What is a sales funnel?
Quite simply, a sales funnel encompasses the steps your customer will go through before they end up making a purchase from you.
For example, if we’re looking at an online business, someone finding your website be that via Google, social media or elsewhere, is the first step of the funnel.
Clicking on and visiting your website is step two.
You may then choose to have a pop up appear, inviting the visitor to subscribe to your mailing list, or perhaps you leave them to browse your products.
Sales funnels have many different options and it’s up to you to choose the funnel which works best for your business.
Optimising your sales funnel can turn people from prospects into purchasers, but you first need to understand the steps people take and their mindset at each one.
This allows you to target your messaging appropriately to maximise the chances of them moving on to the next step.
The four stages of a sales funnel
It’s widely accepted that sales funnels have four primary stages. Some choose to break these down even further, but to avoid over-complicating matters, we’ll stick with the main four here:
The very first stage of a sales funnel is someone becoming aware that your business exists.
It may be through word of mouth, advertising, Google or social media.
You can increase the chances of someone reaching the ‘awareness’ stage by nailing your marketing in one or more of the above areas.
So, a potential customer has found you – now they’re going to evaluate your business to establish their own level of interest.
They’ll do a bit of reading here about you, your business and what you offer to see if you’ve got what it is they’re looking for.
Now they’ve decided they’re interested, it’s decision time.
Do you offer the best value for money compared to your competitors? Is there someone else in the market doing what you do better? If not, chances are you’re on to a winner.
This stage potentially involves sales pages, calls and anything else which could sway someone to buy your product/service.
All the above stages come down to this. If your sales funnel has worked effectively then the potential customer should look to purchase or book at this stage.
Here is where you need to use the power of persuasion, be that at checkout (yep, many sales are lost at this stage!) or on your booking page.
Creating a sales funnel
Now you know the ins and outs of what a sales funnel is and how it works, the next step is creating one!
This takes time, and you need to really understand your target audience and their behaviours effectively.
However your sales funnel looks, one thing we recommend is to test, test, test.