84% of Leads Convert on Their First Site Visit (and What to Do About It)

by Brad Shorr May 8, 2019

Everything moves faster on the Internet. For internet marketers, that means you only have a limited window to convert site visitors into leads. What you may not already realize, however, is just how limited that window of opportunity may be.

Although repeat traffic is great, for lead gen campaigns, the most important visit is the first one.

First Impressions Matter

At Straight North, an Internet marketing services provider in Chicago, we’ve studied more than 350,000 website conversions. Amongst all of those conversions, we discovered something interesting about lead gen campaigns: 84% of lead gen conversions happen during the first site visit.

[clickToTweet tweet=”84% of your leads convert the first time they visit your website.” quote=”84% of your leads convert the first time they visit your website.”]

In fact, the more times someone visits your site, the less likely it is that he or she will convert. About 1% of conversions come during someone’s fifth visit.

So, if the goal of your marketing is to drive leads, your landing pages and website need to be designed from the ground up to convert as many of your website visitors as possible on the first visit.

With this in mind, it’s not enough simply to have a beautiful site. You need a site that has a number of features that encourage visitors to convert right away. To help you out, we’ve compiled the findings from our study and suggestions on how to use our data to improve the performance of your campaigns into this SlideShare:

Making the Most of Your First Site Visit Experience

There are 10 basic site features that improve the chances visitors will convert on their first visit:

  1. Content That Stimulates Action. Website copy should be focused on a single idea, so as not to overwhelm visitors with too much information. Copy should be kept light and easy to scan, but with enough intrigue to make visitors curious enough to reach out for more information.
  2. Intuitive Navigation. A website should feel familiar and comfortable for visitors, so build yours with standardized navigation labels and consistent features. Keep drop-down menus simple and uncluttered.
  3. Relevant, Custom Imagery. Professional-looking photos/graphics help your image, especially when they are accompanied by informational captions.
  4. Persuasive Credibility Elements. Include testimonials from prominent customers whenever possible, and make your case with verifiable facts rather than fluffy promises.
  5. Get Personal. Staff bios add a personal touch and make you seem like good people with whom to do business.
  6. Irresistible Calls To Action. Calls to action should be prominently placed and offers should be substantive and time-sensitive to drive visitors to action.
  7. User-Friendly Forms. Forms that drive customers to action are short and to the point, assuring them of privacy. Include your phone number in case visitors prefer to do business the old-fashioned way.
  8. Prominently Displayed Phone Number. Phone numbers are a crucial element of Internet marketing—put yours where customers can find it.
  9. Continuous Testing. It’s essential to test every element of your website constantly. Broken links could cause visitors to go elsewhere.
  10. Mobile-Friendly Design. Customers will be viewing your site on smartphones, so be sure to make your site’s design responsive. Sticky navigation also makes phone browsing easier.

With these features built into your lead generation website, you’ll have a site that drives conversions faster and takes advantage of the limited window of opportunity you have to grab a customer.


Although repeat traffic is great, for lead gen campaigns, your primary goal needs to be to convert your traffic now! After all, if they don’t convert on their first visit, they aren’t likely to come back and convert later.

Fortunately, using the recommendations outlined in this article, you can make the most of your traffic’s first site visit and maximize your lead volume.

What do you think of our data? Did it surprise you or does it match what you’ve observed in your own campaigns? How do you maximize conversion rates on the first site visit?

  • Site Optimization

Brad Shorr

Brad Shorr is Director of Content Strategy for Straight North, a provider of SEO and PPC Internet marketing services. Brad has more than 25 years of marketing, sales and management experience — and is an active and respected blogger who has been featured on sites including Forbes and Entrepreneur.

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