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10 Reasons Why Your Online Leads Might be Going Down

Clients join us at various stages of growth: from start-ups looking to grow quickly to established businesses looking to take their business to the “next level”. And, of course, one of the most common queries from new clients is how to increase their online leads. Perhaps they have not grown as quickly as they expected, or their marketing efforts have stagnated along with the number of enquiries, or–perhaps–their enquiries have started decreasing. What was once a thriving online channel generating new opportunities is seeing fewer and fewer users and–more concerningly–fewer and fewer leads.

Why are the leads on my website decreasing?

There is no one definitive answer that we can write here.

Give us a URL and a few minutes, and we can spot something immediately (we’re pretty damn good). However, in our decades of experience, there are notable factors that frequently occur that cause conversions to decrease, and we wanted to list them here for you, as there’s a good chance if your leads are decreasing it’s due to one of these factors.

Spotting the problem will be your first step in addressing it.

Look through our list and see if there’s one that resonates with you.

And remember, the good thing is–if you’ve made the list–it can be fixed.

The 10 Reasons Why Conversions Decrease

We’ll start with those that are out of your control:

1. Seasonal fluctuations

The graph below is a site’s traffic with a YoY comparison. Each year, the website sees similar trends around key periods of relevance.

If you have a business that is dependent on seasons, holidays, and market demand, you’ll see similar spikes and troughs. And while you can focus your marketing efforts to grow YoY, during periods of depreciating conversions, you need to look at a larger visual to see the impact you’re having.

a screen shot of traffic effected by seasonal purchasing habits

Yes, this month your leads decreased, but have they increased for the same period YoY?

If you’re still seeing a decline over a larger period with a YoY comparison, then it’s not seasonal, and we can move onto number 2.

An effective strategy is to use online advertising such as Google Advertising or Meta Ads to flatten out seasonal troughs.

2. Changes in legislation

A great example of this is the recent change in kitchen renovations/builds–with engineered stone. As of 1st July 2024, engineered stone counters will be banned to protect workers from the dangers of silicosis. Bunnings and Ikea began to remove these products, but what if you were a business that relied on the sales of these countertops?

“…there are about 10,000 people working in engineered stone businesses in Australia.” (source)

If your business has been affected by changes in legislation, it can be a tough pill to swallow, and we empathise.

If you’re in need of support, moral and digital, we can help.

3. Changes in consumer behaviour

There is a treasure trove of product examples we can point at whose sales plummeted due to changes in consumer behaviour:

  • CDs
  • MiniDiscs
  • Blackberry phones
  • Pagers
  • Typewriters
  • Floppy disks
  • Palm pilots (remember those?!)
  • LaserDisc
  • Cassette tapes
  • Dial-up modems
  • Polaroids
  • Betamax
  • Petrol and diesel cars (not yet, but it’s happening)

Just like the legislative changes, if there’s a significant enough shift in consumer behaviour, there’s not much you can do to turn the tide.

It might be a matter of pivoting your business in a different direction.

Here are the ones that are in your control:

4. Increased level of competition

If you launched a product or service that was new to the market or had low competition, the world (or Australia) was your oyster. Sure, there may have been low search volume, but those few searchers found your website immediately, and as interest grew, you remained at the top of the Search Engine results.

Then, a competitor popped up. And another one. And another one.
To catch up with your market share, they built a better website than yours:
– Faster
– Improved UX
– Enhanced features (videos, testimonials, etc)

So did the other competitor and then the other one.

Suddenly, you weren’t the top dog for a niche product anymore. Sound familiar?

Here’s an example. ‘Noise cancelling headphones’. What once was a rare item grew in popularity, and now the competition for the top of SERPs is fierce:

Do you give up? Absolutely not. You can improve your offering, leverage your points of difference and constantly optimise your digital marketing strategies to stay ahead of the competition.

If you don’t know how–we can help! Whether your website, or landing page needs a refresh, or your marketing needs zhuzhing up, there are options available.

Your competitors did it, so it’s time to step up your game.

See also: Ineffective SEO, or lack of SEO
See also: Outdated/ineffective content

5. Marketing strategy changes

It can be tempting to direct your paid marketing efforts towards an advertiser network you’ve seen a YouTube video about. Your friend Dave is seeing phenomenal results for his plumbing business from Meta. You’ve redirected your marketing budget to Meta, but your leads have gone down. Or, you have left your digital marketing agency and switched Google Ads to broad match instead of phrase match, and you’re now burning through the budget and bringing in fewer leads. Perhaps a ‘Google Ads consultant’ convinced you to switch on ‘auto apply recommendations’, and it’s not helped.

Paid marketing, if done poorly, can churn through your ads budget and cripple your business. It could be as little as ticking the wrong box.

If you have noticed a shift or a decline in leads, review the history of your paid campaigns and see if you can identify when it happened and what might have caused it.

For Meta, you can find your history in the ads campaign dashboard.

history in your meta campaign

It will show you when and who made the change.

For Google Ads, you can find your history at a campaign, ad group or ad level. Select the ‘change history’ on the left-hand navigation.

See also: Inefficient PPC campaigns

6. Stalled innovation

Time to take a look in the metaphorical mirror–have things stalled? For example, a potential tool in your arsenal is AI. Many businesses are utilising AI for their marketing efforts, administration and internal tasks. Experimenting with innovative tools, like AI can streamline your business, enhance it, and give you the opportunity to direct attention and budget to other areas for the purposes of growth.

Here’s how we use AI in our digital marketing agency. Or, if you run B2B marketing, here’s how we use AI in our B2B marketing.

7. Negative online reviews

“A study by BrightLocal found that 94% of consumers reported avoiding a business based on a negative review. Moreover, 57% of consumers will only use a business if it has four or more star ratings.” (source)

There are plenty of articles with advice on how to respond to negative reviews. Avoiding them is not one of them.

Actively encouraging your customers to leave positive reviews is a great defence against negative reviews.

“It takes roughly 40 positive customer experiences to undo the damage of a single negative review” (source). “A customer who has a positive experience, on the other hand, is unlikely to leave a good review. In my experience, only one in 10 happy customers leaves a good review.”

Negative online reviews should be as much an indicator for you – to analyse your service/product offering – as they should be for your potential customers.

review ratings in 5 stars

8. Poor mobile optimisation

“As of April 2024, mobile devices accounted for 60%+ of all web traffic.” (source)

If your website isn’t responsive on a mobile device, has formatting glitches, pop-ups that don’t resize, won’t appear at all, or can’t be minimised, users can accidentally click links or navigate away, and poor User Experience will reduce engagement and decrease your rankings in the Search Engine results.

There is no excuse if your website is not mobile-optimised. Time to upgrade/optimise.

9. Technical issues

As with mobile optimisation, a site with technical issues such as these issues can negatively impact the User Experience and lower your conversions, engagement and search rankings:

  • Poor page speed
  • Broken links and images
  • Unintuitive navigation
  • Intrusive ads
  • Unclear CTAs
  • Cluttered layout
  • Large, uncompressed images and videos
  • Browser incompatibility
  • Security warnings
  • Auto-playing media
  • Non-functional elements
  • Poor font choices
  • Poor image choices
  • Inconsistent layouts
  • Improper Javascript
  • Poor error handling

10. Stale strategy / Old creatives

If you’ve been using the same ad strategy and/or creatives for an extended period of time, you’re in danger of two potential pitfalls:

  1. Ad fatigue (or banner blindness)
  2. Lack of innovation

An example: You have a business that targets a young demographic. Before 2020, Meta channels generated leads for you, but despite spending more money on their platforms and targeting the relevant demographic, your leads and ad ROI are decreasing. Chances are, your demographic has moved elsewhere. Time to adapt.

a graphic of online advertising

These are our top 10 reasons your online leads might be decreasing. We didn’t even get the chance to include:

  • Lack of trust signals
  • Weak Calls To Action
  • Inadequate social media presence
  • Unclear value proposition

If your website’s leads have decreased, we’d recommend you go through this list and see if any of them resonate with you.

I Need My Enquiries To Increase ASAP

If your business needs more leads, we can help. At Business Assist, we help clients by generating high quality leads with Online Advertising, Search Engine optimisation, User Experience optimisation all supported by our Constant Optimiser System. We focus on conversions and incremental growth of the business at a manageable pace.

Get in touch with our digital marketing experts are happy to help. And why not sign up for a complimentary 45-minute strategy session – obligation-free?

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We’ve been working with Steve and the team at Business Assist since 2010.  With an information dense website it’s vital for us that our visitors find the information they need, when they need it. The BA team understand that people search for information in an organic way, that it’s not a linear process. By using their expertise, we now have a friendly, welcoming website that allows visitors to find the information they need quickly and easily. They were also extremely helpful when we transitioned to our new name and new website – with everything from developing a new website that incorporated consumer and staff feedback, to developing an SEO strategy and Google Ads campaigns that helped us retain our past users and attract new ones. They’re a professional, friendly team that takes the time to get to know the needs of your organisation and your website users.

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We appointed Business Assist to focus on SEO improvements for aspects of our property team marketing including our compulsory acquisition advisory services.

The results have been outstanding with web-based enquiries growing exponentially and, critically, the right prospective clients contacting us and invariably converting into fee paying clients.

We certainly recommend Business Assist highly for any professional services business looking to better leverage its internet presence.

Ultimately, Hunt & Hunt asked Business Assist to develop a new website for our national legal group and we are very pleased with the results.

We continue to work with Business Assist today across various teams as we derive great value from Steve’s practical layman’s advice on SEO.  Business Assist also understand our business and genuinely seem to go the extra mile to add value.

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It felt that our previous digital agency was not very engaged with our business – there was a real disconnect.  With Business Assist we feel like we’re talking to the people who are actually implementing the campaign, or at least have a very good understanding of it.  We believe this is one of the main  reasons we saw results happen straightaway – increased new customer inquiries from Australia and overseas. But the other thing we get is great advice from Business Assist about things we can and can’t do from a Digital Marketing perspective. We trust really these guys. The other thing we’re getting is the changes we’re asking to make or services we’re changing, it happens really fast – there’s nothing like a 2 week period of waiting.

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We’re a small business but we try and behave like a bigger company and Business Assist help us lift that bar. They have helped us get ahead of our competitors. We have a strategy meeting soon where we will develop a 5 year plan and we look forward to Business Assist’s input and planning what we should be working with them on for the next 5 years.  Business Assist have a  really good personable team and they tailor to us – we really like the flexibility. We’re very strategic in what we do and Business Assist helps us enhance our competitive advantage by reacting to opportunities quickly. Our position, interests and needs are well aligned.

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We have been using the Business Assist team since 2013. Coming from a trade background in Roofing & Roofing maintenance and jumping into Digital for all that is involved is a daunting task. We know everything worth knowing about our own trade and Digital is such an unknown area. In turn we were so hesitant because we felt like we were getting ripped off from previous attempts with other agencies and any requests for information or advice would have an extra charge or a feel like such an up-sell. Upon working with the Business Assist team we have COMPLETE clarity around the following:

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Providing these services should be a given for any Digital company – however we have found that it is not. Providing this whilst maintaining honesty and transparency even educating us along the way, whilst not making us feel like idiots because we didn’t know certain terms throughout the process is the real benefit working with Business Assist. We have meetings every week / fortnight with the team to report on every aspect of the business on a digital front. We feel the Business Assist team is an extension of our 40 + family. I think we are really fortunate we found a company that propelled us to grow from 2 staff to 40+ in 7 years – they know our company as if it was their own!