No matter what you call them – sales funnels, marketing funnels, conversion funnels, purchase funnels, customer funnels, etc. – one thing remains true, you need one!

In this post, I will walk you through a few simple models to demonstrate the power of a sales funnel. By the end, you’ll truly grasp the concept in all its glory.

The Scenario

We’re an online only (eCommerce, B2C) electronic cigarette business.

Note: Whether you know anything about Ecigs or not … it doesn't matter, I'm simply using it to illustrate the point … which you will still understand. (I know very little about eCigs myself)

Core Product

The core product is the main reason anyone visits our store. Ours is this …


Basic Ecig ($50)

Upsell of Core Product

This is the more “prestigious” version of our core product and what we try to get people to buy as opposed to what they originally visited our store for (core product).

It costs a little more, but it's better!


Advanced Ecig ($75)

Complementary Products

These are products that complement the core product. They’re not really useful on their own; however, they take the core product to the next level or are used with the core product.

complementary products

Fluids ($20)

Battery ($15)

Battery ($15)

Car Charger ($10)

Car Charger ($10)

Quick Recap

The point of a sales funnel is to bring people into your business, “funnel” them down until they make a purchase, and then keep that customer happy for years to come (retention).

sales funnel updated

No Sales Funnel

Although the sales funnel is a general representation for business, most businesses don't “purposefully” operate in this fashion. Instead they focus on the immediate – sell, sell, sell!

Needless to say, they’re missing out on a tremendous amount of conversions, customer loyalty, and revenue.

Here’s what our business looks like without a purposeful sales funnel in place:

No Funnel

So, assuming 1,000 people visit our store, and we have a 10% conversion rate on sales … we can expect 100 purchases a month or $5,000 in revenue a month … which means each visitor to our store is worth about $5.

Not too bad.

But, think about it … 90% of the people who visit our store leave and never come back! Certainly there is something we can do about this.

Sales Funnel (Convert Leads To Customers)

Enter the sales funnel!

With Funnel

By adding an email opt-in with a lead magnet to our site, we're able to build a better relationship with our leads and increase our conversion rate to 20%!

Sales Funnel (Maximize Customer Value [Retention])

Now, let's take it one step further by continuing to engage with our paying customers:

Funnel with pipeline


By implementing a “purposeful” sales funnel, we're able to bring our visitor's average worth up from $5 to $14! That's an increase of 280%!!

Let’s quickly walk through it.

Thanks to our sales funnel (the part that converts leads into customers) we’re able to boost our conversion rate from 10% to 20%. After the lead becomes a paying customer and we begin to focus on retention, we're able to recommend complementary products to our customer.

Sure, not every complementary product (cross-sale) will convert, which is why we have different conversion rates. Some will convert, which is the key.

Overall, the retention phase adds another $4 (or 40%) to our customer’s lifetime value … and this can all be handled automatically, through email marketing!

Apply To Brick And Mortar

I know what you’re thinking. This whole concept sounds all well and good with an online store … but, what about a physical, brick and mortar store?

I’ll let you in on a little secret … treat it the same way!

Instead of a landing page … you have a store. People “land” in your store.

Instead of a lead magnet … you can offer people a chance to enter a raffle for a $100 gift card … in exchange for their email address.

When someone makes a purchase … you manually tag that individual in your autoresponder tool.

Sure, some stuff will be more manual … but, it’s not at all hard. You can easily see the value between having a sales funnel in place and not.

The time invested in setting up a little contest (lead magnet), and manually entering people’s information is well worth it!

Get Started!

I'm done trying to convince you of the power of having a sales funnel in place. If you're still not convinced … I can't help you.

If you need help … grab our top converting email series! It will get you headed in the right direction in no time!