If you’ve been running an online business for a while, or just hanging out in the Betty Means Business community, chances are you’ve heard the F-word.
No no, not that F-word. (Although, you’ve probs heard that gem too!)
I’m talking about the other F-word: a.k.a. Funnels.
Sales and marketing funnels have been a buzzword in online marketing circles for the last few years, and much like the “real” F-word, funnels elicit a massive range of responses.
Some folks love funnels. Some hate ‘em. Some just don’t see them fitting into their businesses.
As for me? I’m a massive funnels advocate. In fact, sales and marketing funnels completely transformed my business.
But they can be tricky. Funnels take work, and a lot of optimising to become real “set it and forget it” sales machines.
That’s why, whenever I see my students or readers or colleagues throw their hands up in the air after building a funnel and saying: “Well that didn’t work! What’s next?” I just want to throw my hands up and shout “STOP RIGHT THERE!”
Honestly, if a funnel didn’t work for you? It’s very possible that you quit too early on what could’ve been a complete game-changer for your business.
Don’t be intimidated, and don’t throw in the towel so early. While you may believe funnels are beyond you, or your business doesn’t need one? If you run a personality-driven or service-driven business — funnels are basically built for you, babe.
That’s why today, I want to talk about ways to tweak a funnel if it’s not converting.
This is particularly for you if you have a sales funnel, of any complexity at all, in place.
Simple or more complicated, your funnel could be failing to convert for any number of reasons, which I’ll jump into in a sec.
For the record, this is by no means an encyclopedia of alll the tweaks you can make to fix your funnel. All of these points come from my personal experience of having sales or marketing funnels that have felt like they haven’t been working for me. This is the stuff that I’ve personally come up against in the past, what I did about it, and what worked well.
BTW this month I’m hosting a free, live training where I’m spilling the beans on My Biggest Launch Mistakes And How To Avoid Them. Launches are the ultimate funnel, and super intimidating for so many of us… but when you get them right they can be absolutely game-changing. If you’ve been toying with the idea of launching something (your coaching program!, your ecourse!, a book!) this year, you will love LOVE this special training! Click the button below to come along. We’re gonna have so much fun!! PS It’s totally free!
Ok, now let’s dive into those funnel tweaks you can make:
The first step to tweaking a failing funnel? Check your conversion expectations.
You might think that your sales funnel isn’t converting or you had a shitty launch result, but in fact, you might be right on the industry standard. You could even be doing a little bit better than the industry standard.
Standards fluctuate significantly depending on your industry. But as a rule of thumb, it’s commonly understood that between a 1% and 2% conversion rate (a.k.a. the rate of subscribers turning into buyers) for online programs or offerings that require investment is awesome, and a totally fair expectation to have around sales.
As for a free gift or opt-in sequence via a landing page where you’re asking for someone’s name and contact details in return for a fantastic free goodie? I know a number of online mentors believe that 25%+ is a solid result.
I have personally had some landing pages convert at around 38% to 42%, and I feel ah-mazing about that. My best ever landing page was for an opt-in gift that consistently converts between 65-72%… and that’s basically my unicorn funnel. 😉
Tweak #2: Check your traffic.
Because, the fact is, that you may just not have enough people coming through the funnel to make it effective.
Without enough traffic, you can’t pinpoint whether or not you have a conversion problem… because not enough people have gone through the funnel to get some good data on it.
The first thing to do in this situation is to track your traffic, so you know your numbers. If the numbers are really low, if you have had, for example, less than 1,000 visitors, think about ways to feed more people into your funnel.
Exactly how you feed your hungry funnel is going to depend on a number of factors; including your specific client type, your industry, your business model, your strengths, preferences, and budget. (I’m planning on creating a resource all about how to feed your funnel soon, so stay tuned!)
Tweak #3: Check if technology might be letting you down.
There may be something, technically, that isn’t integrating properly in your funnel; like issues with email deliverability, or things not tagging properly in the back end of your funnel.
For example, if you share a webinar recording in your funnel, and the video isn’t working? Peeps will completely miss that step. Or maybe emails aren’t being delivered in the way that you thought they were being delivered, so the funnel itself is incomplete.
If technology is letting you down, here’s what you need to do: Get help from an expert.
Hire someone so you can focus on your content, on building relationships, and on feeding your funnel, while other experts can focus on getting that integration done and making sure that all the elements of your funnel are married together really well.
In my own business, even a simple funnel can involve integrating 5 or more different platforms! Technically making sure they’re all working in perfect unison is not my zone of genius. That’s why I have awesome people on the team to help set everything up… and you can too.
Tweak #4: See if you’re sharing too many ideas in a single funnel.
A confused mind doesn’t take the next step. So instead of trying to create a single funnel that is all things to all people, or a single funnel that shares all of your genius, focus on a single, overarching idea for each funnel.
For example, having a single theme for your launch that runs through allll the content in your funnel is a great way to approach this.
I used this strategy in my Booked Out Habits challenge. Each day via email, I share a specific habit, a little activity challenge, and a bunch of other value around the topic of habits that help you win dream clients. Peeps in the funnel get worksheets, and my special tips on this specific topic.
The key? For the whooole funnel, I’m just talking about habits. Then the funnel leads into a larger paid offer called The Betty Booked Out Formula, that program includes a special, much more in-depth module all about the practical daily and weekly habits of booked out coaches, creatives and solopreneurs.
It’s really easy and clear for people. They know what they’re signing up for, they know what to expect, and there’s a really nice, clear link between everything in the funnel.
Tweak #5: Make sure it’s clear how you can help.
This is something I really used to struggle with back in the day.
On a mastermind call, a friend of mine, who is a bit further ahead than I am in her business building journey, told me, with love, that my sales pages never really landed for her.
She said that while everything looked beautiful, she could never figure out exactly what I was offering.
I’m very thankful that she did, of course. At the time it was disappointing to hear, but it lit a fire under my ass to go tweak my sales page and change up everything.
That’s why these days, I work hard to make sure that every element, in any funnel of mine, is really grounded. I want everything to clearly lead to and explain my offer. And I do my best to stay away from flowery language or anything too poetic.
Tweak #6: Is the next step really, really obvious, and are you getting people excited about it?
No clear call to action is the death of many an otherwise-awesome landing page or sales page. And the same is true for funnels. If you don’t spell out exactly what’s going to happen next (whether they’re making a purchase, or moving into the next phase of the funnel), you’re gonna lose people.
On a similar note: I can’t tell you how many marketing funnels and sales pages I see where the incredible woman behind the business seems almost apologetic about asking for a sale or inviting funnel participants to the next step.
They never say in the funnel, “My offer is incredible. Here’s what it is and here’s why you should have it. You need to go get it today because it’s going to change your life.”
Instead, there’s a weird energy around it. This, of course, puts anyone else engaging in that funnel in an odd, edgy place and unlikely to take the next step.
Look, there’s no shame in selling. Especially when what you’re putting out there is genuinely going to help people.
A message from your potential clients: We know that you’re in business, so please, make the offer. We’re struggling and we want to know how you can help.
Tweak #7: Check in to make sure it’s genuine to you.
When you’re starting out, being really inspired by those ahead on their business building journey can be really powerful.
But, at a certain point, it’s important to realise that you’ll experience much more success, and so much more fulfilment by being yourself, rather than an imitation of someone else.
This applies to every piece of your business, not just your marketing and funnels. We all shine brightest when we step fully into ourselves. Really take time to pump your unique personality into your sales funnel, and let us know the real you. It will take your funnel to the next level.
Tweak #8: Are you sharing the benefits of taking action, and the loss of not taking action?
Sometimes people are so focused on the feature of their offer (a recording, a worksheet, a masterclass, a product or program) that they completely forget to underline the benefits of their offer from the perspective of their ideal clients in a way that really cuts through the noise.
If you have a funnel already, review all of the copy and content around it and see if you’re answering the question: “What gets to happen for them as a result of completing my program/course/book/offer?”. That is the thing that you really need to be crystal clear on and putting your best foot forward with when it comes to communicating benefits.
Pro tip: Stories are way more powerful than simply listing out benefits, so incorporating testimonials, case studies, and personal stories into your funnel can really help paint a picture of how life could change for your ideal clients after they take their next step.
And while we’re on the subject: Underline what will happen to people if they DON’T take the next step. Will they stay stuck where they are? Will they miss the boat on a hot new trend? Will they feel like they’ve missed the boat after a week?
Spell it out.
Tweak #9: You just didn’t get expert help.
This is similar to point #3, but rather than technical help I’m talking about strategic help.
I’ll be honest: With my first three funnels, I just kind of copied the “greats” in my industry without really understanding the why behind what was happening. I was just making my best guess with things. I was trying to discern what the steps in my funnel should be, based on seeing others doing their funnel. But I now know that this approach is only ever going to get you so far.
Looking in from the outside is quite different from actually being behind the scenes of a funnel. Trust me. There’s quite a bit of nuance strategy and tactics that are going on behind the scenes of any great funnel that you don’t see.
The first time I worked with a funnel strategist was a very eye-opening experience – there’d been so much I was missing!
So if you’re ready to build an awesome funnel, get help from an expert funnel strategist. You’re going to see things completely change and your funnels take off.
And hey: If you’ve gone through all of those bullet points, and you’re feeling good about things, but you feel like you could still optimise your funnel? Then your next step is to experiment with split testing.
Start tweaking small things in your funnel one at a time and track your results so you can optimise it.
For example, you could test out different imagery, or different colours for buttons or headlines. You could test out a different amount of copy on a landing page. Maybe you could test out the type of bonuses that you offer. You could test using, or not using, countdown timers for things. You can test out using different words on the buttons.
There are endless options with how you go with these kinds of things. I think that once you are really happy with the baseline you have around the funnel, then the work of optimising your funnel is ongoing.
So, my F-word lovers or haters: I hope you’re feeling a bit clearer now about how you can make funnels work for you.
Many of the best funnels are totally tailored to the businesses they serve, so what works for me won’t work for everyone! But these are general rules of thumb that were crazy valuable and impactful for me, so I wanted to make sure you knew about them too. <3
Don’t forget to join me for the free, live training I’m hosting this month: My Biggest Launch Mistakes And How To Avoid Them. If a launch is something you’re planning this year, this special training packed with practical tips is for you! Click the button below to come along. We’re gonna have so much fun!! PS It’s totally free!