What Is a Sales Funnel and Why Your Business Needs One

a man presenting a marketing funnelThe term sales funnel has become a hot topic among internet marketers, entrepreneurs and businesses. A sales funnel is a critical tool for every company that is looking to make effective business decisions.

In addition, a sales funnel helps entrepreneurs, marketers and businesses to build profitable relationships with their target market. It enables them to attract continuous traffic and an inflow of leads and sales.

With that said, this article aims to enlighten you on what a sales funnel is and why it is important for your business. Please keep reading.

Definition of a Sales Funnel

A sales funnel is also referred to as a sales process or revenue funnel. A sales funnel is a visual representation of the journey your potential clients will undertake until they become customers or purchase your products.

In that regard, a funnel is largest at the front end and narrows towards the bottom and, therefore, begins to funnel the customer into taking a particular action as they go through. It is possible to build a sales funnel for anything including products, services, blogs, webinars, free giveaways, reports and even white papers.

A sales funnel or process has several components, which are determined by your sales model, or your niche, products and services. Nonetheless, there are specific components that all sales funnels should have, as you will see below.

If you currently think you’d just prefer to stick with your website and not bother with a sales funnel then read my post on websites vs sales funnels here.

Components of a Sales Funnel

Awareness

This stage is all about traffic generation. It is a stage when you focus on attracting potential customers by giving them information about your product, offer, sales or services.

This is where you raise awareness about the solutions you have for their problems. You can start building awareness through blog posts, videos, forum comments, infographics, podcasts, product reviews, social media posts, among others.

Interest

Potential customers are actively looking for solutions to their problems. Therefore, if you want to grow your email list, you can offer something of value to your target audience preferably something that will give them tips on how to solve their problems such as a course or guide.

With that said, when a potential customer finds you, he or she shows interest by following you on social media or signing up for your lead magnet.

Decision

This is the stage when your prospect likes your solution or products and services. When interest develops, the potential customer then decides to move forward with your offer.

Action

At this stage, the prospect becomes a customer by making a purchase with you. In other words, the prospect is ready to sign a contract or click the purchase button.
Why is a Sales Funnel Important?

Generates Leads

Making good use of lead magnets and lead pages increases your chances of making a lifetime customer.

Increases brand awareness

A funnel helps your potential customers to know who you are and what you are selling. It allows your leads or prospects to know not only your brand but also what your company values.

An effective way of beating your competition

Builds trust

A robust sales funnel enables you to nurture potential customers or target audience because you know what they are looking for. Trust! In other words, customers like doing business with people they trust.

Therefore, trust develops when you, for instance, nurture your potential customers with free and relevant content that eventually establishes you as an expert. The more your potential clients hear from you and see your work, the more they get to trust you.

The sales funnel helps you to organize specific sales opportunities based on their probability of resulting in a sale. Managing a sales funnel allows you to estimate the likelihood that enough opportunities are progressing towards closure to keep income flowing over time.

With a robust sales funnel, you are able to know the short to the long-term health of your team’s sales efforts. You can easily forecast your sales.

A funnel allows you to quantify the number of prospects during each stage of the process. It makes it easy for you to forecast the number of prospects who, with time, will become customers.

Parting Shot!

The sale is a process. It has a starting point and an end. Therefore, your ability to manage that process efficiently, at every single stage, is critical. A robust sales funnel will not only scale your business but also help you build reliable relationships with your potential customers.

With a sales funnel, you can be sure of having significant and recurrent revenue. It is important to remember that a sales funnel can only be limited by your imagination.