A sales funnel is your best friend when it comes to saving time and effort: With the help of a sales funnel, you can guide your potential customers almost automatically from the first contact to the purchase without even lifting a finger.
But how exactly does that work? First and foremost, a sales funnel visualizes the customer journey of a potential customer before they finally decide to buy. This encompasses the phases from the very first point of contact with your potential customer, through building their interest, to conversion.
The classic structure looks like this:
Source: weBOUND marketing
You are new to the topic of sales funnels? In this article, we tell you all about the concept behind it: How To Triple Your Conversion With A Sales Funnel
In each of these individual phases, a potential customer has different needs and intentions. A person who has just learned about your product or service needs a lot of knowledge to build a certain degree of trust. Further, this trust has to be nurtured step by step before your customer is ready to enter into a transaction. After all, you would not marry someone right on the spot after meeting them for the first time, either, would you?
Conversely, this means that you have to provide your potential customer with different content, information and media depending on the phase he is currently sitting in. This way you can successfully meet the customers expectations and build a successful sales funnel!
The right type of Content for your Sales Funnel
The first stage of your sales funnel is all about attracting attention and awareness among your target group. This is where potential customers discover your site for the very first time and become aware of your existence.
In this phase you have to intercept your potential customers and make sure that they go deeper into the sales funnel. This is almost the most important phase, because if no traffic is generated in the first line, you have no people to guide you through your sales funnel. Therefore, in the awareness-stage everything revolves around the perfect first impression that your visitors will not get out of their heads all that quickly.
There are endless possibilities for attracting attention and visibility. However, in this article we will only present a few, highly effective variants in more detail that allow you to reach many people at once.
Make friends with the YouTube algorithm! Because the YouTube algorithm is a professional at suggesting users exactly those videos that they are most likely to love. Consequently, you will not even have to worry about how to get your video on the screen of interested people – YouTube does all that for you!
The tactic is therefore seemingly simple: Create videos about the topics that are important to your target group and are in line with your product and upload it. In the best case scenario, you will do a little research about YouTube SEO in advance in order to optimize your upload for the search engine. From then on YouTube will take care of your video and that it will be seen by your target audience!
And the best is yet to come: Once uploaded, a YouTube video on a specific topic can quickly become a long-runner. This saves you time and effort!
What is especially great about guest posting is that you and your business quickly come into view of many people in your niche who probably do not know you yet – and all of this without having to build this reach yourself. Because this has already been done by the host!
When creating your guest post, the aim is to present your expertise in the best possible way and to provide added value for your target group so that they have a reason to remember you.
Here, you have loads of options: Write a guest article within your niche, be a guest on a podcast, the list is virtually endless.
Further possibilities to generate awareness could be:
- Build a Social Media presence
- Use performance marketing
- Engage in groups of forums
- Optimize your website for search engine
In this article, you can find 19 Ways To Generate Traffic and Brand Awareness For Businesses And Personal Brands
This is all about convincing your audience in some way and getting their email address or other kind of contact information from them. You need this in order to stay in conversation with your potential customers, to build a relationship with them and to lead them further in the direction of conversion. In order to convince your audience of your product, performance or your expertise, it will therefore be necessary to provide them with a certain amount of information about it or even a “taste” of your product or service.
A popular strategy at this point is to offer a free eBook or guide, which can be easily downloaded after submitting an email address. In itself, this is a good approach because you share your knowledge with potential customers. But nowadays, there is a huge amount of knowledge and information on the Internet that this is often no longer sufficient. If your potential customers want to find out something, they can usually do it with a short Google search. Instead, you should share something that has a higher value and will give your audience a structured result – no matter how small it may be.
Our favorite ways to do that are through the following options:
So simple, yet so effective. Your checklist does not even have to be long: a simple A4 page is often enough. However, make sure to be really precise in the individual points. This is the only way your audience can really benefit from the checklist and will continue in the sales funnel.
Are you interested in creating your own Online Course? Here you can find a Checklist for user-oriented Online Course Creation!
Whether as a webinar, in written form or as a mini online course: With the help of a workshop, you teach your audience valuable skills, which they can then apply and get a real result from. Once your audience has achieved their desired result through you, they will quickly build an immense trust in you and will move on just as quickly in the sales funnel.
Typically, a challenge lasts a few days, often a whole week. During the challenge period, you send your audience daily instructions on a new step they need to take in order to reach their ultimate goal. With the choice of platform, you are relatively free here: social media, email or even packaged as a workshop. In general, however, we recommend using an email sequence for your challenge for the following reasons:
- An email sequence can be automated so that it is sent out as soon as a person takes a certain action, e.g. fills out the registration window for your challenge. This saves you time and you will not have to worry about sending the right messages to the right challenge participants every day.
- If your audience knows that they will be receiving emails from you in the near future (because they signed up for the challenge, after all), they will open them with great curiosity. You can continue this curiosity after the challenge in order to guide your potential customers more easily to conversion in a later stage of the sales funnel.
The best thing about these 3 options is that they do not require constant maintenance and can run automatically: You create the landing page once with the download of the checklist, take care of setting up the email sequence for a day and after everything is set up, the process works by itself!
In this often critical phase of your sales funnel, you not only want to arouse real interest in your potential customers, but also nourish or “warm up” them in such a way that they are ready to convert and buy your product or service.
So it is all about precisely identifying the problem or the desired state of your target group and presenting your offer as the ideal solution or way to get there. In this phase, you primarily present your offer and all the advantages that it brings with it. Attention! Always proceed in a solution-oriented manner: Because for your potential customer, it is primarily about the solution, not the product.
The classic way to warm up potential customers for the converison is of course with the help of an email sequence. And not without reason: Once you have the email address of a potential customer, you can send personalized messages and build a relationship.
Lead nurturing via email works particularly well if you combine it with a challenge sent by email. In this case, your potential customer is already used to receiving e-mails from you, so that they open them instead of pushing them into the spam folder regardless. Then it is up to you and how well you can advertise your offer in your email sequence.
Ads? Really? Is that not more of a traffic source than a way to warm up potential customers? Generally speaking, we actually know online advertisements as a medium to attract attention in a target group for the first time. However, the retargeting options of today allow us much more: If a person follows you or your company on Facebook, Instagram and Co., you can present this person with a series of advertisements.
Similar to an email sequence, with a systematic stringing together of information in the form of individual advertisements, you can generate interest step by step and guide your potential customers towards the lower end, the conversion part, of the sales funnel. The best part about this is that you can customize the ads based on when and why someone interacted with your company.
Attention! A series of advertisements only works well if the person has already gone through the preceding steps of your sales funnel and has established a certain relationship with you: This person discovered you, for example through your guest post, and decided to follow you. In the consideration phase you have already helped them to achieve a small result using a workshop or checklist and with a retargeting ad you bring them back to your products and induce them to buy or any other desired action.
Immediately before your potential customer can be convinced to buy, the point here is once again to convey a lot of trustworthiness. You want your customer to feel comfortable with the transaction and to stand behind their decision.
One of the best ways to build trust and positively highlight your or your service is to appeal to the voices of those who know best: Satisfied customers!
You are free to choose the format here: Written testimonials are commonplace and are therefore well received.
By using videos of testimonials speaking you can breathe some fresh are into your marketing!
When designing your sales page, be sure to include positive reviews, testimonials or happy messages that your customers have sent you about their results. It is even better to use a video instead of a written testimonials, because these appear more authentic and real than written testimonials, which can be forged more easily. This encourages potential customers who are currently sitting in the lowest part of your sales funnel and evaluating their purchase decision that your offer is valuable and meaningful for them.
This is one of the few pieces of content in your sales funnel that is difficult or impossible to automate. Because for some products or services, holistic descriptions, product photos and instructions simply are not enough. This is where you should offer individual advice to answer all of your potential customers’ questions and ensure that they make the right decision.
Another positive aspect is that you can collect even more information about your customers here, which will subsequently help you to build a close relationship with them and make them a loyal regular customer.
After you have won a new customer, you should definitely not just let him go back into the big wide world. Because you have already invested resources in building a close relationship with this person. You can continue this relationship to get a loyal customer!
Why is that so important? The probability that an existing customer will buy from you again is 60-70%. In contrast to 5-20% for new customers. (Source: Altfeld)
In the end, it is mainly about staying in touch with your customers, not only to make them a regular customer, but also to ensure that they act as an advocate for your company by recommending you to others. Because Word of Mouth leads to 20-50% of all purchase decisions! (Source: McKinsey)
Surveys are a great way to get customers to review the performance of your product or service. Positive experiences become even more solid in this person’s memory and you will be remembered by them.
Another side effect is that you can keep an eye on customer satisfaction and receive first-hand suggestions for improvement or positive customer voices for the upper phases of your sales funnel.
Once a customer follows you on your social media channels, you can start a conversation with this person over and over again. Be it on Instagram or Facebook, use every opportunity to establish direct contact here and there: Instagram Direct Message, Facebook groups, etc.
A well thought out newsletter should not be underestimated. It is suitable for product launches as well as for building a customer relationship.
Of course, there is no end to the options here. All options are open to you to turn your customers into repeat buyers. For example, try special offers, additional email sequences or even customer events!
Sales funnels are a great way to automate the buying process of individual customers so you can save time, money and effort. Nevertheless, sales funnels hold a multitude of stumbling blocks, especially if you are only just daring to approach your first sales funnel.
Therefore, in this article we have summarized 7 common misunderstandings about sales funnels so that you don’t have to experience these mistakes firsthand: 7 Myths And Truths About Sales Funnels – And How To Get Them Right!
When networking wizard Bettina is not working on the next big idea, then she is focusing on how to constantly improve workflows, and systemizing the “stuff that is not so much fun but needs to be done”. She believes in giving and that being kind gets you a long way.
You might spot her as a keynote speaker, a guest lecturer at universities, or a mentor at StartupLive or Greenstart by Climate and Energy Fonds Austria.
Bettina describes herself as a foodie, travel addict, and her team sees her as a true leader, who always encourages everyone she is working with.