Posted By Nithya S | Feb 24, 2020 - Sales Funnel
What is a sales funnel?
Sales funnel is the multi-step journey that your prospects go through on their way to becoming customers. There is a lot that can happen from your prospect’s first contact with you to guiding them to take a desired action. There are myriad touches and relationship building steps that occur in every stage of the sales funnel.
Unlike standalone landing pages that are designed with one major goal or websites that are information rich and encourage exploration, sales funnels are created to specifically boost conversions.
Yes. It is nothing new. You’ve been doing it all along. If you run a business you already have a conversion funnel in place. It could be drip email campaigns or soft pushes for webinars. But being aware of the different stages of the sales funnel and optimizing them will help you convert more with less effort.
The difference between a landing page and sales funnel
You’ve built a sparkling landing page. You are generating leads. It is working at the moment, so why switch? Now, why do you need a sales funnel? Because sales funnels are awesome at converting. Let’s look at two examples.
Sally Newaroundhere has a product to sell. It is a workflow automation solution. She spends thousands of dollars to run paid campaigns and hands over leads to her salespeople. The sales team struggle to explain the product to customers. They get frustrated because they’re unable to close sales. Customers become unhappy because they didn’t get the response they wanted. Everybody ends up feeling frustrated. Sounds familiar?
Mary Beentheredonethat comes up with a brilliant product. She sends out targeted campaigns to her customer base. Creates a landing page to capture leads. Sends out email campaigns regularly to engage leads. Creates special promotional offers for the first 50 customers. Closes more sales with a 2 member sales team.
This is the difference between a sales funnel and a landing page. And this is why your business needs a sales funnel. Read that again, slowly. To bring customers closer towards the finishing line and to convert prospects into customers, it is important to have a proper, well-optimized sales funnel.
The 4 basic stages of a sales funnel
The stages of a sales funnel was introduced by John Dewie in 1910. Guess what? It is still relevant today and forms the foundation of a marketing funnel. Let’s see what the most important stages of a sales funnel are.
Your customers arrive at your website through various digital locations and means. It could be an eBook, brochure or Google ad. In an ideal (and happy) world they fill out the contact form and become your customer. But that’s not how it often works. People rarely make a business transaction at the first contact. You’ll have to woo them and that is why sales funnels convert more than landing pages.
Once they are aware of your existence you need to turn up the dial. The end game is to move customers through the other stages of the funnel. Let’s see how to do it.
Once your prospect is aware of your service they’re willing to learn more about you. They get interested in you and this when you take the lead and showcase your expertise. This is the most important stage in the sales funnel. Show them that you have the solutions to their most pressing problems
Offer them consultative content. It could be a spiffy sales page, ebook or webinar. Don’t sell. Reach out to them and make them feel at home. Your customers are smart. Convey your value proposition quickly and clearly in the interest stage.
This is the stage where customers are ready to take the plunge. The decision making stage is when customers are almost ready to do business. They’d have identified a few vendors/products and are just one step away from doing business with you. It is essential to follow-up through email sequences and consistent follow up to move them to the final stage of the sales or marketing funnel.
This is the last stage of the sales funnel. The one that every marketer waits for. The customer is finally ready to take the desired action. It could be buying a product, opting for a service or signing up for membership. During the final stage it is essential to make doing business with you as easy as possible. How well optimized your marketing funnel is will have a huge role to play in how many people convert.
Landing pages do a great job at generating leads. But the question is, what next?
What happens after your leads fill up that form?
What happens after they click ‘okay’ on your sticky bar?
What happens after they subscribe?
If you don’t have a well optimized marketing funnel in place you’ll never know the answer.
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