A great sales funnel is essential in the marketing strategy of virtually every business. It helps you to build a lasting relationship with your customers, reinforce business credibility, and get more customers on your side.
This article will help you learn more about sales funnels, how they can impact your business, and take your profit margins to the next level!
Top of Funnel Vs. Bottom…
At the top of your funnel, you are focusing on new potential customers (the introduction). Your Middle of funnel is for turning those potential customers into actual customers (showcasing what you do). Your Bottom of your funnel is where you close the deal with your customers and make your sales. Also, don’t forget to follow up with your customer after the sale to offer a complimentary offer.
There is much more to it though, so keep reading to find out how to create the perfect sales funnel.
To run a successful business in today’s competitive market (either digital or offline), you need a strategy to attract, convert, and retain your customers.
You need to guide your customers through every purchase stage to ensure that you don’t lose them halfway through. One way to go is to pay close attention and invest in your sales funnel.
What is a Sales Funnel?
The sales funnel is best described as the process someone has to take to become your customer. If you get your sales funnel right, you will be smiling all the way to the bank and cashing out big cheques.
Here is an illustration to help you understand how a sales funnel works…
Suppose you have a store, the chances are that people will pass by, and only a percentage of them will walk in. Now that is the first stage of your sales funnel – it is regarded as the top of the sales funnel.
In the second stage, the customers go through your wares and understand who you are and what you do – the middle of the sales funnel.
In the final stage, they will head straight to the checkout point — the bottom of the funnel.
The above illustration is the same for online businesses, such as e-commerce.
Think of it like this; a potential client finds your page through a google search (which makes him or her a prospective customer).
After browsing your listings and reading through your blogs, they trust you enough to sign up for your email list. When they sign up, they become your lead. You can then follow up via emails. Hopefully, they will come back to your websites for special offers and new information.
The entire process from when the prospective client clicked the link to your website to when they take action (like buy an item or subscribe to your services) is all implemented by parts of your sales funnel.
Tip! – Check out The Basic Elements Of A Sales Funnel for more info.
4 Stages Of A Sales Funnel
The sales funnel is broadly grouped under four stages — Awareness, Interest, Decision, and Action. These four stages are a typical representation of every potential customers’ mindset when they interact with your brand.
Let’s take a second to touch on all four of them.
Awareness – Top Of Funnel
This is where you first catch your prospective customer’s attention. It could be through your social media channels, a friend, or from a google search. At this stage, they are aware of your business and what you are selling — your offer. If the chemistry is right, your prospects won’t waste time to “add to cart” and check out their goods.
Interest – Upper Middle Of Funnel
The interest stage presents you with an opportunity to help your customers make an informed decision.
This is where your prospect makes a comparison with other offers and decides whether to proceed or not. It’s always best not to push your products or services from the beginning; you risk turning your customers off, and you don’t want that.
Decision – Lower Middle Of Funnel
After guiding your customers through the awareness and interest stage, it’s now time for them to make a decision.
This is where you put out your best offer. You can look at providing free shipping instead of charging like your competition, offer discount codes or bonus products —anything to win them over.
Action – Bottom Of Funnel
The action stage is the bottom of your sales funnel. This is where the prospect purchases your product and joins your client list. However, getting to the bottom of the sales funnel doesn’t mean your job is done.
Now, you need to whip up creative means to turning one purchase into many more – Customer retention.
Expressing gratitude for purchase, providing after-sale support, and requesting feedback will go a long way in keeping your customers, and hopefully, they will make you their go-to-guy.
How to Create the Perfect Sales Funnel
As you already know, the sales funnel refers to your potential customers’ journey through a sales process. Also, there are steps in a sales funnel — the top, middle, and bottom of the funnel.
The different stages differ with varying business models but revolve around creating awareness, interest, decision, and action, as we mentioned earlier.
At the top of the funnel is “marketing,” the “sales process” forms the middle of the funnel, and “customers” sit at the bottom. Remember, you want as many customers as possible to reach the bottom of your funnel and make a purchase.
The million-dollar question is, how do you create the perfect sales funnel for your business?
Here are some simple steps to help you create a profitable sales funnel…
1. Build a Landing Page
Most customers are likely to find your business or company through your landing page. A landing page is usually the first contact your customers will have with your business.
When someone clicks on an ad, download eBooks, or sign up for a webinar, they usually do that from a landing page. Your landing page should be clear and straight about your offer and the unique benefits of your products or services.
The idea is to make your landing page captivating and get prospects to sign up with their emails for follow-ups and future correspondence.
Tip! – Check out How To Grow Your Email List Organically for more info.
2. Offer Value
Gone are the days when prospective customers offer their emails at a simple request. You need what is known as a lead magnet. Your lead magnet can be a whitepaper or an eBook. Perhaps a free course or gift code for special offers. Must be something desirable.
3. Nurture Your Prospects
Now your prospects have moved into the interest stage. Thankfully, you have their email addresses. You can arrange an email series to engage with your customers.
Your email series can be educational content or tips and guides about using your products. Any useful information will do, just keep it relevant.
4. Exclusivity/Special Offers
At this stage in your sales funnel, you need to deploy everything in your arsenal to get your prospects to purchase from you.
To nudge your leads into making a purchasing decision, you can offer exclusive special discount offers, free trials, or product demo to make it an easy decision for your potential customer to purchase from you.
5. Keep Up the Tempo
As we mentioned earlier, at the bottom of sales funnels lies the customers. At the bottom of the sales funnel is the “action stage,” and you should already have a new customer.
It’s not always rosy at the bottom of the sales funnel. Sometimes, potential customers will come all the way to say no. However, it would be best if you didn’t let their negative response sway you.
You need to keep pushing; you need to keep communicating. For your new customers, you should provide product education, engagements, and work on retaining them.
For the leads that didn’t convert, you need to check with them to see how you can meet their future needs.
6. Plug Every Loophole!
You can set up and monitor all elements for your sales funnels. Making use of data will help you track and fix your customers’ journey through your sales funnels. You need to find any loopholes or weak points in your sales funnel and change them ASAP.
While you are at it, don’t be in a rush to dump any lead that didn’t convert and move to the next. Consider all leads as potential customers, and with the right strategy, you can get them on board.
Tip! – Check out How to Make Money from Email Marketing – 3 Simple Steps for more on this.
Why You Need a Sales Funnel
Over time, customers have become sophisticated in making purchasing decisions. You need a sales funnel to manage modern-day consumers and their needs.
Often, the purchase cycle can last from hours and even months or even longer.
You need a sales funnel to keep track of your customers’ journey at all times while also guiding them to make the desired purchasing decision.
Sales funnels are also an avenue to build trust and increase your products and services’ lifetime value.
Each stage of the sales funnel is important. A fault in one aspect of your funnel will affect the performance of others. As such, both the top and bottom of your sales funnel should be taken seriously and treated equally.
There are some great stats on sales funnels here if you like stats!
To create a perfect sales funnel, you need to reassess your sales funnel from time to time to reflect changes and new sales funnel trends. It would also help if you optimized your sales funnel to make your customers’ journey through the sales process easy to follow through.
If you notice a part of your funnel where customers leave the funnel, make sure you focus on that specific area and fix any issues. For example, if you are not able to get the customer’s email, fix your landing page/lead magnet.
If potential customers don’t click on your links in the emails you send them, make sure you write more engaging emails and so on and so forth, until you reach the perfect sales funnel.
You may also like the Several Ways To Immediately Increase Your Website Traffic article for getting more traffic into your funnels!
Hope you enjoyed reading.