A lot of people suffer from the misconception that anything to do with a sales funnel only applies to businesses that exist solely online. But the honest truth is that even brick-and-mortar locations of any size can benefit immensely from optimizing their sales (or growth) funnels. We live in the information age, and your business needs to have a strong digital presence if you have any hope of building a thriving business. Between social media, smart phones, and the ease that everyone accesses information these days, you would be remiss if you didn’t spend some time creating a polished web presence.
But any web presence is going to need a steady stream of quality leads to help a business grow. Otherwise, you may experience dips in your sales and lose tons of revenue generating opportunities. But basing your strategy on rumors and myths that are spread by word of mouth is a sure-fire way to destroy your relationship with your audience and annihilate your ability to identify quality traffic and increase your bottom line. Don’t buy into the following sales funnel myths or your business may end up paying a heavy price. Here are 4 things that you can avoid so you don't end up with a clogged growth funnel.
Myth: Cram as Many Leads into Your Funnel as Possible
Sometimes in life, less is more and some people suffer from the delusion that need to force as many leads through their sales funnel as possible. Can you guess why this could be a bad idea? All leads weren’t created equal, and some of them can be low quality leads. For example, if an Internet user clicked on a link to your site because they thought you were selling motorcycle helmets when you actually only sell bicycle helmets, do you think that lead is in the purchasing state of mind? Of course not – because you didn’t have what they were looking for. While you may have driven one more visitor to your site, what’s the point? They were not a high quality lead.
Also, too many leads can be too much of a good thing. Some businesses, such as those in service industries, need to focus on the highest quality leads in their sales funnel because their time is their largest constraint. It would do no good to sift through 100 low quality leads to find the 1 lead who is looking to build a long term relationship with your business. As such, you need to make sure you are following up with the right leads and opening a dialogue with them accordingly.
Myth: Online Lead Generation and Sales Funnels are Ineffective
Ha – this one couldn’t be further from the truth. But many people still think that only face to face and in-person lead generation from members of their sales staff is the only credible way to generate quality leads. While it does depend heavily on the industry your business is in, the vast majority of organizations will benefit tremendously from online sales funnels. But you are going to need to appeal to them in the same manner that you would if you were face-to-face. For example, your business will still need to solve a genuine problem, you will need to be credible and have untarnished authority, and your lead is still going to need to trust your business.
Myth: You Need to Hire In-House Staff and Pay Big Bucks
Believe it or not, you don’t need an in-house team to build and optimize a sales funnel. In fact, this is probably the least favorable option due to all of the employees you would need to hire and the amount of time it would take to coordinate them. You can save a lot of time and money by hiring an external professional to do the work for you. They myth that many people believe is that they won’t be able to control the messages they send to prospective clients unless they manage their sales funnel completely on their own. Not only will an external professional be able to take guidance and direction to create messages to your liking, they already have experience with sales funnels so they can likely help you identify the best strategies.
Any good Internet marketing professional already knows how important brand representation is in their work, and they won’t cut corners because they know that would build a bad reputation. By working with an experienced marketing professional, you can rest assured that your brand will be well represented and that your brand will be presented with high quality leads and opportunities.
Myth: You Only Need to Focus on the “Best” Sales Channel
Your customers and leads can come from a lot of different sales channels. Focusing solely on one channel excludes a vast amount of potential customers that come from other channels. As such, you need to make sure you have all your bases covered. A professional will be able to help you identify different sales channels and sift through them to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Don’t think that this means you should pursue every channel though. Remember that too many leads can be too much of a good thing if the leads are low quality. By working with an experienced Internet marketer, you will be able to identify the best sources for leads while pruning away the less desirable sources of leads.