Taylor Swift’s love life is more complicated than the explanation of “almost surely” and you never know who she is dating at the moment. Being Taylor’s boyfriend is quite an unsteady position actually. The singer herself claims, that she’s a typical woman, who cannot be possessed, and “designed to be single”.
Our website’s sales funnel can be just as unpredictable, precarious and extremely complex as Taylor. She is also independent, of which men are a bit afraid of. I don’t blame you. As long as she is not our ex, she won’t write another love song about our breakup. This doesn’t differ much from our attitude towards the conversion funnel: as long as it is working and we are having sales, we don’t want to bother it.
Businesses often tend to be immensely scared of fine-tuning their own conversion funnels even though they might earn way more if they did so. The keys are profound analysis, deliberate planning plus a little experience-based refinement. This way your altered sales funnel can achieve amazing results and way more profit than you have ever imagined.
All these can be learned. With this article, we wish to provide you a few tricks and tips on how to plan, analyze and optimize your sales and incoming traffic. You will be able to understand this mystery and increase your website’s performance and sales.
First of all, to be completely clear, let us define the term sales funnel, or conversion funnel itself. Sales funnel, I knew you were trouble when you walked in…
What is it exactly?
Allow me to present the definition by a lively example. Let’s suppose we wish to put oil in our car – we need a funnel, right? No matter how clumsy we are; as long as the oil ends up in the funnel, it will reach the engine sooner or later. The funnel will lead the oil into the engine tank. Now, in case of a business, our website is the funnel that drives all incoming traffic to us. It’s also of what we are able to make sales later on. By definition, the sales funnel describes each step in a consumer’s journey to purchasing an item from an e-commerce site. The shape of the funnel represents a gradual decline in the number of customers who reach each step.
The sales funnel …
Begins where the potential customer visits our website (or decides to visit): this is the entry step. As a preceding measure, the company has to generate brand awareness. A paid online advertisement or an AdWords campaign will attract them. A profound analysis and paying close attention to the success rates will help you specify what methods work best for your business.
With strategic, user-friendly design and readable content, the sales funnel will convert visitors to buyers or at least make them subscribe to your newsletter, register or spend some time on your website. These visitors are often in need of a special product for which they are purposely searching and, of course, are willing to pay for it. In other words, they are looking for a solution to their problem so they check if your website offers one or not. If yes, you made a sale.
You might think the funnel ends here, but it doesn’t! You don’t want your first conversion to be the last. We all wish that these visitors and buyers turn into loyal, returning customers in the future and spend even more money at your site. Now it’s time to build a great customer relationship by showing them some of your amazing products and services.
If everything goes as planned, you will have a loyal (hopefully a brand evangelist) customer by the end of your conversion funnel, who will buy anything from you or at least a more expensive product.
Now we defined the conversion funnel and broke it down to its steps and elements. Our next step is to give you a few tips on how to improve your sales funnel and thus increase your sales.
It is important to identify and understand the different segments and steps of your funnel. At each step of the funnel, there are visitors (or customers) who might exit the journey and won’t make any further purchases. Know your funnel and apply online tools, such as Google Analytics’ Funnel Visualization Report. It’s an effective funnel performance metric by means of which you can identify the flaws, see where you lose most of the visitors and check what can be improved there.
2. AVOID SHOPPING CART ABANDONMENT AT ALL COSTS
The solution is quite simple: find a way to enter them into another conversion funnel. The easiest way is to send them a polite reminder email. Besides, today’s online world allows us to use remarketing. Such will also remind the lost visitor of the previously viewed product. It uses PPC, Facebook ads or any other remarketing system to regain them. Many companies prefer live chat to find out about the most frequent problems and help the customers through their journey on the website. One of the reasons people leave their cart and exit your site is because they find it hard to use and get stuck in the process. Live chat can help to solve the bugs and after making it easier to use, your abandonment rate will also drop.
3. MAP YOUR BUYER’S JOURNEY
The ultimate goal of a business is to understand customer behavior. This requires the comprehensive analysis of the journey and the funnel. How did they find the website, what were their actions leading to a sale and how did they transform from a lead to a buyer? You also have to understand what content made them become leads. Create different types of contents for different types of customers and funnel areas. To make your life easier and bypass guesswork, there are tools that let you track visitor activity. These include solutions such as mouse movement tracking, segment heatmaps, click heatmaps, funnel optimization and more. These online platforms provide a great and simple way to track customer pain points and to see where changes have to be made to better retain visitors throughout the process.
4. IMPROVE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
According to Econsultancy Digital Trends 2015 report, which was based on a global survey, great customer experience is considered to be the most important competitive advantage, beating product quality and price. Make it easy, fun and pleasurable to shop from your e-commerce site!
According to a study by Esteban Kolsky, “it is 6-7 times more expensive to attract new customers than to keep existing customers”. This means that a business rather has to focus on improving the experience for existing customers. Nowadays, people can experience a brand in countless ways, such as content and event marketing, social media campaigns, purchase, usage and, of course, word-of-mouth.
In conclusion, once we get to know and understand our sales funnel, realize the hidden potential in it, we won’t be afraid to apply a couple of changes to improve it.
Dating Taylor Swift looks way scarier now, doesn’t it? And to be stylish, may I close this article by a Taylor Swift lyrics line: “I know something now, I know something now I didn’t before.”