Helping Visitors Down the Sales Funnel
How to set up your site to keep customers happy and encourage conversions
Having a complicated sales funnel is a surefire way to sabotage conversions. When customers arrive at a business website, they want to shop, check out and be done. This is especially true of mobile users who represent a growing segment of online consumers. Proper sales funnel design is essential for turning the highest possible number of prospects into paying customers.
Understanding the Sales Funnel
The process through which consumers progress in pursuit of making a purchase is known as the sales funnel. It’s often described as a series of steps:
- Awareness, a prime time to hook prospects
- Consideration of where to make a purchase
- Preference, highly influenced by branding
- Loyalty, built on brand awareness and purchase experience
- Advocacy for a chosen brand
Customers drop out at each stage for various reasons, making the final advocacy group significantly smaller than the awareness group, hence the “funnel” shape.
Getting potential customers into the sales funnel requires a solid SEO marketing strategy. Optimizing content both offsite and on draws attention and builds trust between brands and consumers that influences purchasing behaviors.
Designing for Conversions
Ease of use is the number one consideration when designing a sales funnel. The process should be straightforward and offer a clear path from step to step. Consumers go through the awareness and consideration phases of the funnel before arriving on an eCommerce site, but once there, site layout and content drive the rest of the process.
Combining compelling content with eye-catching call-to-action (CTA) buttons on product pages encourages a transition between preference and purchase. A streamlined checkout completes the phase and should include:
- A choice between registration and guest checkout
- Multiple payment options with clear statements of security for each
- Simplified forms that require as little information as possible
- An option to store credit card information for future use
Site navigation must be clear and intuitive at every stage and be easy for both PC and mobile shoppers to use. Minimizing the amount of typing required to make a purchase encourages more mobile shoppers to complete the sales funnel and increases the likelihood that they’ll return for future purchases.
Analyzing eCommerce Success
Online tools such as Google Analytics allow businesses to track customers through every phase of the sales funnel. Being able to analyze where people drop off offers insight into which steps in the funnel need improvement. If large numbers of people abandon the checkout process at the same point, it’s a sign that something is putting them off.
While it’s not possible to hold onto every customer that comes in at the awareness end of the funnel until they become brand advocates, simple changes can be made throughout the purchasing process based on this business intelligence. Streamlining steps to make checkout easier and adding campaigns such as abandoned cart emails encourages users to stay in the funnel or return to it to complete a purchase. Analyzing CTAs from various sources such as blogs, social media and landing pages serves to show where most prospects are coming from and can influence future marketing campaigns to improve sales flow.
How Clarity Can Help
Keeping track of customer flow through your eCommerce platform requires constant monitoring of all channels and careful analysis of the results. The experts at Clarity have the knowledge necessary to take the information from big data and apply it to website design. Our team can help you design campaigns that attract prospects and create a smooth sales funnel that turns those prospects into customers. Contact Clarity to see how we can help you optimize each conversion to increase sales and profits for your business.