Sales funnel guide – Optimising your funnel
Firstly, a well-defined sales funnel is the ace up your business sleeve. Key to helping you understand your customer journeys and optimise the sales process, your sales funnel is a vital strategic component that feeds both revenue and business efficacy. Despite the above benefits, a staggering 68% of B2B enterprises have yet to identify their marketing sales funnel . Yes, over two thirds of businesses are missing out on vital sales insights and opportunities, risking their bottom line. That’s why the Think Beyond marketers put together a sales funnel guide outlining what a sales funnel is and how to make the most of this powerful tool.
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What is a sales funnel and how does it work?
A sales funnel is a visual representation of the journey a prospect takes from first awareness of your brand towards purchase.
Resembling an inverted pyramid, sales funnels are frequently divided into three ever decreasing stages. These are top, middle and bottom with only the most engaged prospects moving to close:
● Top-of-the-funnel (ToFu): The awareness phase
Prospects have identified a problem and are researching solutions. Sales efforts at this stage are centred around education and often include cold touches with material such as blog posts or infographics.
● Middle-of-the-funnel (MoFu): The qualifying stage
Buyers are actively considering your solution and engage with sellers. Marketing material such as e-books or in-depth guides combined with sales demos and meetings help to qualify prospects and push them to convert.
● Bottom-of-the-funnel: (BoFu): Decision and close
Your lead has made the decision to purchase. Sales teams produce proposals or terms of contracts backed up with content such as feature comparisons and product videos. Win rates can vary dramatically here depending upon how engaged a prospect is and external factors such as budgetary concerns.
Ultimately, a sales funnel allows you to strategically plan marketing and sales activities to direct and nurture prospects towards buying. Each stage contains more meaningful interactions than the last.
The importance of funnel management
The importance of a well-constructed sales funnel goes beyond planning activity. Sales funnel analysis can reveal areas of leakage to protect that all important bottom line.
Do you know what your most profitable customer acquisition channel is? What is your MQL to SQL conversion rate? Why are you winning or losing deals?
By continually analysing your sales funnel for drop-off and examining pipeline velocity you can prevent misalignment and ultimately, lost revenue. In this sense, a marketing sales funnel is a work in progress. It is subject to constant tweaks and A/B testing as marketers seek to optimise interaction. Creation of new calls to action, landing pages, drip e-mail campaigns, nurture programmes and more.
Accurate data and tracking always remain a constant in your sales funnel. The average B2B purchase cycle takes many months and involves multiple decision makers. An accurate, optimised sales funnel is essential to ensure that no opportunities are lost. In summary, your funnel is only as good as the data you put in.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems can take your funnel management one step further. They provide greater visibility across the prospect cycle and automatically touch and nurture leads, prioritised with lead scoring.
How Think Beyond can guide your sales funnel to improve your sales
Think Beyond is marketing consultancy agency committed increasing sales and marketing potential. A philosophy of partnership and a data-driven approach means our expert marketers work with you to develop bespoke sales solutions.
Based on data analysis and research, our marketing consultants provide full sales strategy support. We can help identify where your leads come from, create and optimise your sales funnel, provide tailored sales enablement workshops and analyse customer life cycles and buying patterns. Coupled with expertise in marketing automation and CRM, we provide a full tookit to improve sales performance.
Contact the Think Beyond sales specialists today
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Finally, find out how we have already helped North West business take control of their sales strategy.