How I generated 238 business sales leads from my website in 14 weeks

Fraser McCulloch - Tuesday, December 19, 2017

I have outlined how I generated 238 business sales leads from my website in 14 weeks.

My website is 9 years old and before the period I’ve described I did put considerable time and investment into content creation and link building.

Before the detailed results and steps I took, let me first explain some key terminology.

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But first, what is a sales lead and a subscriber?

A sales lead is a prospective customer showing interest in your products or services.

A sales lead can be generated when someone gets in touch by phone, by email, a social message, submitting a web form, downloading a white paper or taking some kind of proactive action towards your service or product.

A subscriber, on the other hand, hasn’t show an interest in your product or service yet.

They might have subscribed to your mailing list or downloaded a white paper but they don’t show any signs that they are interested.

It is my responsibility to turn a subscriber into a sales leads then into a paying customer through a series of interactions.

Best lead generation channels

There are various lead generation surveys and sales lead reports that outline the best lead generation channels.

However I simply don’t have the budget or resources large companies have so I must use the assets at my disposal.

I believe many business owners would value seeing realistic results achieved on a very low budget and the detailed steps I took with each lead strategy.

My best sources of lead generation are:

I have analysed the sources of my leads from the past 14 weeks and I can report the best sources of lead generation for my business are as follows.

  • Google
  • Leads from social media
  • Leads from cold email outreach
  • Existing email subscribers
  • Private Facebook groups

In the timeframe from 01 September to 15 December 2017, I generated 238 leads broken down as follows.

  • Search Engine Optimisation = 131
  • Social Media = 61
  • Direct to website = 38
  • Referral = 5
  • Email marketing = 2

The 8 ways to generate sales leads for your business website

I shall now provide detailed steps I have used to generate leads from each channels.

In addition, I am experimenting with some new sales lead generation tactics and steps are outlined too.

Ready, steady, go.

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Generating leads with search engine optimisation

55% (131) of my leads were generated from organic search results in 14 weeks.

Of the 131 leads from search, 49 of those leads came from my guide to planning a website structure.

Introduction to search engine lead generation

Google is a search engine that aims to deliver the best results for the users’ searches.

My goal was to increase visibility of my pages in the search engines and earn more organic traffic to my website.

To understand what users search for, I had to have understanding of what they want.

That’s done through knowledge of my target market, web professionals, and with the use of paid for research tools.

Steps to generate sales leads from Google organic search results

  • Research
  • Understand what the user wants from a search result
  • Write long form content
  • Add a call to action throughout the page
  • Create a valuable guide or template for subscriber
  • Use Drip for web forms and email marketing
  • Write out your page title and description

Research is the first step in the process of generating leads from organic search results.

The first question I ask is “have people purchased this product or service before?”

There’s no point trying to generate sales leads when no one will actually buy.

A year ago, I got an email from a web designer who told me he was too busy and asked what I would charge to do research for him.

His problem was time.

Then I used the sales safari process to look on Reddit forums to find out other problems related to my services.

Notice that I did not survey people; that would provide un-natural research results in my opinion.

I discovered that potential customers hated the free alternative version of my services.

The 3rd part of my research was listening into a webinar for web designers and I learned that they found my type of service daunting, difficult and time consuming.

I looked at competitors who offered services and I used paid for research tools to find out how many people were searching and clicking on page one results.

Understand what the user wants from a search result

My best converting page from google search at the moment is a page about planning the structure of a website.

You can see all the different variations of what people are searching for and finding my page.

And you can see a page position in Google.

Why does, a web professional, make that search in the first place ?

Well, I believe, many have been commissioned to develop a website and they are unsure how to start the planning process.

Therefore, I believed, when I created the page, that they want a guide, step by step instructions they can use when they do their work.

So what do users want from a search query and result ?

They want an answer or a solution to their problem.

To be effective, in generating sales leads from organic search, first and foremost you have to understand your potential customers problem.

You have find out if there’s enough people with this problem and then if you can actually generated top rankings from the page you created.

Write long form content

You will notice all my pages have a lot of written content on them.

In order to rank for multiple keywords and provide an in depth guide or answer that’s what you need to do.

Also, research has been done by Brian Dean outlining the average page in the top 10 results has around 1890 words.

Once you know your target audience’s problem, then you will know what you have to write.

I generally write down 7 chapters or subsections in a Google Doc then flesh out the content and finish off with a summary.

Add a call to action throughout the page

You will notice a grey box with a border with a web form inside placed throughout my web pages.

This is a call to action inviting users to receive and download a guide relevant to the page.

For example, on this page, you may want to read or learn other people in your industry have generated sales lead for your own website or business.

In return I offer you a relevant guide to generating leads.

All you need to do is provide your name and email address and in exchange I offer you my lead generation case studies and steps to achieve these results.

Create valuable guide or template for those who subscribe

I use a website called Print Friendly to turn my web pages into PDF.

The PDF becomes my valuable guide that subscribers will receive and can download.

It’s free, it’s easy to use and more importantly, it’s deemed valuable by users.

Use Drip for web forms and email marketing

There are other systems and solutions to capture subscribers details on a website form but I shall outline my process.

  • I created a form in Drip and added a field for their first name.
  • When users complete the form, I redirect them to a confirmation page.
  • They receive an email to confirm their email address.
  • Inside the email is a confirmation link that they click and they land on a post confirmation page that tells them to check their email for the download.
  • In the rules section of web form creation in Drip I perform an action to send a personalised email with the download link.
  • I upload the PDF to my website and update the download email with the link.
  • I tag users to inform me that they download this page guide.
  • I get an email notification that they have subscribed to this page guide.
  • Then I add the form to my page with a little bit of css styling.

This takes around 5 minutes.

Write out your page title and description

Once I have proofread my page and tested out the web form and PDF delivery, then I update my page title and description of the page.

Most of my page titles start with “How To” followed by the main keyword and I utilise all possible characters.

The description describes to users what the page is about, starts with how to followed by the keywords and it’s written to prompt users to click my search result.

Results of my leads earned from Google organic search

55% or 131 out of 239 of my leads (or should call them subscribers) came from organic search results in the last 14 weeks.

That time frame was 01 September to 15 December.


Ahrefs costs between $ 99 and $178 per month.

The time to research, write, design and code each page is between 3 and 7 working days.

Drip, used for web forms and email marketing, costs me $49 per month.

The only variable cost could be the time to write or cost to outsource content creation; which I believe is not only the biggest cost but the biggest and best investment in generation leads for organic search.

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Social Media Lead Generation

61 leads (25%) of my website leads were generated from social networks.

This really surprised me because, I’m the first to admit, I don’t really ‘get’ social media.

Introduction to social media lead generation

Let me explain this social channel.

Quuu Promote take blog posts and feed them to people who use a tool called Buffer App.

The people using Buffer App are looking for interesting content to curate and share on their social media networks.

They are looking for other people’s content that re-affirms their beliefs and or makes them look good.

As a result, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn were the 3 primary channels that have resulted in generating leads from social networks.

The social lead generation process I’m going to outline had an inexpensive paid for element to it.

Steps to generate leads from social media

  1. You promote influencer content with Quuu Promote.
  2. Create account with Quuu Promote and pay Quuu to promote post for 60 days.
  3. Create Facebook and Twitter graphic with Canva.
  4. I paid for 12 campaigns, Quuu gave me bonuses to promote posts again.

You can watch the YouTube video I created outlining how to use Quuu Promote.

It’s very simple, but here’s on outline of my process.

Promote your influencer content socially

Your influencer content is generally content aimed at other people in your industry as opposed to your sales or product pages.

In my case, my influencer content is all my blog posts; that generally are ‘how to’ guides.

Create account with Quuu Promote and pay Quuu to promote post for 60 days

Provided you have a spare $40, go to Quuu Promote and sign up.

I think they offer a free 14 day trial to test out their service.

Create Facebook and Twitter graphic with Canva

You will require Facebook and Twitter graphics as part of promoting your posts with Quuu; unless you have great looking open graph formatted images already.

Use Canva to create your graphics as they have pre designed templates in the correct image dimensions for sharing on Facebook and Twitter.

Keep your words to a minimum and ensure the word font size is big and bold

  • Export your graphic.
  • Go into Quuu Promote.
  • Select your url to promote.
  • Upload the graphics your create.
  • Choose a channel to promote your post to.
  • Submit.

That’s you done.


In the time frame from 01 September to 15 December I generated 61 leads from social media this way.

Nothing particularly special but results nevertheless.

Looking at social sessions from my Google Analytics account were as follows:

  • Twitter sessions = 945
  • Facebook session = 1000
  • LinkedIn sessions = 364
  • Total sessions = 2309

That’s a 2.6% conversion of social sessions to leads.

I’m happy with a conversion rate like this.

I looked at a previous time frame; April to September and I generated 100 leads from social channels; 45% of my total leads.


Cost of $40 to promote each post; in total $480.

Canva costs $12.95 per month.

In terms of time spent, I would estimate about 15 to 20 minutes to create the graphics and run the promote.

Since I already accounted for content creation time in the SEO section, we won’t count that cost here.

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Outbound Cold Email Marketing

My aim was to target and email 200 of my ideal prospects on a weekly basis.

These were companies and people I had never spoken to before and were not aware of me.

However these companies typically hire and buy the services I offer.

Introduction to generating leads with cold email marketing

I believe the fastest way to reach decision makers is to email them.

There are many companies and solutions that are able to detect the email address of your targets as their email is sourced from social media platforms.

Please note this is not spamming people but it could be viewed as a grey area.

Let me explain the process I used to reach out to targets I chose.

Steps to generating leads with cold email marketing

  • Scrape Google for companies I was targeting.
  • Used to find names and emails of those companies.
  • Verify the contact details.
  • Import into Mailshake to reach out.
  • Compose and send the message.
  • Follow up with prospects regularly.

Scrape Google search results for companies I was targeting

This is very simple.

I just Googled ‘type of company’ followed by the city and copied the website addresses into Google Sheets.

I did this for the first four pages on the search results.

Then I repeat the process and changed the name of the city.

There’s a quick way to do this.

You change your Chrome browser to display 100 results.

Then you install a plugin that will copies all the 100 website urls into a file and you copy and paste the urls into Google Sheets.

Use to find names and email address

With, I uploaded a list of company websites and it finds email addresses associated with the company.

In many cases, the software will deliver up to 10 names and email addresses per website.

This gave me more work than I expected.

So I had to personally check the about page of each website as well as checking LinkedIn for the correct job title I sought to target.

Verify the email addresses has a feature that will verify email addresses that are found.

Without going into technical details they check the email address exists.

Import names and emails into email client

Once you export your list from Google Sheets as a CSV file, then you go into Drip, select subscribers, Imports and follow their instructions.

You can match your csv file fields with Drip’s fields and assign a tag to this list; essential for the next step; composing an email.

Compose and send an email

In Drip, follow these steps

  • Select Broadcasts.
  • Select New Broadcast Emails.
  • Enter a name for the broadcasts.
  • On the recipient tab, select choose a filter, tags and then scroll down and find the tag you assigned to the list you imported.
  • Press Next.
  • Now compose your email heading and body copy.

Here is the subject line of the cold email.

Hello {{subscriber.FirstName}} - stretched in-house resources ?

Here is the body copy of the email

Hi {{subscriber.FirstName}}

I’m reaching out to see if your agency are ever stretched and outsource keyword research or site audits?

We’ve not spoken before but I do this outsourced work for UK agencies such as Add People in Manchester and many Adobe partners.

"The client was very pleased with the report and went a long way to helping me encourage him to restructure the website, which was the main reason and aim for me."

I come recommended for advanced page SEO.

If you are open to connecting, let me know.


Fraser McCulloch

Web :

Results :

LinkedIn :

By default Drip adds an unsubscribe link to the foot of the email.

5 Tenets of cold emailing

I have 5 principles I follow when sending a cold email to prospects.

  • The email must be personalised eg: Dear John.
  • The email must be very relevant ie: I am sending a cold email to interrupt busy business people about my service.
  • The email must be about them ie: notice how I have asked if their resources are stretched; I’m asking them if they have a problem I can solve.
  • The email must be brief; even 4 paragraphs is too much; get straight to the point in one paragraph to be effective.

When you are happy with the content of your email, save it and send yourself a test email.

  • Press Next.
  • Check the settings are to your liking.
  • Press Schedule Email to Send.
  • Choose the time and date to send.
  • Choose the day of the next email and alter the subject line; if required.

Send to those who did not open

Since I used Drip for email marketing, it has a feature that will automatically send an email to the list of people who did not open the first email you sent.

I set the delay for 7 days and tweaked the subject line.


  • A total of 400 names were added to my prospect list.
  • Open rates in the first emails were 53% and 38%.
  • The open rates of the second emails declined significantly; 15% and 16%.
  • I got a total of 4 responses; very disappointing.
  • But those 4 responses requested my prices and fees.
  • This in turn generated one piece of paying work.
  • The other 3 leads were sent samples on my work in a further email follow up.


I pay 99 Euros a month to which provides me with 5000 credits to find and verify email addresses.

I have an allocation with my web company to send 10,000 emails per month; the cost is $39 per month.

Additionally, I use for my CRM and email marketing system that costs $49 per month.

Additionally, you could use an system called, created specifically for outreach that costs $20 per user per month.

A word of caution; do not take shortcuts with this approach; you must verify email addresses.

You risk your email account being blacklisted or even worse; shut down.

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Generate leads from existing email subscribers

I have turned nearly 20% of existing email subscribers into sales leads in the past 14 weeks.

Introduction to generating leads from subscribers

In the introduction, I outlined that people who subscribed to my blog posts are classified as subscribers.

They do not become a lead until they visit certain pages, open emails or click links in emails I send.

Steps to generate leads from your existing email subscribers

Drip has a feature called Lead Scoring.

I customised my CRM to award 10 points to people who visited my services pages, 5 points to subscribers who visited by cost page and 1 point if they opened or clicked a link in emails I send once they have subscribed.

When a person opts in, they are a subscriber, not yet a lead.

So, I built up my own lead scoring system.

I have sent 22 email marketing campaigns since the 1st of September to pages on my website not indexed on Google that contain helpful content.

Ultimately my goal is to acquire a paid for customer.

But my email marketing efforts also help to educate subscribers and build up their lead scores.

Additionally, Drip has rules that can be triggered and send emails when subscribers visit certain pages; which increases the number of emails I sent.

For example, if a subscriber visits my service page they are awarded 10 points and an email is triggered if they do not purchase from the page.


To calculate my sales leads, I simply run a subscriber report.

I filter all subscribers who subscribed on or after 01 September with a lead score of 10 or more.

The result is 42 leads.

With a total of 239 subscribers in this time frame, I have converted 18% of subscribers into sales leads.


Drip costs $49 per month for up to 2500 subscribers.

Then I have to factor in the time to set up and run all 11 emails marketing campaigns and their follow ups.

Email campaigns are not time consuming to run with Drip; 11 times 30 minutes equals around 6 hours in 14 weeks.

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Generate Leads from Quizzes

50 subscribers and 14 leads using quizzes

Quizzes are a method of reaching people early or at the top of the sales funnel.

Introduction to generating leads with quizzes

I tried using quizzes as a way to engage people and get them into my sales funnel.

I’ve only used 2 quizzes to test this tactic out.

Detailed steps to using quizzes

  • Sign up to Try Interact.
  • Adapt one of their existing quiz templates
  • Integrate the quiz with Drip.
  • Tag users based on the answers they score.
  • Create a workflow to send users their quiz score.
  • Add the quiz to your website.
  • Promote the quiz through email marketing, Quuu Promote and social media.


By filtering my subscribers with the quiz answer tags and then filtering those with a certain lead score I am able to calculate subscribers and leads.

50 subscribers and 14 leads during the time frame; although the quiz was only promoted in one email campaign and one Quuu Promote campaign.

I introduced a client, who sells to consumers, the power of quizzes and he has generated a huge number of subscribers using paid for Facebook adverts.


Try Interact is relatively inexpensive at $29 per month.

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Sales Leads from Private Facebook Group

Leads from a private Facebook Group helped launch and validate my new service.

I was fortunate to do some great work and a client posted and recommended my service on a private Facebook groups we were both a member of.

B. Brief introduction to generating leads from private Facebook groups

Groups on Facebook are basically where like minded people congregate and interact.

Steps to getting started generating leads from Facebook Groups

  • Type a keyword or product name into the Facebook search bar.
  • Select groups.
  • Look for a group with a lot of members and has active posts.
  • You have the choice between open and closed groups.
  • I paid for a training course that had a group.
  • Everyone has a vested interest to succeed.
  • I was active for 18 months; posting and being helpful.
  • That got me noticed.
  • I gave and never asked.
  • Then client posted a review and results of worked I’d done for him.
  • This was strictly against the group rules.
  • So I apologised to the group administrators who thanked me for honesty.


In a 2 week period I generated 15 leads and enquiries about my service.

This resulted in 5 sales.


No cost other than investing your time in the group.

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Generate leads by scraping Facebook Groups

10 links acquired for a client by scraping Facebook Groups

I tested out scraping Facebook groups for link building before I do this in 2018 for my own lead generation activities.

Introduction to scraping Facebook Groups to generate leads

Generating names from Facebook Groups is definitely a grey hat technique.

You can find the name of group members and the company they work for.

Then you can find their email address with software such as and then build up a prospect list to email them.

I originally used this tactic as part of my link building outreach process.

And I thought to myself why not pursue this approach to generate people interested in my services.

Steps to finding leads with Facebook Groups

  • Buy the Grouply Chrome tool.
  • Choose a group with prospects you are interested in.
  • Scrape Facebook group.
  • Download the CSV file and import into Google Sheets.
  • Filter out those without a company, who are self employed, a student or say they work for Facebook, Fiverr or other well known companies.
  • Import the data into to find email from name and companies.
  • Use to verify the email addresses.
  • Import your list into your to email client.
  • Start your cold email outreach.


This is not a lead generation tactic I have used for sales yet but I have used it for link building.

The tactic for link building and sales outreach is exactly the same; only the message in the email subject line and body copy is different.

I managed to earn 10 links to a client website with this approach.


The cost of the Grouply plugin is $99 and I assume that’s a lifetime cost.

To find and verify email addresses I use that costs $99 per month.

I estimated I spent around 40 hours going through the detailed steps I have outlined above.

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Offer and Call to action

If you start from a user’s mindset and can answer “what’s in it for me” when they are on a web page, then you have a better chance of this user becoming a sales lead.

Your web page content should make a user motivated offer, relevant to their needs and your service.

For example, the web page you are reading right now is an educational guide to building a lead generation website.

The next element to design on a web page is the call to action.

Think of a call to action like a green or red sign on traffic lights.

They tell users want to do.

Green tells the drive to drive and red tells the drive to stop.

A lead generation website requires signs or prompts that tell the user what to do during or at the end of a web page.

Here are some popular call to action examples on lead generation websites.

  • Click to Read
  • Sign Up For Free
  • Get Started
  • Download Now
  • Send Me Special Now
  • Click to get started
  • Find out more
  • Search
  • Grab the bonus offer
  • Get Instant Access
  • Register For Our Webinar
  • Download Our Free White Paper
  • Free 30 Day Trial

The call to action below in the box on this web page is an offer to download the Guide To Generating More Sales Leads From Your Website.

Call to action examples

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Following up on sales leads

Once the user has completed the website form or acted on the web page offer, the next stage is the follow up.

The length of time between a sales lead and a customer varies from short to long depending on the customer, product and industry.

A car mechanic gets an enquiry from a car owner and only has to reply with the time they will do the car repair.

The restaurant owner may reply once when an enquirer asks about gluten free items on the Christmas menu.

Then a second email promoting limited table availability during the festive period turns the enquiry into a customer.

Follow up leads using Adobe Business Catalyst

A £600 sporting service may take 12-18 months of education and following up to turn a prospect or sales lead into a paying customer.

When someone contacts us from my website, we mark the prospect as a sales opportunity in our CRM as a new business opportunity.

The user is also added to a marketing list and can be sent a series of emails that educate them about our service.

Blog posts contain a bonus offer to download and users who subscribe are also added to a unique marketing list to follow up.

Following up on leads with WordPress and GetDrip

We use the WordPress Content Upgrade plugin on other websites to offer users a bonus download in exchange for their email address.

The email address of the sales lead is captured and added to GetDrip and given a tag to identify the page they subscribed from.

With GetDrip you can schedule a unique workflow to follow up on sales leads.

If the lead becomes a customer, you can remove them from a prospect workflow and put them into a customer workflow and schedule completely different customer communication.

Get Drip email marketing automation software
Content Upgrade for WordPress
Adobe Business Catalyst free CRM tutorial

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How to improve a lead generation website

Various analytical tools will tell you traffic to your website, from which source, how many sales leads you get and your sales lead conversion rates; if installed correctly.

You use these metrics to compare your performance with the goals initially established for your website.

If the website traffic, content or conversion rate is under performing, you improve it.

Use these examples to see the effect on sales leads if you improve the traffic or website conversion.

10% website conversion

5% website conversion

2% website conversion

Look at the 3 examples above.

They all generate the same quantity of sales leads each month but have different traffic levels and website conversions.

Then look below how the number of sales leads increases 400% (from 50 to 250 leads) when you increase your website conversion from 2% to 10%.

10% website conversion with more traffic

Tools to improve your website

Hotjar is software to help you understand user behaviour on your website; where they click, where they scroll, where they drop out your website and how user interact with your web forms.

WebTextTool does a very good job of examining your page content and provides recommendations on how to improve your page position in Google.

I use a content gap tool that shows you the pages and content your competitors have that you are missing.

Hotjar software
Webtexttool to examine page content
Identify content gaps

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Rounding up my lead generation activities

My results were obviously going to be skewed toward search engine optimisation as the main source of leads as I have given this my greatest effort.

If you only have a hammer, you will only hit a nail.

What did surprised me was how effective Quuu Promote was.

I ceased promoting posts 2 months ago and will look to resurrect in 2018.

My biggest disappointment is failing to generate more views, subscribers and leads from YouTube.

It is the second largest search engine after all.

However, the most important learning experience for me is differentiating subscribers from sales leads.

And without a doubt, the features of Drip have enabled me to implement educational steps to turn subscribers who opt into my website to defined sales leads.

Business to business lead generation is definitely a long and slow process where subscribers need nurtured and educated over a period of time.

As an old guru once told me; education, implementation, ROI.

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