You have set up a sales funnel, but it is not converting as much as you thought it would.
What could the problem be?
You have adjusted a few aspects of the funnel to no avail. Now you are getting worked up. Pause for a minute.
What if you are unconsciously self-sabotaging your sales pipeline?
No one goes through the rigors of setting up a sales funnel expecting it to fail, let alone contribute to it. But you might unconsciously be contributing to the ineffectiveness of your sales pipeline.
There is nothing wrong with having a big sales goal. But it won’t just happen by chance. It is necessary to conduct regular assessments to ensure you are not part of the problem.
The good news is that you can learn to notice your faults and take steps to correct them. Let’s look at a few ways you may be self-sabotaging your sales pipeline and outline some improvements you can make.
Three ways you might be self-sabotaging your sales pipeline
1. You are not tracking your leads
It is one thing to have a steady source of leads and another thing to have a system for tracking them. This is one of the ways you may be self-sabotaging your sales pipeline.
Do you know how many leads your sales funnel has generated over the last three months?
Can you confidently pinpoint your highest source of leads?
Do you know where your leads are in your sales funnel?
You may not have these details off the top of your head, but you should know where to find them with ease.
Tracking leads through your sales pipeline and then analyzing this data shows you what is and isn’t working for your business. Not following these specific details creates loopholes that hinder your efficiency in closing sales and generating more leads.
2. Failure to follow up
Let’s say a lead enters your sales funnel but doesn’t complete the process. What do you do?
“Oh! He probably wasn’t a qualified lead after all. Unto the next lead.”
If this is the first thought that comes to your mind, you are getting it all wrong. You self-sabotage your sales pipeline when you don’t prioritize follow-up.
The attention span of the average consumer is gradually declining. A thousand and one things could have distracted that lead from completing the buying process.
Not all leads you generate will lead to conversion the first time they enter your funnel. But that doesn’t mean they’re not qualified. Sometimes they need a little push. And that is what follow-up does for you. According to statistics compiled by Brevet, 80% of sales require an average of five follow-ups to close the deal. Follow-ups also help you build relationships and connections with your prospects.
Failure to follow up will lead to a loss of interest in your products and services. It also causes you to repeat the cycle of generating leads with a reduced conversion rate.
3. You’re not lead nurturing
What do you do when a lead enters your sales funnel?
Well, you could either show him around or leave him to wander through your funnel unaided. The latter could eventually lead to him exiting the funnel.
Another common way you could be self-sabotaging your sales pipeline is by prioritizing lead generation over lead nurturing. You could be generating a lot of leads. But without lead nurturing, your conversion rate may be low.
Lead nurturing gives you an edge in conversions and building brand loyalty. Here are some aspects of lead nurturing you need to start paying attention to.
Are you communicating with your leads? If you’re not, that could be another loophole costing you.
Without communication, a hot lead may grow cold. Communication is a powerful marketing tool that can move your leads from interest to action.
Effective communication is tailored to educate and guide leads at different phases of their journey through your sales funnel. By creating a channel of communication between you and them, they get to know more about you and the products and services you are offering.
There are several ways you can close the communication gap in your sales funnel. One of them is the use of CRM and marketing automation tools. These tools help to automate the process and keep the communication flowing.
Yes, you read that right. Content marketing serves as a solid backbone for lead nurturing. According to a 2021 Hubspot report, 47% of buyers view three to five pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep.
So if you don’t have a content marketing strategy, you might be leaving money on the table.
An effective content marketing strategy has the power to nurture leads and guide them through the sales funnel. It could be in the form of a blog on your website, webinars, podcasts, and more. Content marketing helps you generate brand awareness, build credibility and trust, and drive your leads to take action.
If there is one thing you must come to terms with, it is the fact that your leads are not all going to be at the same phase in your funnel. There will be those that are more sales-ready than others.
You will be making a big mistake if you treat them the same. Knowing the leads to prioritize and the ones to give more attention to makes a whole lot of difference. And this is where lead scoring comes in.
Lead scoring is a system for ranking prospects according to their sales-readiness. You do this by assigning scores to each lead based on the level of interest they show in your product or service. These scores are measured according to the interaction of your leads within your funnel.
Using your lead score, you can determine which leads require follow-up and which need more nurturing.
Making things right
Finding out that you may have been self-sabotaging your sales pipeline is a hard pill to swallow. But you don’t have to beat yourself up about it. Gaining knowledge about a problem is a great place to start.
At this point, you should be able to know where you fall short and how to make the necessary adjustments. The truth is that you’re going to make mistakes as you go along. You’ll need to learn new things and unlearn a few others. But one thing is sure, as long as you are determined to readjust your marketing approach, it will get better.