Sales funnel is the most fundamental model that details the process by which prospects become customers. It may sound simple. But converting casual leads to loyal customers is never easy.
There are several phases involved between lead acquisition and final conversion. If you try to visualize the lead-to-customer journey, it forms a funnel and hence the name. While managing the sales funnel may sound dreary, it is possible to automate this journey through sales funnel software.
Before we talk about software solutions that automate the sales funnel, a quick look into the basics.
What is a sales funnel?
Sales funnel describes the journey involved in converting prospects into customers. A sales funnel does this by guiding visitors to take steps that would eventually lead to your sales. In general, there are five main stages of a sales funnel – awareness, attraction, interest, purchase, and delight.
These stages map a prospect’s current relationship status with your brand. For instance, the awareness stage indicates that the lead has just come to know about your brand and hasn’t made any purchase yet. By sending attractive offers on your products/services, you can move them down the funnel into the attraction and interest phase, and so on.
Now, imagine having thousands of inquiries every day. Out of these, some are highly qualified leads, and others are casual inquiries. That said, some will convert sooner while others might require nurturing.
Identifying these attributes and nurturing them one by one can be tedious. That’s where sales funnel software comes into the picture.
What is sales funnel software?
The term sales funnel software usually refers to platforms that help businesses automate the movement of the prospect down the buying path, with assets such as landing pages, nurturing emails, application forms, and payment gateways among others. It is a digital tool or a collection of tools, that automates the customer acquisition process from the time you capture lead to conversion and beyond. Generally, organizations use CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software for sales funnel management and automating their sales process.
You see, there is a whole range of software that promises to help you with your sales funnel. All of them say the same thing: help you win customers. How do you know which one will work for you?
The right software will surely help you run your business smoothly. But finding the one that perfectly fits your business can be tough.
Don’t worry. We have simplified this for you. Following are the features to look for in a sales funnel software.
Features of a good sales funnel software
1. CRM software features
Customer relationship software helps you to move your leads down the funnel. A CRM system manages your customers as well as sales leads in one place.
The CRM system helps with lead capture, list segmentation, lead scoring, lead prioritization, and distribution. You can also assign leads to your sales reps for follow-up/nurturing based on their expertise and availability. This way, you can manage your sales team with the software and ensure that all your sales reps complete their tasks on time. For instance, if you want to send an email campaign to a selected few, you can send it to your targeted lists depending on their interest or lead scores.
In a nutshell, it takes care of your sales funnel and helps you and your team focus on one goal – making sales. Most of the time, CRM software serves the purpose of sales funnel software.
2. Integration with other business tools
Sometimes, you may already be using a tool for a part of your business. You may not want to buy new software and replace the old one altogether. Instead, you would like to have these tools work together.
However, it is not enough for the sales funnel software to be capable of integrating with these tools. It should be compatible with it. This way, you can have all your favorite tools in one place instead of worrying about replacing any of them.
3. In-built email marketing tools
Emails are the most preferred way of communicating with customers. Almost 90% of sales and marketing people use emails for communication and promotion. The ROI (Return on Investment) from emails equals $32 for every dollar spent.
Email is, therefore, one of the most important features a sales funnel software could have. It should allow you to customize and send intelligent and personalized email campaigns to your leads. A good sales funnel software should have email options such as a call to action, popup options, auto-responder, automated follow-up, trigger/activity based emails, list segmentation, drip emails, one-on-one emails with tracking, tracking itself, split testing, and deep analytics.
Your software should also allow you to personalize your emails.
For example, a lead that contacts you via email as late as 3 AM, will probably not expect any reply. But with the help of an email marketing tool, you can send an automated response that also addresses the customer query.
This gesture will certainly impart a positive impression on your lead. It will also increase the likelihood of the prospect converting into your customer.
4. Mobile functionality
Everything is mobile these days. And so should your sales funnel software. You should be able to access it from wherever you are, through your smartphone. Choose the software that has a mobile app as well. Also, make sure that all your activities, whether on a mobile phone or a PC, can be synced.
5. Easy to use and setup
Look out for the sales funnel software that resolves most (if not all) of your sales and marketing challenges.
Let us take an example. Lead generation is one of the most pressing and recurring challenges of salespeople. Simple lead gen tasks, such as creating a landing page, can look daunting, especially if you are not familiar with HTML and other web basics. Moreover, for every small change, you will have to go to your design team.
In such situations, having software that helps you create landing pages in moments can be a boon. Fortunately, sales funnel software lets you create beautiful landing pages in minutes.
The landing page builder is only one of the many features of sales funnel software. There can be many more useful features and tools within.
However, you need to check if the software is easy to use or not. After all, what’s the use of having tons of features when using the interface is a hassle.
Which is the best sales funnel software out there?
There are lots of sales funnel software available in the market. Also, you must be continuously bombarded with ads for such tools most of the time. But you can cut through that noise by focusing on the ones that have the above features.
To quote an example, LeadSquared Sales Execution CRM, with its no-code workflow automation, lets you create automated sales funnels as per your business logic. It also supports landing page builders, marketing automation, email automation, and more to build a complete customer journey – from lead to customers and beyond.
Prior to LeadSquared, tracking the leads and the process through excel sheets was a difficult task. Since the lead disposal was not on time, the lead leakage was 80%. Now that we are using LeadSquared, we have been able to reduce the lead leakage by 70%. All these statistics have finally resulted in improving the sales funnel and increasing the visit to booking percentage by 20% month-on-month.Shrung Mehta, Tenant Acquisition Head of NestAway
But remember that while a sales funnel software can be super useful, you must take the first step for getting new visitors/your target audience to visit your website. It is only then that a sales funnel can do its job. That is, help convert visitors to long-term customers and referrals!
There are several software solutions available for managing your sales funnel. But if your goal is an end to end sales process management, then CRM software is the best option.
To build a sales funnel, first, understand your audience persona. Based on this information, create attractive ad copies, web content, and a landing page to capture the details (email id, mobile number, etc.) of the leads interested in your products or services. Then, qualify the leads and pass them to your salespeople for follow-up or nurturing until they become your customer. You can also automate this journey through CRM software.