One of my favorite things about Bob Ross episodes is that moment when you start to understand the scene he's creating. At first, you're pulled in by the smooth brush strokes and quick adjustments between colors that seem to be the perfect fit. Somehow he always brings it together in the end to make a masterpiece.
But what if you were tasked with selling a Bob Ross painting (though he famously never did himself) before it was complete? You'd need to know what was coming so you could tailor your pitch, right?
And it might not be good enough to know that it involved a babbling brook or a wintery cottage.
You'd want to know the colors involved, what's in the foreground and any unexpected critters planned for the woods. The same can be said for any sales process. You want to know as much as possible about your prospects before they even reach your desk. If you know the audience likes countryside scenes, you’ll stay away from offering them a dark cityscape.
The reality is that hitting your quota each month shouldn't be a happy little accident.
Thankfully, the modern salesperson has a bevy of tools and data sources to use when studying their prospects. This includes everything from demographic data to sales training scripts developed over thousands of calls and interactions. When it comes to your website though, the picture may be less clear.
That's where Session Recordings come into view. By watching a session recording for a specific prospect (or one that mirrors someone you're currently working with), you'll be able to pull the right colors from your palette and close more deals.
So, if you're ready, let's get crazy—with session recordings.
First, what are Lucky Orange Session Recordings?
At its core, Lucky Orange is designed to help businesses better understand what’s happening on their website so they can optimize toward a world-class user experience. With our Session Recordings tool, the focus is on following along with a specific visitor as they navigate through your site.
Within Session Recordings, you’re able to choose from recordings of recent website visitors, a certain segment of traffic or pinpoint a specific visitor based on IP address, name or a multitude of other data points. It allows you to find the session recording and the data you need quickly.
With this tool in your hands, you can see every page someone visits including clicks, scrolls, forms completed and any other interaction they may have had during their time on site.
Why should salespeople care about their website?
If you’re a salesperson, you likely understand the power of customer data. You likely also know the limits of your data.
Whether this means you have a blind spot with a key demographic element like annual budget or company size or you lack a true understanding of customer motivations, you probably know where you could use some more customer insights.
One blind spot for many sales teams is what happens when prospects are on their website.
The reality is, for many businesses, the website is a key moment in the sales process. No matter how many lead generation sources you have, most prospects are likely to touch the website at one point or another. Whether it’s the initial touchpoint when they discover your brand or used as a research vehicle during the consideration phase, your website needs to be a great public-facing version of your sales messaging.
Treat your website like a frontline salesperson. It has to sound the same as your sales team and needs to set people up for a great human interaction once the process reaches that place. Bob Ross wouldn’t come into an episode and say, “I feel like using crayons today” and you shouldn’t completely change your brand voice across the different elements of your sales funnel.
Your website can either make a sale easier or harder—a great conversion optimization program can skew things in the “easier” direction.
5 steps for using Session Recordings in a sales enablement program
The goal of marketing is to make sales easier. No matter who uses session recordings in your sales organization, there should be a set path to gaining more knowledge about your customers. This includes which sales enablement and conversion rate optimization (CRO) tools to use, what will be analyzed and how that information will be documented and shared with others.
1) Choose a session recordings tool (like Lucky Orange 😊)
To watch session recordings, you’re going to need a tool like Lucky Orange. When you’re choosing a session recording tool, be sure to evaluate its segmentation abilities, other tools you get for your money like dynamic heatmaps or chat and whether it helps you see the entire website journey including conversion funnels, forms and chat.
If you’re trying to better support your sales team and their efforts, consider a free 7-day trial of Lucky Orange. Get started here.
2) Determine key pages and elements
The biggest role you play as a user of session recordings is deciding which pages and page elements you care about most. This process involves noting which spots on your website you believe have the largest impact on getting a prospect to take a positive step forward in their journey.
Let’s take a look at three quick examples:
If you’re selling insurance, maybe you want someone to visit their agent’s bio page and read about their services. You can filter recordings for people who visit the bio page and watch as they read (or skip over) the content focusing on available services. (We’ll talk more later about what to look for in your analysis.)
If your business offers a high-cost item with a drawn-out sales qualification process, your prospects may be re-visiting your site to confirm details on your product. Watch recordings for returning visitors that have a tag confirming they completed your lead generation form. This will provide you with information about how you can funnel these visitors to the product details page(s).
Or maybe you’re a recruiter for a college looking to increase applicants. Watch recordings for people who visit the “start your application” page on various devices to ensure your CTA renders the way you expect in a mobile environment. See which fields people are repeating or struggling to complete.
3) Decide how you’ll pick sessions to view
After choosing the spots on your website you’d like to focus on, it’s time to figure out which visitors matter most. Depending on your goal, you might want to view a set of recordings for visitors from a specific source on a certain web browser or in a particular geographic region.
Or, based on the key elements selected in the last section, you might want to see people who engaged with a CTA or who are returning to the site for the third time.
No matter how you segment your traffic, this is a key step to success with session replays. Taking a more targeted approach saves you time and helps you stay focused on the things that matter most to your current project.
We find that many sales teams use session recordings in this way. They’ll search for a prospect who has been unresponsive but visited the website or one who may have gotten nervous about a particular step of the sales process.
4) View visitor behavior before/during/after engaging with key elements
It’s finally time to watch some recordings. Focusing on the traffic segment or person you chose in step three, we want to see what happens around the time they interact with key elements and pages.
And, as with anything in conversion rate optimization, what you’re looking for when doing analysis depends on your end goal. If you’re optimizing a form, we’ll want to see what happens when they interact with form fields and buttons.
More on what to look for when watching session recordings shortly.
5) Document and share knowledge
The worst thing you can do when optimizing your website is forgetting something you learned. Whether it’s an A/B test that taught you which content block needs to be a higher priority or a piece of customer feedback that highlighted an issue with a form, it all needs to be written down.
A great place to start is a CRO journal. This journal can be as simple as a list of notes with a date and a link to pages/recordings in question. If you want to get more complex, consider codifying your notes so other people throughout the organization can better understand and use them.
Speaking of communication around CRO, it’s vital that knowledge gained as part of optimization work is shared with relevant people on a regular basis. This can take shape in a vast amount of ways, but the key is to be consistent.
Before rolling out a new CRO initiative, be sure to communicate across departments what you’re trying to achieve and how they’ll be kept in the loop. Helping people see the value in CRO will build a culture of optimization where the customer is always prioritized.
If you’re in sales, you’ll certainly want to keep the marketing team and whoever is in charge of the website in the loop. This will prove valuable if you ever need to make changes to the website to improve the visitor experience.
What to look for when watching session recordings
So you pulled up a session recording. That’s a great start. But what are you looking for? What should be considered noteworthy inside the recording?
More specifically, as a salesperson who has a busy day, how can you efficiently learn about your prospects in a consistent manner?
Signs of struggle or confusion
Look for rapid mouse movements or several clicks in a row without anything happening on the page. Think about what you do on a website when you’re frustrated, and look for that. When you identify an issue like this, consider ways to make things easier on the visitor.
You can add helpful text or remove distractions to more easily communicate your key messages and CTAs.
Re-reading content blocks
If you see someone reading a certain block of content over and over again, this might mean they’re confused or are not seeing the detail they need. Consider offering a survey on pages where this happens to help clarify:
What visitors are trying to accomplish on this page
If they’ve been able to accomplish it
If not, what’s getting in the way (lack of information, confusing information, etc.)
Beyond research with a survey, you can also test a reorganized page or rewritten content that aims for simplicity. You could also link to your FAQ page if it supports what you’re communicating.
Back and forth between pages
Oftentimes, visitors looking for a solution to their problem will bounce around between a few pages. They’ll scroll up and down and click links in frustration, unable to find what they need. In this situation, a survey may also prove useful.
See if you can draw a connection between the pages in play and decide if content should be combined or partially pulled over to one page or another. The goal is minimal clicks between arriving at your website or landing page and one of many desired actions.
Clicking unlinked elements
If you see people clicking on something that isn’t linked to anything, you might be causing some unnecessary frustration. We often see this happen with elements like trust icons or highlighted (but not hyperlinked) text.
It’s possible you thought the element in question was linked. That’s an easy fix. If not, consider why your visitors may click something like a trust icon.
Are they looking to read more about what it means? Do they want to see your rating against competitors? This is where you get to be creative. Consider adding a subtitle or help text to encourage rapid comprehension.
While much of sales operations efforts will focus on what happens after leads come to the floor, you likely care greatly about the user experience during that initial form submission. Many times, Lucky Orange customers will find that they’re asking for too much (or too little) information upfront.
This can leave your sales reps scrambling to explain themselves and your brand at the beginning of a sales call, getting things off on the wrong foot.
Focusing on the “wrong” content
Depending on where someone is in your conversion funnel, you may have specific content you’d like them to consume. If you observe high-value prospects getting distracted by higher-funnel content, it’s likely you’ll want to reconsider where they’re landing on your site or which options they have to navigate your site.
In some cases, it may make sense to provide traffic from a specific channel like search engines with a hyper-focused landing page that provides the exact details you want to share at that point in the journey.
Go higher-level with Dynamic Heatmaps
Improvements to your sales process after using session recordings are about as reliable as Bob Ross’ perm holding its shape. But what about if you want to go a step further and identify higher-level trends on a specific page outside of the individual visitor? There’s a tool for that and it’s called Dynamic Heatmaps.
In fact, heatmaps and session recordings make a great pair.
Check out this video to see how this powerful combination will have your sales team’s numbers soaring among the almighty mountains in no time.