3 min read
How to Build and Make the Most of a Sales Funnel
The sales funnel is an extremely useful sales tool that helps you grow your business and convert leads into loyal customers. Read on to learn more about the sales funnel and see how to create your own customizable sales funnel. Using a combination of automated and manual processes, nurture your leads with personalized campaigns and track each lead in detail.
What is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel is a sales tool designed to shorten the sales cycle and help nurture and convert qualified leads. With a sales funnel, salespeople follow a lead from the first point of contact, through to turning them into a qualified lead or prospect, and through until they close as a customer. A sales funnel is also often called a sales pipeline.
A sales funnel or pipeline has a number of different stages. The stages are simply a number of steps that make up the sales process. Throughout the sales cycle, many prospects and leads will drop off. The sales funnel helps salespeople identify the hottest leads who are most likely to convert. Having a well-organized sales funnel keeps all leads organized and displayed for convenience.
The intent is to nurture the lead (with relevant content and salespeople contact) all the way through to conversion, or until they drop off. In general, the farther a lead moves into a sales funnel the more likely they are to close.
What are the benefits of using sales funnels?
Having a sales funnel is a great way to keep everything organized and identify your hot leads. It enables you to keep a detailed record of where everyone is at, how engaged they are and where they still need to go.
Looking at your sales funnel, you can identify which leads are hot so you can focus more effort on them. You can keep track of how many times leads have been contacted manually and automatically, view additional personal information that has been gathered about the lead and more.
With an automated sales solution, contacts can be added both manually and automatically. Contacts can be in several pipelines at the same time.
How do I create my own sales funnel?
Different sales software allows you to set up sales funnels in different ways, so we're just going to look at our own tool. Using the SimplyCast Contact Manager, you can set up a basic sales pipeline with just a few clicks.
Sign in to your SimplyCast account (or sign up for a free account if you don't have one yet) and click on the Contact Manager. Then select "Pipelines" and click "Add Pipeline." Choose a name for the pipeline and click "Create Pipeline."
From there, build and customize your pipeline based on your own needs. Add as many stages as you need, name them and choose distinguishing colors. Edit and delete stages at any time. As mentioned earlier, you can add contacts to your pipeline manually. Contacts can also be added automatically once you have an automated process set up.
How are contacts added to my sales funnel automatically?
Your sales pipelines can be connecting to the automated marketing campaigns you set up using SimplyCast 360. You can map different touchpoints in the automated campaign to different stages in your sales cycle. As leads are nurtured by the campaign, they automatically move through the sales funnel.
For example, you could create an automated lead nurturing campaign in SimplyCast 360 that starts with a signup form and includes three different automated follows-ups that are driven by recipient behavior.
You could then map this campaign to a sales pipeline so you can easily see where leads are in the sales process. You could associate the signup form with Stage 1 in a sales pipeline so that when a lead signs up through that form they are added to pipeline Stage 1. You could then associate the follow-up email campaigns to different sales stages so that leads are filtered through the sales funnel based on their actions.
How do leads move through my sales funnel?
Leads may move both automatically and manually. You can manually move a lead to a new pipeline stage at any time. Leads are moved automatically based on what actions they take. The more engaged they become, the farther down your pipeline they move.
In the SimplyCast Contact Manager, you can score and rate leads (both automatically and manually), add notes, rate the lead as hot, view their activity and behavior, set up marketing tasks, custom alerts and timelines and much more.
If you have different staff members working on your campaign or different salespeople who are in charge of specific leads, set up multi-user accounts. Multi-user accounts give each staff member and salesperson a separate login and the master account holder assigns specific permissions for each. This gives you control over how which staff members have access to what campaigns and which contacts.
Try SimplyCast 360 and the Contact Manager for free!
Sign up for a 14 day free trial of SimplyCast 360. You can try creating your own campaigns and sales pipelines. The Contact Manager is completely free to use for all SimplyCast users.