Sales funnel is a business jargon used to refer to the journey that prospective customers of a company goes through on their way to purchase.
With a solid sales funnel, it’s easier to convert leads into sales efficiently and grow sales and revenue over time. Improving the sales funnel’s efficiency is among the top sales priorities. It evokes an insight into business people about their potential customer’s thought process, challenges, and decisions.
Sales funnel is a visual representation of the journey from your prospect’s first contact with you to them completely purchasing your product.
A lot of potential customers may have heard of your product or service. A smaller part of that group may be interested in learning more, and a smaller part of that group may actually reach to you. At each stage of the sales funnel, the number of people you talk to falls shorter and you end up with the people who become customers.
A sales funnel constitutes several stages usually known as the Top of the Funnel(ToFu), Middle of the Funnel (MoFu) and Bottom of the funnel (BoFu). These steps differ from one company to another depending on its sales model.
As the term ‘funnels’ indicate sales funnel is the widest at the top and the narrowest at its bottom. Each stage of the funnel drives your most fitting prospects into the next stage and discards those who are not a fit for your offer.
1. Top of the sales funnel (ToFu)- the awareness stage: A customer starts their journey as if in a quest for solutions to their problems. Potential customers go through a specific problem and are researching and learning about it. They are still identifying their challenge and have many questions. They just know the symptoms or signs of what they require. They are looking for a trusted source of information and education to define their problem and give a solution for it.
This is what happens at the top of the so-called sales funnel. They want content that will guide them through the topic that relates to their search, including blog posts, videos, and even questionings.
Now that the information-seeking visitors are turned into their leads and it’s time for the marketer, to ask appropriate questions and qualify your lead, thereby guiding them to the next stage.
2. Middle of the sales funnel (MoFu)- the consideration stage: Here, you’re no longer dealing with unknown and faceless contacts. They no longer have generic questions and are now looking for all available solutions such as products and services to their needs and wants. They want specific answers to their queries.
The sales representatives initiate a discovery call, sales meeting, or demo with the prospect to identify their challenges and explain to them how they can help with the prospect’s pain points through their solutions.
Marketing content such as guides having in-depth information, competitor observations, feature comparisons, ebooks, how-to videos, and blogs of experienced users will help leads at this stage.
The lead discovers more about you and the advantages of working with you. Once they find you can drive them to apt solutions, they can be directed to the next stage.
3. Bottom of the sales funnel (BoFu)-the decision making and action stage: The bottom of your funnel is where your leads are now aware of what their problem is, the best type of solution available for them and makes the right decision to purchase the solution from you.
The best content you can employ here is frequently-asked-questions pages, videos about product features, live demos, side-to-side competitive feature analysis, budget features etc.. Thereby reinforcing their confidence in your offer because they find it fitting for your needs. This is the point where you are said to win the business.
Once you are aware of the sales funnel stages, it’s time to find out where you’re losing the potential customers or where the funnel is leaking. A system should be devised to give you a visual overview of what’s happening in each of your sales funnel stages, as well as send you reminders for key actions to take and proceed with the leads. A Customer Relationship Management software or CRM software will help you with this. It refers to the technology and processes that an organization uses to manage its internal and external contacts and relationships. It is helpful as it:
Predicts your upcoming sales.
Close deals faster.
Ensure to get top and hot leads that makes you productive.
Track your lead.
Optimize reminders and organize your lead dealings.
Make sure you don’t go off track with unimportant tasks.
CRM is just a tool that increases the pace of your deals and sees to that you yield better quality leads that will make a positive impact on your organization. It’s up to you to find what your sales funnel requires.
As said earlier, a well-defined sales funnel benefits not only the customers but also the organization. A sales funnel implies well-organized sales efforts that result in better lead generations.
A high-quality sales funnel benefits your organization in many ways like dismissing low quality and fake leads thereby saving your time, tracking your sales metrics and hastening the leads to the next stages of the funnel. In short, a sales funnel tells you where in the sales cycle you have to spend more money and where you have to not spend it.