In a nutshell, a sales funnel is a marketing system that leads someone through a systematic process with the goal of purchasing your product or service.
The idea behind it is to turn a lead into a prospect, then a prospectinto a customer, who finally becomes a repeat customer buying over and over again. Sales funnels have been around for decades, but since the introduction of a number of online marketing tools & methodologies they have become easier to scale and manage.
When visualizing an actual sales funnel, the top is wide heavy with many people while the lower end is much smaller with fewer people, this is how you should view your leads, prospects and customers. At the top of your funnel you have a vast amount of leads, it’s unrealistic to expect all your leads to turn into customers at the end as not all leads will be interested in your product or service. However, there will be a percentage of leads who are interested, these will then become your prospects.
Depending on how truly awesome your sales funnel is, will ultimately decide on how many of these prospects will become customers. Once again, don’t expect to turn all prospects into customers as it’s an impossible task. At the bottom of your funnel you have your customers. As you work down each step of the funnel, you will filter out the weak leads (who have no interest in buying), allowing you to focus your energy on ‘qualified leads’ who have a higher chance of buying.
Sales funnels are awesome because they avoid you from wasting time and money to sell to people who aren’t interested, and instead allows you to focus on the meaty leads where the money is tied up. The more well defined your lead generation tactics, landing pages and follow up emails are, will greatly increase the number of qualified leads, prospects and customers your funnel will produce.