Are you struggling to generate leads and drive business? Then you need to be integrating the concept of sales funnels into your marketing structure. However, the notion of sales funnels may not be very familiar to you.
What is a Sales Funnel?
A sales funnel is a multi-step marketing strategy. The ultimate objective of the sales funnel is to obtain a completed transaction, or a sale. Of course, if you own your own business, you are very conscious of generating sales.
That’s because each completed sale means income for your business. To accomplish this goal a sales funnel utilizes several intentional interactions with the customer in order to complete the sale.
These are broken down into four parts:
The Awareness Stage
In this stage, you are attempting to make the potential customer aware of who you are and what you are offering.
Before the days of the internet, someone may come across an ad in the newspaper or hear a commercial on the radio. They previously were not aware of you.
In the 21st century, all one has to do is a quick online search. If your website shows up higher in the search results, then that creates the opportunity for the customer to click on your link.
Nowadays so much shopping is happening online. Before, you would interact with a customer in a store. You would ask them questions to get an idea of their interests.
Then, you would provide options that hopefully would align with those interests. Now all that happens online. Thus, your website needs to be friendly enough for them to interact with the site easily. For example:
- Providing photos and written descriptions of products or services.
- A search feature.
- The ability to maneuver easily through pages.
Whether it is online or in person it is important that your customer be able to interact with the options that are available.
When a customer develops an interest in a product, they will want to learn more. If it is a major purchase, such as a new washing machine, they will want to learn as much as possible about the product.
They will compare several brands with differing prices and features before honing in on one in particular.
Committing to Action
Once the customer has zeroed in on their choice they are ready to commit to action. This means making a purchase.
Remember, everyone wants to feel good that they are making the right decision. Otherwise, they won’t be reading to commit to action and will retreat from making a purchase.
How the Sales Funnel Works in Action
One example of how the sales funnel works in real life is the fast-food industry. For instance:
- You become aware of a restaurant or chain thanks to their advertising, such as for a 2-for-1 deal or special menu prices. The next time they are hungry and have several options, they choose the one for which they saw the ad.
- Once inside they review the menu options, comparing prices with meal offers.
- The clerk behind the counter reminds the customer about getting extra fries or other options with the meal.
- The customer comes to a decision and is ready to commit to action.
Now that you have reviewed what a sales funnel is, it’s time to consider how to apply it to your business. By looking at marketing less as firing “random shots” into the dark, you have an intentional framework to generate interest. That’s the beauty of sales funnels.