If you have an online business, increasing your conversion rate is a top priority. The greater your conversion rates, the more customers or clients your company will likely have. There are many one-off actions you can attempt to increase your conversion rate, but in order to see a sustained level of conversion you need a plan.
The good news is that you don’t have to come up with this plan on your own. A marketing model has been developed over the years that allows you to examine the processes you established in a methodical way. It’s called a marketing funnel, and it has the power to increase your conversion rates.
What Is A Marketing Funnel?
A marketing funnel is the process a potential customer takes to go from just discovering your business all the way to purchasing your products on a regular basis.
The purpose of a marketing funnel is to break your processes down into incremental steps. These steps are critical to the process as they allow you to examine how things are going at each stage. This allows you to catch friction points early, so they don’t snowball into something unmanageable later on down the line.
The purpose of a marketing funnel is to break your marketing processes down into incremental steps. Click To Tweet
Why Is It Called A Marketing Funnel?
If you are unfamiliar with the concept of a marketing funnel, you may be wondering how it got its name. As you audience moves through your process, its size will gradually decrease, giving it a funnel-type shape. Let’s explain that idea a bit more.
At the beginning of the process, you are casting a wide net in the hopes of attracting a lot of attention. For each time someone notices your company online, they add themselves into your funnel. Since you are just building awareness at this point, your audience is going to be very large. Thus, this step is depicted by being the widest part of your funnel.
As people work their way through your marketing process, you will either retain the interested or lose the uninterested. As they learn more about your company, they may decide that your offer isn’t for them and they drop out. This takes your initial audience size and drops it down to a smaller audience. These stages are depicted by the narrowing middle of a funnel.
Finally, we come to the bottom of the funnel. At this point, you have retained only those who are truly interested in your company. They are interested in making a purchase from you or signing up to be your client. Since they have been converted, they are now able to leave the funnel. You audience has been slowly reduced and only a handful of qualified individuals are left. This is how we have come to the smallest section of funnel.
What Are the Marketing Funnel Stages?
According to Feedough.com, there are six stages within a marketing funnel. Here is a brief description of each stage.
This is the first stage of a marketing funnel and is represented by being at the top of your funnel. This stage assumes that your audience is not aware of your company and/or your product or service. Therefore, you are beginning to build that awareness. This can be done through a number of different means, but examples could include a Facebook Ad or a Tweet. However, your audience becomes aware of you, you want to pique their interest and get them to want to know more.
Now that your audience is aware of you, you want them to learn more about you. During this stage, the ball is in your audience’s court. They will use their various research methods to gather information about you to determine whether they should carry on or not. They can use word of mouth, product reviews, testimonials etc., in order to form an idea about you.
While you can’t control how your audience learns about you, you can monitor what is being said about you. You can post positive reviews and testimonials on your website. You can also create a FAQ section to answer common questions you have received. If, however, you have some less than flattering comments online, don’t despair. Check out our article here on how to save your online reputation.
If your audience liked what they saw, they will have moved on to the consideration stage. At this point, you are back in the driver’s seat and are able to start engaging with your audience. You can provide more information about your product or provide them with an opportunity to test it out with a free trial or a discount offer.
During this stage, you are waiting for your audience to act. This shows that they liked what they have heard and are willing to go further with you. This could be as simple as putting something in their cart or signing up for a free trial. To help persuade your audience to take this step, here is an article on how to improve your Call-to-Action buttons.
The evaluation stage is the last step your audience will take before making their decision. They will review what they know about you to determine if you seem trustworthy. They will also determine whether your product or service will solve the problem that they have. If you pass this scrutiny, your audience will move on to the final stage of your funnel.
Throughout your funnel, you have been slowly weeding out visitors who are not in need of your product or service. For those that make it to this final step, they have qualified themselves and are ready to make a purchase from you. This is the stage where all your time and efforts pay off.
Marketing Funnels and Conversion Rates
Now that you know what a marketing funnel is, you may be wondering how it can help your conversion rate. By creating a marketing funnel for your business, you can break down each stage of your plan into these steps. You can then evaluate each step to see how many people arrive at that step and how many move on to the next step.
The end goal is to get as many people to the purchase step as possible. Therefore, if you can make improvements to each stage of the process, you can increase how many people make it to the end. Thereby increasing your conversion rates.
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Jolene is a strong operations, compliance, and paralegal manager. She also loves to research and write about business as well as personal topics that help others.