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How to Stop Spam and Increase Leads (Part 1)

Where did the term "spam" come from? This was derived from a Monty Python sketch where a couple tried to order something at a restaurant other than spam (the popular meat product). Then a group of Vikings in the background started to sing the praises of spam and soon the only word you can hear in the sketch is "spam." The same thing happens to the Internet, which would be overwhelmed by large-scale unsolicited emails. Let's say you paid for a list of email addresses from a local business organization. The list of addresses seems like it could contain great prospects for your business, and you wanted to send them an email containing a relevant offer they can't refuse. But since these recipients didn't give you explicit permission to contact them, sending an email to this list would be considered spam. In this episode, Joshua Lewis shares some tips on how to stop spam and increase your chance of obtaining leads. 

How to get less spam and more inquiries. All right, so we've all been there. We've started up a business and we've been sitting there, looking at our inbox waiting for something to come through and nothing comes through. So you wait a bit longer, you do a bit more stuff with your SEO and then you wait and nothing comes through. So you go to a couple of breakfast networking meetings and you try your best to see where you end up. You get a few leads, but then you notice spam starts coming through. You might be checking out the rankings of your website and looking at the quality scores and page rank scores and whatever other metrics that you're trying to use. You notice you're getting more spam than inquiries and you're thinking, why is this? Why do the spammers love talking to me?

Dos and Don’ts

So, I'm going to go through a few different dos and don'ts with your website. Number one, if you're jumping on your website and you're having a bit of a look around, a lot of people think let's make it nice and easy for people to email me and I'll put in place an email straight up on there. So they have info at whatever the name of their company is .com.au and they have these spammers that will crawl through this information, find these email addresses, and then just start bombarding you with things that you don't want or you shouldn't want. Russian brides are fine if you're in Russia, but I'm not going to be buying one off of an email. Although Viagara seems great to buy off an unsolicited email, I'd probably go to my doctor if that was needed hypothetically. So one big rule, do's and don'ts for websites. Don't put your email address up there if you don't need to have it up there. So that's a don't.

Being Easily Contactable is Key

Here's a do. Do make it easy for people to contact you by having them fill out a form with one of those annoying am I a robot tick box. If they tick the box that they're a robot, they're a robot. Luckily most robots don't know how to tick that box. So it's just going to be humans ticking that. So you end up in a spot where you're getting less spam coming through and it's also more orderly. If they're all coming through the same single page, you can then reformat that instead of just having the email address that they're typing in and having a message, you can refine that a bit further and get other details out of them that you would not have otherwise got if they were just sending a normal email. So you're making this better for you, which makes you at an advantage to servicing them better. That also means that you're going to be getting less spam. So that's a do. Make sure you have an easy ability for people to contact you all over your website.

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Easy Access to Your Website

Here's a don't. Don't make it difficult for people to get to your website. If you're selling a product or service where your main market is in Australia, make sure your web hosting provider is in Australia. Don't host it overseas. If you're hosting it with Wix or someone like that and the server's in Louisiana or San Francisco or wherever it is, that is going to be fantastic for anyone that's accessing that server from over there and anyone accessing your website on that server because they're going to be able to see your website really, really quickly. It's kind of like a road. As much as we'd like to think that the speed that we drive along the road could be unlimited, we have caps on it and in the digital world that happens as well.

Spam, email spam, spam messages, website, website speed, leads, target leads, stop spam, increase leads, email address How to Stop Spam and Increase Leads (Part 1)Think About Website Speed

So if you want to drive from Brisbane to Sydney or even from Brisbane to the Gold Coast. Brisbane to the Gold Coast is going to take you 40, 50 minutes. If you look at that from an IT perspective, we'll call that 40 to 50 milliseconds. So it's going to take 40 to 50 milliseconds if your website's hosted on the Gold Coast and you're in Brisbane. Now, luckily with IT stuff, it could be hosted in Sydney and it would still only be 40 to 50 milliseconds if you're on a decent provider. Now, let's rewind back to that scenario where you might be over in San Francisco. To get the data going all the way over there will take maybe 200 to 300 milliseconds. I know you're thinking, all right Josh, 200 to 300 milliseconds. What? It's going to take a third of a second. No one's going to notice it, but it is noticeable because it's kind of like me asking you something. If I ask you something and I say, "Hey, what's your name?" Then you respond and you say, "Oh, my name's Jason," and I go, "Okay, no worries Jason. What's your favourite colour?" Then you tell me what that is. Each time there's a 30-millisecond delay. You can't notice it a whole bunch when you ask 10 questions because then it comes to 300 milliseconds. If you have a 200-millisecond delay or a 300-millisecond delay and then you ask 10 questions, it's now pumped up to three seconds because it takes that delay for every question.

Limit Questions

Now a question is anything on your website. One photo, the computer that goes to see your website has to click on that and open that one photo to show your client in the browser. So that's one request. That's one question and then if you have a bunch of texts, that's another question. So you can easily have lots and lots of "questions" coming through. Most of the time there are about 150 or so on a poorly built website or more and on a streamlined website, 30 to 50 elements. So 30 to 50 elements would work out to be 1.5 seconds for those to load on a site if your hosting provider's in Australia. If it's overseas it could be 15, 20, 30 seconds. It all depends. So that's where hosting within your own country is a very, very good idea.

 IT doesn't have to be expensive. If you're starting a business and need reliable IT support and services, fill out the form to learn more about $1 IT services.

Host Where Your Target Market Is

Don't host outside of your country if your main target market is within the country. Now I'm going to have IT nerds telling me this is slightly wrong and I understand obviously with the different protocols, HTTP2 et cetera. It's slightly wrong, but it's the easiest way to explain it. So as a cookie-cutter example, that's how it works. So to recap, don't host overseas. Don't have email addresses up and available all over your website. Do have a contact form for people to be able to easily fill out where you can get granular information. We're going to go through another do. Do make sure on the home page of your website. So that's the first page someone sees when they type in www.yourcompanyname.com.au. When they type that in, do make sure that you've got an ability for people to connect to you and you've got exactly what the problem is that you're solving that differentiates yourself from your competitor.

So if you're selling vegan pies, on that home page right at the top before they have to scroll and do anything, and that's called before the fold of the page, do have a message there that says exactly what you do. So for that example, save the animals and eat consciously or something to that effect that's going to resonate with your clients and then have a button there saying order your pies now or find a store near you or something like that, or call us here or whatever the call to action is. Make sure that's there because the moment they've seen that if you've grabbed them and you need to get them within the first three seconds, which is again why it's so important that your website loads quickly. Once you've got them and you've hooked them, they'll then start looking around the rest of the site and they'll look with more engaged interest and intent. That's what you want.

The Final Word

So overall, these few tips will give you a website that means you're getting less spam, a website that's getting more inquiries, and overall a better message and better quality of inquiry. I hope you've enjoyed this. You might be thinking, all right so we're doing this. That sounds good. What if I've already stuffed up and now I need to backtrack? That's a very good question. I'm going to leave that to the next episode. I hope you've enjoyed this, and if you have, jump across to iTunes, leave us some love, give us a review and stay good.

Enjoyed this? Go to How to Stop Spam and Increase Leads (Part 2)

 

Spam, email spam, spam messages, website, website speed, leads, target leads, stop spam, increase leads, email address How to Stop Spam and Increase Leads (Part 1)
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