A lot of companies take the approach that if they build it customers will come, and this is not the case. From brick and mortar locations to business websites; you can tell a lot of them lack a good sales funnel and direction.
If you build your website or business with no direction and have no way to convert your traffic into buying customers then you’re going about things in the wrong way. The truth is, every business needs a sales funnel.
Sales Funnel (also known as a revenue funnel or sales process) – refers to the buying process that companies lead customers through when purchasing products. A sales funnel is divided into several steps, which differ depending on the particular sales model.
In basic terms, a sales funnel is the process that your company follows to take potential customers to buying customers.
Most businesses go out of business because of 2 things, they do not have enough attention and they do not have enough cash flow. As I am sure you have heard before, “You may have the best product or service on the planet but if nobody knows about you then who cares?”
I am going to add something to this old saying because I think it is a little off. I believe the saying should go, “You can have the best product/service in the world but if nobody has heard of it or you can’t close the deal then who cares?”
I think this is more fitting because a lot of people believe that by simply having the best product/service or the cheapest price that it will sell itself, and this is not true. To be a successful company you have to have the best product along with a great sales funnel. By implementing a solid sales funnel into your customer acquisition process you will start to close more deals which will increase your cashflow and attention.
Now, you might be curious how a sales funnel is going to increase your attention but is it does. By taking your customers through a dialed in process that is designed around getting your customer what they want, it will make for a good experience and a new customer.
As your company gains more happy customers they will spread the word about your product/service and you will have the sales process to turn new traffic into buying customers.
This leads into the fact that most companies are not taking advantage of their current traffic and attention because they are not optimized to convert this traffic from a viewer to a buyer.
Think about it.
You go into a retail store and the “sales associate” will ask you questions like, “Can I help you find something?”
As we mostly reply, “No thanks, I am just looking.”
the sales person will then say, “Ok, let me know if you need anything.”
We say, “Ok. I will.”
then we leave the store empty handed or with 1 item while they keep folding clothes on the rack. This is an example of a missed opportunity and a terrible sales funnel.
Side Note: This isn’t just happening at retail stores…
What makes this even worse is companies will spend a lot of money on their marketing to get a customer into the door or onto the website and then the website or store will not be optimized to turn these viewers into buyers. To me this is putting the cart before the horse and a waste of precious marketing dollars. A bad sales funnel will inadvertently increase your customer acquisition cost simply because you have an inefficient sales funnel.
The truth is, if companies pay more attention to optimizing their sales funnel, they will close more deals and have happier customers.
By closing more deals and turning your customers into brand advocates you will be bringing more attention to your company by having more people talk about you. You’re showing your customers that your product is awesome and that it is easy to do business with your company. In addition, your brand advocates will start to refer your company more and more. They will start to tell people where they bought their products from and what salesmen helped them find it, instead of sending customers away.
The scary thing is, a lot of companies have a terrible sales funnel with an awesome product and it is holding back their business.
On the flip side, what this means for companies who have a strong sales funnel and a great product is that you’re ahead of the curve. While most businesses are trying to figure out how to bring in more customers and increase their cash flow, you will be closing a higher percentage of your current traffic which will increase your attention and sales.
Every company should focus on taking every single viewer/prospect through a sales funnel and follow up process till they turn into a customer.
The way you do this is with a solid sales funnel and an optimized company.
One of the first things you should look at when you’re analyzing your sales funnel for a website is see if your site is designed to capture your viewers information. A lot of websites I come to do not have enough call to actions. Call to actions are designed to get your customers to give you their name, email, phone number, and contact info so you can follow up with them and make a sale.
The fact is, you will never gain a customer without gaining their information. Your website needs to be designed to create internet leads by gathering your viewers name, email and phone number so your sales team will be able to follow up with them. Once the internet lead hits the salesmen, the salesmen needs to have a sales funnel and follow up process that they can take the internet lead down till they become a customer.
Side Note: Having an optimized website will also increase the number of buyers who will simply buy because of the information your website provides.
As more and more leads come in to your salespeople and as they get better at the sales process, they will start to close more deals and you will start to see exponential growth instead of wasted traffic.
When it comes to a brick and mortar location, you should focus on training your current salespeople how to take your customers through a sales funnel instead of just asking if they need help. Your salespeople should be engaging with your customers and asking questions to figure out what brings them in to the store today. Once your salespeople finds out what the customers needs are, they should then take them to the products and make sure the customer has everything they need before they leave.
These simple tweaks to your sales funnel will make a huge difference to your cash flow and customer acquisition.
Now, these are just 2 minor examples of how to adjust your sales funnel but I hope this will help you understand the importance, because if you get more attention but have a terrible sales process then you’re just wasting time and money.