Once someone acts to visit your website, they have transitioned from the “Awareness” section to the ‘‘Interest’’ section of the funnel. At this point, they will have expectations of what they should see based on the channel and content that compelled them to learn more about your offering.
It is common to have different landing pages for distinct channels or pieces of content. For example, a guitar store is having a discount on Gibson guitars. By creating unique content and posting it to Facebook to promote the sale, it meets the expectation of the prospective customer to land on a page that only shows the Gibson guitars that are on sale. Should they land on the homepage, they may not browse every guitar the store has to find the Gibsons on sale.
The Interest section aims to provide the information a visitor expects with as few hurdles as possible between landing on the website and entering their payment information.
User-friendliness is fundamental. When a prospective customer visits your website, you want your website to perform quickly, be mobile-friendly, and be easy to navigate. You do not want to have wasted the effort and resources to get someone to the website only to find the page does not load. In that scenario, you risk the visitor never returning or, worse, sharing their experience and advising others not to visit your website.
Mobile-friendliness is also essential; each year, more people use their phones as the primary choice for browsing the web. Make sure each page of your website functions on desktop and mobile.
Custom landing pages are a great way to increase your conversion rate. By utilizing A/B testing, you can see your visitors' preferences. Once you have created the landing page, make a duplicate and change one aspect of the page. For example, have a short product description on Page A and a long product description on Page B. Direct traffic to both pages evenly and after a month review Page A and Page B to see which one converted more visitors into customers. Adopt the page with higher conversions. You can then change another aspect (such as the product images) and repeat the A/B testing over another month. To get accurate data in A/B testing, you should only change one variable at a time. Changing multiple aspects will make it harder to analyze results.
Regardless of whether you use A/B testing or not, you will want to ensure that you prompt visitors to provide you with some of their information––at minimum, their email address. The prompt can be as bold or passive as you like. An aggressive prompt would be an on-page pop-up that covers the screen and asks for the visitor’s information. A passive option would be allowing unhindered navigation with a contact form embedded on the page for users to provide their information when they see it. Once you have their information, you can send them materials about your offering to keep their interest in your product or service.
Wherever your visitor lands, you want to ensure that the page is on-brand. Brand coherence means having your fonts, colors, and style consistent with your logo. All forms of your marketing materials should carry that consistency.
Once a visitor enters your website, it is an opportunity for you to provide them with everything that they need to know to make an informed purchasing decision. Leaving out specifications or having vague messaging will result in leads who may have otherwise made a purchase losing interest. Messaging that is on-point will help you obtain a higher conversion rate. Great messaging often contains the following:
- Distinguishing Factors
- What makes your brand unique? Why is it better than the competitors?
- What is your desired outcome for those who use your product or service?
- Speak the language of your target audience to show you understand their needs
- Origin Story
- Relate and appeal to your audience by telling them a compelling story of how you have gotten to where you are and what inspired you to get there
When creating your messaging, there is a delicate balance to strike; you want to have the customer feel confident your product or service will solve their problem. It is easy to end up with boring messaging or pushy messaging. For example, A candle shop with bland messaging might state, “Our candles smell great.” Pushy messaging oversell the product. It is not credible for a candle shop to claim, “Our candles will change your life.” Instead, saying “Our candles enhance your home” with our candles" is credible and delivers the desired effect.
Your product price might be fixed, but your display is not. When browsing the web, you may have noticed websites that sell subscription services and high-priced goods tend to have the price buried a few pages deep. Often you will scroll past compelling imagery and rave reviews before getting a bit of sticker shock.
It is impossible to unread, or un-see materials navigated past to get to the price. So even if they decide to evaluate a competitor’s offering, you have provided a bench-mark the competitor will need to surpass. This strategy appeals to the lead and builds confidence before giving them cause to reconsider purchasing (e.g., a high price).
Alternatively, with lower-priced offerings, you may want to make the price unmissable to instantly grab attention and make your lead feel comfortable that they can purchase without heavily impacting their wallet.
It is a good idea to look at your competitors' offerings and get a feel for what appeals to you and the industry standard.
Whether you value quality over quantity will likely shape the digital purchasing experience of your customers.
A quality-focused approach will put more effort towards communicating with individual leads, such as a live chat where a representative or A.I. program answers questions and guides the customer toward their purchase. Again this is commonly associated with higher-priced items where a lead may take more time evaluating the offering.
A quantity-focused approach will prioritize efficiency and volume of turnover, such as curating a generic experience for the target demographic without attempting to engage leads unless they reach out for assistance. Attention to inventory or availability is crucial–– canceling because of lack of stock or double-booking and refunding a purchase is a wasted effort.
Some leads won’t decide the first time they view your offering. Give this customer a way to stay connected with you (via email, social media, or phone number). That way, you can reach out to them later to re-spark their interest and see if they are closer to having made up their mind.
The cherries on top
We have established that implementing a successful sales funnel requires a good strategy. Maintaining it is easier but still needs attention.
Focusing on the final conversion rate is a trap. You will not know how your sales funnel performs by just watching the bottom line. Check the various metrics on your social media channels, Google Analytics account, and MailChimp (or other email marketing tools) to understand what is resonating with your demographic. Spend time reviewing each element of your funnel.
Review your data at regularly scheduled intervals to pivot the campaign if necessary. When running multiple campaigns, you will want to focus your attention and resources on the ones that gain the most traction, even if that means stopping less productive ones early.
Lastly, take the time to learn why people are exiting your funnel. Use Google Analytics, or an interaction tracking tool like FullStory, to track how visitors move across your website. In addition, you can survey your demographic directly through your mailing list. Once you learn what influences people against your offering, you can make the required changes.
Take a look back at our overview of the sales funnel article, to re-enforce your knowledge of how each of the sections work together.
Having a digital marketing agency like Think Design, with 25 years of experience working with Fortune 500 Companies, will make it easier to implement and manage your sales funnel.