If you are in the realm of niche marketing online I’m certain by now you’ve heard “the money is in the list”. What if I told you that is 100% backwards and simple mathematics dictates more research. Now before you think I’m crazy because this is so contrarian its not when you just put paper to pen, and realize that the a one-size-fits-all approach is not realistic, honest, or from someone who actually does this for a living and does not make a living selling theory.

Here’s your shocker for the day which only makes sense: The Money Is In the Sale

I’ve sold a few of my products in different niches and split tested results between opt-ins to direct sales copy and I can tell you the answer is not so cut and dry.

So here’s pen to paper math to help you understand whether or not you should use a squeeze page:

1st Figure out your goal before you sell something: is the sale solely to build a list? Is it to make some money? What’s your price point? Do you have back-end funnels set-up that will properly monetize the list?

2nd How do you plan on building the list? Paid traffic or through free methods?

Once you’ve figured out how you want to approach this there are more considerations:

What’s your cost per opt-in vs your cost per customer acquistion? Do you have the time/experience/know-how to do effective split-testing on 2 levels? What I mean by that is you have to know how to optimize your conversion, first to your squeeze page, and second to your sales page.

So why am I so “blah” against squeeze pages? Well first of all I’m not against them, I use them, but in many or most cases they hinder your success without realizing that by making more sales through a direct sales copy you are creating a bigger buyer’s list which is worth 10-30 times the value of an opt-in.

HERE’S THE MATH…

Let’s say you were selling X product for $27 and were paying 50 cents per click to a squeeze. Well cold traffic converts at about 5-20% on the squeeze page depending on how passionate the niche is, and second if the page is optimized correctly. In some niches a properly optimized squeeze page might convert at a lousy 10% (they don’t tell you that when they teach you about their 60% opt-in rates with warm traffic).

Ok, so it’s costing you $5 per opt-in on your list and what % of those people will buy? Statistics show about 6-8% at best and 2-5% if you’re decent and 1-3% if your poor and obviously 0% if you stink like a dog.

Now a good sales page can convert at 1-4% with 100% of the traffic seeing your sales message where you make money. Let’s assume you can get a 20% opt-in rate, and a 5% conversion from the list from cold traffic… well that puts you at the bottom of how well your sales letter should convert at 1%.

So Why In the World Would You Put All That Time Into Creating a List?

Well there are good reasons for doing so, let me defend the notorious squeeze page.

Let’s say you were selling a $200 product, and you knew the odds of you converting them from cold traffic was .5-1% and the lower conversion numbers is only because of the higher price point and you really optimized the sales page, well the $5 opt-in isn’t end of the world shattering because if you could convert 5% you could double your money right out of the gate.

This is how world-class marketers make their money with high end products, and for them $2-5 opt-ins are a great deal because they understand the value of each opt-in because they have metrics for the lifetime value of each customers, how well their list converts, and how well their sales copy does.

This was much easier to do 5 years ago, and the marketers of 5 years ago have a huge leg up on anyone today who is trying to use cold traffic because they got the traffic when it was cheaper and easier to get to run their studies and metrics as they fine-tuned the process and grew with the changes to Google PPC and their quality score changes.

More than likely you don’t have those deep pockets, and even if you do you want to tread lightly before shelling out more cash for advertising.

You should also use a squeeze page if you are doing adswaps, or solo ad email advertising… other than that not really. You should ALWAYS have an opt-in on your blog if you chose to have one.

The solution is to perfect one thing at a time and make money with a positive cash flow before you even attempt to go to the next level. That means perfecting your sales letter is infinitesimally more important than perfecting your squeeze page, and it means you are focusing on creating a buyers list vs an opt-in list which has much more value.

Lastly, focusing on the most important aspects to your business (sales and a buyers list) is best accomplished through simplicity and taking out as a many barriers to the person who wants to buy to your offer. Focus on making sales and creating a buyers list before you even attempt to squeeze. Testing too much at once is for the guys with 5 figure budgets to test out on each project.

I want you to get to that point of 5 figure testing, but you can’t just get there by focusing on squeeze pages at the beginning of your fun quest.

Let me know what your thoughts are and your previous experiences, I’d love to hear them.

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