Most people working in the field of growth or marketing understand the concept of a sales funnel in its broadest sense, without mastering all the basics. Nevertheless, having a good sales funnel is an essential step in sales prospecting.

What is a sales funnel? What are the stakes for companies? How to build an efficient funnel?

You can choose from many tools and strategies to build an effective sales funnel. In this article, we will see what it actually is, how it works, and the steps associated with it.

Let’s dive right in!

What is a sales funnel?

The sales funnel is a marketing notion that allows companies to better target their promotional efforts and maximize their chances of converting prospects into customers.

The goal of the sales funnel is to guide prospects through the buying (purchasing) cycle, providing them with the information they need at the right time, in order to encourage them to take action.

The sales funnel generally consists of several steps, from the need discovery by the prospect to closing the sale.

Each stage of the sales funnel corresponds to a key moment in the purchasing cycle, and each interaction with the prospect must be designed to help them progress through the sales funnel.

What is the objective of the sales funnel?

The objective of the sales funnel is to guide prospects through the purchasing cycle, providing them with the information they need at the right time, to encourage them to take action.

Further on, it’s a way for sales and other growth marketers to follow the evolution of prospects in their nurturing cycle until they become customers.

That’s why the sales funnel is often a guarantee of sales performance.

And this is also why multi-channel is so popular these days.

At LaGrowthMachine, we have developed our tool around this principle, which allows us to prospect on several channels at the same time… but not only!

Thanks to our tool, you can go even further by automating most of your prospecting tasks: emails, LinkedIn messages, follow-ups, etc.

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As you can see, automated multi-channel prospecting allows us to get almost 60% of responses, on cold prospecting, and all this with the click of a button.

Get 3.5X more leads!

Do you want to improve the efficiency of your sales department? With LaGrowthMachine you can generate on average 3.5x more leads while saving an incredible amount of time on all your processes.

By signing up today, you’ll get a free 14-day trial to test our tool!

Try now for free!

There are several approaches to define the different stages of the sales funnel:

  • the buying cycle
  • the TOFU / MOFU / BOFU

The buying cycle

In this approach, the sales funnel is generally composed of several stages, from the discovery of the need by the prospect to the completion of the sale.

Each stage of the sales funnel corresponds to a key moment in the buying cycle, and each interaction with the prospect must be designed to help them progress through the process.

Understanding this cycle is important because it allows companies to target their sales prospecting efforts to the needs and expectations of prospects at each stage.

The buying cycle generally consists of 5 stages:

1. Awareness of the need: the prospect begins to sense a lack or problem that they are looking to solve.

2. Information search: the lead gathers information on the different possible solutions to solve their problem.

3. Evaluation of options/comparison: the lead compares the different solutions and decides on the best option for them.

4. Decision making: the lead makes the decision to buy a solution and takes action.

5. Post-sales follow-up: the lead evaluates their satisfaction after buying and using the solution.

Each buying cycle stage is important, and it is crucial to target efforts to the lead’s needs at each stage.

LaGrowthMachine is compatible with most CRMs on the market. You can set up the solution so that when a lead responds to you, it automatically synchronizes with your CRM and appears with its specific status.

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For example, if a lead is looking for information, they’ll need content that helps them understand their problem and solutions. If a prospect is evaluating options, they will need more details about products or services to make a fair comparison. And if a prospect is about to make a decision, they’ll need a nudge to make up their mind.

TOFU, MOFU, BOFU

In reality, this approach is more of a macro process that takes into account the evolution of the lead in its entirety. From its identification (Marketing Qualified Lead – MQL) to its conversion (Sales Qualified Lead – SQL).

  • TOFU: Top of the Funnel. These are prospects who have just been identified, and who are therefore at the beginning of the path. They usually have an unidentified need and are not yet familiar with your company. The objective here is to make your company known and to arouse the prospect’s interest.
  • MOFU: Middle of the Funnel. These are prospects who have been identified, qualified, and are therefore further along in their journey. They usually have an identified need and are starting to show interest in your company. The objective here is to develop your relationship with the prospect and convert them into potential customers.
  • BOFU: Bottom of the Funnel. These are the prospects who are at the end of the funnel and the most advanced. They usually have an identified need and are interested in your company specifically. The objective here is to close the sale and convert them into customers. The sales funnel is part of this last step.
Lead parcours
The lead from MQL to SQL

How to build an effective sales funnel?

There are many tools and strategies to build an effective sales funnel, but here are some tips to help you get started:

1. Define the stages of your prospects’ buying cycles.

2. Identify the needs and expectations of the leads at each stage.

3. Create specific content and offers for each stage of the buying cycle.

4. Set up a lead scoring and tracking system to measure sales funnel performance.

5. Test different approaches and adapt based on the results.

By following these tips, you will be able to build a sales funnel that will guide prospects through the buying cycle and inspire them to take action.

What are the tools to consider in the sales funnel?

As we have seen previously, the sales funnel is broken down into several steps. In order to optimize the success of each of these steps, it can be interesting to equip yourself with several tools:

  • A CRM: to track all interactions between the company and the customer and centralize the data of your leads.
  • Marketing automation software: to perform lead nurturing and score your leads according to certain relevance criteria that you define beforehand.
  • Content marketing tools: to offer interesting content to your leads at each stage of the sales funnel (email, white paper, video, sales presentation).
  • A web analytics tool: to track the performance of the sales funnel, understand the behavior of your leads, identify areas for improvement and optimize conversion at each stage.

By implementing these different tools, you will be able to better guide your prospects throughout the buying cycle and optimize the results of your sales funnel.

Another interesting option to consider would be to opt for a sales automation software: by automating your prospecting on different outbound channels, you can schedule your target audience and your messages in advance to reach the right lead at the right time.

That’s what we do with LaGrowthMachine. The result? 3.5X more leads for an incredible amount of time saved on a daily basis!

Get 3.5X more leads!

Do you want to improve the efficiency of your sales department? With LaGrowthMachine you can generate on average 3.5x more leads while saving an incredible amount of time on all your processes.

By signing up today, you’ll get a free 14-day trial to test our tool!

Try now for free!