by Nathan Snelgrove
Published on 2 January 2014
ManyContacts Review - Collect information from their website's visitors
Web traffic isn't everything. For most small businesses, agencies, or freelancers, the first thing that we learn is that having a quality website isn't enough. It's one thing to be directing hundreds, or even thousands, of visitors to your website every day, but it's another thing to turn those into direct conversions and leads. That's what ManyContacts is trying to do: help you get better conversion and lead rates with a simple tool that turns visitors into customers by allowing them to quickly punch in their email and get added to a database of leads. Let's see with this ManyContacts review if it is that simple.
ManyContacts makes it just a little bit easier to market yourself to potential clientele: when they visit your website, they can enter an email address to quickly and easily get in touch. It's great for freelancers and small web agencies in particular, although there's no real end to the sort of people that could benefit from the service (bloggers, shopping services, and even news services could all benefit from using it like an easy-to-maintain email list).
The customizability of the widget goes beyond the greeting message and allows you to select a colour as well, which means it can integrate well with almost any pre-existing design you may have. It's spam free and keeps you from checking out fake email addresses. Even better, the app judges lead quality and lets you know about the potential of a contact through visual lead qualification and sophisticated data enhancement (in other words, the information is really easy to read in your account).
The app allows you to offer rewards (or other incentives) just for signing up as well. So while it's a basic service, it also offers more than just the minimum. The service is kept as simple as possible, so logging into your account will quickly provide you with the contact information you're looking for. This is a "one thing well" app, which is to say that it never tries to be anything other than what it's not.
The problem is pretty simple: you need customers or you can't keep your lights on. ManyContacts helps with that. The app's unobtrusive menu bar is its biggest benefit: it gets pertinent information into potential clientele and customers without breaking their trust with a sleek design that stays out of the way unless you tell it otherwise. While it's attention grabbing, it's not overly dramatic. It doesn't appear to be "in your face."
I've given a lot of thought to this while testing ManyContacts, and while the app is easy to explain, it's difficult to fully wrap your head around. After all, this can still dramatically change the way a potential customer feels about a website. But it's not a pop-up. There's no real reason it detracts from the overall content. This is just a small menu bar, and it can be even be pushed away from the top of the page if your visitor so desires.
The bottom line is that, while there are no easy ways to turn visitors into leads and potential customers, ManyContacts does it in a package that benefits both you and (if you write the right tagline) your visitors. If you simplify your message and remember that it's a surprisingly convenient advertisement that it's cumbersome to the user, but often inviting, you'll find it's probably perfect your business - or at least worth trying.
As I said, the bar is very visually simply-stated. It doesn't detract from the overall experience for the visitor. Using the ManyContacts site, though, is a piece of cake.
Creating a form only takes moments, and the ManyContacts website is easy to browse and convenient.
Creating a form
Finally, the pool of leads that you'll start to develop appears in a simple page that makes it easy to track who's visiting. This screenshot was taken right away after I started using the service.
ManyContacts' support information is not the best of what they offer. There is a question button on the website, lower right corner, to ask to speak with the team. They also have a contact email in the footer of the site. I don't think that's good enough though.
ManyContacts is currently free, which makes it a steal. It's slightly worrisome that all of this data is being handled by a company with a free product (after all, when does free really mean free?), but it's easy to export any email addresses you've gathered since you started using the service. While Woorank says that your data always belongs to you and that they don't plan on using it for arbitrary means, it's arguably irrelevant at the end of the day. Because you're not locked in, it's easier to swallow the bitter pill and leave ManyContacts should they ever start using your information in ways you don't agree with.
You can't argue with free and you can't argue with the premise of ManyContacts, which offers a simple way to build clientele without succumbing to any obnoxious advertisements. If you don't mind suffering their almost nonexistent customer service and need a way to quickly build a list of contacts, I think ManyContacts is nearly perfect for everything from newsletters to business leads. Given the price, it's more than worth giving it a shot. The company has also announced an integration with Mailchimp to be released in January 2014, that will offer a great boost in functionality.
Ratings: ease of use 5/5, features 4/5, value 5/5