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What’s an inbound marketing conversion funnel?
You’ve taken time to focus on driving valuable traffic to your website using inbound marketing strategies. But are you reviewing website data to understand your conversion rate and looking for ways to reduce friction to help your website visitors convert?
Conversion rate optimization helps increase the percentage of website visitors who express interest or take the next step with your company. It can lower customer acquisition costs and help you do more with the website traffic you’re already generating.
While you might have an inbound marketing funnel on your website, tweaking where your calls to action are, what they say and the materials they lead to could make a difference in attracting new customers.
Learn more about the role of conversion rate optimization in an inbound marketing strategy and ways to improve your website’s conversion rate. Want to see your ROI potential? Review the Conversion Rate Optimization ROI Calculator.
Understanding the Inbound Marketing FunnelTo understand conversion rate optimization and how it works, you have to first consider the inbound marketing funnel. As a refresher, there are five general stages for customers or potential customers in an inbound marketing funnel.
- Strangers: customers who don’t know your brand or your products/services
- Visitors: strangers that visit your website to learn more about you
- Leads: visitors who have explored your website and provided you with their contact information
- Customers: leads that purchased your products or services
- Promoters: delighted customers that share their experience and how happy they are with your products and services with their acquaintances
Inbound Marketing FlywheelThen there’s the inbound marketing flywheel, which helps marketers understand how to cater to the various stages customers go through in the funnel.
- Attract: brands need a way to bring strangers to their website and other branded materials to build awareness for their product or service. Some activities included in this phase include SEO, social media and content marketing.
- Convert: providing the right information or sending a message when a customer needs it can help them engage with your business to become leads. Some inbound marketing activities involved in the convert phase include landing pages, forms and calls-to-action.
- Close: once a visitor becomes a lead, you need a plan for how to close the sale. Some marketing activities within this step include email marketing, lead nurturing and sales techniques.
- Delight: outstanding customer service, follow-up emails, regular check-ins and superb products and services can make your customers happy and turn them into promoters.
Each component of the flywheel is equally important and requires attention to detail and consideration for how you’ll provide prospects an opportunity to take the next step.
Optimizing the Inbound Marketing FunnelOptimizing for conversions is work that is never done. It requires attention to detail and deep analytics. You should never stop measuring:
- Revenue per website visitor
- Website conversion rate
- Most effective calls to action
- Lowest converting webpages
As you track these metrics, look out for changes that might signal that it’s time to rework your calls to action or supply leads with additional information in the conversion funnel to encourage faster conversion or remove pain points or concerns they might have that prevent them from converting.
Conversion rate optimization can also involve A/B testing or multivariate testing to find what resonates best with your target audience.
Benefits of an Effective Inbound Marketing FunnelAn effective conversion funnel impacts every phase of the customer buying journey. Once you’ve implemented an effective inbound marketing funnel, you’ll see many valuable benefits.
- Increased conversions and sales
- Improved customer relationships and loyalty
- Reduced customer acquisition cost
- Greater long-term value from customers
Best Practices and Strategies for Implementing an Effective Inbound Marketing Funnel
Building an effective inbound marketing funnel requires a deep understanding of your customers and their needs. Putting work into the strategy up front helps inform every piece of content, follow-up email and sales interaction to prepare customers for the next step. Here’s a look at several best practices for improving your conversion funnel.
1. Outline Your Target Audience
Before you review website, metrics or build your first marketing automation, you have to pause and learn more about your target audience. Understanding who they are, what they’re looking for and ways to best serve their needs will inform everything you do in your inbound marketing strategy.
Don’t just explain how much money they make or where they’re located. Go deeper into their interests, behaviors, pain points and objectives when looking for a solution.
Taking the time to outline your audience is a foundational element that will inform everything you do in your inbound marketing strategy.
Now you know who your target audience is and what they’re trying to do when seeking marketing solutions. You can build landing pages designed specifically for them.
2. Build Great Landing Pages
- Take your time to craft each element of a great landing page.
- Attractive imagery
- Simple copy that is easy to read and jargon-free
- Speedy page load speeds and a great user experience on any device
- Easy navigation to reach subpages or additional information
- Legible fonts and text styling to make the website accessible for everyone
- Details that help a customer understand how your products or services solve their pain points
To have a chance of converting website visitors, you need traffic. But not just any traffic. You need relevant traffic from individuals who have an interest in or need for your products. Some ways to generate website traffic include the following.
3. Generate Relevant Website Traffic
- Social media posts
- Content tailored to customer needs in every phase of the buying journey
- Highly targeted ads that speak to customer pain points
- Partnerships, sponsorships or influencer marketing
- Captivating headlines and email subject lines
- Regular newsletters
4. Build Meaningful Marketing Automation Campaigns
Once customers have taken the initial step of sharing their contact information with you, what happens next? How can you help those leads become customers? The answer lies in marketing automation that sends helpful information for the phase of the buying journey the customer is in.
You should have multiple email journeys set up to match various customer personas and products or services. The key here is that the content and cadence meet the needs of your customers. You can’t just send any email once a customer expresses interest. The content has to resonate with the customer’s interests and help take them to the next phase in their journey to finding answers and solutions for their problems.
Improving Conversion Rates with the Traffic You Already Have
One of the greatest benefits of focusing on your conversion funnel is that it makes the traffic you’re already getting more valuable. You’ve taken the time to create content that brings your customers to you, now all you have to do is consider what comes next and how to convert these leads into customers.
If you’re ready to see greater value from your website traffic and marketing strategies, schedule a free consultation with Diaz & Cooper, a team of knowledgeable inbound marketing strategists focused on results and improving ROI for their clients.