Sales funnels are very important and, as a concept, are something all business owners should understand. Unfortunately, most business owners not only fail to understand sales funnels, they also fail to apply them to their business.
When sales funnels aren’t properly understood or set up, entrepreneurs end up burnt-out and with an income that is not reflective of their hours worked.
Over the next few paragraphs, we’ll explore the art of the sales funnel, and share three keys you can use to get them started.
What are Sales Funnels?
The word funnel is used as a metaphor where the top (the wide side) represents the entry of prospects in your target market into the sales pipeline. As these prospects work their way down through the funnel, the un- or under-qualified prospects fall off, leaving your business will a neat little pile of prospects ready to buy and (hopefully) become loyal clients.
When I got started in the wondrous world of online automation, I would set up these amazing automated processes that had nothing to do with the most important element of a new business:
The development of a sales funnel
As an entrepreneur, you might have the best product or service or processes in the world but if your sales funnel isn’t tuned and ready to roll no one is going to buy your services or products.
A good sales funnel is the KEY to consistency and positivity in your cash flow. It is the only way to filter out unqualified prospects that are unlikely to buy and highly likely to waste your time.
Why Sales Funnels are important?
You have a fantastic business, your baby that you created and you love. You work day in and day out on your business, even to the point of ignoring holidays and weekends.You have thousands of likes on Facebook, but few of those likes have turned into sales.
Your bank account does not reflect the work you put in. You’ve tried to find resolutions online only to end up with few answers and even more questions.
A good sales funnel allows you to take all those activities and interactions (likes, retweets, shares, etc.) and channel them in a way that’s designed to drive conversions above anything else. It will give you the capacity to start forecasting the returns on marketing and advertising campaigns, helping you identify what’s working and what’s not.
Ultimately, your sales funnel is going to allow you to start driving the returns your efforts deserve.
Sales Funnels Tip #1 – Tune up your website
Just imagine for a second that your ideal customer walks into your office looking for a solution you can provide, BUT…they leave because nobody greets them as they enter to enquire about their needs or wants.
Sure, they could browse around and find something to buy themselves, but it’s far from a guarantee.
A website is no different from a brick and mortar storefront:
An unfriendly atmosphere will drive away potential clients
Your website is the door to the sales funnel.
Every social media or marketing effort you run should be directed to the website, your 24/7 online office.
Websites should be crafted to not only attract visitors but keep them there once they arrive. Offer them a free report, white paper, video series, or product discount on your website in exchange for a newsletter or email list sign-up.
Entice visitors to hang out on your website and they gather their information for further lead qualification.
Sales Funnels Tip #2 – Have a follow up system in place
Once you’ve facilitated list sign-ups, you need to start strategically marketing to your prospects and turning them into consistent customers.
Start building relationships with your new list members and increase the likelihood of conversions down the road.
Make an effort to stay in contact with them!
Give these prospects everything you promised them when they opted in. It may seem obvious, but many entrepreneurs (and their website) fail to deliver on their promises.
After the initial email, send helpful articles with some regularity (maybe once a month) with news on current events, exclusive content, special offers, and any other valuable content that will help them understand what you do and how you can help them solve their problems.
Sales Funnels Tip #3 – Measure conversions
It’s finally time to start measuring your funnel to see what works and what doesn’t.
Measuring is about achieving successful outcomes. It doesn’t have to be difficult and there are plenty of tools out there to help you draw intelligent conclusions.
However, no measuring stick is as important as YOU and YOUR judgement, because YOU know what success looks like.
Define your goals and look at the numbers to see what you’re getting back from your effort. .
Measurements allow you understand how effective your sales funnel is and what changes need to be made to increase the ROI.
If you think you’d benefit by having your sales funnel examined by professional marketer, start by clicking here to see first hand how this process works.