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9 min read Do You Need a Sales Funnel AND a Corporate Website?

Do You Need a Sales Funnel AND a Corporate Website? (Yes!)

Key Takeaways

  • Sales funnels are for every kind of business. Even the big and well-established ones.
  • Sales funnels follow and nurture the path taken by leads and customers from initially learning about your company to eventually making a purchase.
  • Optimising your sales funnel means you can re-engage tired leads and attract new prospects automatically. Once you’ve done the work, the funnels work for you.
  • Sales funnels help businesses of all sizes grow to new heights.

You were real­ly proud of your web­site when it was fin­ished: it’s well-designed, por­trays your com­pa­ny val­ues cor­rect­ly, and gains the trust of new vis­i­tors. What’s not to love?

Your cor­po­rate busi­ness’s web­site is essen­tial for show­cas­ing your brand and its val­ues, sell­ing to cus­tomers, and reach­ing a glob­al audience.

Well… we’re here to tell you that your cor­po­rate web­site isn’t everything.

If you want to accel­er­ate your growth, attract new cus­tomers on autopi­lot, and re-engage tired leads effec­tive­ly, you’re going to need a sales fun­nel too.

In this arti­cle, we’ll go into more detail about how sales fun­nels can help cor­po­ra­tions and large busi­ness­es and why it’s bet­ter to devel­op a fun­nel than sole­ly rely­ing on a web­site for increas­ing sales.

Sales funnels in digital marketing

The first ever sales fun­nel can be tracked back to 1898, when Elias St. Elmo Lewis con­ceived the ear­li­est for­mal the­o­ry of mar­ket­ing. He laid out the fun­da­men­tal prin­ci­ples (Aware­ness, Inter­est, Desire, Action) that still form our mod­ern sales fun­nels today.

Elias Lewis, though, could not have pre­pared for the phe­nom­e­non of the World Wide Web. No longer can busi­ness own­ers stand in mar­ket­places and shout about their prod­ucts, nor can they rely on leaflet­ing alone to gen­er­ate interest.

The mod­ern sales fun­nel has had to adapt to dig­i­tal marketing.

In dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing, it’s essen­tial for busi­ness­es to estab­lish a direct line to their cus­tomers’ com­put­ers and phones. Sales fun­nels cre­ate this con­tact by per­suad­ing inter­net users to sign up for mail­ing lists and click on CTAs. Fur­ther­more, fun­nels can be built in a way that adapts to indi­vid­u­als’ dig­i­tal behav­iour – such as when they’re most like­ly to read pro­mo­tion­al emails or how long they take to con­sid­er an online purchase.

Instead of shout­ing about your prod­ucts in busy mar­ket­places, a sales fun­nel can do the work for you. And with thor­ough plan­ning, you can work out exact­ly when’s the best time to turn up to the “mar­ket­place” and what to shout to the passer-byers.

Importance of sales funnels

Sure, a well-made web­site can gain the trust and inter­est of vis­i­tors. It can inform them of your com­pa­ny’s val­ues, edu­cate them about your prod­ucts, and encour­age pur­chas­es with pop-ups detail­ing coupon codes. How­ev­er, did you know that 96% of site vis­i­tors aren’t ready to make a pur­chase?

That’s why it’s essen­tial that you have some way of reach­ing out and nur­tur­ing them. With sales fun­nels, you can recon­nect with site vis­i­tors and nur­ture them with more infor­ma­tion about your busi­ness, spe­cial deals, and reminders to shop with you.

Of course, you must obtain vis­i­tor email address­es first, but web­sites alone can­not re-estab­lish this nec­es­sary con­tact as sales fun­nels can. Nor can they guar­an­tee vis­i­tors will return.

Sales fun­nels can be extreme­ly pow­er­ful in increas­ing your aver­age order val­ue since nur­tured leads make 47% larg­er pur­chas­es than those that haven’t been nurtured.

The ben­e­fits of sales fun­nels go beyond aver­age order val­ue. You might already have a sales fun­nel in place, but you don’t feel like you’re max­imis­ing its poten­tial. Read on to learn what else you can gain from using a sales fun­nel to its fullest extent:

Benefits of using sales funnels

1. Attract new prospective clients and customers

Busi­ness sales fun­nels need and begin with con­tent. By pro­duc­ing more blogs, arti­cles, social media posts, videos, info­graph­ics, reels, tools, how-to guides, and any oth­er forms of dig­i­tal con­tent, you put your brand out there for a larg­er audi­ence to find.

While some busi­ness­es believe sales fun­nels are there to con­vert leads, they’re also great for attract­ing them in the first place. A large part of your sales fun­nel efforts will be answer­ing tar­get audi­ence pain points in your online con­tent, which will attract more prospec­tive customers.

Plus, you’ll have to put the appro­pri­ate land­ing pages and CTAs in place to acquire leads who might oth­er­wise just be pass­ing through. Sales fun­nels will catch these strag­glers and put them in direct con­tact with your brand – thus, you have a larg­er pool of leads to work with.

2. Streamline and automate your processes

Mar­ket­ing is a huge field: you could go for paid adver­tis­ing, long-form con­tent mar­ket­ing, social media mar­ket­ing, or SEO mar­ket­ing – among others.

Hav­ing a sales fun­nel in place means your efforts can stay focused. Lay­ing out the required actions to acquire and con­vert leads is a huge part of cre­at­ing a sales fun­nel. When these are stat­ed clear­ly, your mar­ket­ing team will be much more focused and effective.

Once you’ve per­fect­ed your sales fun­nel and you’ve got email flows in place, it can essen­tial­ly run on autopi­lot. You’ll only need to tweak it when your ana­lyt­ics data high­lights an area in need of improvement.

3. Identify better quality leads

Not every lead turns into a cus­tomer, so you don’t want to waste valu­able time and effort on chas­ing low-qual­i­ty leads.

After oper­at­ing for some time, you’ll have enough data on your leads to be able to track their actions, deci­sions, and pro­gres­sion through your fun­nel in real-time. Once you’ve achieved this, it becomes a lot eas­i­er to iden­ti­fy which leads are worth pur­su­ing and which oppor­tu­ni­ties have the great­est chance of success.

4. Results become more measurable and predictable

For leads to advance through your sales fun­nel, they’ll need to per­form spe­cif­ic actions that qual­i­fy them for sub­se­quent stages. E.g., sign­ing up for a mail­ing list, click­ing on a link in an email or blog post, or adding an item to their basket.

Since their pro­gres­sion through your fun­nel depends on the com­ple­tion of each spe­cif­ic step, you can mon­i­tor the per­for­mance of your fun­nel very eas­i­ly. The very nature of a sales or mar­ket­ing fun­nel means that weak links can be very appar­ent – and, there­fore, quick­er to solve.

For instance, if a large num­ber of peo­ple were open­ing your emails but nev­er click­ing on the links with­in, there could be an issue with the email design or the per­sua­sive­ness of your copy.

In this case, you would iso­late spe­cif­ic vari­ables and change them one at a time. One cam­paign could have a dif­fer­ent design, and anoth­er could be writ­ten in a new style. If there’s a change in the per­for­mance of either email – you’ll get your answer.

As your data set grows, your per­for­mance track­ing will only become more accu­rate. This kind of per­for­mance analy­sis can’t be done with just a web­site – as vis­i­tors don’t have to leave their details. Build­ing a mail­ing list means each and every user’s behav­iour can be analysed for the good of your mar­ket­ing efforts.

For instance, once you have a reli­able fig­ure for the per­cent­age of leads that is like­ly to drop off the fun­nel (which is data that could take sev­er­al months to gath­er), you’ll know how many leads you need to attract at the top of your fun­nel in order to gen­er­ate the desired num­ber of sales at the bot­tom of it.

5. Increase in conversions

Sales fun­nels are all about learn­ing about your leads and prospects. Once you under­stand their jour­ney and behav­iours, you can con­vert a greater num­ber of leads.

Your leads will also want to learn about your com­pa­ny – so build­ing an under­stand­ing goes both ways. Allow your leads to learn about your com­pa­ny val­ues – not just through the con­tent you show to them, but through your email behav­iour. Leads will not trust a com­pa­ny that spams them every day with pro­mo­tion­al emails – they’ll just be annoyed.

Con­ver­sion rate increas­es with sales fun­nels because of the increased num­ber of inter­ac­tions users have with your brand. Plus, the high­ly insight­ful ana­lyt­ics data gleaned from sales fun­nels means that you can con­stant­ly improve the areas caus­ing leads to lose interest.

What are the stages of sales funnels?

Sales fun­nels (or mar­ket­ing fun­nels) sym­bol­ise the path a cus­tomer takes from ini­tial­ly learn­ing about your busi­ness to even­tu­al­ly mak­ing a pur­chase. Dif­fer­ent mod­els list dif­fer­ing num­bers of stages. Some­times there are three, four, or five. In their most basic form, we can see three dis­tinct phases:

  1. Ini­tial inter­est – learn­ing about your busi­ness or show­ing non-com­mit­tal interest
  2. Con­sid­er­a­tion – defined your product/service as a poten­tial solu­tion to their issue
  3. Action – high­ly qual­i­fied leads ready to purchase

These stages are some­times known as ToFu (top of the fun­nel), MoFu (mid­dle of the fun­nel), and BoFu (bot­tom of the fun­nel), and they fol­low the same order.

You might be won­der­ing about the fourth and fifth stages. These are essen­tial­ly sub-cat­e­gories of those list­ed above, which pro­vide a deep­er lev­el of detail about leads and their lev­el of inter­est. The two stages some busi­ness­es include are “Aware­ness” and “Desire.”

If we were to include all five stages in a sales fun­nel, it would look like this:

  1. Aware­ness
  2. Ini­tial Interest
  3. Con­sid­er­a­tion
  4. Desire
  5. Action

Some mar­keters use “Aware­ness” to be ultra-spe­cif­ic about their leads and where they lie on the “Inter­est” scale. Mak­ing this dis­tinc­tion is under­stand­able as not every­one who’s aware of your busi­ness is nec­es­sar­i­ly inter­est­ed in what it sells – there­fore, a dif­fer­ent engage­ment method is needed.

For instance, prospects in the “Aware­ness” phase might just need to be edu­cat­ed about your prod­uct – espe­cial­ly if it’s very niche. On the oth­er hand, “Inter­est­ed” leads might just need a dis­count code to nudge them towards more seri­ous “Con­sid­er­a­tion.”

Mar­keters will include “Desire” as a phase for when leads add items to their bas­kets but aban­don their carts.

This kind of lead would­n’t qual­i­fy for the “Action” phase as they haven’t com­plet­ed a sale, and they’re engag­ing a lit­tle more than oth­ers in the “Con­sid­er­a­tion” phase. Defin­ing this

phase, there­fore, can help with address­ing aban­doned carts and nur­tur­ing leads at dif­fer­ent “Con­sid­er­a­tion” levels.

The lev­el of detail you include in your sales fun­nel is entire­ly up to you. If you have a large mar­ket­ing team, it might be bet­ter for you to include all five stages so that you can use the most accu­rate engage­ment tech­niques possible.

Nev­er­the­less, in our expe­ri­ence, three fun­nel stages will def­i­nite­ly suf­fice in most cases.

How do I write a sales funnel for my business?

To kick­start your sales fun­nel strat­e­gy, there are a few things you’ll need to consider:

  1. How does your tar­get audi­ence access your type of business?
  2. What are their pain points?
  3. What do your leads need to know (or have) to make a purchase?

The answers to these three ques­tions will help you in the fol­low­ing ways:

  1. Work­ing out what types of con­tent you’ll cre­ate to gen­er­ate interest.
  2. What your con­tent will say.
  3. The meth­ods you’ll use to re-engage your leads.

Make sure you spend a long time con­sid­er­ing these three ques­tions. An extreme­ly per­son­alised sales fun­nel will always be the most effec­tive. Once you’ve done that, you can get start­ed on cre­at­ing your sales funnel:

1. Create content leading to that landing page:

To get users to vis­it your land­ing page (see below), you’re going to need some kind of con­tent that leads them there.

The type of con­tent you choose will depend on your answer to ques­tion 1 above. Do they con­sume blogs and arti­cles? If so, what plat­form do they use? Do they pre­fer Insta­gram or TikTok?

What­ev­er type you choose, your con­tent should tar­get pain points and offer your busi­ness as the solu­tion. Then, you’ll need to put a CTA at the end of this con­tent – to lead them to your land­ing page.

If your busi­ness is unique or dif­fi­cult to under­stand, your con­tent may need to have an empha­sis on edu­cat­ing its read­ers. This is par­tic­u­lar­ly true of tech com­pa­nies or those with inno­v­a­tive products.

2. Create a landing page:

This page should be designed to get users’ con­tact details. Ask­ing them to leave their email address­es is cru­cial – how else do you expect to con­tact them in the future?

3. Nurture your leads:

Nur­tur­ing leads may include edu­cat­ing them fur­ther about your prod­uct or telling them more about your busi­ness. For instance, an eco-war­rior tar­get audi­ence will love to know that you plant a tree with every online purchase.

Email­ing them with links to your YouTube chan­nel or Insta­gram page can help them with their con­sid­er­a­tion – as they can fol­low these links to learn more about your busi­ness by themselves.

4. Send an offer they can’t refuse:

If leads haven’t made a pur­chase already, this stage is like­ly to require a dis­count code.

Remem­ber to set up an email flow for aban­doned carts – this will catch all those leads who very almost qual­i­fied for the “Action” stage.

5. Continue the re-engagement process:

You can turn those first-time buy­ers into return­ing cus­tomers with effec­tive re-engage­ment mar­ket­ing. These efforts can still be a part of your sales fun­nel process; all you need to do is devel­op high-qual­i­ty email flows.

Make sure to tell your mail­ing list about new or updat­ed prod­ucts. Plus, you can per­son­alise your prod­uct rec­om­men­da­tions based on their pre­vi­ous order/s.

Be care­ful not to over­load your mail­ing list. There are many email mar­ket­ing mis­takes you can make that will cause you to lose some cus­tomers forever.

6. Keep improving your funnel:

Mon­i­tor­ing the per­for­mance of any mar­ket­ing efforts is essen­tial if your busi­ness is to improve, become more effec­tive, and keep those sales fig­ures high. Even if you’ve got the most effec­tive sales fun­nel in the world, times and styles change. So, there’ll always come a time when it needs a makeover.

Keep work­ing to improve your fun­nel so that those rewards keep rolling in.

A B2B sales fun­nel won’t dif­fer much from a B2C sales fun­nel – it might just be that B2B fun­nels will be a lit­tle longer, as a whole team is like­ly to be involved in the pur­chas­ing decision.

Why do you need a sales funnel AND a corporate website?

Your web­site still has a cru­cial role to play – par­tic­u­lar­ly your blog. 55% of com­pa­nies say blog posts and infor­ma­tive arti­cles are the most effec­tive thing when mov­ing leads through a sales fun­nel. So, there’s no doubt that your web­site is extreme­ly valu­able. How­ev­er, the rewards brought by an effec­tive sales fun­nel can­not be underestimated.

These two ele­ments, when work­ing togeth­er, can pro­duce extreme­ly pos­i­tive results for your business.

If you need help with your cor­po­rate web­site or the devel­op­ment of a sales fun­nel – don’t hes­i­tate to get in touch. With 17 years of expe­ri­ence, this is what we do best.



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