How To Collect and Use Intent Data to Increase Sales

Man smiling at his laptop as he shops online while a program collects intent data.

How well do you understand your customers? What you learn from making a sale only tells you half the story. Some of the most valuable insights about your customer occur before they even express an interest in your products. However, you can discover more about your customers and what would attract them to your brand through intent data.

Learn how to collect intent data and five ways to use it in your marketing and sales efforts.

Key Takeaways:
  • Intent data tells you how close a prospect is to making a purchase
  • You collect intent data through first-party sources within your company or third-party sources from other companies
  • Intent data is essential for lead scoring and qualification processes

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What Is Intent Data?

Intent data in B2B sales tell you where customers are in their journey. It is an insight into online customer behavior that you can use to identify how close they are to purchasing your product.

For example, keyword research might tell a shoe brand that two popular search queries in their industry are “What shoes to wear on a hike?” and “Best hiking shoes.” However, intent data will alert the company that consumers perform the first search when they want to learn about hiking boot options and are still in the educational phase of the buyer’s journey. Consumers search for a second query when looking for specific products to purchase. Therefore, customers who come to their website through the second query are more likely to buy their shoes.

Understanding intent data is vital for offering timely and relevant sales content. It is also crucial to qualify leads based on their behaviors and knowing when to pass a lead from marketing to sales.

How Can You Collect Intent Data?

You have two ways to collect intent data: first-party and third-party data.

First-Party Intent Data

The data you collect from your customer interactions are first-party data. This information is most relevant and valuable.

Some examples of insights that might show a lead’s intent or likelihood of buying include:

  • Number of visits to your website
  • Interactions with your content
  • Time on your website
  • What pages a lead visited
  • Number of interactions with customer service
  • Past purchases
  • Demographics

You can collect some of this information from your website’s analytic reports that show how visitors interact with your pages. You can find patterns in what pages visitors often visit before purchasing or what search queries or links they used to find your website.

You also need to gather other insights, like demographic data from the leads. You can collect this information through a survey or request It in exchange for a gift. For example, demographic data will tell you what type of consumers are most likely to purchase from your brand and whether the lead is your target buyer.

Third-Party Intent Data

When you purchase or find data outside of your company, it is third-party data. These insights aren’t directly about your customers but may give you information on common customer behaviors that you can apply to your specific situation.

Third-party intent data complements first-party data and offers a more comprehensive view of your customers and potential consumers. While first-party data is a valuable source of information on relevant customer activities, third-party data reveals the behavior of consumers that don’t purchase from you. These insights can tell you why they go to your competition or what actions they take that you can target in your marketing to attract more consumers.

How intent data can make a difference in your marketing efforts

Source: SalesIntel

5 Ways to Use Intent Data to Improve Sales

Use these five intent data strategy ideas to optimize your sales processes.

1. Create Targeted Marketing and Sales Content

Intent data tells you what information your buyers are searching for at each point in the sales cycle. If you only focus on buyers in the conversion stage, you will miss out on attracting new consumers. Instead, use third-party data to identify common search queries during earlier buyer stages.

You can use consumer search queries as keywords in your SEO marketing content. Then, as potential customers research product solutions, your content is more likely to appear in their search results, which means you will attract more buyers in earlier buying stages through your targeted marketing and sales content.

About 60% of marketers agree that SEO brings in the highest quality leads, and those leads have a 14.5% close rate.

2. Personalize Your Sales Message

Over 51% of marketers said personalizing their marketing message, and customer experience increased the number of sales they saw. However, before you can personalize your approach, you must first thoroughly understand your buyer.

B2B Intent data gives you a deeper look into the motives behind your customer’s actions. It allows you to create more relevant marketing content and provide a customized sales approach based on where they are in the sales cycle and what their specific needs are.

3. Identify Interested Buyers

Often, you won’t know a buyer is interested in your products until they are nearing the end of the sales cycle. About 83% of their journey involves extensive research and comparing options.

If you could identify those prospects during that research phase, you could increase your conversion rate by starting the nurturing process sooner with those customers before a competitor contacts them.

User intent data are the digital footprints your customers leave behind. You can track the data to find consumers in early buying stages based on customer behavior, like keywords they use, pages they visit on your website, or third-party sites they use during their research.

Stages of the buyer’s journey before and after expressing intent to buy

Source: Clearbit

4. Score and Qualify Leads

Over 79% of leads don’t ever make a purchase. If you pursued every lead or sent leads to sales before they were ready to buy, you would waste valuable time and resources. That’s why lead scoring and qualification processes are essential. A lead scoring system assigns values to consumer actions. Once a lead reaches the qualification threshold of point values, they move from marketing to sales.

You can use your intent data to improve your lead scoring system. For example, you might assign a point for every marketing email a lead opens, indicating an increased interest in your brand and a higher chance of purchasing.

5. Analyze and Optimize Your Sales Process

Use your intent data to map the customer journey. This is a crucial step to understanding your customer’s behavior and what might prevent them from purchasing from you.

For example, your customer intent data might show that most customers who visit your “about” page usually check your prices next. Then, you could add a direct link from one page to the next to streamline that process.

Download our free eBook to discover the power of marketing automation for multi-location business.

Start Using Intent Data Marketing to Increase Your Revenue

Convert more of your leads by incorporating intent data in your nurturing, scoring, and conversion tactics. When you automate your lead management system, you can gather more significant insights and perform more sales functions to increase your conversion rate.

Schedule a demo to learn more about using intent data in our lead management software.

 

Featured Image: istockphoto

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