If you are starting a business, it is very likely that you have already realized the importance of establishing a marketing strategy to attract customers. If you don’t know where to start, let us explain how to create a sales funnel, as it is an important element for any strategy.
What is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel is a schematic representation of the sales strategy, as it resembles a funnel when depicted as a diagram. Each stage or category is defined based on the activities that the sales team needs to perform to take the lead from attraction to closing a sale. We could say that it is a journey that they must walk together and can be divided into stations.
Regarding customers when creating a sales funnel
Customers do not follow the same journey in all cases, much less in all industries. The ideal scenario would be to build your sales funnel tailored to your needs, so it is important to identify the pattern in the journey of people who become your customers. Pay attention to what they say and do before making a purchase, at the time of purchase, and even after they have made a purchase.
You should know that the length and stations of the journey depend on the complexity of your product or service. The more complex it is, the longer the journey may be, and you may need to rely on more stations. You should also consider the time it takes for your leads to move from one station to another and see which ones convert into customers and which ones don’t. Paying attention to this type of information will help you make predictions, better understand your leads, and adapt your sales and marketing strategies.
Regarding your budget
We know that both time and budget are decisive factors and, sometimes, limiting. In that case, establish a simple model and refine it as your business progresses. Below, we explain a model of a sales funnel. We hope it is useful for you to start creating your own.
First station of the sales funnel
The first station is about attracting people. In the funnel, it would be the widest part. Here, it is about approaching your target audience, the profile of people who you think would find value in what you are offering. You could even facilitate the recognition of the need that your product solves.
In this approach, your business needs to appear accessible and available. To achieve this, make sure to have an online presence. Social media can be a good starting point, but creating a landing page definitely takes it to the next level. On this page, you should present your solution in a simple way for visitors. Remember that there should be a recognition of the problem and consideration of your product as an interesting option to solve that need. Your landing page should also be attractive, inviting the audience to navigate it, and should be easy to access the resources you provide.
What you should always include in the first station of the sales funnel:
We will never tire of repeating it: explain your value proposition in the simplest way possible. Explain how you create that value and how it is relevant to your customer. Literally show your product or service (people will want to know how it looks). Here, you can play with various audiovisual resources. Experiment and see what works best in your industry. Provide evidence that your product works. How? If you have already made sales, gather testimonials from satisfied customers. Once again, experiment with various resources to make it appealing. The point is for people to perceive credibility in what you show. We have talked about explanations, a nice website, but what comes next? Include, of course, a call to action. Invite your potential customers to contact you to learn more about your proposal, to make an online purchase, to request a trial, or simply to subscribe to your newsletter.
Building a landing page requires more attention and some additional elements to refine details. If you are just starting out, make sure to follow the five steps mentioned above, and that should be enough to capture people’s attention.
Second station of the sales funnel
The second stage is about establishing contact and responding to it. If your landing page was successful and your lead is interested, they have entered the research process. At this point, the lead seeks more information, perhaps comparing options because they are interested in addressing their needs.
It’s a good idea to offer a video call or a meeting to delve deeper into the features of your product or service and address the person’s doubts.
Take advantage of this stage to gather more information about the person. This information will help you build an ideal customer profile and, as mentioned earlier, make estimations about who has the most potential to become a customer.
Third station of the sales funnel
If the previous conversation was successful, you will have captured the attention of your potential customer. It’s time to offer a trial or demonstration of your product. Allow the lead to experience your solution, to test the features and unique aspects you offer. The goal is to fully convince the lead to turn to your solution.
Listen to what people say about your product or service. What led them to contact you? Why do they find your proposal interesting? Why did they request or agree to a demonstration? What tasks would they be solving by hiring your service?
The answers to these questions are valuable feedback for your entire team. This feedback should help you improve.
Fourth station of the sales funnel
If the lead is satisfied with the demonstration, they will be open to receiving a proposal to purchase your service or product.
At this stage, the lead receives a proposal from the sales team and will take the time to analyze it. Ensure that the presented information is clear in all aspects: payments, timelines, terms, and conditions. Some doubts may still arise, so follow-up is of utmost importance.
There may also be room for negotiation after this period (depending on your business model), and then you proceed to the desired sale.
Fifth station of the sales funnel
Once everything has been clarified and agreed upon regarding the proposal sent in the previous stage, we have reached the final stage. It is the culmination of the sale.
The entire process leads to signing a contract or executing the transaction, as applicable. If you have reached this point, you have crossed the finish line and gained a new customer.
But it’s not over yet. Now you need to start planning the delivery or installation steps, as applicable. This involves coordinating logistical details, continuing with the process, and following up. Remember that having recurring customers is much more valuable. The goal is to build loyalty.
Never stop listening to what your customers tell you. Use that connection to nurture the conversation.
Important considerations when creating your sales funnel
- As mentioned at the beginning, this is just an example that can serve as a guide, but each business has its own sales funnel. Start building yours!
- Make sure you always have more leads in the first stage than in the subsequent stages. For various reasons, not all leads will progress through the buying process. That’s okay. If you have their contact information, you can keep them in the loop, and perhaps they can convert into customers later on.
- At every stage, follow-up and listening to people is of utmost importance. A fruitful relationship is built with well-nurtured prospects. Additionally, when creating a sales funnel… As mentioned earlier, you will gather information throughout the sales funnel. Some data will help you refine the ideal customer profile, others will help you analyze your sales process, and even more will help you reconsider your strategy.
Additionally, when creating a sales funnel…
We want to let you know that you will be gathering information throughout the sales funnel. Some data will help you refine the profile of your ideal customer, others will assist in analyzing your sales process, and even more will aid in reevaluating your strategy.
Regarding process analysis, you need to establish metrics and translate all the information into concrete numbers that serve as indicators. Otherwise, how will you know if you are achieving your goals? It’s a good idea to rely on CRM software that can assist you with the analysis. Most CRMs allow you to track your sales funnel and collect statistical information. There are several options available in the market, and we have taken the task of comparing them in our articles «The 7 Best CRMs for SMEs» and «CRMs for WhatsApp.» Take the time to read them and find out what each option offers.