What Is A Sales Funnel?
A sales funnel is a type of website specifically designed to turn leads into sales. Instead of passively having customers browse around your store, sales funnels start with a landing page and then use various stages of marketing tactics to convince the visitor to part with their money. Typical funnel tools include social media campaigns, blog postings, email drips, webinars, customer success stories, comparison sheets, infographics, and demo videos. Having lots of content is a key component. All of this is easily managed in one central dashboard, and every part of your funnel is extensively tested to figure out what works best. Once you have it optimized where it is earning more than you are spending on ads, you can scale to create an automated selling machine with unlimited profit potential.
If you want to offer dozens of different products, a sales funnel (also sometimes called a marketing funnel, purchase funnel, or conversion funnel) is not a good choice. Instead, we will give you a free online store. Sales funnels focus on selling one specific product or service instead of offering an entire catalog of merchandise. There are 4 main stages of marketing in the funnel: Awareness (inducing curiosity through ads, SEO, and influencer marketing), Interest (retain them using interesting content), Decision (email or call them to help them decide), Action (convert them). The objective is to guide your customers through each part of the funnel, giving them very limited options and building up their desire to continue on to the next page. Aside from selling physical items, some good fits for funnels are online courses, ebooks, memberships, consulting services, downloadable items, seminars, and events.
There are many different ways a funnel can be configured, but some common methods are:
- Lead Magnet Funnel - Starts off by offering your prospect some free content in exchange for their email address. Examples of what you can giveaway include an informational video, personal phone call, PDF document, case study, or whitepaper. All of this helps get the prospect in the right mindset before seeing your offer, by educating them about your business and what problem you are trying to solve for them.
- Survey Funnel - Involves a fun survey, calculator, or quiz. The purpose is to get the name and email of the user, and usually some info related to what you are trying to sell them, so you can target them better. It also can be used to agitate the problem, making the user more interested in buying.
- Product Sales Funnel - For selling digital or physical products. Also known as a Tripwire Funnel, this qualifies the lead by tempting them with a great deal on a low-ticket item. The goal of this is to break even on this item with your advertising, and then make a profit by upselling the customer on other products. A variation of this is the Self-Liquidating Funnel, where you structure it to break even so you can advertise as much as possible to build up your email list.
- Squeeze Page Funnel - Consists of 2 pages. On the first page, the goal is to get the visitor to submit their email address by using a curiosity-based headline. To get the answer, they need to opt-in to your email list. Then on the Thank You page, give them the answer they want and then lead them into your next funnel.
- Webinar Funnel - For high-ticket items. Show the customer who you are and what you’re about so they will feel comfortable spending a large amount of money with you. Then at the end of the webinar, once you have built up authority and trust, create a sense of scarcity and urgency by making them a big, limited-time offer that they can't pass up.
- Application Funnel - For selling expensive products and services people won't buy online without speaking with you first. Pre-qualify the prospect by using an application for them to get a phone call. Assuming they qualify, they can then schedule the call using an online calendar. Great for consultants, coaches, lawyers, accountants, and more.
- Free + Shipping Sales Funnel - For low-cost physical products. All the customer has to do is to pay shipping. You can then upsell these leads later.
- Challenge Sales Funnel - Hold a 5-to-7 day challenge. This builds up excitement and is a group bonding experience.
- Affiliate Sales Funnel - Use when you are part of an affiliate program, as compared to selling something directly. An example way to make it work would be to give away a freebie related to the product, and then on the Thank You page have a video about the product, with your affiliate link under it. You can then also send follow up emails about it.
- Combination Funnel - Funnels are modular and can easily be stacked together to increase your sales. For example, use a Lead Magnet Funnel to feed potential customers to an Application Funnel, where you then close the deal.
How Do I Build A Sales Funnel?
To create a funnel, you don't need to know any web design, HTML, or programming. Just use the funnel builder program provided by whatever service you sign up with. They will also host the funnel (unless you are using WordPress, in which case it runs in your WordPress hosting account). The funnel service will automatically give you a URL for your funnel, or you can connect a domain name to it. If you have an existing website, you can either keep your site the same and link to the sales funnel or move your site to the funnel provider so they host it and it is integrated into the sales funnel. Here are some funnel providers for you to look at:
Click Here for Free GroovePages Funnels
Also see Simvoly Funnels - $12/month, OptimizePress (works with WordPress), and Systeme Funnels. There is also this
Traffic Secrets Book, which is about funnels.
If building up email lists is not your thing, and you want something more simple to use, try SamCart. It gives you a landing page, sales funnel, and payment screen, all in one high-converting web page.
We earn a referral fee from these funnel hosting services, so if you have any questions, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.