5 Winning Steps To Build A Robust Sales Funnel

 13 Jan, 2022

Close won or close lost? In the end that is what matters the most. Sometimes do you feel you do everything on earth to improve your conversion rates but still, it is not happening? You have made your content full proof user-friendly, you have set an enticing offer but still, you are not getting results?

Let me tell you, this is because there is more to just copywriting and designing. You need to focus on the sales funnel.

In this post let’s discuss:

  • What is sales funnel
  • The stages of a sales funnel
  • Leaky sales funnel and its cause
  • How to fix a leaky sale funnel to convert sales

What is Sales Funnel? Why is it important?

A Sales funnel is a pyramid- A journey or a path that a prospect or potential customer goes through to become a customer. The funnel is the widest at the top and narrows down as the prospects get closer to the sale considering few prospects drop off and those who convert are a smaller part of the original group.

Tips to build an effective sales funnel

Now that you know what are sales funnel, let’s understand what makes it so vital for business success.

Importance of having a sales funnel

The sales funnel helps you show the path to your customer which will lead them to take on the way to making a successful purchase. Therefore, analyzing your sales funnel will help you understand how it works and what is the sales funnel benefits.

This will also help you identify the holes in the various stages of your sales funnel. Understanding your sales funnel will help you give a great impact on how prospects move through it. This may help you convert your visitors into potential buyers.
It will also serve you with insight into what customers think and do at each stage of the sales funnel so that you can invest in the marketing activities that grab the attention of more prospects. You may develop more relevant messaging at each stage of the sales funnel and help you convert more prospects into paying customers.

knowledge of your sales funnel

What are the Four Stages of Sales Funnel?

Until you start investigating the world of digital marketing and sales, you may have never heard the term “Sales funnel.”  However, the concept relates to all types of action-based convincing, not just sales taking place in the digital realm. In this post, we’ll go over the four main components of the sales funnel or stages of the sales funnel and how they relate to your sales journey.

Four Stages of Sales Funnel

As you can see in the above pyramid of funnel design, there are four stages in the sales funnel. Learn more about how to build a sales funnel from scratch in our further read.

Stage 1: Awareness

This stage is basically an awareness stage in the sales funnel design. Here your leads get aware of your product or service. In this stage, they most likely interact with your marketing efforts such as your advertisements, blogs, or articles. In this step, a few of the potential customers might express further interest in your offer and will go down the funnel and this entirely depends on the business model you choose. To make this happen, you need to know your target audience well.

You need to carefully understand what your target audience wants:

  • List the needs of your customers
  • How your competitors are targeting them
  • Understand if there is an area where you can dominate.

This stage in the funnel sales model basically helps in finding out how your information benefits people the most. Add some substance to make a prospect want to take some action. To get your message going right at the point, back up your facts with emotional appeal adding in some social proof.

Step 2: Generating Interest

To generate interest you need to design an effective content plan.

A content plan along with writing efficiently also includes understanding what your target audience wants at each stage of the funnel. This task involves lots of layers in the process.  So it’s important to how your prospects are located at each stage of the funnel.

For instance:

You run a mobile phone repair shop and you need to create content for your prospects at every stage of the funnel. So to address some of the major concerns related to the phone, you need to use social media platforms, or your blog posts suggesting a solution.

At this stage helping people get familiar with your product or service, convincing them of your expertise, and increasing brand awareness is important. Once you have realized what the prospects came there, focus on marketing the content and your irresistible offer well.

Stage 3: Customer Acquisition:

After all the evaluation, in this stage of building a sales funnel or design funnel, the prospect decides to buy the product. At this stage, you should be prepared and well equipped to answer all the questions of the prospects. The pricing system determines the final pricing at this stage. A positive experience on the part of the customer leads to referrals that fuel at the top of the sales funnel, and the whole process starts again.

The second part of this stage is a satisfactory transaction. A sale transpires completely when both parties sign the contract. A signed contract is booked as revenue from an accounting perspective.

The sales funnel is an ongoing process. It always keeps shifting and your conversations with your customers keep evolving. So keep questioning yourself, the strategies you used yesterday to serve your customers, are they adequate enough today too? This would help you to live up to their expectations and fill your sales funnel.

Stage 4: Compelling action

Now once the visitor has landed on your page, it’s your prime responsibility to make sure that your webpage and design does all the work. Companies that nurture the needs of the prospects can see a huge difference.

Focus on customer acquisition. After all the evaluation, in this stage, the prospect decides to buy the product. At this stage, you should be prepared and well equipped to answer all the questions of the prospects. The pricing system determines the final pricing at this stage. A positive experience on the part of the customer leads to referrals that fuel at the top of the sales funnel, and the whole process starts again.

The second part of this stage is a satisfactory transaction. A sale transpires completely when both parties sign the contract. A signed contract is booked as revenue from an accounting perspective.

The sales funnel is an ongoing process. It always keeps shifting and your conversations with your customers keep evolving. So keep questioning yourself, the strategies you used yesterday to serve your customers, are they adequate enough today too? This would help you to live up to their expectation and fill your sales funnel.

So, these are the basics related to funnel design but how to build a sales funnel can be tricky. Read our next section to learn sales funnel development in the most effective way.

How to Build an Effective Sales Funnel?

For your sales funnel to show the desired results, you first require prospects who can move through that funnel efficiently. Once you have those prospects, you can track your visitor’s behavior and engagement using lead scoring to identify where they stand in the funnel.

Here are five steps to how to build sales funnels  :

Learn how to build sales funnels effectively that ensures business growth:

#1. Understand Your Target Audience

To build sales funnels, you require to understand your target audience before you start to create your sales funnel. Moreover, based on research on the following points:

  • The problems they’re looking for solutions for
  • The social media channels your visitor’s use
  • Things that interest your target audience
  • Things they hate about online shopping

#2. Build Your Buyer Personas

You can build multiple buyer personas targeting your marketing campaigns for the various segments of your customers. This can help you derive multiple and accurate buyer personas from research based on the below-mentioned questions:

  • Why would they buy your product/services?
  • What are the things that influence your visitor into buying a product?
  • How are they going to use your product after purchasing it?

#3. Plan on Generating Traffic

If people are not aware of the products you sell, there will be no sales. Therefore, you need to adopt different lead generation strategies to drive users to your website. You can adopt the following measures for this purpose:

  • PPC campaigns
  • SEO
  • Landing page optimization
  • Influencer marketing
  • Guest posting
  • Social media marketing

#4. Plan on Engaging Your Audience

Your lead generation efforts won’t be enough on their own if you fail to engage your audience. They need to learn about your product and services, and this goal can be achieved with the help of the following strategies:

  • Creating engaging and high-quality blogs
  • Creating interesting videos
  • Involving influencers and requesting that they review and offer tutorials of your products
  • Promoting your content on social media platforms
  • Conducting email marketing campaigns to promote your latest blog posts and sending newsletters

#5. Convert Your Leads

One of your goals is to create a high converting sales funnel.

Lead conversion is the final stage of the process during which the visitors convert into paying customers. Ensure that completing a purchase does not take too long by:

  • Minimizing the number of form fields
  • Lesser number of steps for completing a purchase
  • One-click options for sign-in and sign up

How can you create a connection with your Visitors?

You can have it all by following a more active approach. You can reach out to the prospects through active email campaigns that distribute personalized relevant information which they need. You can see in the below screenshot how these email campaigns work:

create a connection with your Visitors

Most of the customers get influenced by such emails or by reading testimonials before they purchase. Casper’s email in the above screenshot is crisp, clever, and to the point. It’s like it asks the visitor if they will revisit the cart they have added to, shows that they were shopping, and includes simple CTA.

Now, you have seen how building a connection is of utmost importance. At the same time, you have to be alert that you don’t get disconnected from your customer. Make sure that the prospect after clicking an ad or link lands on the correct page. Many automation and email marketing services help you in targeting customers based on the action they take to segment themselves by specifying the type of content they are looking for.

Guiding customers through each step of your sales funnel is about encouraging customers to come forward. This helps your future prospects to help themselves, which in turn, helps to create your brand awareness.

Leaky sales funnel

If a sales opportunity does not move down the funnel, the sale will not take place and the opportunity is removed, that is where the “leaky” funnel takes place. Your customers see you as an engineering powerhouse with great design capabilities and an unmatched skillset. However, without these key elements, you will have increased leads with new prospects but no conversion. The leaky funnel can end up costing you market share, valuable revenue, and customers. In fact, the leak can sometimes affect your existing customers too as competitors start encroaching on your existing business. So it becomes highly essential to stop this leak and get back on track and have a solid design funnel.

Let’s find out the causes of cracks in your sales funnel

  1. Not enough Traffic:

The very heart of your sales funnel or funnel design group is the traffic you bring in. As we know the process, if you don’t have visitors, you would have no prospects and without prospects, you would not have any sales or business. Now, this is where the actual struggle lies, attracting prospects into your funnel and then converting them. Your goal should be to gеt as many eyes on the material and gain as many ѕubѕсrіbеrѕ as possible іntо уоur sales funnel. So one of the main reasons for your leaky funnel is inadequate traffic to your site.

  1. No, follow up on the leads:

After spending a lot of time and energy on setting up a squeeze page and driving traffic, if you don’t tend to follow up or stay in touch with the leads or prospects, they might forget you. If there is no effort taken from your side in the form of follow-up emails or calls to be on the minds of the prospects, you tend to lose them.

  1. No call to action:

Another very common cause why your sales funnel can fail is no call to action. Such activities usually happen at the top of the funnel where you design your landing page. If you make everything you offer such as podcasts, your YouTube videos, your blog posts, your social media site content available without any call, it becomes useless.

Call to action can be a simple plain call to your visitors to let them know more about your offer.  You can keep it very simple like ‘Subscribe to my YouTube channel’ or ‘ Follow me on Facebook. Whenever you come up with a blog post or any content, ask yourself what do I want my readers to do next. Once they are done with reading the article, this will surely lead to a call to action where you can include what you want to.

These are the few common causes why your funnel leaks. But these lost leads represent a large amount of potential revenue that can be gained by stopping the leakage.

How to fix a leaky Sales Funnel?

Remember, it is sometimes complex and takes a lot of effort to build a sales funnel. But with the complexity comes the opportunity. It’s the complexity of the sales funnel that makes it so effective. They are great at moving a prospect along step by step in the sales process. It can be atomized, customized, and tested. There is no shortage of ideas on how effective a killer sales funnel could be. There are effective ways to troubleshoot your sunder performing sales funnel. You just need to break down your leaky sales funnel and then work on each part.

Let’s have a look at the below few things that you need to have in place when planning for a digital sales funnel:

As it is said, ‘What goes in is what eventually comes out. Your leaks sometimes can be an indication that you are either attracting the wrong prospects or through the inappropriate path. So that’s the reason your leads aren’t easily qualified and don’t get converted. The top of your funnel is very important for your lead generation where you have to focus on attracting the right traffic with proper follow-ups. Thus, focusing on the right opportunities with the right prospects can lead to better conversion.

1. Focus on the top of the funnel:

As it is said, ‘What goes in is what eventually comes out. Your leaks sometimes can be an indication that you are either attracting the wrong prospects or through the inappropriate path. So that’s the reason your leads aren’t easily qualified and don’t get converted. The top of your funnel is very important for your lead generation where you have to focus on attracting the right traffic with proper follow-ups. Thus, focusing on the right opportunities with the right prospects can lead to better conversion.

2. Take a high-level view of your sale process:

Take a step with your marketing and sales team and look at your entire sales process while planning for a digital funnel. Studying the entire process will help you in finding the flaws in the transition.

You need to prepare a questionnaire and discuss with your team if all the essential activities are taking place as per the requirement.

Take a high-level view of your sale process

To find out the roadblocks, you need to discuss them with your team and answer the above-mentioned questions and work on them. You need to see if your marketing strategies can be planned in such a way that it reduces the time of conversion. Most importantly ask yourself, after you have won the designed contract, are you doing enough to engage your new customer? For this, you need to document your buyer’s journey which will help you outline your sales process and accordingly work on it.

3. Where do leads quickly and easily disappear:

It’s very well said, “Speed of response wins business”. If your team isn’t responding in a timely manner, you may lose on your leads. Waiting until you have all the relevant information available before contacting the customer may allow your competitor to steal your lead. This would lead to a leak in your sales funnel which would be self-inflicted. You need to establish KPI – Key performance indicators which help in defining an accurate response time on information requests, proposals, or lead generation. Your designs and construction codes should be reviewed before contacting prospects as it will save time, thereby maintaining the relevancy of the information.

4. Update your lead nurturing and conversion strategies:

You may often lose leads if you don’t track them internally. This mostly occurs when you rely on labor intensive, labor tracking, and nurturing practices. To get a better hold of things, you need to update your strategies. You can manage your leads more effectively if you invest in a customer relationship management tool (CRM). The major benefit of CRM is that through its nurturing platform, it continually keeps your customers engaged. You have a complete record of all customer’s discussions, correspondence in an organized way. Leads are very less likely to fall through the cracks when you have a real-time tool that helps you move your customers along the journey.

You need to follow the above tips rigorously to avoid any cracks in your sales funnel and thereby increase your revenue.

Frequently Asked Question:

Question: How does a sales funnel vary from a marketing funnel?

Answer: The sales funnel begins at the end of the marketing funnel as it is because the marketing funnel builds the interest of the prospects in your brand. Hence, guides them from their first visit to the point where they have some interest in learning more about your product or services.
The marketing funnel also helps with generating and nurturing leads. Once the prospect is aware of your brand, they exit the marketing funnel and enter the sales funnel.

Question: What is the difference between a sales pipeline and a sales funnel?

Answer: A sales pipeline is a sequence of steps for turning a prospect from a lead into a customer. The prospect moves through each step until they make a purchase and become a customer. The sales pipeline and the sales funnel have the same stages, but they are represented differently. The sales pipeline explains the value, quantity, and stage of different open deals at a given time, while the sales funnel helps sales teams understand the total number of deals and what percentage of those deals have passed through each stage of the sales process.

Question: What is a sales funnel manager?

Answer: A sales funnel manager helps with overseeing the customer journey, from attention to action, as well as identifying and closing any leaks in the sales funnel. Customer relationship management (CRM) software automates and streamlines the process of managing the sales funnel, including qualifying leads, tracking prospects’ activity at each stage of the buyer journey, and following up automatically when the time is right. CRM software can also help to define the sales process, identify leaks in the sales funnel, and streamline the conversion process so prospects reach the bottom of the sales funnel.

The Bottom Line

Building and understanding the sales funnel is critical to figure out the holes in the funnel leading to prospects drop out and low conversion rate. All the four stages that include awareness, interest, decision, and action need to have a strategy around how to hook the customer and turn them into a buyer.  

Pay attention to knowing your customers in detail and creating a strategy to build a sales funnel that matches your goal and that of the audience. More than a constant check on the funnel performance and what isnt working is important to fill a gap in no time and ensure utmost optimization of the conversion rate. 

However working with a professional digital marketing company will help you with the required research, developing a robust sales funnel and optimization with minimum resources being involved.

If you are bugged up with a constant leaking sales funnel or ready to make one share your objective with us and we will be more than happy to guide you to the best!

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Andik Prastiyo

Fantastically explained what sales funnel is! Very helpful. Although, if you have to suggest a sales funnels tool like CloudFunnels, Kartra, etc. which one according to you is the best and worth using?

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