At this stage we have in place some of our basics, our web presence is in place, so that when people come to our website they will see a legitimate live looking business. We’ve got list building and data collection also in place.
Next on our list is to build our first sales funnel. But first…….
What is a Sales Funnel?
To put it simply, a sales funnel is a series of designed steps that we will take our visitors through with the end goal being to make a sale to that person. A step that will be repeated in the traffic process is that the traffic source needs to match the sales funnel. We want targeted traffic that may have interest in the product we are selling in our sales funnel. A simple example, we don’t want to send cat lovers to a dog product sales funnel .. so make sure we have congruency there from traffic to product!!
There are many models for how to implement a sales funnel.
At it most simple it could look like this:
- a series of blog posts are written to qualify people who are interested in our product/service … posts written about their problem and the solution to their problem leading to a call to action for them to take a look at our product/service
- this serves to qualify people, if they are reading our posts then we can ascertain that they have “shown interest” in a solution to this problem
- we give them an instruction to take a look at our product/service (the call to action)
- they link to a sales pages with a call to action to buy
- purchase is made
- a visitor exchanges their email address in return for our lead magnet
- they are now qualified as a person interested in the topic of our lead magnet
- we follow this person up with a series of further emails offering more information on the topic (again congruency is important … if they have shown interest in a topic, don’t start talking about another topic to them)
- the emails have calls to action which bring them back to our solution (sales page on our website)
- the person if interested comes to our sales page via the email and purchases our product/service.
Firstly what is the product/service we are selling? Map out a sales funnel that will lead to a sale. Implement all the steps.
Important Points to Keep in Mind
A sales funnel is not always just an online experience. For many businesses it may involve a combination of both online and offline steps to achieve a sale. For example, we capture a lead by a contact form on our website, the lead details are passed to a sales consultant who makes a follow up phone call. Make sure to understand and map out your entire sales process from beginning to sale…and then make sure that all the steps work smoothly together.
Another important point to note about sales funnels is to look at your sales cycle. Some products/services are instantaneous purchases (low price, simple decision) while at the other extreme a million dollar software purchase may take over 12 months of sales process before a contract is signed (high price, complex decision).