Hand Sketching Lead Generation Business Sales Funnel Concept Wit
Credit: Hand sketching Lead generation business sales funnel concept with marker on transparent wipe board.
If you’re selling things online then you’ve probably heard of the “sales funnel” but what does that mean and how can you create offers that help people click into your funnel rather than away from it?
The sales funnel is essentially three layers of interaction with your website. It begins with “traffic” which is essentially visits from unqualified prospects. It moves to “leads” which is the moment at which a potential customer chooses to engage with you (and supply their email or other contact information). Then to “sales” which is self-explanatory.
The best sales funnels allow you not just to sell to a prospect but also to move them into another sales funnel on sales completion and maximises conversion levels. (This will never be 100 per cent).
Entry to the funnel – We begin with potential customers who are just working out that your brand exists. Your goal with these people is to firm up that discovery and then to move them from “aware” to “interested”. This is important because you may only get one chance to engage that person. Let them leave and you might never see them again.
The middle – Turning a prospect into a lead is nice but it doesn’t equal money. This is the phase of engagement where you give your prospect stuff (lead magnets, e-books, trials, etc.) and they give you information in exchange.
The “jackpot” end – This is the moment that you finally use all your selling skills to turn that lead into a sale. You create reminders, you retarget and you close the business.
Calls to action
At each step of this process, you want to be calling your prospects to action. They are never going to move through the funnel without taking voluntary action, so you need to ask them to take action and to incentivize them to do so.
Check out HubSpot, for example, and you’ll see that their first call-to-action is subtle. “Get Started” is a small action and doesn’t commit the prospect to something huge but it does get them to consent to move forward.
Driving traffic to your landing page
You need to ensure that your offer is seen if you want people to take that action. That means you’re going to have to do some inbound marketing to get that offer seen. Typically, this will mean running pay-per-click campaigns, social media campaigns, search engine optimization, etc.
If you’re not collecting an e-mail address on your landing page, it must be the next step in the process. Your offer here is simple; you give the prospect something in exchange for their e-mail address. The best lead magnets give something of great value to the customer. Smart internet marketers create multiple lead magnets; they know that their customers may have different needs and they cater to as many as they can.
You also want to draw visual attention to it. This may be your only chance to win the person’s email address and the opportunity to sell to them – make your lead magnet noticeable and insistent.
Make it easy to get that information too. Don’t create complicated forms. Just a box for an e-mail address and a send button. That’s it. Don’t get in the way of your customer formally entering your sales funnel.
To get clients into your sales funnel, you need to create compelling lead magnets and use calls to action to guide the prospects to where you want them to be.