The Other F Word: Funnels

Funnels get a bad wrap because, well, they aren’t always fun.

People tend to be nervous about funnels because of the word “funnel.” It makes them sound complicated and technical, like something you need a degree to understand. But really, “funnel” is just a fancy word for the process by which people move through your business.

That’s it. That’s all a funnel is. Simple right?

Think about the path you take through the grocery store, it’s pretty much the same every time you go, right?

“Start at fresh fruits and veggies, circle past dairy, ask an employee where a certain pasta sauce is, deny the existence of desserts, and then grab a water while you wait in line.”

Your funnels are no different, except instead of plotting out your route through Whole Foods, you use funnels to lead your clients and customers exactly where you want them to go, instead of leaving them to fend for themselves and die on the vine of confusion. As we all know, a confused mind never buys.

Feeling Funnel Frustration?

Many business owners get hung-up on their funnels. They know funnels are the key to scaling their business, but they don’t want to feel like a fraud or alienate their people with phoney or cookie-cutter funnels. They’re paralyzed because they’re not sure how to integrate smart, human (gasp), people first funnels into their business. Sound familiar?

This feeling is almost always the first sign that a business isn’t primed for growth and might be stuck in stagnant revenue waters.

Here’s why.   

Funnels should be integrated thoughtfully into ALL aspects of your business because they allow you to remove the barriers that keep you stuck IN your business rather than working ON your business. Today, I’m talking about using funnels to help automate the small, administrative tasks that need to happen as people move through your business, so that you don’t have to stop your day each time a prospective customer enters your funnel.

So These Funnels, What are they? Where They Are? What Do They Look Like?

Funnels are found in:  

  • Your website flow. Remember, lead them, don’t leave them!
  • Your products or services. Do you have something to step them up from, or transition them to, once you have delivered your product or service?
  • Your social media. Getting them off the book of faces and into a face-2-face with your business!
  • Your emails, both for clients and non-clients. New sales, winbacks, and client happiness, they are all connected.
  • Your customer experience post sale. Referrals, irrationally loyal clients, and great case studies/testimonials.
  • Your “freebies” aka lead magnets which start the dance. (If that has you stuck too, our Lead Magnet Overview could be just the ticket.)

Now, it is important to remember, funnels don’t look the same for everyone. Funnels are not one size fits all. Some businesses need longer, more flexible funnels, some need short and sweet funnels. It depends on your sales cycle and how much trust is needed before someone says yes. Also, some find that their funnels need to change overtime as their business evolves, which is a good thing, stagnation is the surest way to let people slip through the cracks.

Funnels are infinite in their structure and use.  I recommend revisiting them regularly and make adjustments to make sure they are growing with your business, serving your people, and not leaking.

How to Know If Your Funnels Are Working

The best way to tell if your funnels are working is if they are converting. Every funnel you create needs to have an objective. If your customers are taking the action you want them to—joining a mailing list, downloading a lead magnet, or making a purchase, etc.—then your funnel is working.

If your objectives aren’t being met and conversions aren’t happening, then you have a problem with your funnel and probably the messaging around them. This is the time to take a really close look at what’s working and what isn’t, every step of the way. Looking at your site analytics will give you a good idea of where things are falling apart and how your customers are moving through your site or funnel (or not!).

Here are a couple of great, free tools to get you started with funnels:

  1. Crazy Egg – Crazy Egg has an awesome heatmap tool that allows you to see where people are clicking on your site. Their A/B tool is great for testing different versions of your content and email marketing so that you can create content that achieves your goals.
  2. – Funnelytics is an amazing tool for creating visual funnel maps in minutes. You can easily see exactly how you want people to move through your funnels and what the steps are! 
  3. Google Analytics – hands down the best way to take a deep dive into your website traffic, behavior, demographics, etc.

One of the biggest mistakes many businesses make is leaving their customers stranded on a landing page, rather than leading them step-by-step to where they want them to go.

When constructing your funnels, think through each step. Put yourself in the mind of customer, who has just clicked on your website for the very first time. Map out how you want to dance with them from initial contact to conversion, and really ask yourself if your funnel is set up to facilitate these steps.

 When it comes to funnels, the only thing that really matters is whether or not they work. It doesn’t matter how long or short your funnels are, how many steps you have, or even what your objective is. What matters is whether or not your funnels are effectively achieving conversions. That’s it.     

If you are not sure if you have any funnels, want a current funnel review to see if yours are effective and clear, or you want help setting up your business’ funnels, then let’s chat so you can start having some fun with funnels!

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