You are selling products or services, and you may be doing great!

But is there an overall strategy behind your sales technique, or are you just unlocking your door in the morning and seeing who drops in?

Maybe you are selling online, and you got a little word of mouth going through friends and family, but you aren’t really reaching that next level of sales you are hoping for.

The piece that you are missing here is a sales funnel.

What is a sales funnel?

A sales funnel is a mapped out visual of your sales process. It will step you through how you plan to help people learn about their problem, learn about how to solve their problem, and ultimately lead them to making a purchase of your service or product.

These steps ultimately lead prospects through their buyer’s journey, and hopefully ending with your business.

You may have noticed from my definition that there is a lot going on before a sale even takes place.

This is the content marketing section of the funnel that will draw people towards your solution.

The idea is to give a lot and get a fair amount in return.

Start Mapping Your Funnels

Funnelytics is a FREE funnel mapping tool that helps you visualize your sales funnel, make easy changes, impress clients, and much more!

Rehash Media, LLC is an affiliate partner of Funnelytics.
Any qualifying purchases you make through Funnelytics will result in a commission for us.
Thank you for your support!

Sales Funnels: The Breakdown

So how do you know where a person is within your sales funnel?

How do you pull them closer to the end goal of conversion?

Well, there are set steps to a sales funnel.

Let’s break down the different section of a funnel, and what kind of content and strategies can be used within each to pull people farther into the funnel.

Since I am Inbound Marketing Certified through Hubspot, we will be using their model of a sales funnel.

Hubspot Marketing Funnel

Image from hubspot.com.

Visit

A visitor to your website is anyone who visits it. This is the top of your funnel, and the place where you try to start pulling people in.

If someone visits your site and then leaves without providing your contact information, it is hard to get that person back into your funnel (unless you having some kind of tracking pixel set up on your site). 

 

Lead

A lead is a visitor who has provided you with an email address, and can then be further contacted with additional offers, additional content, and eventually an offer of your product or service.

We pull visitors in and make them a lead by offering value through a downloadable ebook, guide, whitepaper, maybe a quiz.

The trick is to provide enough value that they will gladly leave you their email address in exchange for the informaiton.

 

MQL

MQL stands for Marketing Qualified Lead and is a lead that is deemed worthy of further marketing efforts.

If you find that someone that has opted in to one of your downloads is very unlikely to buy your product or service (people who aren’t interacting with further emails or marketing efforts), it may not be worth the further time and effort to market to this person.

 

SQL

SQL stands for Sales Qualified Lead. Your sales team can take a look at the list of engaged people who have become MQLs, and see who is worthy to make a sales call or pitch to.

This is just a potential list of buyers, so sales will need to do their due diligence and follow-up with these individuals.

 

Opportunity

An opportunity is a person who has been contacted and is showing express interest in making a purchase.

It is the sales team’s job to remove the few remaining bariers that Opportunities have to make the purchase and turn them into customers.

 

Customer

A customer is someone who has made a purchase.

Even though they have finally made it to the end of your sales funnel, doesn’t mean that you should break contact with them.

In fact, it’s easier to sell to existing customers than to find completely new ones, so nurture these relationships and keep making pitches for upsells and other products or services that will bring them value.

The Power of the Sales Funnel

Sales funnels are super powerful tools, and are almost a MUST when selling any product or service.

At the base level, a sales funnel is a plan of action to get people to the sale.

On a more advanced, level they are a system that allows for automation and analysis of how you are selling and who you are selling to. With a sales funnel in place, you are basically building a sales person who provides value to your customer and leads them to a sale.

Your sales funnel should be working for you 24/7 to help your prospects and lead them closer to making a purchase with you.

 

I hope that this article has been helpful to you, and that you now have at least a base understanding of what a sales funnel is, and a little knowledge on how they function.

My plan is to continue writing extensively about sales funnels and how they can help you, so please explore the other topics within this article to dig a little deeper.

If you are ready to start mapping your sales funnel, I would give the free funnel mapping tool Funnelytics a try (link below).

This is an excellent tool that helps you visualize  the different stages of your funnel, make easy changes to that funnel, and plan what elements you still need to build and put into place in order to draw people closer to a sale.

Start Mapping Your Funnels

Funnelytics is a FREE funnel mapping tool that helps you visualize your sales funnel, make easy changes, impress clients, and much more!

Rehash Media, LLC is an affiliate partner of Funnelytics.
Any qualifying purchases you make through Funnelytics will result in a commission for us.
Thank you for your support!

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