Category Archives: Sales & Marketing

Frictionless Data Collection: The Easiest Way to Get Customer Information Online

We really can’t emphasize enough how important customer data is — for any company in any industry. Gathering data from customers should be easy for them, and it should lead to accurate information for you. Without collecting key information, you can never truly understand your current and potential customers and their desires. How long do you think your company could survive without good data?

Frictionless Data Gathering

Interactive decision trees simplify the process of collecting information on any web page that customers land on first. Just by prompting customers to click a button in a decision tree, you’re collecting data!

Once you get customers engaged with a decision tree, they’ll be hooked. You can then ask for name and contact information using data entry fields. This data is easily sent to you via email, viewed with Zingtree’s reports, or exported into any database or CRM system. Zingtree can validate this data as well.

Case Study: Zingtree

We use this technique ourselves – the Zingtree “Request a Demo” button on our Contact Us page is an example that asks some questions, and then leads to this form:

Before our potential customers see this form, they have clicked some buttons to answer a few basic questions. And at the end of the process, we get an email with all of their information and can schedule a demo with the right expert. It’s an awesome source of leads for us.

The emails we receive at the end of the process look like this:

XYZ Corp requested a demo

Zingtree session data:

Q: I would like to:
A:  Request  a Demo
Q: Next:
A: Continue
Q: How will you be using the Zingtree decisions trees you build?
A: External Use
Q: Are you looking to integrate Zingtree with other applications?
A: Yes
Q: Next:
A: Continue
Q: Are you interested in self-hosting Zingtree?
A: No
Q: Next
A: Continue
Q: Finish:
A: Send Demo Request

score: 0 
zt_browser_language: en 
zt_browser: IE 
zt_country: United States 
zt_regionName: California 
zt_city: San Diego 
zt_zip: 92121 
zt_ip: 208.87.212.000 
zt_isp: Surfer
zt_org: surfer.com 
name: Jane  
company: Customer 
email: jane@xyzcorp.com 
contact_number: 8882121000 
integrations: Looking to retrieve all data points and button elections in a spreadsheet  
send_out: 1


Step 1: Build a Tree, and add a  Data Collection Form

Ready to put this technique to use?

First, engage your customers with some questions answered as button clicks in an interactive decision tree, and at the end of the process ask for more info via a form. It’s easy for customers, and they are providing you fantastically helpful data.

What needs are you filling? Depending on the goal, you’ll want to be collecting different customer information. You can even automatically gather customer location, language, region, browser and more.

Step 2: Refine and Distribute Data

Before you send or publish any decision trees with forms, be sure to check your writing. It’s an often overlooked aspect of surveys, questionnaires and other means of data collection, but contributes greatly to the value of the information gathered.

Step 3: Analyze and Verify Collected Information

If you’re collecting certain information such as a customer’s shipping address, email, or phone number, validating that information before putting it to use can save you a lot of time and money. Bad information wastes valuable resources! Our interactive decision trees allow you to validate information using built-in data cleansing.

When all is said and done, Zingtree’s analytics and reports or API will help you collect and analyse key data directly from your customers themselves.

 

Take a look at the Gallery for a more in-depth look at how data entry forms work in different scenarios. Any questions? Reach out to us anytime.

Create a Product Finder to Improve eCommerce Conversions

For businesses with lots of product SKUs, helping customers find the right product is a sure-fire way of increasing sales and conversion rates; Zingtree is a perfect solution. Guided product selection is a new kind of strategy that allows customers to help themselves, self-solve, and locate exactly what they need as quickly as possible.

From picking out the perfect pair of sunglasses to the right kind of bike, to figuring out the ideal package of services, these “product finders” can help customers locate the right product in the easiest way possible.

The Facts: Customers Want Easy Access

Key metrics and figures in the eCommerce world only work to confirm what we know: simple, guided product finders are the wave of the future where customer journey and improving conversion rates are concerned. Let’s take a quick look.

Stat #1: On average, people spend about 51% of their time on their mobile phones.

It’s incredibly convenient for buyers to browse your store on mobile in short, quick, sessions during the spare pockets of time they have throughout the day. Online stores should always be optimized for quick shopping experiences that help customers find what they need within the fastest possible route. If they can’t find what they need, they’ll move on.

Stat #2: 94% of companies see “higher engagement and conversion rates” as benefits of a commitment to customer experience.

Customer experience is all about personalization. When you take the time and effort to customize an experience to specific people, they are far more likely to enjoy it and walk away feeling positive. Without any personalization, consumers can quickly jump to the assumption that those products or brand are not for them.

Stat #3: 74% of online shoppers rate product selection as important during the online search process.

That’s right — about 3/4 of all online consumers consider product selection as one of the most important parts of the search and purchase process. When you think about it, it really makes sense; making it as simple as possible to locate the right product is critical to customer satisfaction and loyalty.

What Are Product Finders?

Product finder decision trees are the perfect way to set up customers for success in a personalized, self-solving, mobile-friendly environment. Instead of the traditional eCommerce site boasting pages and pages of products, product finders allow customers to take the lead using well-thought out, pre-programmed guidance.

Nationally-recognized baseball bat manufacturer, Phoenix Bats, is a perfect example of how product finders have a direct impact on happy customers and better conversion rates.

After building and implementing a custom decision tree bat selector tool on their website to guide customers to the perfect bat for them, Phoenix Bats saw vast improvements to overall sales and revenue. Read the full case study here.

Tips for eCommerce Product Finders

No one product finder should look or feel the same — each eCommerce business’ brand should always shine through. Here are our top 3 tips for creating interactive product locators that are as helpful as they are nice to look at:

1. Create pop-up trees.

Just a few short lines of code can allow you to publish and present decision tree product finders as fun pop-ups! Shown as a button as popping up in a clean overlay window, it’s one of our many publishing options to fit any eCommerce business needs.

2. Customizations are key.

We make it easy to inject some personality a few different ways, custom CSS files being the main one. After having a designer create the perfect file, just add to your decision tree product finder to ramp up the style — take a look at one of our customer’s awesome uses of this. You can also do things like build color buttons, add images and videos, and insert GIFs for something extra informative.

3. Use for support improvements.

Interactive decision trees aren’t just for helping guide customers to the right products, they are also used for helping guide customers to the right answers and solutions. Any FAQ item, tutorial, or troubleshooting article can easily be reformatted as a decision tree, allowing customers to more easily self-solve and stay happy.


You can check out our Gallery of examples for even more inspiration.

Have any questions or want help getting started? We’re always here for you.

Marketing Case Study: Global Players

Here’s an example of how Zingtree’s interactive decision trees are helping to improve online marketing efforts in a real education abroad organization.

Global Players helps to place student-athletes in their perfect study-abroad fit, promoting awareness and cultural education as well as athletic endeavors around the world. As an organization growing in popularity, Global Players was in search of finding a streamlined, self-service way to placing students in their ideal location abroad.

Since adopting Zingtree’s solution to integrate their “Program Match” decision tree, Global Players has been able to place over 1,000 students so far, increased the likelihood of a visitor to contact the organization by 5 times, and more!

You can view the case study below, and open a PDF version here.

casestudy-global_players copy

Want to see more? Explore the Zingtree Gallery for examples of how our decision trees and interactive solutions provide value for businesses!

This case study was originally published January 19, 2016.

Decision Trees for Sales Retail: Phoenix Bats Case Study

Phoenix Bats + Zingtree

Helping customers find and choose the right products in an interactive way

The Phoenix Bat Company has been crafting high-end baseball bats for over 20 years. Using only premium grade woods with the most advanced bat-making machine in the world, they deliver the most consistent and high-quality bats to their customers, including pro baseball players. With painstaking attention to detail and custom manufacturing, Phoenix Bats produces some of the best bats in the country.

Phoenix Bat’s Challenge

With customers at all skill levels and various requirements, visitors to the Phoenix Bats website were confused by the difficulty of researching and selecting the right bat for their needs. In search of a better solution, Phoenix Bats wanted to find an easy way for potential customers to find and select a wooden bat tailored to both the customers’ game and hitting style.

Zingtree’s Solution

Building a decision tree bat selector tool has enabled Phoenix Bats to guide customers to the baseball bat perfectly suited to their needs. With this interactive platform in place, customers are now able to quickly find a bat, leading to an increased conversion rate and improved sales. Phoenix Bats is also enhancing the end-user experience by using the Zingtree API.

“Without Zingtree, [our customers] would have to read through a number of different bat descriptions in order to figure out which bat is the best fit,” says Seth Cramer, General Manager and Co-Owner of Phoenix Bats. “Now, they get the answer in seconds.”

Key Statistics: 

  • 13 Trees: 13 decision trees in use
  • Lots of Bats Sold: Over 10,000 customers helped

About Zingtree

Zingtree is the most user-friendly platform for creating and implementing interactive decision trees that deliver answers faster. Quickly create a decision tree that your site visitors, leads, trainees and/or customers navigate by clicking buttons to answer questions, and receive detailed analytics on how trees are being used. Zingtree makes it easy to guide anyone through complicated processes – there’s no better way to help people get answers and solve problems.


Want to see more? Explore the Zingtree Gallery for examples of how our decision trees and interactive solutions provide value for businesses!

How to Simplify Lead Scoring and Qualification

Working at a startup or with a tight-knit sales team? Many smaller sales and marketing departments don’t necessarily have access to the same advanced tools and platforms that help large scale businesses identify which leads are worth the effort. And, as we all know, a business really can’t grow at a steady rate without ongoing interest from qualified leads.

According to MarketingSherpa, 61% of B2B marketers send all leads directly to sales, while only about 27% of those leads will actually be qualified to contact. Essentially, while the effort is there in terms of generating leads, marketers who pass along potentials to their sales departments without taking the time to qualify those leads are wasting a lot of time.

So, how do you streamline this often clunky process of qualifying leads? Luckily for startups and small businesses, there are affordable ways to get the job done quickly, so you can better keep up with the competition.

Using Decision Trees for Lead Qualification

You wouldn’t cold call an intern when you’re targeting upper management… would you? After generating new leads, whether it be through direct referrals, marketing efforts or some other channel, it’s critical to carefully select the best, most qualified leads for your specific market or industry.

Instead of blindly qualifying leads that may not be the best use of company time, create a simple decision tree that houses the ideal characteristics of each lead that comes in. After having leads identified, sales reps and marketers can quickly run through the standardized tree of questions and answers to see how qualified a potential customer is. By using a decision tree flow, or multiple trees, that address sales distribution, promotions and marketing efforts, and more key criteria, your small business can quickly identify the best leads of the bunch.

Setting Up Lead Scoring

Our decision tree platform also allows you to effectively score new leads based on their quality as a customer. With the Zingtree scoring feature, sales and marketing teams can assign a score (numeric value) to each answer as they go through a set of questions about that lead. Once having gone through the decision tree to properly score each lead, sales can later act upon the total score and reach out to those leads accordingly.

Here’s how to get set up:

1. Go to Overview > Edit Node and then click Edit Buttons to open the button editor.

2. Select Use Scoring, and enter a Score Variable Name that will be used to tally scores and branch on later.

3. Add your desired score values to button clicks in your lead qualification decision tree.

4. Add a new Logic Node, using This Tree > Add Node. In the Logic Node, specify which node appears next, and which to branch to, according to rules you create.

4. Link the last button click of your lead qualifying decision tree to the new Logic Node.

Go here for a live example of scoring in the Zingtree Gallery.


Want to learn more abut lead qualification with decision trees? Reach out today!

The Best Way to Evaluate Employee Performance

Productive and happy workers are at the center of every successful business. But, knowing how to properly and efficiently assess the performance of your employees can be a big task to handle.

> Does your employee understand the overarching goals of his or her role?

> Are they enjoying the work that they do, along with the environment?

> Is he or she meeting personal objectives and levels of development?

These kinds of questions are important to keep an eye on to ensure your company is on a consistently good track.

How to Easily Evaluate Employees

Zingtree allows you to create what we call ‘evaluations‘ that assign a score to each question answered within a tree, and later lets you act upon the total score. This powerful decision tree logic can be applied to tests, quizzes, training simulations, performance evaluations and more.

Integrating a relevant, easy to understand, employee-appropriate decision tree evaluation into your workplace is a great way to tap into your employees’ knowledge, progress and comfort levels.

Here’s how to build a tree with scoring:

1. Add a score value to each button click when designing your tree.

2. As the end-user goes through your tree, Zingtree keeps a running total of the score values of all buttons clicked.

3. When you’re ready to act upon the running total score, use a new “Score Branch Node”. From there, you can specify a range of score values which redirect to specific nodes.

Here’s a preview of what it looks like, but you can get a step-by-step right here:

Evaluating the performance of your employees is an ongoing task that should cover all areas of their work ethic, achievements, and other random areas depending on the role at hand.

By using Zingtree interactive decision trees customized to fit your organization’s employee evaluation needs, you’ll be well on your way to a standardized, efficient way to keep everyone on the right track and help identify internal issues.

See more examples of evaluations and more on the Zingtree Gallery.

3 Ways to Take Advantage of Decision Trees in Business

Decision trees for business can address a variety of problem-solving use cases. Since the beginning of Zingtree, we’ve helped 7,500+ organizations spanning geographic locations and industries to improve support and internal business processes, build powerful sales funnels and enhance productivity in a number of ways.

The intuitive question-and-answer style of a decision tree makes it simple for companies to improve efficiency, train new hires and evaluate staff, qualify the best leads, deliver amazing support experiences, and much more. Here are just some of the ways that taking advantage of intuitive decision trees can help businesses.

1. Lead Qualification

A business can’t grow, or succeed long-term, without continued interest from leads that are the most qualified for the market they serve; this is a well-known fact. After generating new leads for your business, it’s important to carefully select the cream of the crop, according to what your company is looking for in an ideal lead.

By putting these new leads into a decision tree based on the main characteristics of your ideal customer, any business can easily make sure that the most qualified leads are sent along to the right person. After all, the faster you can follow-up, the more potential for new business! For a decision tree to qualify leads, you should include a flow for proper sales distribution, content and promotions to best serve them, and more.

See an example in the Zingtree Gallery.

2. Training and Evaluation

Because Zingtree is such a powerful interactive tool, it is a prime resource for building and implementing training programs, simulations and evaluations. As with all training and evaluation programs, yours should be relevant to your company or the position, easily digestible, and appropriate to the employee involved – this is important if the training is to be integrated into workplace practices.

Once training is completed, it’s just as important to keep up with how they are doing, using evaluations to tap into their knowledge, progress and comfort levels. We’ve used Zingtree’s robust logic with a scoring system that can perform detailed evaluations, allowing you to add a value to each answer and later act upon the total weighted score. Explore our Gallery examples to preview existing decision trees for training and evaluations.

See an example in the Zingtree Gallery.

3. Customer Support

Interactive decision tree troubleshooters customized to fit your business needs are one of the most important extensions of your brand that can be implemented. Troubleshooter decision trees allow customers to follow a path of questions and answers that lead them to the most-likely solution, and are even more helpful for technical issues.

Companies that build interactive troubleshooters and FAQs into their customer service processes have seen an average of a 20% overall reduction in support costs!

See an example in the Zingtree Gallery.


Ready to improve your key business processes?

Get started with Zingtree!

4 Reasons Why Marketing & Sales Need to Adopt Decision Trees

You’ll often hear us talk about how decision trees can save contact centers and support managers valuable time and expended energy, but did you know that this interactive toolkit can also benefit those in the marketing and sales world?

With a simple question-and-answer flow, it becomes much easier for marketers and sales staff to boost their own productivity and efficiency, collect business-driving information and much more. Here are just a few of the ways that building decision trees can boost your game.

1. Streamline Lead Qualification

Every B2B marketer and sales staff is well-versed in the importance of lead generation and qualification for the continued health of a business – without new interest being cultivated, a company simply cannot grow.

Placing these leads into a robust decision tree based on key classifiers for your ideal customer ensures that the most qualified leads are quickly delivered to the right person, for faster and more accurate follow-up. Including the types of content, communications and promotions to best serve to these potential new consumers, along with the correct flow of distribution for proper sales resources, is a great way to enhance the lead qualification process overall.

2. Build & Optimize Sales Funnels

It’s incredibly important, in any business or industry vertical, to focus on the customer’s complete path to purchase; the sales funnel is, in essence, a decision tree looked at in a slightly altered way.

By designing your initial sales funnel (or any other process) in Zingtree prior to consumer use, you’ll quickly be able to spot and measure any inconsistencies or trouble areas through simple user testing. If your business or organization is struggling with their current sales funnel flow, creating and testing decision trees can vastly excel the improvement process.

3. Improve Procedural Standards

Following and improving corporate procedures, including procurement processes (acquiring or purchasing products/services from an external source), are another factor that should not be overlooked.

By using decision trees to build internal codifying systems, getting employees to follow corporate procedures, and continually optimizing these processes, any company can effectively boost these procedural standards.

4. Narrow Down Designs

Marketers are always serious when design is involved; after all, how something looks is directly related to how a consumer perceives a product or service offering!

Companies that use decision trees as part of a decision-making process can easily generate a Zingtree based on potential design (or copy) options to gather direct feedback on team preferences. Rather than communicating in longer form, a decision tree is ideal for collecting quantitative data to drive faster decisions.


 

Ready to get started? Sign up for a free trial or contact us to see how Zingtree can help improve your sales and marketing efforts.

Infographic: How People Use Zingtree Decision Trees

Below is a brand new infographic we created for our customers. We wanted to share how others are using Zingtree decision trees. If you’ve spent any time with Zingtree you’ll find it interesting.

Since sprouting in late 2013, we’ve helped over 7,500 organizations everywhere engage with customers, streamline support and business processes, build powerful sales funnels and more.

There’s a virtual forest of Zingtrees out there, and it’s growing every day. Have you planted your tree yet?

How to Get Great Data: Framing Quantitative Questions

Untitled design-18
Services like Zingtree offer powerful, interactive tools for gathering data, but the programming behind the system you build with those tools is only half of what you need.

It takes an extremely well-thought-out and well-written flow of questions in order to gather great data correctly. How you write the questions presented in your decision tree or survey directly affects the data you receive, including its accurateness and effectiveness.

About Quantitative Questions

Decision tree questions that take a quantitative approach are;

  • Completely closed-ended
  • Generally very simple to select an answer for
  • Ideal if you are looking to collect hard stats or data in numbers

Do your customers think the product/service you offer is amazing, or just alright? Would they like it more if you charged less, or offered something additional? Quantitative questions will garner answers that provide you with objective data to make your business even better.

Zingtree also includes a distinctive scoring functionality, so you can build a sophisticated system that assigns numeric values to corresponding answer selections that you’ve predetermined — this allows for quick measurement and objective comparison.

Structuring Quantitative Questions

Quantitative questions follow a fairly standard format, typically starting with a “how” or “what” in order to gather information. Some very common ways to begin structuring your questions include:

  • What is/are…?
  • How many/much…?
  • What percentage…?
  • How often…?
  • To what extent…?

Because Zingtree allows users to select only ONE answer to move forward in a decision tree, you’ll need to be aware of every potential answer to include and gather the most accurate data.

When in doubt, take advantage of comments to gather feedback from your customers on which answers they would have selected, if given the option — this will allow you to continually optimize your decision trees to gather the best data possible.


 

Strategically constructing your decision trees and writing out your questions, answers and final solution paths according to standard quantitative framing will make things easier for you and your end-users. Customers will be able to understand and navigate more clearly to provide better answers, and you’ll gather amazing data from your key users!

Ready to change your business? Get started on your first decision tree.