A Leaky Sales Funnel and How to Prevent It

In business, few things are worse than a leaking sales and marketing funnel that slows your growth and reduce revenues by losing leads between sales initiation and closing. Regardless of where your leads come from, you need to identify the leak and repair it straight away.

But how can you identify these leakages? Don’t fret; there are several tools, tactics, and strategies to allow you to find the leakage in your marketing funnel.

In this post, we’ll explain everything about sales funnel leakage and how to fix it. Hang on to learn more.

Understanding sales funnel leakage

Sales funnel leakage is the loss of potential leads, sales, or traffic within the marketing funnel. For clarity, when we say “sales funnel,” we mean all the step-by-step guidelines built to convert traffic into leads and convert the leads to paying customers.

Most sales funnels feature a landing page, an about us page, a thank you page, pop-ups, or upsells along the way. Sales leakage, therefore, occurs when one or several of these sales funnel parts start losing traffic and leads that shouldn’t be lost.

Image alt text: sales funnel leakage. A sales funnel canvas.

Author credit: By Kuombo – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=96767150

Several reasons can lead to this drop, including;

1. Poor value proposition

A value proposition is an essential factor to a business since it tells users why they should buy your products and service, not competitors. Therefore, it should be relevant, clear, and specific to your potential customer’s needs.

If the value proposition does not relay the intended purpose of a brand’s existence and is irrelevant, all your efforts to convert and close deals will be highly undermined.

2. Poor processes

Encouraging your sales team to apply their own strategies to identify and convert prospects when gathering leads is a recipe for sales funnel leakage. Usually, this results from broken communication between the marketing and sales team.

With a poor sales process, you will definitely have leakages in your sales funnel. Your marketing strategies, such as capturing users’ interactions, sending reminders and follow-ups, and maintaining updated data, will likely go to waste.

3. Lack of Call to Actions

This is a short prompt for users on your website, compelling them to take an action that is desirable for the business, such as making a purchase or signing up for your email newsletters. In short, it directs potential clients to the next action they should take after engaging with your business.

When CTAs are missing in your outreach methods or the business website, your visitors won’t know the next course of action, leading to a loss of leads and revenue.

4. Inconsistency in the marketing effort

Customers always get suspicious and get out of the sales funnel immediately they see contradicting and conflicting information about your products and services.

For example, if your product descriptions in your blog post or website differ from what you say in your ad copies or email newsletters, it can lead to sales funnel leakage. Instead, you should make your sales and marketing strategies work in tandem with each other. Use similar language across all the platforms and ensure your teams are aligned.

Strategies to optimize a leaking sales funnel

From the section above, you definitely got an idea of what is causing drops in your leads, low conversion rates, inaccurate sales forecasts, or missed sales targets. Fortunately, you can fix this menace. Here are some tried and tested strategies you can use to achieve this.

  1. Attract the right customers

Do you know your customers? Can you identify where they are dropping out in the funnel? And can you tell exactly where they are dropping off?

These data will help you evaluate your lead generation approach while also enabling you to see how frequently you are unable to progress a lead to the next customer conversion stage.

To capture the right customers and make them convert, you need to analyze your business website content, the home page, landing pages, emails, CTAs, and stages of the progress of the sales as logged into your CRM.

Identify pages that your ideal customers spend a lot of time on and optimize those them to streamline the buying journey to conversion. Ensure you provide a straightforward sales pipeline that helps your customers to enter and stay in the funnel.

Other factors you can also consider include your product features, UX/UI, and creating stronger buyer personas.

  1. Use data to analyze and improve your sales process

Businesses can never get success with serious data usage and analysis. Data helps you identify where your leads are dropping off, expose features your ideal customers find challenging and give you insights into what works and what does not.

But where can you collect this data?

The first place to look for data is your CRM tool. Behavioral tools and Google Analytics can also give you insightful data for sales analysis. Gathering your prospects’ data eliminates uncertainties in your sales funnel, particularly if you are unsure of the cause of the leak, and helps you hit relevant metrics and improve your lead acquisition process.

  1. Improve the value proposition

As seen before, a poor value proposition is an ingredient for sales funnel leakage. One of the strategies to optimize a leaking sales funnel is to review your value proposition to identify if it is still aligned with your business goals and objectives.

One way to do this is to analyze your marketing and sales engagement messages. Does your customer service staff address your customer’s pain points? Do they depict you as better than your competitors? What about your pitching approaches? What reasons do you give your clients to buy from you and not competitors?

Review your value proposition and make it aligned with the business goals. Ensure it is still reliable, usable, and convenient.

  1. Refine the business metrics and KPIs

You can sometimes have objectives and KPIs that are not specific, or the team does not understand why they are important and even how to leverage them.

Your sales and marketing team are left alone to figure out strategies on their own, making them to end up with contradicting metrics or data that does not guide your customers towards your sales funnel.

For the reasons above, you should refine your KPIs and metrics to prevent and address sales funnel leakage.

You also be able to help your sales team understand what they are working with and how to use them effectively. Once you get these right, you can therefore get the right CRM tool and improve your lead nurturing strategies.

  1. Experiment and split test

Customer nurturing is a process that is complex and full of distractions, with ever-changing trends that you need to adapt to. However, as a business, you need to find a way of meeting these new demands.

The perfect way of achieving this is through A/B testing for marketing and experimenting with various methods and strategies throughout the sales funnel. Various metrics to A/B test include the pricing page and shopping cart.

Optionally, you can include free demos and trials to your CTAs and landing page and see how your visitors respond. A few changes in the CTAs, sales pitches or image proposition may bring tremendous changes to your conversion efforts.

  1. Improve your customer onboarding experience

Customer onboarding is a complex and challenging process. That’s why many businesses are not good at it. The outcome of this is usually low conversion rates.

A notable case is when users sign up for your newsletters or free trial but fail to convert to paid clients. This might be because your team didn’t engage them properly, or they didn’t get answers as to why they should upgrade to the next level.

If your customers receive poor customer service along the way before they convert, there is a high chance they won’t become buying customers.

In such instances, make the inquiry process seamless for users while also allowing them to see why they should buy your products. If the problem lies with your sales team, you need to train them on the best customer onboarding approaches.

Also, you can add a customer suggestion page in the sales process or improve your product pricing page.

Ready to fix your leaking sales funnel?

A leaking sales funnel is a nightmare for every business. It can make your sales efforts inexpert, increase operating costs, and impact your overall bottom line. Additionally, it can cause great sales and marketing campaigns to look like they are not efficient.

Fixing a sales funnel leakage is a continuous process that calls for ongoing monitoring, assessment, and adaptation. Build a culture of implementing strategies discussed in this article to prevent your sales funnel from dropping leads.

Good Luck!