Creating a High Converting Sales Funnel may seem like an insanely tough task to accomplish. Where to start? What tools to use… does this ring a bell? Creating Sales Funnels isn’t nearly as difficult as we make it seem (most of the time) – that’s because a sales funnel is only meant to do one thing. Create a sale. Right? Maybe there’s more to this puzzle than you might think.
And this wonderful guestpost by our friends over at Yeloni – creating a high converting sales funnel has never been easier.
How do we convert visitor on our website into a customer and then into raving fan?
As online business owners I bet we have pondered about this question a lot of times. The simple answer to that is to establish a powerful sales funnel. This post will help you create one.
The truth is, very rarely does a customer make purchase at the first contact with our brand. Unless he knows the brand well or the product cost is so low that he wouldn’t care, it rarely happens. Research shows that at least 6-8 customer contacts are required before our customer is ready to make a purchase.
At Yeloni, we have observed that the customers we engage with – be it during support or over welcome emails are the ones that convert into paying customers and leave awesome reviews.
So you would ask – what do those 6-8 contacts comprise of?
Anything that is scalable and can be delegated needs a solid process in place, and establishing this “communication” process that converts a lead into a paying customer is what we call the Sales Funnel or the Sales Process. Simple isn’t it. It is!
The sales process is an ideal step by step process that we lead our customers through – starting from finding a lead to converting them into a paying customer.
Some more reasons why a business needs a sales funnel:
- Easy Visualization
For any given customer, it is easy to visualize which stage of the sales funnel they are on. If you have a sales team working for you, it is easier for them to customize their interaction with the customers based on the stage they are in. Maybe even have a different set of people specialized to interact with customers on each stage.
- Efficient Planning
Having each of the stage clearly mapped out gives the business owner a clear view of what tasks are to be accomplished at each of these stages. All the different strategies, marketing efforts and content can be customized to each stage so that every customer receives only what is relevant to them.
So what’s AIDA all about?
AIDA is an acronym for “Attention – Interest – Desire – Action”. It is a very old strategy used to create verbiage for sales copies. In a nutshell, here is how it works:
First, we get a clear idea of who our target audience is – by creating a customer persona. We would already have an idea about who they are, because our products are built solely to solve problems they face. Through our copy, we aim to get their “Attention” by engaging them, addressing a current problem they have (to which our product is the solution for).
We then create an “Interest” in our product by gently suggesting the benefits of the product and how it can help them. This finally leads to their “Desire” to try out the product and finally the “Action” – the Sale.
How to use AIDA as a framework to design the funnel
AIDA is not only does an awesome job at inspiring the verbiage of a sales copy, but AIDA’s core principles can also be applied to build an effective sales funnel.
At any given point of time, each of our customers’ is in one of the 5 funnel stages. As a business, it is up to us to move the customer further down the funnel.
Each stage of the funnel is an opportunity for us to prepare the customer to make the purchase. Shell out some bucks! At each stage we get to educate and inspire our lead about the product / services we are offering and to make them believe that our product is the perfect solution to their problem.
Let’s get to it yo! The Funnel Stages:
Primary function: Gather leads who are facing a problem our product/service can address.
This stage is akin to the Attention in AIDA.
This is the first stage of the funnel and is the widest. Our main intention as a business owner is to identify as many people as we possibly can that match the customer persona we created earlier. You do have a customer persona. Don’t you? Study where they hangout, which social channels they use, which blogs they read – in a nutshell stalk them. Kidding! 😉
Once we know the channels / websites they are on, time to get in front of them and obtain a way of staying in touch with them. Create a valuable lead bait and get their email address. Email is still the best way to convert a lead into a customer.
Tools to use:
Social Media: Facebook groups, Pinterst boards, Instagram hashtags, free offers, lead baits, etc.
Ads: Google Ads, Social media ads
Landing Pages: Unbounce
Exit popups on Websites: Yeloni
Organic: Google search, SEO optimization, Guest posting on major blogs
Primary function: Engage with your customers by offering value. This stage is akin to the “Interest” from AIDA. This stage is getting the user interested in our brand by offering valuable information.
Now is the time to use that email list. Create awesome content around your product, its benefits, problems that your target audience face, content that teaches them something new, content that adds value to their life, and then some more. Be it videos, blog posts, infographics or any kind of content your target audience consumes the most. Here are great ideas on how to create interesting content. Check out these amazing 135 email templates to make your email planning easy!
We stress on having a solid email list because this is what truly belongs to you. Facebook groups are owned by Facebook. Instagram following, Pinterest users are all owned by the respective brands. One change in algorithm can restrict the number of people seeing your updates – which you’ve worked so hard to create. Tip – Use 2-3 channels at once and do have an email list.
Once you have all that in place, set up email drips (periodic emails that go out to your list) and monitor the analytics. Apart from emails, creating your own Facebook group and adding your target customers into it is also a good way to engage them.
Our main goal at this stage to establish our brand in the customer’s mind with respect to the service that your product offers. Think Colgate for toothpaste and Lays for chips.
Tools to use:
Emails: Mailchimp, Aweber
Email Marketing Automation : Getdrip
Videos: iMovie, MovieMaker, CamStudio
Blog posts: Evernote, Google Docs
Image editing: Picmonkey, Canva
3) Educate & Promote
Primary function: Educate the customers about your products & how they can resolve their problems. Offer time bound offers to instill a sense of urgency. This is akin to the “Desire” in AIDA
The 80-20 principle is the key here. While you are sending out valuable content during stage 2, mix it up with promotional content. Let the customers be aware of benefits our products provide and it can solve their problems. Typically at this stage, the customers are convinced and are willing to make a purchase, but are holding back for some or the other reason.
Now is the time to send them a time-bound offer that acts like a catalyst converting them into paying customers. You ideally want to sell them on a smaller product first, just to get the trust and credibility flowing.
Tools to use:
Discounts / Offers / Freebies
4) Convert – sell!
Primary function: Upsell!
This is the stage where a subset of our customers respond to the time-bound offer we made earlier and make a purchase. Yay! After we virtually throw confetti in the air, it’s time to get back to our laptops & execute these two main tasks.
Do not stop the communication
We have been nurturing our customer all through to get him to make a purchase and once it is done, many people stop communicating with him altogether! It is vital to keep the communication on.
Create multiple products.
As a business you would want to create multiple products all around solving the same problem. Multiple plans of the same product also work well. Once a customer purchases a ‘starter’ product or plan, our goal at this stage is to get him to buy a higher ticket item by up-selling him on the benefits of the same.
Tools to use:
Payment gateways: Paypal
Online stores: Shopify
Invoicing: Zoho Invoice
Primary function: Incentivize existing customers to refer new ones.
Often businesses are so lost in finding new prospective clients that they forget to look at the gold mine that they are sitting on – their existing clients. Happy customers are the best source of acquiring new clients. Let’s give them enough reasons and ways to talk about our brand.
When happy customers talk, leads pour in!
Tools to use:
Affiliates Marketing, Referral Bonuses
Tracking: Google Analytics
Link Love: ACloaker
We have created a Simple Sales Funnel Worksheet which you can print out and get started on your high converting sales funnel right away. Get it for FREE here.
Guest Author Intro:
Jayasri Nagrale is the founder of Yeloni, a powerful plugin that adds intelligent exit popups on wordpress websites. When she is not working on Yeloni, Jayasri loves experimenting with new marketing strategies, playing with her puppy, scrolling through Pinterest & hoarding on craft supplies! Reach out to her on firstname.lastname@example.org