The most successful ecommerce businesses and bookkeepers use well-documented processes. Get your ecommerce bookkeeping ready to scale with our free checklist.

How To Create A Shopify Sales Funnel [Guide]
Jan 18, 2022

How To Create A Shopify Sales Funnel [Guide]

Home » Blog » How To Create A Shopify Sales Funnel [Guide]

Estimated reading time: 11 minutes.

Shopify customer journey

“If you’re in business, you’re in marketing. And if you’re in marketing, you need a sales funnel.”

Don’t you just hate it when someone tries to hard-sell you, and you’ve never heard of them or their product before?

Perhaps you get annoyed when you’re bombarded with ads from a business online, one you’ve never interacted with, telling you to buy a product you know nothing about?

We know that, as customers, we hate this kind of approach. But without a sales funnel, ecommerce sellers can easily slip into this behavior when trying to attract new customers online. 

It’s often counter-productive, and as a result, a waste of your money.

Since Shopify sellers in particular need to generate all their traffic themselves, a sales funnel is an invaluable tool. It’s designed to optimize and maximize a customer’s purchasing journey so that every cent you spend generates a few more.

In this guide to Shopify sales funnels, we’ll be covering:

Learn how to manage your Shopify accounting the right way

If you want to scale up your Shopify business, you need reliable accounting. Discover the best tools, key tax information and how to ensure that your Shopify accounting is set up for success.

Download our free guide

Ready to get converting?

Let’s do it.

What Is A Sales Funnel?

A sales funnel is a marketing construct. It’s designed to replicate the progression of an in-person relationship with potential customers, but online, and with many people at once. 

It allows businesses to communicate with different types of customers in different ways, just like you would in a high street store. 

For example, imagine you are running a store on the street. 

A young man wanders in and remarks that he hasn’t seen your store here before, and asks you what you’re selling. 

You might give him some context and background to your business, and perhaps ask him about his interests, wants, and needs, to see whether you can offer anything appropriate. 

You might end the interaction by asking him to follow your business on social media or check out the website.

After he leaves, a woman comes in. 

She has been looking at your website for days and can’t decide between two specific products. She wants to know more about them and you give her additional information with perhaps a discount if she buys both. 

Your response to these customer types has been drastically different. But you’re there in person and in full control. This isn’t the case online. 

A sales funnel is the remedy for this problem. 

The Sales Funnel Structure

A sales funnel is essentially a set of steps that helps marketers strategically engage with new and existing customers. 

It’s called a “funnel” because it’s designed to help people learn about your business, then choose a product, and then buy - but inevitably, there will always be people lost along the way. The better the funnel, the fewer people should drop off (because you attracted the right ones in the first place).

Sales funnels can look a little different from business to business, but the idea is the same. 

Sales funnel graphic

Source: ClickMinded.

  • Top of the funnel: Awareness

“Hello, what’s your name?”

This stage represents those customers like the man above who walked into your store knowing nothing about you.

The goal of this stage

To attract new visitors from your target audience to a brand asset. This asset might be your website or social media accounts. 

Activities for this stage

Providing relatable, relevant content that they would be interested in, just to pique interest, like:

  • Blog posts
  • Social media posts
  • Videos
  • Tutorials
  • Interviews
  • Podcasts
  • Influencer campaigns

The content should include a call to action like, “check out our website…” or “like/follow for updates”, or “enter your email address to stay informed”. 

Shopify has many features (and apps) that can help you get the most out of content like this. 

  • Middle of the funnel: Consideration

“We seem to have a lot in common, shall we meet up again?”

For customers that have had some interaction with you, perhaps read a blog post or followed your socials, it’s time to build trust.

By this point, they should have some idea as to what problem you’re trying to solve, and how that relates to their lives. Hopefully, they’re interested in staying in touch with you.

The goal of this stage

To develop a relationship with your visitors. You want them to come back and start considering a purchase. 

Activities for this stage

You might want to offer your new visitors something for nothing to stand out from your competitors, like:

  • Lead magnets. These are free resources or services given away in exchange for something - usually contact information. 
  • Opt-ins. You could produce a newsletter, or rewards program, or something that people can opt into, giving you their contact information. 
  • Introductory offers. You might want to offer new customers a particular discount or perk for their first purchase.

Check out the Shopify discussion boards to see what other sellers are using for these types of activities. 

  • Bottom of the funnel: Action

“I like what I see. I’m in!”

This stage represents the woman in our example above. She’s learned about your business, she’s considered which products she wants, and she’s ready to purchase.

The goal of this stage

To remove any obstacles in the final stage on a customer’s path to purchase. And to maximize the number of sales and the average order value of each.

Activities for this stage

By now, your customers should know what your core product and offering is. You might sweeten the deal with:

  • Special offers. 
  • Add-on offers or similar, pricier products (upselling). 
  • Cheaper alternatives for those put off by price (downselling). 
  • Email marketing and offers. 

So you’re at the bottom of the funnel now, but your activities shouldn’t stop here. You want to make fans of your customers - for the long-term. 

  • The next step: Retention and advocates

“I’m telling all my friends about you. I’ll definitely be back!”

It’s much cheaper to convert existing customers than to start from scratch acquiring new ones again. 

The goal of this stage

To bring customers back time and time again, increasing their lifetime value to your business. You also want to foster great relationships so they spread the word about you. 

Activities for this stage

Retaining customers is all about two-way relationships. You could offer things like:

Check out this nice visual that shows the potential paths into and around the funnel:

ClickMinded sales funnel journey example

Source: ClickMinded.

5 Money-Making Benefits Of Sales Funnels

Setting up a solid sales funnel for your business gives you more control over who visits your site, what they see, and how they interact. 

With it, you can:

  1. Attract targeted traffic to your Shopify store and other business pages.
  2. Interact with customers in a tailored way.
  3. Increase the number of leads that convert into customers.
  4. Increase the lifetime value of each customer and their average order values.
  5. Scale-up your spend to bring more traffic in and repeat the cycle.

It all sounds pretty win-win, right?

So let’s get down to it: creating your very own sales funnel for Shopify. 

5 Steps To Create Your Shopify Sales Funnel

Ready to put everything into action?

Here are your steps to designing a sales funnel. 

  1. Identify the problem of your target audience and your compelling solution

What you’re selling and why should dictate how you sell it, so get clear on this before tackling any kind of marketing.

You’ll want to know:

  • Who your ideal customer is, broken down by demographics (like age, gender, occupation), psychographics (like beliefs, values, drivers), and their behaviors.
  • Who your competition is and what they’re offering the same target audience. Where’s your point of difference? How can you make your business irresistible to customers who have other options?
  1. Map out a customer journey with marketing activities for each stage

What might the journey look like for a customer to progress from complete stranger to brand advocate? What channels might they use, in what order? 

When you have a list of these, think about the types of marketing activities that would make sense at each step in the chain. Use the ideas set out above for inspiration, and think about how each should nudge the customer onto the next step. 

Pro tip: Set your own KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for each marketing activity so that you have something to measure and track. This guide lays out what types of metrics you could measure and why.

  1. Plan all the tasks that need to be done to bring it all to life

You’ve probably got a decent list coming along now. It might include social media posts, blog posts, tutorials, product demos, paid ad campaigns - and that’s going to take some time. 

Not only will that content need creating, but scheduling, uploading, and probably replying to comments and shares too. 

So look at the work that is required to bring your sales funnel activities to life, and plan what you’ll do when. Think about how you’ll schedule the activities and manage them (will you use apps and automation?), and what will need doing daily/weekly/monthly, etc. 

Using KPIs to measure the success of your activities will enable you to invest your time wisely.

Check out our Shopify apps guide for recommendations to help you automate some of these processes.

  1. Set dates to review and renew your actions

This is a crucial step, so don’t miss it out - especially if you do have KPIs.

You need to check in with your efforts. What’s working, and what isn’t? How do you know? What could you do differently?

  1. Measure, test, experiment, repeat

And finally, don’t be afraid to try things out. 

Platforms bring out new features all the time, so if something makes sense for your audience, or you notice that they’re all over a new trend, why not try it out?

Instagram launched its Reels short video feature in August 2020. And just over a year later, it’s the go-to format for businesses wanting to create viral content. 

That is likely to change again in the near future, so stay intune! 

And that’s that, your quick-fire guide to creating a sales funnel. 

Good luck!

Are Your Accounts Ready For Growth?

With an efficient funnel up and running, you could see significant growth in no time. But is your accounting system sophisticated enough to handle that?

Are you reconciling your transactions individually, yourself?

Do your numbers come out right every single time, without fail? 

How about splitting out sales taxes, refunds, shipping costs, packaging costs, and everything else an ecommerce business has to track?

Well, what if you didn’t need to do any of that yourself. What if integrating an app with your Shopify store and accounting software could do all of this for you, automatically and accurately every single time?

Cue: A2X for Shopify

A2X generates journal summaries for each of your Shopify payouts that detail every income and expense line associated with them. 

Any statements spanning months are split automatically and books are organized via the accrual method of accounting, which is required of businesses that hit a certain size. 

With A2X, you can better understand whether your sales funnel efforts have paid off (literally), and make informed, strategic decisions for your business based on reliable numbers - always.

Try it for free today.

Also on the Blog:

Learn how to manage your Shopify accounting the right way

If you want to scale up your Shopify business, you need reliable accounting. Discover the best tools, key tax information and how to ensure that your Shopify accounting is set up for success.

Download our free guide

Ecommerce accounting is challenging, A2X makes it easy.

Discover how A2X can automatically take all of your accounting pain away.

Try A2X for Free

Before you leave...

Are you looking to take control of your Shopify accounting, to ensure that your business is running like a well-oiled machine?

Download our free guide