the end, not worth your time.
Another example might be if your homestretch effort to the win CR is lackluster, perhaps you should look at your proposals and what it might be that is causing the process to stall. It would also be a good idea to examine upstream activities and question how your leads are qualified.