Simple wimple sales funnel explanation

Sales funnels can sound like a complex and hard to understand concept that makes the brain hurt. Here’s a nice and simple explanation.

The first thing to understand is that sales funnel are naturally occurring. If you’re actively selling a product, you have created a sales funnel, whether you intended to or not.

The term “sales funnel” just describes the process of presenting a product to potential buyers.

We’re in Argos in 1,100 BCE

The Greek city of Argos is believed to have been inhabited since 5,000 BCE, but we’ll pay a visit toward the end of its time as a Mycenean settlement during the late bronze age.

We make and sell bronze jewelry, so we rent a shop with a rudimentary shuttered window on the main street of the city.

That street is the top of the funnel, with people walking up and down it all day long.

Some of those people will stop and look at the display of jewelry in the window, so reaching the first step of the funnel.

Of those, some will enter the shop to view more items, so moving deeper into the funnel.

Some of those will select an item and start to queue to pay. For whatever reason, some of those may abandon the queue before buying.

Some of those queuing will then reach the counter and buy their selected item.

So at the top of the funnel, the busy street, there’s lots of people and at the bottom of the funnel, the counter, there are very few people. From top to bottom, the number of people decreased at several stages.

Of course this might not be the bottom of the funnel.

We could offer an upsell of an ebony jewelry box for storing the new purchase or then attempt a downsell of a cloth for cleaning the new jewelry.

Maybe a friend owns the coffee shop next door and we give customers a discount voucher for their cafe to try and move them into a new funnel.

Sales funnels aren’t a new thing

That outlines a sales funnel in simple terms. I deliberately chose a setting from several millennia ago to highlight that funnels aren’t some new technological modern world phenomenon.

If you’re selling something and actively marketing it, a sales funnel naturally occurs.

However, you can take control of the exact form that the funnel takes, which is where they can become much more complex and involved as you attempt to maximize the value of every sale.