What is a sales funnel and how to build one that works!

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Why you should care about Sales Funnel?

  • Do you want to have more people know about your company?
  • Do you want more people to buy your product or service?
  • Do you want to spend less time and effort on marketing activities but still maintain efficiency?
  • Do you want to build customer trust so they will choose you instead of your competitors?
  • Do you want to provide the best customer experience from the very beginning to post-purchase?

If your answer is “Yes” for any of the questions above, then building a sales funnel is your solution.

What is a Sales Funnel?

A sales funnel (or a marketing funnel) is a system that provides the right solution at every step of the customer journey. The better it keeps track of customer data and the more automated it is, the more successful it will be at driving results. (The Startup)

A Funnel - image via TrackMaven
A Funnel – image via TrackMaven

Just like its name indicates, a sales funnel is widest at the top and narrowest at its bottom. Each stage of the funnel pushes your most qualified prospects into the next stage and drops those that are not a fit for your offer.

According to Track Maven, there are 3 phases of the funnel:

Lead Generation

A prospect is made aware of the product through marketing or advertising campaigns, and consumer research. The awareness is followed by gathering information in some form from him, for example collecting e-mail address when people subscribe to a newsletter or downloading content. This process of gathering information is called lead generation and the information is further used in the lead management system to nurture it down the system.

Lead Nurture

This phase includes 3 stages: Interest, Consideration, and Intent. Once the prospective customer gets to know the product, it’s the responsibility of a marketer to nurture the lead by raising his interest in buying the product and make him consider it over other alternatives. This involves marketer to tap several other channels, improve its public relation strategies, and include affiliates and partners who promote the product.

Sales

The narrowest bit and the tip of the funnel. This is the result of marketer’s efforts and the customer’s journey. In a company where sales and marketing are distinct roles or departments, activities from this phase will be handled to the salespeople.

3 steps to make a sales funnel for your business

Step 1. Be clear about your ideal customers

Customer persona - image via Hubspot
Customer persona – image via Hubspot

Try to be as detailed as possible about your customer’s personas – how your best customer is like? The questions below help you draw a clear picture of your ideal customer:

  • What is his/ her name, age, marital status, job, and location?
  • What are the difficulties they’re facing?
  • What are their goals?
  • How your business can help them get rid of the challenges and achieve their goal?
  • What are their interests?
  • What are their fears?

Above is just one example of the customer persona. You can download more template from Hubspot here.

Step 2. Create content for each stage of your funnel

Stage 1: Awareness

The first stage of the sales funnel is awareness. In this phase, you want to attract and educate your audience on your topic.

Marketing resources across the web suggest that creating for this stage of the sales funnel is best in the following formats: ads, social media posts, infographics, and videos.

It’s no secret that video is the best performing type of content. In our project with Finnish client osaketori.net, Aurora Digital produced a highly engaging animation video that served to onboard new users. The video was also for a Marketing campaign, which successful improved the user signup rate by 5 times.

Stage 2: Interest

To build a deeper relationship with your subscriber, introduce them to your product/service and nurture them with contextual, targeted content or retargeting/ remarketing ads.

Marketers can nurture leads through emails, content that is more targeted around industries and brands, classes, newsletters, and more.

Stage 3: Consideration

The interest stage is followed by the stage of consideration where the lead gets converted into a marketing qualified lead. The prospective customer is now considering to buy the product and hence marketer needs to give more attention and communicate to him elaborated information about the product, offers, and discounts. This information is communicated through free trials, basic services (if applicable), targeted emails, newsletters, phone marketing, and other direct interaction strategies

Stage 4: Intent

An intent stage is when the prospective customer does some specified activity after the consideration stage, this includes purchase related queries, putting the product in the shopping cart, etc. The intent stage is a trigger for the marketer to start with its remarketing and other pull marketing strategies.

Stage 5: Evaluation

In the evaluation stage, buyers are making a final decision about whether or not to buy a brand’s product or services. Typically, marketing and sales work together closely to support the decision-making process and convince the buyer that this is the best choice.

Typically, the best formats for this stage are testimonials, questionnaires, self-assessments, product sheets, and calculators.

Stage 6: Purchase

This final stage is all about convincing your audience that purchasing is the smartest step. The goal is to create content that results in closing a deal.

Content formats for this stage can be reviews, certificates or money-back guarantee policy.

Step 3. Optimize your funnel

Now that you’ve analyzed the different stages of your sales funnel, it’s important to optimize each of those stages. Below are some tips that are simple yet can make a huge impact on your business’s growth.

Evoke curiosity

Instead of asking them for their contact information, build more trust and credit by offering: free trial, interactive quizzes, lucky draw, test, etc. first. This gives the audience reasons to spend more time with your site and increase the followup response.

Make signing up easy

We have all been asked for signing up for an online service for first-time use. Imagine having to type in all the basic information like name, e-mail, address, phone number, password, which is such a time-consuming process. Now, if your business has a function to login with other services people have already used like Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. The signup rate will increase by 22%.

Build a funnel that works

Imagine at a networking event or a trade fair, if somebody walks up to you and ask you to buy their product, would you say yes? Probably not, because you know nothing about them nor what they’re selling, and you have no trust.

A well-structured funnel will help you to create and strengthen the trust in customers through the whole online process of finding you, observing your content, and making a purchase.

The top of the funnel is where everyone goes in (visiting your site). Only the most interested buyers will move further down your funnel.

To drive more sales, you would need to widen the funnel, in other words, cast a larger net by advertising to new audiences, increasing your brand awareness, adding inbound marketing, etc. in order to drive more people to the site. The more people there are in a funnel, the wider it is.

We at Aurora Digital focuses on helping companies establish a digital sales funnel to increase their online sales. Combining our expertise in Design, Development & Marketing, we help you create and design unique, visually appealing and effective sales funnel that works for your business. Looking for more leads and shares? Book a free consultation with us now!

 

illustration by Ouch.pics

Daniel Nguyen

Daniel Nguyen

Daniel Nguyen is the Chief Marketing Officer & Partner at Aurora Digital.

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