What your business can learn from Chris Froome’s Tour de France victory

Chris Froome tour de france 2013 winner

My wife and I are avid cycling fans and loved watching another Brit winning the Tour de France for the second year running. The man in question, Chris Froome, was the yellow jersey winner, which means he had the best time in the overall standings.

Froome was born and raised in Kenya and studied in South Africa. He honed his cycling skills on the  dirt tracks of Kenya and quickly rose through the ranks, signing on for Sky Pro cycling in 2010. Last year Froome was Sir Bradley Wiggins’ right hand man and helped him to get to the podium in Paris, whilst sacrificing his own chances of taking the lead. His success at the Tour de France this year only goes to show how far he has come.

His cycling career hasn’t been without problems. In 2010, after signing on for Team Sky, his results were inconsistent and the management was baffled as to why he wasn’t performing as expected. It took the team doctors 18 months to realise that Chris was suffering from a water borne parasitic disease called Bilharzia. Only after this was treated did he begin to show his true potential, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The story behind how Chris Froome rose to champion status lies in the research, scientific procedures, constant testing and improvements carried out by the Sky Pro cycling team.

But how why is this being written about on a business blog?

Team Sky are obsessed with statistics. Everything is measured, monitored and tweaked. Without such high attention to detail, Froome may have otherwise been dismissed as a domestique (support rider). Instead, their monitoring  of the data from his training and fitness regime, allowed them to spot that something wasn’t quite right with him.

Your business website is your shop window to the outside world. Visitors come onto your site, look around and go away without performing actions that will contribute to your bottom line and ultimately your profits.

If you are not constantly monitoring the effectiveness of your online presence, you are already on the losing foot.

Knowing is the first step in improving.

Web Analytics are a must for any business that is serious about their online properties – not just the basic installation, but expertly segmenting your traffic to get the vital information you need to act on. Free tools like Google Analytics along with paid tools like Kissmetrics and Mixpanel can give you insights into your conversion funnel.

You also need to be constantly improving your website to increase its impact via conversion optimisation. Conversion optimisation can help you test elements of your current website to help your visitors convert better.  If you want to convert more visitors into leads, you have to be proactive in improving the website. If you are selling something, you want more visitors to go to the checkout and pay. Iteratively improving your site via conversion rate optimisation is a constant process. It never ends and it shouldn’t need to.

Take a leaf out of Sky Pro Cycling’s book and find the reasons why your website is not converting well and then test continuously.

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