Most likely youʼve heard about the sales funnel and know what it does for your
business. Everyoneʼs sales funnel is labeled a little bit differently but basically itʼs a
stage-by-stage representation of how the potential customer/client moves from just
getting to know your company to committing to purchase from you. In the graphic, the
first stage is the initial contact with your company. The next stage is where the customer
is intrigued by your brand and has a developing interest. The next stage is her desire to
purchase developing and finally, she purchases in the last stage. Yay! Itʼs very useful to
know what your own sales funnel looks like because it can keep you on track with your
day-to-day activities — constantly working to move your prospects through your funnel. I
know! It sounds fun!
When a business owner starts to notice sheʼs losing sales or has potential customers
who disappear before getting to the purchasing stage, itʼs probably because she has
failed at a particular point in the sales funnel. She needs to analyze where the potential
customer backed out. If the business owner looks closely, it shouldnʼt be too hard to
discover where she dropped the ball, develop a new strategy and make sure she
doesnʼt lose another potential customer at that stage in the future.
The sales funnel is also called a sales pipeline and every business ownerʼs goal should
be to keep her pipeline full. In order to keep your pipeline full, you have to focus on 4
core moneymaking tasks. The tasks are the same whether you sell products or
services. These 4 tasks bring new potential customers/clients into the first stage of your
sales funnel. They are:
- Generate new website traffic. This includes online marketing such as updating your
Facebook or Twitter pages, writing articles on your topic, blog posting, search engine
- Convert the traffic you have into sales. This includes building trust with your
potential customer with testimonials, your personal story, video and audio
interactions, using regular newsletters, and meeting your customerʼs emotional needs
(as it applies to your product or service). For instance, I might want to buy a new
iPhone 4G not because I “need” it but because I think Iʼll be in the “Super-cool Mac
Club” if I show up at work sporting the new 4G. So knowing this, Apple tries its
darndest to convince me of the cool lifestyle Iʼll have if I own a 4G. Theyʼre trying to
meet my emotional need to be cool.
- Offer new value to your potential customers. This includes offering products or
services in a wide range of price points. So you might offer an expensive package at
$800 but you should also offer packages in the mid- and low-range so you donʼt lose
those potential customers that have different budgets and needs. Also, offering a free
bonus adds value that is hard to pass up! You should add new products/services to
your offering on a regular basis. Itʼs a great excuse to connect with your mailing list as
well as the general traffic to your site.
- Connecting with current customers regularly. Receiving a regular newsletter is
like an invitation from the site owner to interact with her and see what sheʼs up to. Itʼs
invaluable. Itʼs also a trust-builder so donʼt forget to regularly connect with your fans.
You can let them know about your new projects, new partnerships, new sales and
deals, upcoming holidays, new recipes or weekly tips.
These 4 categories of tasks should always be your focus as they will keep your pipeline
full and always supplying you with potential clients. A full pipeline directly converts to
higher sales as long as you spend some time polishing your processes in your sales
funnel stages. Itʼs a great feeling to know you are doing the right things to support your
business and your hard work WILL pay off!