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What Is A Sales Funnel?

I'm willing to put money down that at some point in your research on email marketing or small business marketing you have come across the phrase “Sales Funnel”. It’s the shiny gem most business owners are striving to have in place, but what the heck is it?!

Simply put it’s the process by which you convert cold or warm leads to make a purchase. While it would be lovely for people to search a random phrase, come across your site, and just click “buy”, that is very rarely the case. Cue your handy dandy sales funnel!

One of my clients offers a free mini-course (a small taste to her full-scale paid course) on her website and social media in exchange for an email address. After someone signs up they receive a series of emails which guides them through each lesson in the mini-course and explains the connection to the bigger course. Depending on how much they interact with this first series of emails they are then put into a sales sequence focused on the paid course only with the goal to convert them into a sale.


Let's dive into each specific component of a sales funnel and what that can look like for your business.

Let’s dive into what comprises the funnel.

Attract the lead:

This might be through organic means such as social media and blog posts or paid media like Pinterest ads. Wondering which is better? Check out my blog here.

Capture the lead:

Here is where you trade something for their contact info. In email marketing this is commonly what’s known as a lead magnet or opt-in in exchange for their email address and possibly other info. A familiar example might be “Type in your email to receive my top 5 veggie friendly dinners ready in under 30 minutes.”

Nurture the lead to a sale:

You may have heard of Nurture Funnels, Marketing Funnels, and Email Funnels; while some of these are just different names for the same things, Sales Funnel does have the very specific objective to convert to a sale. So this part in the process is where you give your new leads opportunities to do just that. What this looks like will vary on your business, product, and leads. But it’s almost always a good idea to have some part of the process include sending useful, attractive emails.

With these pieces combined you have formed your basic funnel and the steps a lead will take from hearing about you to purchasing from you!

There are certainly more elaborate steps you can build here (think: cross-selling, integrating texting and calling in the sales nurture process, targeting different emails based on information you have gathered about your contact). At the end of the day, getting these solid basics in place will serve you well and then you can build from that strong foundation.

Excited to see what amazing things you build or work with you on building something together!

P.S. If you want to make the sales funnel process even easier, check out our email templates.


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