The Anatomy of a Profitable eCommerce Sales Funnel for Small Businesses

If you want your small business to succeed, you must know how to generate a sustainable amount of leads and customers over tie. This way, you can help keep your business stay afloat and scale it as you see fit. The more sales you bring into your business, the more revenue you can make and use to grow it, such as adding new lines of products, increasing your marketing efforts, and more.

This reason is why you need an eCommerce sales funnel geared to help you turn in a profit. It enables you to visualize the buyer journey to identify the type of people you should turn into clients or customers.

This article will look into the different stages of an eCommerce sales funnel and the specific tactics you must use to break the bank. This way, you can help your business realize its earning potential and make the most out of the opportunities and resources available to you.

Awareness Stage

In this stage, you want to attract your target customers who aren’t aware that your small business exists yet. The goal is to leave an unforgettable impression on your audience so you can bring them down to the next stage in your funnel.

Below are time-tested tactics you can use to get in front of your audience and put your best foot forward:

Create a Content Strategy

Publishing content about your business across different channels remains one of the most effective ways to make a splash in the market. A content strategy covers everything you’ll be publishing on social media, blogs, emails, and more. Your plan should also extend to the other sales funnel stages to bring them down your sales funnel and maximize conversions.

However, at the awareness level, you want to provide valuable and informative content to your audience. Since people don’t know what your business is about initially, your content should forge a trusting relationship between you and your audience.

With social media, you must first build followers on your chosen platforms by publishing engaging posts. You can start by curating the best posts related to your business and sharing your thoughts about them. Another is to launch polls and ask people questions that you can answer based on your expertise. Doing these things gives them a reason to trust and follow your brand.

You can extend answering questions by writing your answers in a blog post format. The great thing about blogging is that you can appear on Google to target the right keywords for each post. This way, even if you’re not promoting your content on social media or email, people can still see your content and learn more about your business. And by creating content that is useful and compelling at the same time, you can earn their trust.

Launch Facebook Ads

As part of an effective social media marketing strategy, you need to tap into Facebook’s massive active user base by launching an ad to target your buyer persona. By identifying the different demographics of your customer avatar, you can deliver the ads straight to them and optimize your ROI.

As part of the awareness stage, you can create ad campaigns for your latest blog posts and informative pages on your site. Since the goal is to foster trust with your target audience, you don’t want to sell your products and services just yet. That can come later in the succeeding stages. 

Consideration Stage

In this stage, people view your small business as a viable option for their needs. They will review your site for information about the different products and services you offer to learn if you offer the features they need to solve their problems and improve their lives.

Below are tactics that you can utilize to significant effect in this stage:

Display Social Proof

The best way to tell prospective customers of your business’ effectiveness is by resorting to social selling, where you let satisfied customers speak for you. Since their positive experiences are not coming from you and from within your company, people will view them as unbiased endorsements of your brand. 

Therefore, the more positive reviews you can gather and display on your site, the greater your chances to convert visitors into customers.

To do this, email your customers to leave a review about your business on Google My Business, Yelp, and others. You can also set up a widget where people can leave reviews about your products so you can display them on your site.

Work on Your Product Pages

Your product pages determine whether people will buy or leave your site and look for an alternative. And how you present your offers on these pages on your site plays a pivotal role in what they’ll do next upon arriving at your pages.

Below are some of the best practices regarding product page optimization:

  • Feature multiple high-resolution images of your product. Make sure they’re also compressed, so they load fast without compromising on quality.
  • Write punchy descriptions of your product. Break each aspect or feature down into bullet points to make them easier to read as well.
  • Make your call to action (CTA) clear and visible on the page. You can feature the same CTA on different parts of the page so visitors won’t miss them.
  • Add a shopping cart on each product page of your site. This way, you encourage them to browse for more items on your site to add to their cart.

To determine the effectiveness of your pages, you must A/B test them by creating variants of some aspects of each page and testing which version converts the best. This way, you can constantly improve the conversion rate of your pages.

Purchase Stage

The line dividing consideration and purchasing stages are slim. But in the purchase stage, people are much ready to take a plunge with your brand. However, there are still some factors preventing them from clicking on the “Buy” button, some of which are technical. Therefore, your goal is to make the purchasing process painless for them.

Below are things you can do under this stage to help you push leads into making the purchase:

Send Abandoned Cart Emails

There are many reasons why people abandon their cart before checkout. However, instead of mulling over these reasons, it’s best to send emails to people who didn’t empty their cart.

Sending them an automated email using your email platforms a few hours after abandoning their cart allows you to touch base with them and help them complete their order.

Offer Different Payment Gateways

While PayPal may be one of the most popular payment gateways that you can use to process payments of your products and services, it shouldn’t be the only gateway available.

Find ways to integrate other prominent gateways like Stripe, Square, Apple Pay, and more so you can accommodate more customers moving forward.

Retention Stage

Once you have converted people into customers, the real work begins. You want them to keep buying from you or remain subscribed to your services. It’s possible that they can jump ship and pledge their allegiance to your competitors if you’re not careful. 

You must find ways to keep them engaged and remain as customers in the foreseeable future. Below are ways you can do that.

Use Cross-sells and Upsells

Personalized email marketing comes into play here. Sophisticated software like ActiveCampaign can help you send customers products related to their previous purchases in the hopes of getting them to buy again.

If you’re running a discount sale, make sure that they receive them via email as well. You can also integrate SMS marketing into the campaign to receive notifications on their mobile phones as well.

Reward Their Loyalty

Build a loyalty program with your existing customers to earn points for every purchase they make that they can use on upcoming purchases.

You can also opt to create a referral program so customers can share a link with their family and friends. Customers can gather points similar to a loyalty program for every successful referral, except that they didn’t have to shell out cash to earn them.

Implementing both programs allows you to build a deeper relationship with your customers, making it easier for them to stay with you as brand advocates.

Conclusion

Knowing the flow of your eCommerce sales funnel is important in building the parts necessary to turn people into customers of your business. Hopefully, the tactics shared above should give you ideas on how to develop a funnel maximized towards making sales and revenue.

Also, developing a sales funnel for your small business doesn’t stop at following the tips above. To ensure that you achieve maximum profitability from the tactics you will be using in each stage, you must analyze your conversion funnel and identify tactics that aren’t producing your desired results. For example, you may be attracting lots of traffic from the awareness stage, but none are getting past the consideration stage. From here, you must check for issues that may be causing bottlenecks in your funnel.

Christopher Jan Benitez is a freelance writer for hire who specializes in the digital marketing field. His work has been published on SEO and affiliate marketing websites like Monitor Backlinks, Niche Pursuits, Web Hosting Secret Revealed, and others.

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