What is: Funnel (Marketing)


Peter Jobes

Definition of Funnel

Funnel is a marketing term used to describe the process of turning a visitor into a lead, and a lead into a buyer. It’s often associated with blogging, as blogs are one of the fundamental pillars to the success of most modern day online marketing efforts, such as inbound marketing.

As you attract customers to your site, some will be interested in exploring your services further, while some may not. Then some of the happy visitors may want to engage with your website and join your mailing list or another subscription-based service, and so the process goes until you’ve forged a group of loyal customers.

To illustrate the funnel effect, Trixmedia has come up with a useful graphic showing how visitors are converted into customers:

At the top of the funnel is the process of bringing an audience into your site – this can be effectively done by keeping your pages fresh with content and an engaging blogging section. Utilising social media also makes for great exposure in bringing traffic over, as well as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

With any website, it’s common for visitors to access your page and decide that it’s not for them – this is why it’s described as a funnel process: you’re whittling down your visitors until you get to your smaller but powerful core following of customers and consumers.

After your website is clicked on, and your visitors decide they want to engage with your business further, they’ll need a good hook. Often a free service or mailing list is the ideal method of showing interested parties what you have to offer – a good call-to-action or content upgrade offer is great for turning visitors into subscribers.

Converting a visitor into a subscriber is an important step to take because it allows you to show off your services to them without the need of them clicking on to your site – it can all be done with a regular email into their inbox, and greatly increases the chance of you making a sale.

It’s important to not see the sale as the end-point in the funnel effect – you’ll want to ensure that your customer comes back – potentially offer more premium products or services for your more established returning customers. If they love your product, they’ll cherish the opportunity to spend more to get more.

The end goal is to repeat the process, and use your premium customer as an influencer at the top of the funnel for new visitors. If they would recommend your service, then great. A testimony or review online works wonders in attracting more potential customers into the funnel!

Tip: Think of ways to reward your audiences at all points in the funnel. What call-to-action and content upgrade can you offer them to keep them happy when subscribing to your mailing list? What premium service can you provide to your most dedicated customers? It pays to get into the mind of your visitors.

Further Reading:

1. 100 Business & Marketing Websites Every Entrepreneur Should Read & Follow

2. What is: Content Upgrade

3. What is: Call-to-action (CTA)

Full Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase or sign-up with one of the services, we may receive a commission.

Peter Jobes

Content Marketing Manager

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