Sales funnelsFunnels are a basic marketing technique used by every serious eCommerce business. If you haven't implemented funnels in your business, you're probably losing a large number of customers every day who look at your shop but don't make a purchase.
It is also one of the more effective strategies to get higher returns on your investment in advertising e.g. Google Ads, Facebook Ads etc. If you advertise online and have not implemented a funnel strategy your costs are higher than they could be.
The problem is that inexperienced people find it very difficult to use this technique, and trouble arises at virtually every stage of implementation.
Sometimes we do not know how to build the additional pages needed for this strategy, we do not know how to connect them properly, and even if we do, we often do it in an incompetent way or on our knees, which consequently does not bring any benefit, but only a waste of time.
In fact, if you are working in a WordPress environment all you need to do is take an interest in the subject matter and without coding you will be able to implement sales funnels on your sites. In this article you will find one way to go.
Sales funnels can help you
I very often talk to online shop owners and only a small percentage of them know what the sales funnel function is. For most of them the term is familiar from hearsay, they know that it is a way to increase sales, but nothing else! There are also those who ask "Wait, wait... what was it? What funnels?"
Those who know what funnels are, at least in a superficial way, for the most part do not go into the subject thinking that it is probably too complex, and that they cannot afford to hire a sensible marketing agency which is able to introduce such implementations in an effective manner. I often hear "Mr Krzyśek, I want a simple shop without fireworks. Products, basket, checkout and that's it". The question is, however, why does this shop exist? So that there are products, a shopping basket and a cash register? Or to generate income, a specific income. When I sometimes ask this question, the answer is: "Of course income, but at the moment I do not have the money to invest in this shop".
If someone thinks that they will launch a shop for free or for a few tens of zlotys a month and will make a lot of money from it in a year's time, they are terribly wrong in 99.9% cases. This will never happen. A shop launched in such a way has little chance to stand out on the constantly growing eCommerce market. Take this to heart so that in a year's time you won't say that Krzysiek from JZS was right. Take an interest in strategies which you can implement yourself. You don't have to hire an agency! This is your business, so you should care about it.
What is a sales funnel
In the simplest terms, a sales funnel is the path your customer has to follow, from first contact with your brand to purchase. In other words, it's a way of turning a potential customer into an actual customer, and even better, into a loyal customer who will keep coming back.
To do this, you need to take it through several stages of the funnel, which may vary slightly depending on what the specifics of your business are. The basic structure of the funnel is:
- Awareness of your brand. That is, finding you in the crowd. A customer may have found your shop using a Google search, they may have found it from a Facebook ad or another social media post. Whatever the case, they have found you. So the first stage of the funnel is behind you.
- Curiosity - The customer arrives at your website, and it has to make him actually interested in what you have to offer. Initially, this interest is probably already there since he has looked at you, but he doesn't yet know how you can meet his needs. He still has no reason to trust you and is generally very distanced, although curious. By presenting your offer, you can warm up this curiosity and try to convince the client that it is worth buying the product from you.
- Decision - When you manage to bring the customer to this stage, the chance of making a sale is really quite big. The customer browses through your materials and makes a decision to buy. If he is sure that he wants to leave money with you, he starts the process. However, there is still no guarantee that they will complete it. As you may know, the rate of abandoned shopping carts can be very high.
- Action - That is, what you are waiting for the most. The action is to make the payment and really turn the potential customer into a flesh-and-blood customer 🙂 .
When constructing a sales funnel strategy, we first and foremost aim to make this final stage as frequent as possible. And this is where the whole difficulty with funnels lies. How to develop them, how to control them, how to optimise them?
How to build a sales funnel in WordPress and WooCommerce
If you have decided to WordPress and WooCommerce you can congratulate yourself. It's the only environment that gives you, in the field of sales optimisation, so many possibilities for free or at a reasonable price.
What you need at the start
You definitely need a website or online shop to run your funnel. WordPress hosting And a domain is the foundation to get off the ground. If you're just starting out take a look at these descriptions:
It's worth looking into a fast theme, as the speed of landing pages and the entire funnel will affect your results. Have a look at the text: The best free WordPress themes.
Apart from the website/shop and the fast theme, you will need additional extensions (plugins), which you can choose individually or use the ones I will mention in a moment.
Recommended plugins for building sales funnels
If you want to go for the lowest line of resistance without incurring major expenses, use these tools:
- Elementor - is a page builder for WordPress that makes it easy for you to work with page content inside your funnels
- CartFlows - The plugin, available for free from the WordPress repository, allows you to create landing pages, upsells, order pages and thank you pages for your purchase.
- WooCommerce - online shop plugin which is necessary to add products, accept orders and process them. It is not a necessary tool because there are solutions for likes that do not require it, but CartFlows, yes.
Quick process for building a sales funnel
I hope what I've written so far hasn't scared you off. Note that what I have mentioned so far are the total basics of working with WordPress. I believe that it is no longer a mystery to you that how to install WordPress, how to install plug-ins and motive. If you can do this you have the first step behind you.
After installing the plugins, add the products to your shop that you will sell using the sales funnel strategy. This is important because without it, you will not be able to configure the CartFlows plugin correctly and thus create a funnel.
You add products in WooCommerce in the standard way by going to Products > Add New. This step is no different to what you've probably done many times before when running your shop. After adding products, don't forget to configure your shop's payment methods as well. If they are not there, no funnel will help.
Add a Landing Page
A landing page is a subpage of your shop where you present one specific product or service that you want to sell in your funnel. One main product, and then you can upsell other products. At the beginning, however, concentrate on one product that generates or has the potential to generate you a lot of sales. Create your first landing page for it. The CartFlows plugin will make this task easier for you. Just add a new funnel in it and it will automatically create an LP for you, which you can freely modify in Elementor.
I mentioned them above. The landing page itself is meant to encourage and convince a visitor from, say, a Google ad to buy. The upsell, on the other hand, is the next step in the process, which is to offer something extra.
For example, a customer decides to move further into our funnel, and at a certain stage we offer them something special that is only available here and now. The customer can additionally buy another product, perhaps related to the main one but with a special discount that can only be used at the time of purchase. This is a very effective way to increase the number of sales in online shops and is often used in marketing campaigns.
CartFlows will create sub-pages for you with Upsells that you change and customise as you wish.
Add procurement page
By default WooCommerce offers, in my opinion, a rather clumsy look to the ordering page. Yes these pages can be modified by themes, but this does not always do the job.
CartFlows will create an order sub-page that the person in the sales funnel will go to. This page can be individually designed for each product you sell using landing pages! Great because at each stage and for each product, you can design the look of the pages so that they don't distract the customer by giving them maximum comfort, resulting in fewer abandoned baskets.
Add a thank you page
The last stage of the order process is the thank you page. This page is basically only displayed when the buyer has reached the end and has become your customer. It's worth making sure it looks good. You can even use it for another sales boost 🙂 Someone who has just bought something from you right now is most likely to buy more. That is why upsells work so well.
Sales funnel optimisation
Simply creating a like and all the pages associated with it is no guarantee of success. Internet marketing is constant testing, testing and more testing. What works for one company may not work for another and vice versa. Therefore, when you listen to marketers, e.g. in social media, remember this and be aware that what they do is also a strategy, which is primarily for their benefit. They show what works for them and what works for their clients, but it is not said that translated into another land 1:1 will also be effective for you. You will probably have to modify them.
Effectiveness is achieved step by step. It takes a lot of patience and perseverance. I know that there are people who say: "I took a sales course from person X. I am excited because everything this person says is so simple that it is unbelievable". I am excited because everything this person says is so simple that it is unbelievable". Indeed, many of these techniques and strategies are seemingly simple procedures, but you'll find this out by trying to implement them in your own backyard. Something will work and something else will have the opposite effect and instead of making money you will simply lose out. Don't get carried away by emotions. Be alert, test, observe and draw conclusions.
Oh dear, and now Krzysiek is going to write about some A/B tests. I have already worked so hard on the construction of the funnel, and here something else needs to be changed?
Yes, you need to change. A/B testing, in simple terms, allows you to spot the strengths and weaknesses of each stage of the sales funnel. Sometimes even such a small action as changing the colour or text in the headline can increase or decrease sales.
Every eCommerce project, which cares about squeezing as much as possible from its activity, constantly performs A/B tests of landing pages and other subpages in the funnel structure. This is the only way to optimise sales and at the same time to make good use of the money invested in advertising.
Sales funnels have been used in online marketing for years and are still effective. If you know what this strategy is and can implement it head on in your campaigns you will definitely see a noticeable increase in sales and a decrease in abandoned shopping carts.
Tools like CartFlows really do a great job, but they're not the only ones. I'll soon be preparing a description of a WordPress plugin that doesn't even require you to run a WooCommerce shop. It provides the ability to add products and build sales funnels by itself. For now, I am testing it. It's a young and unknown tool, but promising, and at a much more attractive price than similar ones available on the market.
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