Creating an Effective Sales Funnel (A Step-by-Step Guide)

Creating an Effective Sales Funnel (A Step-by-Step Guide)

If you’re trying to sell your product through your website or social media, or any platform and you think you are doing everything right but you are not able to generate sales for your business then the chances are you don’t have a proper sales process.

See, if you want to sell anything online, you need to have a sales process in place.

I would even say that unless you have a sales funnel you won’t be able to make a single sale online. So, today I will walk you through the process of creating an effective sales funnel.

So, let’s start by understanding what exactly is a sales funnel? Well, it is simply the journey a customer takes to purchase your products or services.

Customers enter through the top of your sales funnel and exit through the bottom as paying customers.

An actual funnel is wide at the top and narrow at the bottom, right? That is why this process is called sales funnel as only a small percentage of people who enter your funnel will actually buy from you.

So, to generate sales, not only do you need to have a sales funnel, but you need to have enough volume of people in your sales funnel to have great sales numbers.

The more people you have inside of your sales funnel, the more people are likely to convert into new customers.

It’s also the best way to get people to keep buying from you again and again, which increases the value of your customer.

And which makes it more feasible for you to leverage paid advertising on platforms like Google, Facebook, or Instagram.

How you can create a sales funnel

There are five sales funnel stages:

The first stage is Awareness, then Interest, and then Decision, then Action and finally Retention. And each stage requires a different approach.

Let’s look at each stage one by one

sales funnel stages

So the first step is Awareness

This is where you first catch your potential customers attention through Google search, a landing page, Facebook ads, or even a Radio advertisement. In this step, your prospect becomes aware of your business and its product or services.

Usually, in this stage, you have to lure your prospects into returning to your website and engaging more with your business.

Next is the Interest stage,

This is probably the hardest part. Engagement is necessary in order to establish a true connection with the prospects that are now aware of your business.

It builds trust, credibility, and triggers positive emotions that influence peoples purchasing decisions.

To create interests in your business align yourselves with the needs of your prospects and focus on what is most relevant for your target market concerning your product or service.

Also, make sure you are conveying only the most important message you want to communicate to consumers.

While the first stage is capturing their attention, this stage is about holding it. You can do this with a hook. A hook can be a great story or case studies.

Now the next stage is Decision

The interest and decision stage go together.

While you are building interest in your product, you must help customers realize why they “need” this product.

We’re a simple step away from turning a hot lead into a closed lead. When the customer is in the decision stage they are ready to buy but need a little nudge. This is the right time to make an offer to your customers.

It could be free shipping when most of your competition charges for shipping, a discount coupon, a package deal, or a discount on related products.

The goal here is to make it so irresistible that your lead can’t wait to take advantage of the deal.

Create social media posts and promote your offers to targeted customers.

Now comes, the Action stage

At the bottom of the sales funnel, the customer acts. The prospect purchases your product or service and becomes part of your business.

But your work doesn’t end here there’s a final step and probably the most important step to scale your business –

The Retention

Once you have gathered enough data and attracted a good number of leads for your business, you can start making efforts to retain them. The goal should be to turn your users into loyal customers and boost conversions.

For that, you can use remarketing campaigns with customized offers, rewards, discounts, etc., for the consumers to make them come back. You can also use the ‘rewards and referrals’ technique for better retention and reorders.

This way you are generating not just customers, but loyal customers who will not only purchase from you multiple times but also leave good reviews and become your brand ambassadors.

An effective sales funnel example

Let’s say you own an eCommerce business that sells indoor plants and you know that your target audience hangs out on Facebook and Instagram, and they are males and females between 30 to 60 years of age.

Now what you have to do is run a Facebook and Instagram Ad that drives traffic to a landing page.

On the landing page, you ask your prospect to sign up for your email list in exchange for a lead magnet. Pretty easy, right?

Now you have leads instead of prospects. They’re slowly moving through the funnel.

Over the next few days or weeks, you send out content to educate your subscribers about how to take care of indoor plants, which plant need how much water or sunlight to survive, etc.

At the end of the email, you put a Call-To-Action and offer a 15% discount and free delivery on the first order. That’s it, now your leads will become your customers.

Next, you add those same customers to a new email list. You start the process over again, but with different content and offers to retain them and make them reorder.

Before creating a sales funnel, make sure you have the following things

Number 1 – Well managed social media profiles with all the necessary information about your business and its products or services.

Number 2 – Analysis of your potential customer: The more you know about them the easier will be for you to target the right audience and save your ad expenditure

Do not market to everybody. Only market to people who are a good fit for what you are selling.

Number 3 – Create relevant content for generating awareness about your business. Create texts and images, infographics, videos, and other types of content and post them where your potential customers might see them.

Number 4 – Create a website and Build a Landing Page

Your ad or other content needs to take your customer to a landing page that contains content and a call to action.

Lure them to subscribe by using lead magnets. A lead magnet could be a free eBook, instructional video, a course, free tool and tips, etc.

The goal of the landing page should steer the visitor toward the next step. That is email drips campaigns.

Number 5 – email drip campaigns can help you educate your customers and build awareness about your product or service.

End the email with an incredible offer. That can help them make a decision about your products or services. Make sure you don’t send emails daily; one or two in a week is the sweet spot.

The last thing I want to say is

You must keep optimizing the funnel and adjust your approach to various sales funnel stages, and find out what’s working and what’s not.

The best way to measure the success of a sales funnel is to track your conversion rates.

How many people, click on your Ad and sign up for your email list after clicking through on the Ad. How many people opened your email and how many of them purchased your product or service.

Creating and optimizing a sales funnel takes time and effort. But today it’s the only way to survive in a competitive market.

Understanding your customers need and the psychology behind the need and offering a product or service to fulfil that need is crucial to create an effective funnel.

Hopefully, this episode will give you a better idea of how the sales funnel works, and how your business can implement one.

If you have any questions about funnels or marketing in general don’t hesitate to reach out to me on social media. The links are in the description. And make sure to subscribe to my podcast to get regular updates.

Thanks and I’ll see you next Monday.

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Founder and CEO of MarkBuzz LLP, Digital Marketer, Investor, Youtuber, Podcaster and Author.