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  • Angela Dobbie

Back to Basics: What is the Customer Funnel?

Your relationship with prospective customers matters; from the first interaction with your company to the moment of purchase, and all the way through the sales experience, it’s crucial customers have a positive experience with your brand.

It's also crucial you are aware of the natural progression customers take when making a buying decision. Even though each customer is unique and your products / services may be customized, when dealing with your business most customers will flow through what is known as the customer (or sales) funnel.

What is the Customer Funnel?

The prospective customer flow, relative group size, and stages of the customer sales funnel.

The customer funnel is a visual representation of the flow, relative group size, and stages of the buying cycle most customers progress through as they move from initial awareness of your business to spending hard earned money on your products or services.

The funnel encapsulates the entirety of the relationship you build with your customer, and can be broken down into stages to help you identify opportunities to optimize your marketing strategy.

Common Stages of the Customer Funnel

The customer funnel is often broken down into four stages – awareness, consideration, purchase, and loyalty - and depicts the reduction in group size as customers flow through each stage.

If your company is fortunate enough to boast a high conversion rate, your funnel may end up looking more like a square, as the number of purchases at the bottom matches up with the number of prospects loaded into the top.

Outlined below are the four common stages of the funnel along with insight on why each stage is important for your business:

The Awareness Stage

"Awareness" is the first stage at the top of the funnel, and includes the touch point(s) where prospective customers first become acquainted with your corporate brand. Because this is the first interaction with your business, it's a powerful stage for you to attract the right prospects and introduce them to your product or service.

The Consideration Stage

The Purchase Stage

The Loyalty Stage

How to Optimize Each Stage of the Funnel

The customer funnel transitions leads into paying customers.

So now that you've gained a bit more knowledge about the different stages of the customer funnel, what do you do with it? By refamiliarizing yourself with the steps customers take on their way to buying, you can identify opportunities to improve their experience and positively influence the likelihood of purchase.

Below are ways you can improve your customer experience in different stages of the customer funnel:

How to Increase Awareness

Be sure to clearly define your brand’s personality as people remember brands that stand out and tend to prioritize those that resonate with them. This can range from using consistent graphic elements, logos, taglines, and clearly identifiable corporate voice. But remember, whatever your brand’s personality is - make sure it is unique and authentic.

How to Influence Consideration

How to Solidify the Purchase (Conversion)

How to Encourage Loyalty

Why the Customer Funnel Is Important

The customer funnel leads to money in the bank!

Now that we’ve reviewed the customer funnel and all its stages, consider its importance to you and your business.

The customer funnel allows you to gauge your audience's response to your brand throughout the entire sales cycle and helps you optimize your strategy to encourage more conversions.

And an optimized sales cycle that increases conversions is just money in the bank!

If you need help with evaluating and optimizing your customer funnel, send us a note - we'd be happy to lend a hand!

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