Sales funnel is a tool in classifying and converting leads into loyal customers. This method has been used for a long time to measure the customer experience and improve it phase by phase. From the first to the last floor, it filters and screens a huge lead pool to get a small group of frequent buyers.
It’s getting challenging to build an effective sales funnel because this method is no longer an innovative, game-changing factor. Moreover, the storming advances of information technology and customer tastes make it more challenging. However, if sales funnel is a useful tool in the marketing and sales process. If you understand well your customer insight along with your products pros and cons, you can build a high-converting journey, in which you benefit from the long-term users.
What Does A Sales Funnel Include?
To guide the lead until the end of the hopper, the company has to show them through various layers of sales funnel. A sales funnel usually consists of multiple phases to convince a visitor to purchase.
These below phases aren’t compulsory and should be indicative. Each business model will have different sales funnel depending on its industries and targeted market.
- Awareness Phase: Prospects identify their need, search for the product and be aware of your products and services via social media, news, etc.
- Interest Phase: Prospects start to grow interests in your products and research for more information.
- Evaluation Phase: Prospects search for competitors’ product to evaluate and prepare for decision-making.
- Decision Phase: At this point, prospects decide on buying and negotiate, if possible.
- Purchase Phase: Prospects buy the product and service.
- Reevaluation Phase: Prospects experience the products or services and compare with their expectation in the pre-buying process.
- Re-purchase Phase: If the product meets or goes beyond expectation, the prospect will re-purchase it.
How To Improve Your Sales Funnel?
Going through 7 phases of the funnel is a journey to take prospects into real buyers. To build an effective sale path requires you to understand your funnel and your customer experience once they are in your loop.
The funnel starts with a large folder of visitors and ends up with a much smaller number of customers. You will need a metric to measure your funnel performance; otherwise, you can’t better your sales and increase your benefit.
The most crucial point of a sales funnel is the conversion rate. You will see the 2 main problems:
How To Measure Your Conversion Rate
The easiest way to measure is to consider the prices of initial users and converted buyers. You can record the fluctuation of the quantity in each phase. For example, you should store the number of information seekers, price negotiators, frequent buyers, etc.
Especially at the vital time point when prospect prepares for buying decision, you should note down the difference between people who consider and who do make the purchase. For this data, you can refer to the affecting factors. Reviewing the feedbacks also helps you draw the reason for looping out leads.
How To Improve Your Conversion Rate
Improving customer experience is the key to increase your conversion rate. There are 2 ways for you to do it.
Improve One-Way Funnel
This method focuses on revamping the funnel from the first step to get the most customers out of the initial visitor pool. The target of this method is the Buying Phase.
Accordingly, you need to create the database of all your leads right at the beginning. Regularly, the data is updated in details during the sales process to minimize the missing leads and keep them to the final round to convert. Conclusively, this method’s weakness is its limit on the lead quantity.
A two-head funnel is more open and innovative. It develops the sales process into 3-phase exercise: Attracting – Retaining – Developing. Or in other words, this method expands actively to the last phase – Re-Purchase Phase.
After the customer has bought the products, the business owner will take good care of customer services to better their experience and make them more satisfied.
Once they feel more satisfied than expected, then the value they perceive is more than they hope. Then there is a higher chance of re-purchasing.
And the more important thing is they will introduce your products to others. With the power of word-of-mouth marketing, the referred customers will likely be classified as potential customers rather than starting from the first phase of the funnel.
Here are some steps to leverage your two-head funnel:
- Always care for customer feedbacks via survey, phone call, or email, etc.
- Segment leads to different segmentations to have suitable strategies
- Remind customer to reload or refill their products with customers buying the same products
- Encourage them to consider additional or attachment products and services
- Encourage or create incentives for them to introduce the products with others
- Integrate the sales funnel into your business strategies
A good funnel is the one suitable and adaptable for your whole business operation. Because after all, the sales funnel is to develop the entire business. When a funnel is a part of the company, you need to make it align with the business’s resources.
When placing the funnel into your overall development plan, you can see the big picture and modify if needed to keep everything on track. With an innovative idea, a two-head funnel will help you optimize the resource and identify goal in the future because of its openness. It points out the gap between the current plan and the future target.
For example, you run a healthy drink business in your hometown. At the moment, your primary customers are young adults. Your plan this year is to expand the market and target the elder drinkers. You will soon find a gap between the bottleneck of the 2-head funnel (converted lead is young adults only) and another funnel mouth (elder consumers).
With the current buyers, a suggested sales map is to encourage them to buy your new drinks for their grandparents. Their loyalty will build more trust in your new products and help you cut out of the initial steps to establish authority.
The Process of Sales Funnel
- Understand the demand and arise interest: First and the foremost thing is to understand your leads. You need to put yourself in their shoes and think as they do. This is how you bring your product to their eyes. It’s like when you rank your website on search engines. You have to find the keywords they will use to match with your sites. This step also includes providing the best content of your business to show leads and attract them via communication channels.
- Response to the customer: Once your displayed website caught their eyes, you should be responsive to maintain their interest create a positive experience. Remember to always correspond to their actions to encourage them to the next steps of your funnels.
- Measure your performance: During all processes, take the regular check to make sure your funnel delivers excellent results. If there is a bad outcome, you’re always ready to detect and fix the problem.
- Have a systematical and coordinating tracker: Keep tracking of your business activities. Apart from analytical statistics, you use color codes to clarify: Green (Good and Keep Going), Yellow (Medium and Need More Attention), and Red (Critical and Need To Take Action).
Though inventing and applying a long time in both online and offline businesses, sales funnel is still an efficient way of capturing and nurturing buyers, regardless of industries. A high-conversion funnel will need you to invest more time and effort to blueprint the suitable strategies and sales roadmap.
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