5 Steps To Optimize Your Entire Sales Funnel

By Madison Taylor
February 28, 2022
black and white striped tunnel

Sales and marketing teams share a shared goal: to provide customer value and drive company results. However, these two teams do not always see eye to eye. Marketers think in terms of aggregate client segments, whereas sellers think in terms of individual customers. Marketers are concerned with analysis and processes, whereas sellers are concerned with customer relationships. Optimizing your sales funnel to include clear lines of communication and responsibility goes a long way towards aligning sales and marketing. Here are our top five tips on how to optimize your sales funnel to ensure a smooth handoff between these two teams.

1. Develop a Universal Lead Definition (ULD)

A ULD defines what a qualified sales lead is. The universal lead definition also includes the following:

  • Fits your ideal customer’s profile
  • Outlines the duties and obligations of Sales and Marketing

To find common ground on the ULD ask the sales team “What do you need to know to ensure that you will follow up on a lead we send you, act on it and provide feedback?”

2. Refine the Definition of a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL)

Consider the following: If your marketing team and sales can agree on what constitutes a high-quality lead at your company, marketing can identify and pass on these leads to reps following a prospect’s initial interaction(s) with your brand. Once sales obtains these connections from marketing, reps can qualify and nurture them as needed. This saves time across the organization and guarantees that sales professionals aren’t wasting time trying to locate leads that marketing has already engaged and verified. Marketing qualified leads are those that marketing interacts, vets, and passes on to sales (MQLs). Therefore, it is important to refine the definition of an MQL so that marketing passes only those leads that are likely to be beneficial to the sales team.

3. Optimize and Scale Lead Generation

Understanding how lead-generation campaigns function and what they have to offer as a business owner will help you generate more interest and considerably expand your consumer base. To get more value from lead generation, there are two key strategies you should consider.

Begin at the Top

Lead-generation advertising might be costly if you have a protracted purchase cycle. When you have a lot of touchpoints, starting at the top of the funnel may seem counterintuitive, but it’s vital.
This allows you to make use of more cost-effective lead generation and targeting approaches to help you get in front of your prospects as soon as feasible. As a result, you’ll be able to engage with prospects throughout their entire buying process.

Create Outstanding Content

Content marketing is an excellent technique to capture leads in the middle and top of the funnel. In exchange for your prospect’s personal information, content provides you with something of value. Additionally, content allows you to gather data. As a result, you can start segmenting your leads based on the material they consume. This will help develop future marketing campaigns.

4. Qualify and Interact With Your Leads Earlier

The earlier you can qualify leads, the better and the reason for this is simple: you’re wasting time if you don’t qualify leads early. Ideally, you want to interact with leads as early as possible and close to real-time as possible. For example, you can use site-wide forms to pose qualifying questions to prospects before they contact you. Live chat tools also allow you to interact with site visitors in real-time, qualifying them before they enter the sales funnel.

5. Define Hand-Off Process From Marketing to Sales

For any firm looking to expand its sales funnel, the lead handoff procedure is one of the most significant obstacles. Marketing has spent time and money to develop qualified leads, but they are not always assigned to the Sales team and followed up on. The two most important things you can do to smooth the transition are identifying a trigger and implementing a routing system.

Lead Trigger

To guarantee that leads reach the sales pipeline at the appropriate moment, you’ll need a trigger point that shows their sales readiness. This might be a lead score based on their fit and interest, a BoFu submission or the acquisition of a necessary piece of segmentation data, such as geography or firm size.

Lead Routing

While the details will vary depending on the size of your organization, you’ll need a mechanism for qualified leads to pass from the marketing team to a specific sales agent. When a lead is routed to a sales representative, the representative must be informed and given information about the lead. Email, a chat platform or in-app notifications in your CRM or sales enablement software might all be used as a notification system.

Optimizing your sales funnel is something that every company should accomplish. If you don’t, you’ll be losing business to your competitors unnecessarily. By taking the time to learn what a sales funnel is and how to create one for yourself. Considering how you may improve it, you can make your marketing work harder for you and increase your conversion rate, assisting most businesses in achieving their aim of making more money. So keep in mind the actions you need to follow to achieve. Hungry for more? Here is a deep-dive on how to generate qualified leads for your business.