This blog post will discuss how important sales funnels can be and will teach you how to create one concerning your business strategy.
There are many ways to create an effective sales funnel. So, you must understand how one works on different levels, to better guide you on how to make one for yourself or your company.
What is a Sales Funnel?
Sales funnel is a methodology designed to increase conversions. It is a sales process designed to make sales at various stages. A sales funnel usually starts with some type of branding and advertising or the awareness phase, which leads the customer down through steps within your sales cycle.
Utilizing a sales funnel can help you tremendously as according to an article posted in autogrow, 37% of marketers are at a loss on where to begin, and even admitted that it is the most challenging part of their jobs. As such, it is important to realize that sales funnels aren’t always as simple as they may come across.
A sales funnel is a tool used along the entire customer journey to ensure that all leads are being nurtured and eventually converted into sales for your company.
The sales funnel is considered to be the most important aspect of marketing, and it has been said that you need a sales funnel for your business if you want any chance of succeeding.
For example, Infusionsoft (infusion soft) (who specializes in sales funnels), saw its revenue grow from $40 million to over $100 million in just three years.
Spend some time to understand sales funnels, and they will pay off for your company as well!
Understanding sales funnel
To understand the sales funnel, you need to understand the sales process.
The sales funnel is the last step of this sales process, where you attempt to sell your product or service following a sequence that will lead people through a decision-making cycle and land them at the point when they are ready to buy it.
Every time someone enters your sales funnel, there are specific goals they will encounter before making a purchase decision or moving on, whether it's for more information about products (leads), free content/webinars/workshops (awareness), or subscriptions (consideration).
When these steps have been completed successfully, they'll become prospects who could turn into paying customers!
Optimizing this process can help increase conversions because you're giving people as many chances as possible to buy something from you.
Why is the sales funnel important?
According to an article posted in Passive Secret, 96% of those who visit your website are not yet sure if they will buy anything yet, however, this does not also mean that they will not buy anything from you. that is why it is important to create one to make sure that you will be able to guide them towards the next step.
Moreover, the sales funnel helps increase conversions, as it can give people as many chances as possible to buy something from you. This means that you can take advantage of all the traffic and leads on your website, as well as those who are visiting from other sources.
Furthermore, the sales funnel makes your website look more professional and experienced, which would then convince those who visit or explore your website that is available online which will help you with its creation. For example, Leadpages has a sales funnel that will guide your visitors and customers through the whole process of buying into an offer, as it first asks for their email address and then takes them to a thank you page where they can see the value of what they have just received from you.
What are the sales funnel stages?
Sales Funnel has different stages that are aimed at the conversion of your website visitors into customers. The sales funnel stages are:
The first of the sales funnel stages is awareness and it happens when your potential customer has found you online, or through offline means like television commercials, radio ads, etc. They then get to your website which will be used by you to gather information about them and see if they are a good fit for your product.
The second stage is the decision stage where you get to convince potential customers that what you have to offer is exactly what they need. This will be done either through giving away free consultations, trial offers or discounts, etc. The goal of this stage is to take a potential customer from awareness of your product or service and convince them that it is the best for their needs.
The third stage is the action stage where you request for transactions, be it sales or registration, etc. In this stage, you will have to give away more discounts to motivate customers into purchasing what they need.
The fourth stage is the loyalty or retention stage where you will have to make sure that your customers are satisfied and happy with their purchase which can be done through a follow-up email, promotions, etc. If they were satisfied enough you could even ask for referrals at this point.
A very important part of your sales funnel stages is the action stage. This is where you would have to convince them that it's what they want and need, giving away discounts to get people buying right then and there. The loyalty or retention stage comes next with follow-up emails, promotions, etc. if customers are satisfied enough for referrals at this point, too, you could ask for them.
How to Use Content for Each Stage of The Sales Funnel
It is important that you also use content that is appropriate to all of the sales funnel stages above. This is how to use the content for each stage of the sales funnel:
For the first of the six sales funnel stages, which is the awareness stage, you would want to have a video demonstrating your product or service. For people who are not familiar with what it is and how it works, this will help them understand better. Make sure that the title of your YouTube videos has keywords for SEO purposes also!
In a typical sales funnel setup, the consideration stage should be where most of the content is. Here, you want to answer the most common questions and solve their problems. This is where they start making a more informed decision of whether or not it's something that they need for their business.
If people do have interest in your product at this stage, then what you could also suggest is giving them an offer such as a free trial. This helps them get a feel for it before committing to the product.
In this stage, you should be providing as much value as possible and not focusing on selling yet. If they don't need your solution at any point during this stage, then you've lost them forever!
An important part of the sales process, it is in the decision stage that the people have already been convinced that they need your solution and are willing to pay for it. In this step of the sales process, you will be trying to close a sale with them.
At this point, don't just try selling them on price only - if someone has gone through all these stages then they probably want the best solution, not just any solution.
You should also be asking questions like what is their timeline for purchase right now?
Do they need your product by a certain date? Why does it matter to them if you can't make that deadline? Try to understand why this matters so much and then work towards making sure they meet that goal.
The last tip in this step is to make sure you are asking for the sale! Don't skip over the "do you want it?" part, or assume they do. You can always ask them if they wanted your product, what would be their perfect timetable? If that doesn't work then keep trying until you get an answer.
This tip is to make sure you communicate with them. Don't assume they know what you are doing or that your marketing strategy isn't working! They might not understand why you keep emailing them if it doesn't seem like a sales pitch, so just let them know when the next sale is coming up and how long it will last.
This step is to ask for their credit card. It's pretty simple, just have a button on your website that will allow them to purchase it right there! This way you can get the sale while they are still interested in what you're doing and hope that they leave positive feedback about your product or service afterward. Make sure everything works before this stage though!
In this stage, you want to give the customer a reason to come back and buy from your business again. Perhaps they can get an additional product for free or maybe if their friend signs up with a code that is only available at this stage of the sales funnel process! Just make sure it's something easy enough for them to understand so don't make it too complicated.
Customer Retention Stage
In this stage, you can focus on going above and beyond by offering your clients a membership or a discount to make it worth their while! You may even want to follow up with them after they purchased to get feedback about what they thought of the product or service so that you can improve for future customers. This is a great way to get feedback from your customers and also keep them happy.
The value of a sales funnel
The sales funnel is valuable to your business because it can help you increase profit and sales. By keeping your business organized, you will be able to track data to see what is working or not working for your marketing strategy. For example, if one of the stages isn't converting well, then maybe try changing things up so that way it's more successful!
Adding a sales funnel strategy in your sales process is a sure way to help boost your business. You will be able to track data to see what works or doesn't work for your marketing strategy as well as gain valuable insight into how successful you are with customer acquisition and conversions.
Lastly, a sales funnel is valuable because it can help increase profit and sales which brings us back full circle! With a well-thought-out sales funnel, you will be able to gain insight on what is working and isn't working for your marketing strategy as well as improve customer acquisition.
If you use the sales funnel correctly, it will provide a steady flow of traffic with the potential to build your list, gain more sales, and build your company's reputation.
Impacts of a sales funnel
The sales funnel impacts your sales process positively in so many ways. You will gain more sales, you will be able to increase your customer base and experience growth as a result.
A well-thought-out sales funnel brings value back into the picture because it increases profit with the potential for higher returns on investment (ROI). A key metric that marketers need to keep an eye on is the profit per customer (PPC). The PPC is the ratio of how much revenue you make for every customer. For instance, if you make $100,000 and have 100 customers, your PPC is $1000. If the customer count increases to 200 but revenue stays at $100,000 then your sales funnel strategy has improved because now every new customer contributes more towards profit; hence improving PPC.
For easier understanding, let's take the example of a business selling t-shirts. For every t-shirt sold, $20 goes towards manufacturing and shipping costs while another $15 is paid to the retailer who originally bought it for $40. Therefore, if you're selling 15 t-shirts per day then your profit on these sales would be only $200, which isn't a very healthy sales funnel strategy and leaves almost no room for growth.
That's why it is important to not only focus on increasing the number of customers but also how much they spend, as that will help you improve your sales funnel strategy over time.
How a sales funnel impacts your prospects
A sales funnel will provide your prospects with a clear path of purchase to lead them to get involved in your sales process. It will guide them through each step, providing you with opportunities to build their interest in your product or service. As they get deeper into your sales process, you will be in a position to influence the way they view your product or service. You can guide them to choose it over other similar ones because you have presented them with enough information about what makes your offering stand out from others.
When it's set up correctly, sales funnels can provide a steady stream of new prospects looking for products or services like yours. This means a steady flow of new sales leads, all with the potential to turn into customers. Furthermore, you can track where in your sales funnel people are falling off, and optimize it over time to increase conversions.
How a sales funnel impacts your organization
Aside from the sales funnel's impacts on your prospects, it also affects your organization in several ways. For instance, your sales funnel gives you a framework to guide the way prospects move along in their journey of becoming buyers and eventually, paying customers.
The whole process is designed to help marketers generate leads with the end goal of converting them into customers or revenue for an organization. By having it mapped out clearly, businesses can have a better understanding of the steps to take to increase conversions.
A sales funnel gives you insight into the most important stages of your business's marketing efforts and allows you to measure their effectiveness in terms of revenue generation. It can help identify where problems are happening at each stage for an easier fix before it snowballs out of control later on down the line.
The sales funnel is also useful for identifying where there are opportunities to close the deal at each stage. If you can identify these opportunities and make the proper changes to your business, you can boost revenue.
Using a sales funnel allows businesses to focus efforts where they are most needed and see the results almost immediately. This means that instead of wasting time on activities that aren't generating income or even worse – costing money – the effort will be put into things like developing better products, creating more effective landing pages, and refining the sales funnel.
How to Build a Sales Funnel
In building a sales funnel for your organization, there are a few things to keep in mind. The first is that the sales funnel should be as simple as possible – too many steps and your customers will become frustrated or confused.
Second, you need to have reliable analytics on hand so you can review the numbers, understand where weaknesses lie, and determine what changes need to be made for improvement. This also helps you to better understand your target market and how they interact with your sales funnel.
Third, make sure you determine the right time to ask for sales (lead generation). Don't become pushy or aggressive in hitting them up for their money – this will result in negative reviews and damage future conversions.
Last, don't forget to provide fantastic customer service at every step of your sales funnel. This is often the difference between a successful conversion and an unsuccessful one (or rather, it makes up for any failures that may occur in other stages).
If you can incorporate these steps into your own sales funnel strategy, you will be on your way towards creating a fantastic business that will be the envy of your competitors.
Here are the steps to build a sales funnel:
Step 1: Analyze Your Audience
To identify your audience, you should ask yourself these questions: Who is my target customer? What do I want them to think of when they hear about me or see my sales letter?
This will help you understand the type of content most relevant for your audience and make it easier for them to receive value from what you're sharing with them.
Analyze the sales funnel you have now. How many steps does it take a customer from hearing about your company until having purchased goods, for example, three, four, or five?
Determine how much lead time you need in each step of the sales process so that there's enough time for prospects to convert into customers without being forgotten among all of the other offers competing with yours on social media platforms.
Step 2: Get Your Audience's Attention
To get your audience's attention, you need to know what they're expecting.
What is going to make them want to buy your products or services? What are their pain points, and what would they like solved?
You have to show that your product offers value that they can't get elsewhere.
People are more likely to buy something if there's a perceived lack in their lives caused by not having this product available.
So before worrying too much about how people might be willing to spend money on your product, determine whether their life is absent.
Step 3: Build a Landing Page
A landing page is a one-page website that's dedicated to converting visitors into sales.
It typically includes a headline, image or video, description of the offer, and some form of CTA linking to your sales funnel. It should be simple so people can quickly scan it without getting distracted by too much information.
You could also include testimonials and reviews, and social proof in the sales funnel on this page if you want more persuasive elements at play here.
Whatever kind of conversion goal you're going for (lead generation vs. sales), there are different ways to build your landing pages depending on what fits best with your business model needs and goals. But remember, not all leads will convert instantly.
Step 4: Create an Email Drip Campaign
An email drip campaign is a series of sales emails sent at scheduled intervals to your prospects.
To create an email drip campaign, go into your sales funnel and click on the "Email Drip Campaigns" button in the left-hand navigation menu.
There you will see defaults for new campaigns already set up with some useful templates:
- Salesperson's Name - Prospect's First Name - Subject Line Title Template (for example, Hi John)
You can then edit these default settings or add more information if you need to fit with what kind of content message you want to send out. You'll also be able to schedule when each email should go live!
Step 5: Keep in Touch
Use sales tools such as CRM to keep track of your sales cycle and success rates. When this sales funnel process has been completed, you should be able to know how many of your leads converted into clients!
Don't forget to regularly send out emails and thank people for their interest in the company.
It's also a good idea to send them any information they may want about changes or events that are happening and new products or services.
You can even ask if there is anything else they need from you, so it doesn't seem like sales pitches all the time!
Measuring the Success of a Sales Funnel
Keep in mind that sales funnels are not the same for every company, and each one has different needs. As such, you need to figure out what your sales funnel process will be before creating it.
Know why people come back or buy from you again. Does this mean they like your product? Is it because of good customer service? Figure out why so that the sales funnel can keep those things at the forefront!
Create checklists of items customers would want if they have them readily available with an easy checkout system. This will make sure sales don't slip through your fingers because someone needed something specific but couldn't find it easily!
Optimize Your Sales Funnel
The sales funnel is an important part of your sales process, and it's much more than just a pretty diagram. Moreover, the sales funnel has become an integral part of most marketing strategies because every business needs customers who will buy items at different price points.
This is why you always need to optimize your sales funnel because if you let customers slip out and your sales funnel is not optimized, then it will be hard for new potential buyers to enter. Furthermore, you can't just optimize your sales funnel at the end of the process either.
Completing each step in a sales funnel is important because it adds more value to what you're offering.
Therefore, when optimizing your sales funnel, make sure that you are completing all steps properly and that they aren't too complicated for new customers or clients to follow.
Find the gaps in your sales funnel
Gaps in your sales funnel are the points in which there is missing information or require more work, so you should find these gaps and fill them with relevant content.
A great way to fill any gaps in your sales funnel is by creating a customer avatar that will allow you to break down each step of your sales process further for different types of customers.
Optimizing your sales funnel is a process that requires time, effort, and testing to find out what works best for conversions.
This can be applied to any type of business strategy or marketing plan whether it's the creation of a new blog post or product launch campaign.
The last tip: work backward to figure out where you want any gaps filled, so they don't go unnoticed.
Ensure not to leave anything undone as it could mean major losses down the line without something new coming up through marketing strategies.
In conclusion, a sales funnel strategy is one of the most important elements of an online business. The sales funnel can help you to increase the sales and leads for any business. Don't forget to include a call to action or signup box at the bottom of your blog post, to encourage your prospects to take the next step.
As long as you put time and effort into creating a sales funnel, your company will be able to see instant results that can not only build up over time but also something that continues throughout years down the line.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Below are frequently asked questions about the sales funnel.
What is a sales funnel builder?
A sales funnel builder is software that helps you create sales funnels. It spits out sales funnels that are already done for you, and you can tweak a bit to make it yours.
What sales funnel builder should you use? It's up to personal preference, but some of the more popular builders include Techwitty, ClickFunnels, Leadpages & FunnelLabs.
How can you improve the sales funnel?
You can improve the sales funnel by optimizing sales copy, adding sales videos to the sales funnel, and including Facebook conversion pixels.
You can optimize sales copy by using words that trigger a sense of urgency like 'today' or 'right now.'
And, don't forget to include your company's credible information in there as well - this means mentioning how long you've been in business, what type of clients you have serviced, and so on.
This will help make people more confident about investing their money in your company.
Another way to improve the sales funnel is by creating an upsell for those who previously purchased a product from you.
How to create sales funnel for free?
A few different sales funnel templates you can use will help make it easier to start this process.
Start with the welcome email, where sales and clients should be introduced.
This could include being introduced to your company's culture, how you operate on a day-to-day basis or what type of services people can expect from you.
Then, move onto creating an upsell email - one of these typically goes out after someone makes a purchase, but there's no set timeline for when they go out, so feel free to customize!
Upselling works well because it's like, "I know I just bought something from you guys already but do I want more?"
Another sales email that's important is the cross-sell email.
When someone buys something, this one goes out, but it doesn't necessarily apply to what they believed, like if a client purchased some shirts. You're sending them an offer for a different type of shirt or similar product altogether; then this would be classified as cross-selling.
Last but not least - don't forget about your follow-up emails!
These are great because they can go back to people who have unsubscribed from your list or haven't opened any sales emails in a while.
So, instead of just forgetting about these clients entirely (even though sales reps should always stay in touch with everyone), send them an update on where their purchase stands and find out why they might've unsubscribed.