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How to Build a Strategic Sales Funnel that Maximizes Conversions

Do you ever wonder why no one is buying anything even after visiting your website? You take a look at your Google Analytics month after month. People are visiting your website and maybe traffic has even increased, but your bottom line isn’t reflecting that trend.

If you can relate, you’re not alone.

Most experts state that the average time spent on any given website is just 62 seconds. Ouch.

That’s not a lot of time… Can you remember the last time you made a decision to purchase an item, commit to a subscription, or order a service in just 62 seconds? Neither can most people.

This reveals the importance of building a strategic sales funnel that is designed with customer retention and conversion in mind. Just because people visit your website, it doesn’t mean that they will convert into paying customers, especially within 62 seconds.

A sales funnel nurtures these leads until they are ready to make the final decision to purchase. This results in lower conversion costs, happier customers, and ultimately more profit.

Here’s what you need to know.

What Exactly Is a Sales Funnel?

Simply put: a sales funnel is a way to meet potential customers wherever they are in the buyer’s journey.

In many ways, a sales funnel is like dating. It happens in stages and every milestone happens in a specific order.

You don’t propose for marriage on the first date.

You don’t ask about meeting the parents for the holidays after two dinners.

You don’t give someone the keys to your place after the first time they spend the night.

Building a relationship takes trust, communication, and nurturing.

Developing a relationship with customers is no different.

We don’t like making important decisions with strangers. If this were the case, then we would respond to all cold emails and cold emailing would be the number one marketing tactic. But it’s not. Why? Because it is essentially a sales pitch for a product you don’t need from a company you don’t know.

Here’s where most people mess up: the goal of a sales funnel is not to make sales.

Yes, it’s called a “sales funnel,” but today’s consumers are smart and savvy. They can “smell” when you are trying to sell them something. There’s a reason there is a negative connotation surrounding car salesmen.

Instead, a strategic sales funnel focuses on what we discussed above: building trust, providing transparent communication, and nurturing leads until they determine that they are ready for the sale.

It seems counterintuitive, but it is the formula that successful businesses are able to replicate time and time again.

When you follow this formula, you are able to acquire customers, activate them, and keep them as loyal customers who will continue to do business with you and refer friends and family your way.

How a Strategic Sales Funnel Works

The traditional sales funnel has three stages. Each stage gets smaller (similar to the funnel shape) as you nurture potential customers through the funnel.

The three stages are:

  1. Attraction and awareness

  2. Interest and desire

  3. Action

Below, let’s explore the specific tactics you can use to fully flush out each stage of your sales funnel.

Stage One: Attraction and Awareness

This is the “top of funnel” stage. During this stage, you are casting a targeted, but wide, net. Not everyone you reach will turn into a paying customer, but these should be people who are at least likely to be interested in what you have to offer.

In order to create awareness for your brand, product, or service, take a look at what your competitors are doing. If your competitors are all implementing similar strategies, then it is likely because that is what works in your industry. For example, if you notice that your competitors are blogging, running Facebook ads, or investing in SEO, then you will want to jump into the game before your business gets left behind.

In general, there are two ways to build attraction and awareness.

The first is called inbound marketing. This is where customers find you. How? Well, one of the most common ways is through search engines like Google.

How many times have you searched a phrase like:

Restaurants close to me.

Where is the closest movie theatre?

Cheap hotels near me.

Where to find a dry cleaner.

The reality is that no one can force Google to display your business on the first page of search results when someone searches these terms.

However, you can dramatically increase the likelihood of ranking higher on Google by investing in search engine optimization (SEO).

SEO fine-tunes your website, provides value to potential customers through blogging, and makes it clear to Google what your website is about. SEO is a long-term game, but when it is successful, you are able to harness the power of free traffic from Google.

In short, you are building Attraction and Awareness through people searching for your services through google.

The second way to build Attraction and Awareness is through outbound marketing. Instead of customers finding you organically, you find the