Do you want to boost conversions? Sales funnels are powerful, especially when you’re looking to double, triple, or exponentially increase sales and revenue.
As a freelancer or small business owner, you need a step by step process to walk your leads through.
If they don’t buy at first, some of them will convert down the line. Most sales are only made after the fourth attempt, so don’t give up when you’re being rejected.
The steps you walk your leads through is known as a sales funnel. Most businesses have a sales funnel, whether by default or by design. While it’s important to stay up to date with the latest sales trends and optimize your marketing material, business all-too-often let themselves down at the final hurdle by having a non-optimized sales funnel. If you don’t optimize it, you won’t see great results.
Through your sales funnel, you create awareness, build interest, help your leads make decisions, and drive actions.
Don’t know where to start or how to create your first sales funnel? Here are 9 amazing sales funnel examples you can model.
Sales Funnel Example #1: Netflix
As a huge media company. Netflix uses a high-converting sales funnel to onboard new members to its video streaming services — using any internet-enabled device.
With more than 195.15 million monthly paying users, Netflix caters to a broad audience. Therefore, it needs to keep its funnel simple.
Netflix uses a risk reversal system, which allows members to cancel any time and avoid being locked into a contract.
Here’s how the sales funnel works:
i). Homepage: On the homepage, users simply have to enter their email addresses to create or restart a membership. They also stated that you can cancel at any time during the trial period.
Netflix is a recurring video streaming service, so they emphasize risk reversal if you don’t want to proceed.
ii). Pricing Page: Users can quickly scroll down to the FAQ section to view the pricing information.
By default, every new member is assigned to the Premium plan. However, users can downgrade at any time.
Netflix’s sales funnel is designed to convert new users into loyal members. One of the reasons why the ‘sales funnel’ works is the flexible payment plans and multiple payment options, such as gift cards, PayPal, and all major credit cards are accepted.
Netflix is a trusted brand. Everyone knows Netflix. They strive to satisfy the consumer. They also provide helpful answers with the least amount of text needed.
Even though Netflix is a multinational media company, customer support is reliable.
You can call their phone line, which is amazing — considering that a lot of web-based companies don’t offer phone support.
Sales Funnel Example #2: Groupon
Groupon reaches millions of consumers every month. The Coupon-based company uses one of the best sales funnels you can model.
First, it uses a prominent email opt-in pop-up on its homepage. This is the first prompt visitors get when they land on the Groupon website.
If you’re familiar with Groupon’s sales funnel strategy, you’ll agree with me that the brand has been using this pop-up email form for years.
They have been using it to capture email leads and grow their audience since they haven’t changed or removed it in recent years. Let’s take a closer look at the sales funnel and how it works.
Groupon uses multiple sources to drive traffic to its website. From ads to direct to referrals, affiliates, email lists, sponsored posts, podcast mentions, and more.
The pop-up form that appears on the homepage is inviting, as it incentivizes visitors to fill out the form with their email address and save up to 70% on restaurants, spas, things, and a lot of other great deals.
From there, the visitor can browse other deals and shop for services.
So, why does this sales funnel work for Groupon?
Well, it uses a strategic and clear CTA to nudge consumers to click a deal, however, they need to first sign up with their email address.
A major aspect of Groupon’s sales funnel is the email list. Once you’re subscribed, you’ll receive follow up offers that are tailored to you. The objective is to persuade you to come back to Groupon and search for another deal.
Groupon doesn’t cater to every consumer or online shopper. The majority of its deals are relevant to women — a demographic that makes up its customer base.
This sales funnel might seem pushy at the surface, since there are no free trials. But it’s straightforward.
Customers either want the deal or they don’t. Leveraging the power of email marketing, a giant email list, and great offers that bring consumers back to the website form the bedrock of Groupon’s sales funnel.
If you want to drive your sales funnel using email campaigns, you can start for free using Mailchimp for your first 2,000-subscribers. Or pick from this Mailchimp alternatives list.
Sales Funnel Example #3: HelpScout
In the customer service sector, HelpScout is well-respected and perceived as a valuable company.
Hence, it’s important to use a simple, customer-focused, and valuable sales funnel. Customers want to see what the Help desk software can help them accomplish in their business.
That’s why HelpScout leverages the power of demo video on its homepage. The designs, placements, and animations feel emotional.
HelpScout can be viewed as marketing software, with an emphasis on customer service. The website is clean and the copy is fun to read. Nothing is overlapping with the copy. And the background utilizes white space.
The call-to-action (CTA) is clear and the social proof is believable.
Truly, video demos and video testimonials are amazing ways to quickly establish trust with site visitors and new leads.
According to BigCommerce, the regular use of video demos and testimonials can generate 60% more revenue.
That’s why giant companies like Disney and Adidas invest in video testimonials. And it works — whether you’re in the digital marketing space, health, or sports.
So, what other strategy does HelpScout use to maintain a converting sales funnel?
Let’s dig a little deeper.
The website generates most of its traffic from the blog or resource page. The homepage uses plenty of social proof, a clear CTA, visual cues, amazing contrast, and a modern responsive design.
HelpScout uses three pricing tiers on its pricing page:
The CTA prompts the visitor to start a free trial.
Overall, Help Scout has a subtle and hyper-relevant sales funnel. The homepage is beautiful, their message and services are clear.
And they focus on the beginners and small businesses that need a Help desk software they can trust.
Even though HelpScout is popularly known for its helpdesk services, they have since expanded into Market Research and a Data library resource.
Sales Funnel Example #4: Consulting.com
Unlike Groupon, Consulting.com uses a free trial sales funnel to capture interested leads and grow sales. The free trial is used to sell its flagship service, “The Consulting Accelerator Program.” SendInBlue takes a similar approach with its sales funnel, however, it offers a free test drive instead of a free trial to its email marketing tool.
Consulting.com lets you use all of its services for free for the first 3, 7, or 14 days, depending on the campaign they’re running at the time.
Let’s see what the sales funnel looks like and how it works. The moment you sign up for the free trial, you’re required to enter your credit card details.
Next, you’ll be asked a series of questions about your business, your staff strength, income level, and so on.
This is a great way for them to gather valuable information about their audience. The user’s answers will be used to personalize their experience.
Finally, you’ll gain access to their learning portal. It’s a win/win because the company now has valuable insights about their target customer.
You can enjoy the free content, but in 7 days your credit card will be charged. This will give you full access to the entire modules, lessons, and resources.
After you buy the program, there’s an upsell that nudges you to also consider buying their other programs such as ‘Uplevel Consulting’ and ‘Quantum Mastermind.’
Consulting.com uses this approach and upsell to maximize profit from a single lead.
Most SaaS companies use a free trial offer to get new users and customers into their sales funnels. It’s a proven onboarding methodology that seems to work all the time.
Consulting.com isn’t a SaaS company, yet it uses the free trial technique to build a high-converting sales funnel. That’s why this example is unique — as free trials are rarely used by online course creators.
Sales Funnel Example #5: OptinMonster
I love Optinmonster’s sales funnel. The premise is to convert every visitor who lands on any of its landing pages.
The company believes that every visitor is a potential customer, hence they use multiple sales funnels to ‘welcome’ new customers.
They use a variety of marketing tools and sales techniques — exit popups, content upgrades, case studies, a countdown timer, lead magnets for their opt-in forms, a sense of urgency, and more.
Customers who accept to pay annually are given discounted prices. The company relies heavily on an exit-intent popup to build a huge email list, recommend its email tool, and make more money from each customer. Here’s what it looks like:
A lot of eCommerce brands also exit pop-up plus quiz marketing in their lead generation strategy to convert new leads into customers and build a winning funnel.
The exit-popup is an effective method to capture visitors before they exit the page.
It reels in visitors and potential customers that want to close the tab and leave — giving them another reason to use Optinmonster.
Using funnels that trigger a sense of urgency or offer a last-minute discount tends to work exceptionally well in convincing customers that are still on the fence to opt-in for a free offer.
Sales Funnel Example #6: Backlinko
Brian Dean, the founder of Backlinko, is one of the most respected SEO professionals in the world.
This guy ranks for a ton of high-volume keywords across Google search and YouTube, which are the main traffic sources he pays attention to.
He also uses webinars and podcasts to drive top of the funnel leads that will later become customers.
Pro tip: If you want to host webinars and use it to build your email list, there are webinar software platforms that are completely free or come as an add-on to one of the marketing software you’re currently using. For example, ClickFunnels and GrooveFunnels have a built-in webinar tool.
Also, Brain likes to identify keyword gaps, then uses the Skyscraper Technique to create the most comprehensive content for the keyword — blog posts that attract natural, relevant, and authority inbound links (or backlinks)
He doesn’t use the traditional sales funnel. Instead, he uses email funnels and does most of his marketing and course sales via emails.
When users land on his website, he uses a variety of lead magnets that motivates them to fill out a form with their email address.
Next, he starts building trust and engaging with his subscribers. Then he sells his SEO That Works and YouTube courses.
When users join Brian’s email list, he engages them by sending useful SEO hacks, content creation strategies, and other informative content to help build trust and foster a relationship.
This sales funnel is best suited for freelancers, bloggers, authors, and other experts who are looking to sell products online.
Sales Funnel Example #7: InFlow Inventory
InFlow Inventory is a SaaS company that offers Barcode software to help businesses increase inventory accuracy.
This company has defined its target audience — businesses that currently use Barcodes or wish to incorporate them into their inventory management. More so, businesses that want to make a QR code may also find this tool useful.
The sales funnel begins with a free trial offer. This is an irresistible offer because businesses would be interested in checking out the platform without spending money right away.
But not all free trials are created equal. Some require credit cards, which means you’ll be billed at the end of the trial period.
This approach might be a turnoff to some people — especially if they’re concerned about getting billed unknowingly.
But InFlow Inventory offers a 14-day free trial without credits. All that’s required is the user’s email address, and the CTA further reassures you that no hidden fee awaits you.
The funnel is subtle and doesn’t overwhelm the user with too many form fields.
After the user has entered their email address and clicked on the “Let’s do it!” button, the next stage is where they’re asked additional questions.
To further encourage a new business owner to sign up, both social proof (over 400,000 business worldwide) and an animated customer testimonial appear at both sides of the landing page.
Who should use this sales funnel? If you sell products and services with premium price tags, you might want to offer a ton of value upfront before asking for payment.
Better yet, you can increase conversions if you target mobile users via click-to-call campaigns or utilize predictive dialer tools, this will help you answer your customers’ questions in real-time.
That way, when you take steps to charge what you’re worth (or what your software is worth), there won’t be objections from the clients and users.
Sales Funnel Example #8: Capsule Fillers
There’s no limit to what you can achieve with your sales funnel. It doesn’t matter whether you’re an eCommerce business, a freelance consultant, a business coach, or a company that sells capsule fillers, sales funnels can boost your conversions.
Ifacapsulefillers.com uses a smart sales funnel you can get some inspiration from. The sales funnel is simple but highly effective.
When a business is interested in buying Capsule Filler equipment, one of the steps they can take is to learn or upgrade their skills — for making capsules.
It can be a complicated process, so any help would be appreciated. That’s why Capsule Fillers offer a free eBook.
But there’s a caveat. To get the free eBook, a business owner is required to fill in their first name and email address, then select from the drop-down “what describes their business.”
The CTA might be creative or fancy, but it does the job. We all know that when we “submit” a form, what lies at the other end is the free offer.
After the eBook arrives at the recipient’s inbox, for 7 days, they will get video tutorials ranging from how to create a capsule mix to how to change the tooling and more.
Who should use this sales funnel? If you’re a service business or you have a product that requires a learning curve, offering an eBook or free email course can make your sales funnel valuable and result-driven. You’ll be able to establish trust quickly and close the deal.
Sales Funnel Example #9: Ultimate Meal Plans
Ultimate Meal Plans uses tighter sales funnel. It doesn’t offer free trials, no free meal plan is given, yet, the site is generating decent conversions.
When users land on the homepage, it’s clearly written in the copy that tasty meal plans cost $8/month (billed yearly).
This type of filter will discourage time-wasters from taking further action, which is a good thing. The team behind this company understands that not everyone is a good fit, and they made it prominent in the copy.
You can tell that people who subscribe to the $8/month (billed yearly) offer are interested in getting tasty meal plans that will enable them to lose weight and stay healthy.
When users click on the “Sign up” button, they’re instantly redirected to the checkout page. There, they can enter their email address, choose a pricing option (by default, it’s at $14/month).
As you can see, Ultimate Meal Plans leverages the power of social proof; customer testimonials to encourage new users to check out completely.
There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee, so there’s no loss for the customer if they (for any reason) don’t like the meal plans, they can always get their money back.
Again, the company sends follow up email campaigns regularly, sharing samples of the delicious recipes, a variety of diets ranging from low carb to Paleo to Keto, all the way to Carnivore, Banting, etc.
A sales funnel creates long-lasting relationships with leads and helps a brand to boost conversions — without being pushy or using gimmicks.
The top of the funnel (ToFU) is always wide because a lot of potential leads may opt-in out of curiosity to see what’s inside. But a lot of them will drop off eventually.
That’s why you need to nurture relationships inside your sales funnel so that when leads get to the bottom of the funnel (BoFU), they will be ready to buy your product without asking questions.
Use these sales funnel examples to grow your sales. If you already have your funnel, you can always tweak it to improve sales conversions.