It doesn’t matter what your business does or sells — in order to survive you need customers — new ones and repeat ones.

To get new customers and keep the ones you already have, you market. You might run social media ads, send emails to your lists, or use another form of online marketing. Most business owners think that it’s these efforts that cause the sales to come in, and while they help, it’s not the sole reason.

Not every customer is going to buy from you after their first interaction with your brand. It’s often an automated follow-up email or retargeting ads that will pull them back in and be responsible for the conversion.

An effective conversion funnel helps to push the consumer to the end, which ultimately results in a sale, and revenue for the company. There are four major components of a successful funnel:


  • Awareness Building


  • Interest Building


  • Consideration


  • Triggering the Conversion


There are a lot of funnel products on the market, with Click Funnels being the household name, and I say that based on the fact that they are everywhere and not based on it being the best solution. I’m not a fan of generic funnels that claim to work for everyone.

If you are in the internet marketing or e-commerce world, you have definitely seen Click Funnels ads and probably even looked at their offering. All the “funnels” look the same and have the same basic flow.

You need to build conversion funnels with both your target customer’s behavior in mind as well as the product or service you are selling. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution.

Subscribe to your competitor’s email lists and go through their checkout process and abandon the purchase while in the cart and see what kind of funnel they place you in. This is often a great way to get some new ideas and also see what is currently working in your specific niche.

There are many different kinds of marketing funnels, they all have the basic four ingredients..


Build awareness around your brand and product/service.

When you build a funnel, every component of it doesn’t exist together, as there are many outside factors that contribute to its success and effectiveness. Awareness is one of the most important things to work on – I mean, how else will anyone purchase your products or services if they don’t know you exist?

There are several ways to generate interest around your offers, and it takes a combination of branding and offer-specific marketing to draw eyes and attention, especially if you are in a very crowded niche. Let me break down some common ways right now that can help you build awareness for your brand, product, or service.


  • PR: Any time you can get your company mentioned in the news it places you in front of a new audience that has more than likely never heard of you before. If the mention or story is interesting or it is part of a highly popular topic, then you will see people visit your website as they will be curious to learn more.


  • Organic Social Media: There is a very good chance that not all of your social media followers are customers. Posting organically helps build awareness among them, but it can also help you reach new audiences as well with well thought-out hashtags and eye-catching images.


  • Paid Social Media: This is one of the most powerful ways to build instant awareness, as you have the ability to laser-target your ideal customer. If you know the majority of your customers are males, between the ages of 18 and 34, then you can make sure to build awareness to that specific demographic only.


  • Influencer Marketing: When you really sit down and find influencers that have loyal (and engaged) followers that also happen to be your target audience, it can instantly make your company appeal to them. The right influencer partnership can create instant awareness, sometimes only costing you free product or service.


  • Display Advertising: You aren’t always going to connect with someone after getting in front of them just once. It will often take multiple “touches” before your company will ring a bell. This is why display ads can be so effective in terms of creating awareness for your offers. Running ads on websites that your audience visits and being in their face several times prior to them coming in contact with your other marketing is an easy way to constantly create awareness.



Generate consumer interest.

You are never going to convert sales if your target audience isn’t interested in your offers. Sales will be slow if you just sit back and expect them to roll in without enticing your audience. The beautiful thing about a funnel is that it can work 24/7 for you, around the clock, constantly pushing traffic down the process towards the conversion.

There are many ways to get people interested and excited about your offer, and the excitement is the key factor, as it will often be the piece of the puzzle that pushes the person through the different stages the fastest. Automation is key, so make sure to take full advantage of it.


  • Automated Email Sequence: You need to come up with an automated email sequence that will educate and inform your list, while pushing for them to convert without annoying them to the point that they unsubscribe. It’s a good idea to test several different time intervals and levels of aggressiveness, because you will never know what the most effective strategy is until you test and collect hard data.


  • Automated Social Media: If someone is following your company on social media they are interested, so set up some automated posts that not only inform or educate, but also give them the opportunity to skip to the front of the line and convert on the spot. Often times a sale price or offer such as free shipping can accomplish this.


  • Create FOMO: Language like “Supply is limited,” “Limited time sale” or “Today only” does a great job at creating FOMO — fear of missing out. Nobody wants to miss out on a special deal, so it can often cause them to take action sooner than they initially anticipated.


  • Get Personal: Make sure your emails are personalized, addressing each list member by name. Something as simple as including their name in the subject line generates that initial interest that then triggers other components of the funnel to kick in and help push traffic to the converting endpoint.


  • Be Innovative: You need to stand out, so do things that other companies aren’t. Whether it’s live broadcasting or contests on social media, think of innovative ways to get consumers interested in your company. There are a lot of options out there, especially online, so do things that make your company impossible to ignore.


  • Leverage Your USP: Figure out what separates you from the other options and leverage it. Do you offer something the others don’t? What is something unique about your business model or the people that work for you? Every company has a USP, but not everyone identifies it correctly and leverages its potential.


Get people to consider your product or service by creating conversation.

The internet is responsible for making companies appear more human. Back in the day, it was nearly impossible to track down key executives or even find out what their names were. Now, thanks to websites and platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter, it’s not only easy to quickly find out who the people are behind a brand, but also to start a conversation with them.

Years ago, a CEO would never have a conversation with a customer. Now, it happens daily via email and direct messages. Look at T-Mobile’s CEO — he is a prime example of how accessible people behind the companies are, but also how that type of engagement can really help your business grow. Consumers are switching over to T-Mobile simply because they make it so simple to engage with their brand.

Even small companies and one-man shows can create conversations that lead to prospects advancing through the conversion funnel. Here are some simple examples.

Live Chat: Using live chat on your website can either push first-time visitors into your funnel or help you convert traffic that has come back from a step in your funnel, such as an automated email. Most chat software tells you if it’s a repeat visitor and where they were referred from, allowing you to properly engage with them depending on what stage they are in. Sometimes a little conversation that involves answering questions or explaining something in more detail is all that is needed to secure the conversion.


Social Media & Blog Comment Engagement: Most consumers live on social media throughout the entire day – they are glued to it every waking minute of their day. If they tweet at you or send your business a Facebook message, then make sure you reply and start a conversation. Also, if someone takes the time to leave a comment on your blog after reading your content, take time to reply, even if it’s just to thank them. That little acknowledgement shows them that your company cares. Make them feel like they are more than just a number.


Customer Surveys: Want to create intense conversation? Ask your customers as well as your prospects what they love about your company and what they would change if they could. This not only helps to strengthen the relationship and push more prospects to convert, but it also gives you valuable feedback you can then use to improve your business.



Push your funnel to the final conversion end-point.

Think of the prospects in your funnel as 10-year old children. You essentially have to tell them exactly what you want them to do, and often hold their hand while they do it. Treat your prospects like children, in the sense that you have to hold their hand until the end-point.

While some funnels can be designed to allow the prospect to cycle through again or even infinite number of times, you have to understand that the window eventually closes and a “dead” prospect can do more harm than good. Let me explain.

Let’s assume that you are an e-commerce website that sells baby clothes. Someone that opts-in to a list in exchange for a discount coupon code is clearly in the market to buy some baby clothes, whether it’s for their own child or as a gift.

They are either going to buy from your store or a competitor. In a situation like this, you would want to set up a very aggressive email auto-responder that touches them within 12 hours of submitting, encouraging them to use the code, mentioning that is expires in 24-hours, creating FOMO.

After a few months that prospect is almost useless. And if their email address remains on your list without them unsubscribing they will either ignore your emails and not open them or eventually remove themselves, and some will even report the email as spam since it’s been so long, and they may have honestly forgotten that they did give you permission to mail them.

So, in this example you want to push them to that end-point while holding their hand. Send them specific offers daily, direct linking to special offers and products on your website. Your email could be as simple as asking them if they are shopping for girls or boys baby clothes, giving them two options to click on: a huge pink button or a huge blue button, which then brings them to the respective gender’s page on your website.

I feel like a lot of businesses tend to walk on eggshells when it comes to that final push, because they don’t want to upset their prospects and cause them to exit their funnel. Someone with no intention of buying is better not being in your funnel and well-calculated aggressive final pushes can not only remove them, but also create more conversions that what you would attract by not being aggressive.




All you hear about these days is funnel building, funnel hacking, and funnel optimization, but many are just throwing these terms around as buzzwords. The same thing happened years ago when content marketing was gaining in popularity. Everyone was talking about it and blogging about it, but they didn’t fully understand it.

Since you need to nurture most customers before they will pull out their credit card and purchase, a funnel can be created to walk them through a nurturing process that you have pre-framed and designed in a way that best guides would-be buyers over the edge, triggering the conversion.

Funnels can get more intense and complex, but before you even think of that you need to be fully aware of the basics that I have highlighted above. These are the essentials that every single funnel must have, whether you are selling $20 e-commerce products or $50,000 high-ticket coaching packages.

Do you utilize a funnel in your sales process? If so, what are some tips you can share with our readers? I’d love to hear them as well, so drop them in the comments below. Also, if you have any conversion funnel questions you can leave them below as well and I will try to get them answered as fast as possible.

Tommy McDonald

Tommy is an SEO professional with years of experience running highly successful SEO companies, founded SerpLogic after noticing there was a major void when it came to options for SEO agencies needing a reliable and professional one-stop outsource solution.You can read all about me in the “About” page here on our blog!

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