Review My Simple Lead Generating Business Marketing Site

Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
Hey folks,

I'm building a service that helps people grow their businesses. You sign up to my service, and every morning I send you a list of UK companies incorporated in the last 24 hours. You can use that list to then reach out to those new companies directly, and win their business!

I put together a simple marketing site. The goal of the site is to convince business owners to pull out their credit card and sign up.

https://newbusinessmonitor.co.uk/

What do you think?
 
Hi Jezen,

It's a bold move to put the form to capture credit card details on the landing page. The service you provide seems good and you might get interest, but the landing page as it is now is quite different from the 'best practice'. A few thing that you might consider:

- Nowadays people demand a sample or free trial or at least money-back guarantee, without these I think it will be very hard to get people pay for the service from day 1. If you can offer a free trial then you can start building an email list, it's still better to have 5 paying customers & 500 email addresses then just having 5 paying customers, so I strongly suggest to remove the instant pay option & give the first few days for free.
- Move the CTA (call-to-action) above the fold, now the user has to scroll down, which has a bad impact on conversion rate.
- You have two different message/option on the landing page, a proper landing page has 'one' very specific goal.
- The price is basically hidden inside the text, even if you choose to proceed with the current instant credit card capture process you must mention the price near the 'Sign up' button so the visitors don't have to scan through the whole page to find it.
- '99.99% uptime' is basically irrelevant, because you are sending out emails you might focus more on core advantages.
- etc.
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
Erno,

That's great feedback. Thanks so much.

Demanding payment upfront is essentially market validation. It's one thing to ask people “would you pay for this service?”, and another to ask “here's the service; can you pay now?”.

I'm not so concerned with placing the CTA above the fold. Studies have shown there is no fold, and users are happy to scroll. Moving the CTA above the fold might work if the CTA were just “give me your email address”, and not “pay now”, but I think if the first thing a user sees is a hard sell, they may be turned off.

You're right about the price being hidden. I should make that clearer. I also mention a money back guarantee, but certainly not as clearly as I should. I will make both of those things clearer, and group it with the CTA.

You're right also about the contact form. I should omit that, and instead have some footer with company details, T&Cs, and a support email address.

Again, thanks for the feedback!
 
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fisicx

Moderator
Business Listing
Sep 12, 2006
35,648
10,804
Aldershot
www.aerin.co.uk
I would want to see sample data. and I don't want every company, I only want the ones that match my target profile.

Contact details are vital as are a lot more information about the services.

So give me a free sample and let me decide if the data is worth paying £20/month for. I'd also want a SAAS solution rather than a daily email. Ideally I want to be able to import that data into my CRM

And an account not a CC payment
 
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But isn't the problem you have that this information, excluding the officers' details, is available free of charge from CompaniesHouse.gov.uk. In fact they give you all companies not just the latest (some 2.5m). Every month they provide a downloadable cvs with latest formations. Your offer to sort companies by geographical distance is an extra although of course the spreadsheet can be sorted by town etc. So if people just wanted to mail out to the R/O then its free at CH,

What I would pay for is that list but with the email addresses for the directors. That information is of course not on the register. It would need an App that crawled the net to try to locate websites of the companies and searching for email addresses of the directors. If anyone can do that for me please get in touch!
 
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..and to pre-empt the privacy warriors, unsolicited marketing e-mails to business addresses is lawful in the UK.
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
@The Resolver You raise a couple of interesting points.

But isn't the problem you have that this information, excluding the officers' details, is available free of charge from CompaniesHouse.gov.uk. In fact they give you all companies not just the latest (some 2.5m). Every month they provide a downloadable cvs with latest formations. Your offer to sort companies by geographical distance is an extra although of course the spreadsheet can be sorted by town etc. So if people just wanted to mail out to the R/O then its free at CH

That's correct; this is public information. However if you go straight to Companies House, then you need to do a large amount of tedious work, sorting out which companies are good potential clients for your business. This is hours of work that a business owner could instead be spending on what they do best.

Going directly to Companies House would be like drinking from a fire hose. The idea with NewBusinessMonitor is that you can filter companies by geographical location, and market sector. I'll update this on the landing page to make it all clearer.

Also, if they are providing a CSV every month, then it's a long time between a director opens their business and you reach out to them. If you have a report of the newest businesses every morning, your company can stay on top of growth marketing constantly. You brush your teeth every day, and you grow your business every day :)

What I would pay for is that list but with the email addresses for the directors. That information is of course not on the register. It would need an App that crawled the net to try to locate websites of the companies and searching for email addresses of the directors. If anyone can do that for me please get in touch!

This is doable, to an extent. I have written many crawlers, but my [small amount of] initial research suggests the hit rate is pretty low — you can start a business without a website or email address. It may or may not be a strong suggestion from Companies House that you do have a website or email address, but I don't think anyone is enforcing this.

There's also the legality of email marketing in the UK — which you rightly bring up. I'm not a lawyer, so I don't know what the potential ramifications are of me providing you with data that you would use to break a spam law.

Perhaps even with a low hit rate and legality issue, it's still an avenue worth exploring. I'll look into it.
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
I would want to see sample data. and I don't want every company, I only want the ones that match my target profile.

That's fair. I think I should emphasise the possibility to filter the data more. Would you need more filters than geographical location and market sector?

Contact details are vital as are a lot more information about the services.

I think this isn't possible in every case. All results would include registered office address so you can market to them by post. Some results could also include a telephone number and/or email address, but there is of course the issue with legality as @The Resolver mentioned previously.

Could you be more specific with “a lot more information about the services”? Do you mean services that NewBusinessMonitor provides? Or services that each of the new UK companies provide?

So give me a free sample and let me decide if the data is worth paying £20/month for. I'd also want a SAAS solution rather than a daily email. Ideally I want to be able to import that data into my CRM

A static free sample of data is reasonable. I'll do that, and add it to the landing page in a few different formats.

I had intended for the service to run as a SaaS, so you can log into the app and see current and previous reports, and export them in a number of formats (CSV, JSON, XML, XLS, etc.) I'll make that clearer on the landing page.

And an account not a CC payment

I'm not quite sure what you mean by this. My intention is to bill each customer's credit card monthly. Do you mean you would rather pay with some other method?

Thanks for the great feedback! :)
 
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Thanks Jezen.

The CH spreadsheet does have a column for type of business so it is possible to re-order the list or search for companies in certain industries without hours of work. Ditto search against certain post code areas/towns etc. Yes a bit of work but not hours of work.

I agree it is updated once month and that some will thus be one month old but others less than a day old.

As you say you can start a company without opening a website - in fact mostly before starting up in the business. Thats an argument for focusing on ones a month old rather than todays formations. If what you sell is commonly sold by others eg insurance, telephone answering services etc then there may be value in being the first marketing letter on the doormat, but my service is fairly unique and so I am not bothered if the company was formed some while ago.

Brexit supporters may be surprised to learn that when we implemented the European law which outlawed unsolicited email- we changed it in the UK by limiting the law to email addresses on non-business accounts. It has thus always been ok to send mail outside these rules to business email addresses. The exclusion applies if either the email address uses the domain of the website or , if not, the email account is paid for by the business. There is therefore a risk with gmail/hotmail etc web mail accounts in that you do not know if the company pays and uses it.If it is displayed on the website to invite mail then that might put it in the exclusion.

The crawler would be of interest even if the hit rate is low. Th point is that the data set is huge - I don't just need recent formations.

PM ne to talk further if you wish
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
Is the site deliberatly just text on a white background? seems very plain to me

To add to Fisicx point about filtering, perhaps you could show a simple counter or similar of companies incorporated in specific sectors? again i'd be interested in the filtering aspect and if something caught my eye i'd be more inclined to pay

Thanks for the feedback. You're right; it does look plain. I'm a programmer, so I like plain, but most people are not programmers. I'll revise the design, and make it look more colourful and shiny. I'll also more interactive filtering examples to the landing page :)
 
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fisicx

Moderator
Business Listing
Sep 12, 2006
35,648
10,804
Aldershot
www.aerin.co.uk
The layout is plain but that's not always a bad thing. What it doesn't do is sell the service. People will not find your website by chance, they will only arrive via marketing or referrals. It follows therefore that the focus needs to be the service you offer. Show people the data, show the quality of the information, show the detail, show how it can be filtered.

Don't even bother with the email. Make it saas that I can access when I want to filter and download.

Employ someone who knows how to structure a website and someone else to do the copywriting. You also need to sort out how you are going to market the business. Forget Google and social media, it's almost certainly going to need advertising. What's your marketing budget?

When I asked about an account not CC I meant being able to pay by DD or standing order, or just make a single payment as and when I need data.

And unless I have the contact details for the new business your list is of little value. If I have to go find a contact number or email myself I might just as well go get the list from CH for free.
 
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Alan

Free Member
Aug 16, 2011
6,959
1,922
There is some scope in your proposition. I used to buy monthly new firms within 20 miles. Cost £6 per month. So I could send out letters. The conversation rates didn't warrant it, but it was a form of test, and many companies will at least test.

For me, it would need more value add, the addresses are often accountants so letters go in the bin. Problem with looking for websites and company rather than personal email, is most companies register before creating a web presence.

If however, you found the founders on linked in or other social media now I can see value
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
The layout is plain but that's not always a bad thing. What it doesn't do is sell the service. People will not find your website by chance, they will only arrive via marketing or referrals. It follows therefore that the focus needs to be the service you offer. Show people the data, show the quality of the information, show the detail, show how it can be filtered.

I am putting more effort into the design and copy. You'll see the changes go live shortly; perhaps later today or tomorrow.

Don't even bother with the email. Make it saas that I can access when I want to filter and download.

It'll be both. The user can choose what works best for them.

Employ someone who knows how to structure a website and someone else to do the copywriting. You also need to sort out how you are going to market the business. Forget Google and social media, it's almost certainly going to need advertising. What's your marketing budget?

I'd rather not pay anyone at this time. There is no point investing money in this until it has been validated by the market.

When I asked about an account not CC I meant being able to pay by DD or standing order, or just make a single payment as and when I need data.

I'm not going to do this any time soon. For a £20 p/m service, offering more payment methods than monthly recurring card payments over Stripe is more hassle than it's worth.

And unless I have the contact details for the new business your list is of little value. If I have to go find a contact number or email myself I might just as well go get the list from CH for free.

That's fine. You're a WordPress developer, so you're likely not my target audience :)
 
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Jezen

Legacy Full Member
Jan 26, 2017
94
8
London
jezenthomas.com
Is the current site just for demonstration purposes and testing?

The current landing page is purely for market validation. If people pull out their credit card and sign up, then it validates the market.
 
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UKSBD

Moderator
  • Business Listing
    I'm not saying it is a scam - but as it is at the moment it has scam written all over it.

    You ask for full name, email address, credit card details without providing any info about you.

    Your contact form appears to go through to a site that is hiding behind privacy protection, was only registered a few months ago and is obviously registered to the same person your site is registered to.

    People would be crazy to use it as it is, can't you just not bother getting card details and use a payment processor that people would trust?

    Or alternatively let people sign up before having to give any payment details.
     
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    fisicx

    Moderator
    Business Listing
    Sep 12, 2006
    35,648
    10,804
    Aldershot
    www.aerin.co.uk
    That's fine. You're a WordPress developer, so you're likely not my target audience :)
    You have no idea what I do for a living. All you know is I do Wordpress stuff. I already use a service similar to that which you are offering. They provide me with more information than you appear to do.

    Changing the design won't make things any better. It's the content that matters. Once that is sorted you will still need to invest a reasonable sum in advertising, without this you won't get enough traffic to test the viability of the business model.

    Conversions will be very low to begin with which will mean you need thousands of targeted visitors to test the model.
     
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    Jezen

    Legacy Full Member
    Jan 26, 2017
    94
    8
    London
    jezenthomas.com
    I'm not saying it is a scam - but as it is at the moment it has scam written all over it.

    You ask for full name, email address, credit card details without providing any info about you.

    Your contact form appears to go through to a site that is hiding behind privacy protection, was only registered a few months ago and is obviously registered to the same person your site is registered to.

    People would be crazy to use it as it is, can't you just not bother getting card details and use a payment processor that people would trust?

    Or alternatively let people sign up before having to give any payment details.

    Of course, there's no scam here, but the feedback is fair. I could take the user's email address, and then direct them to pay externally on Stripe. I'm not sure whether or not that would skew market validation data. Perhaps as long as I make it clear that the next step is to pay money.

    I should definitely add some more information that makes the page appear more trustworthy :)
     
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