6 Factors That Can Heavily Impact On Your Sales Funnel

8 min read

Although it’s tempting to focus on the “big picture” of our marketing efforts, sometimes the smallest details of our funnels have the most impact on our bottom line.

We’ve outlined the top six elements of funnel-hacking that are often overlooked yet could make or break your next funnel project.

When it comes to building a killer sales funnel, sometimes it’s crucial to understand what not to do.

After all, we understand the most common mistakes both newbies and professional funnel-builders make including:

  • Focusing way too much on the front-end of the funnel, sacrificing user experience and copy at the expense of a flashy design that doesn’t actually convert
  • Sitting on funnels instead of pushing and testing: after all, how can you hope ever to see a dime if you aren’t putting your products out there?
  • Attempting to cut corners with a cheap team or less-than-stellar affiliate, resulting in few clicks and no conversions

However, these mistakes focus on the “big picture.”

What about errors that creep up on us when we’re least expecting them?

The sort of stuff that has us banging our heads against the wall, asking “Oh crap, why didn’t I think of this?!”

Don’t freak out.

Novices and pros alike are prone to the following six funnel factors that almost everyone ignores.

By understanding how to avoid these pitfalls, you can set up your future funnels for success and have a back-up plan if things go awry.

Lack of Product Support

Teamwork wins

There’s nothing worse than having to deal with something that’s completely out of our control.

Unfortunately, if you build a sales funnel around a product that ultimately lacks customer support, chances are you’re going to hit a huge roadblock.

Even the most pristine funnels, seemingly “perfect” on paper, will be dead in the water if the product its pushing isn’t up to snuff.

So, what’s the solution?

For starters, make sure that you’re working with a trusted affiliate program that provides plenty of affiliate and user feedback regarding the performance of products, for example:

Regardless of which platform you choose, pay close attention to product descriptions and reviews to avoid any sort of red flags (think: exaggerated claims or promises, scammy guarantees, etc.).

Ideally, you should order the product yourself as a means of providing feedback, answering user questions and simply having a better idea of what you’re working with.

While you shouldn’t feel the need to be a buffer between poor product support and your customers, there are some steps you can take to deal with a lack of affiliate support.

On-site, you may be able to quell some user concerns by crafting a personalized “About” page that urges users to talk to you.

Also, you may consider incorporating a live chat function to meet the needs of concerned customers immediately.

More likely than not, you can avoid this headache altogether simply by picking a proven affiliate program and product with plenty of feedback from sellers.

Ignoring Refund Rates

Business documents

Funnel-hackers love to talk metrics: from click-through to conversions and beyond, we love to nitpick what’s impacting the effectiveness of our funnels.

However, the metric of “refund rate” rarely comes up in conversation.

Simply put, refund rate represents the cost percentage of returning a product if a buyer isn’t completely satisfied.

For example, exaggerated claims and money back guarantee for a weight-loss product can come back to bite you if customers don’t see the results you promised.

The higher the request for refunds, the higher the refund rate.

In short, a high refund rate can cause you to hemorrhage cash if you aren’t careful with what you’re selling and how you present it to your audience.

This case study from 2010 notes that a majority of ClickBank’s product refund rates were relatively low (less than 5%).

Also, marketing guru Tim Ferriss notes that the best way to avoid refunds is by delivering a high-quality product and outlining extremely clear expectations for customers.

Not all affiliates and vendors publish refund rates; therefore, it again becomes paramount that you only push quality products and be careful with your promises to potential customers.

Streamline this process by having an affiliate management system that lets you integrate it into your funnels like that of Backpack. Not only can it be easily integrated into your funnels, but you can easily view your affiliates’ performance and not miss a payment to your affiliates. What’s more is that since it is easily integrated into your ClickFunnels account, you’ll have the luxury of time to optimise your pages to cut your refund rates.

Getting Cut Off

Web Traffic

We never want to assume the worst; however, what happens if our traffic suddenly gets cut off?

What if our affiliate account gets banned, or one of our referral sources simply goes ghost on us?

It’s a nightmare scenario for sure: so what’s the back-up plan?

As the saying goes, never put all your eggs in one basket. Instead, you should diversify how you warm and pull leads into your funnel, including:

  • Organic traffic (think: traffic as a result of your SEO efforts and targeting keywords)
  • Social traffic (such as those acquired from hyper-targeted Facebook ads)
  • Email marketing (including opt-ins and subscribers)
  • Affiliate traffic (warm referrals who are interested in what you’re selling)

In the worst-case scenario that one of your traffic sources falls flat, at least you’ll have traction elsewhere.

Likewise, this is why you should consider diversifying your business by building new funnels pushing multiple products rather than being a one-trick-pony regarding sales.

Bear in mind that in the case of any web-based business, it pays to be prepared.

For example, Google’s algorithm update swiftly punished some niche affiliate sites in 2014 for spammy content, dropping some sites’ traffic by a staggering 90%, causing some sites to fall off the face of Google and have to start over from scratch.

While you shouldn’t expect such punishment yourself, always have a “Plan B” on deck.

ClickFunnels can be easily integrated into other 3rd party software to make sure traffic is driven into your funnels. What

Hiring a Cheap Copywriter

Business woman with team working on laptop

The bread and butter of a copywriter are that their words will sell.

Therefore, you need to hire a proven, experienced copywriter before throwing money at someone without a track record.

Preferably, you should look for someone with experience in the following:

  • Direct response copywriting
  • Swipe files
  • Long-form sales letters

Ideally, your potential hires should be able to show you examples of their portfolio and testimonials from former clients to help back-up their claims.

If you’re strapped for cash and perhaps can’t splurge on a career copywriter, you may need to work with someone less experienced or new to the industry (such writers can be found on platforms such as Upwork).

Although it may take some digging, you can find diamonds in the rough who have the chops to write killer copy but haven’t gotten their break yet.

However, if a writer seems like a good fit but is ultimately unproven, there’s no reason to splash big bucks at first glance.

If you’re skeptical, consider offering writers a paid test to figure out whether or not they meet your needs (for example, you could ask them to write a long-form sales letter for a fictional SaaS product).

You can also try Funnel Scripts if you’re looking to creating copies on-demand. It’s a great tool whether it’s for creating high-converting content, ad copy or email subject lines.

Poor Testing

Black Chalkboard with AB Test. 3D Rendering.

“Always be testing” is the mantra of much modern businesses, and why not?

The benefits of A/B testing are well documented; however, running a test doesn’t mean you have to “go big or go home.”

Instead, rely on smaller sample sets or cheap, cold traffic versus warm leads if you want to experiment with your copy or deals.

Granted you have a large enough sample size; you can get a good idea as to whether or not your marketing speaks to an audience.

Whether you’re testing sales copy, email subject lines or ad design, consider using a sample size calculator to help understand exactly how large your tests should be.

You can also cut down on time and cash by running UX tests that provide valuable insight into exactly how users respond to your on-site marketing.

In short, don’t launch anything until you’ve tested it thoroughly (think: make data-driven decisions rather than relying on your gut).

Sleeping on Leads

Lead Nurturing - Prospect, Client or Customer

If someone expresses interest in what you’re selling, you need to act immediately.

After all, why would you snooze when there’s money on the table?

Response time matters; likewise, customers do not like to be kept waiting.

The longer you wait to respond to leads, the more likely they are to drop out of your funnel.

Therefore, you need the following on deck to make sure that you can get back to customers sooner rather than later:

  • Email autoresponders that provide essential details to specific inquiries
  • Crystal clear language on your page that customer concerns will be responded to within a certain frame of time (24 – 48 hours, for example) to manage user expectations
  • Virtual assistants or a dedicated team member to handle customer questions or concerns if you can’t dedicate the time yourself

Thankfully, modern apps and technology can send such concerns straight to our inboxes while we’re on the go.

Much of responding leads comes down to paying attention and acting in real-time, so make responding to inquiries a top priority to avoid losing leads.

Set up email autoresponders and integrate them into your funnel with ease by making use of automation tools like Actionetics. It’s an added bonus if your email automation tools lets you create and design emails.

What Else Can You Not Afford to Ignore?

Modern marketing affords us so many opportunities to reach customers; however, the small “what-ifs” and worst-case scenarios can lead to major headaches.

By understanding the most overlooked factors of funnel-hacking, you can manage your own expectations and stay on top of customers in the process.

Are there any other seemingly “small” aspects of funnel-building that you feel are overlooked today?

ClickFunnels Action Steps

How to Create Emails with Email Builder

As mentioned earlier, Actionetics’ Email Builder lets you create and design high-quality emails whether you choose to design from scratch or start off with the available templates.

Step 1: Log in to your ClickFunnels account

Step 2: Click Actionetics

Step 3: Go to Email Broadcasts and click on the New Email Broadcast button.

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Step 4: Design your email! You can choose from several templates.

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Step 5: Add the information needed

  1. The subject of your email
  2. Add the email lists. In this case, those who signed up for your webinar
  3. Your SMTP Configuration which will be used to send emails.

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Step 6: Open Email Editor

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Step 7: Add and remove elements to your email according to your preference

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Step 8: Click Save

Step 9: You can opt to send your emails upon creation or schedule them to be sent at a future time. Simply click “Send Later” and set the time and date.

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