Hi, this is Stephen Pratley, and today I’m going to help you understand the difference between a website and a funnel.

This was brought home to me just at the end of a recent project. We’ve just finished up building a new website for an agency that I do a lot of work for. It’s a good solid site, we spent a lot of time on the homepage, figuring out what it is that they need to communicate. We’ve done quite a decent, long-form webpage here. It includes a lot of the elements that a sales letter might do, so there’s a proposition statement that kind of calls out who the audience is that they’re talking to; there are some services there that shows what they can do for them; shows the kind of people that they’re working with; gives some great testimonials; and then there’s a call to action to get in touch with them. Then if that’s not enough, there’s some other content, there’s some case studies, there’s some social media content, blog posts, and even a link off to one of the training workshops they’re doing.

That’s all good. Then all those parts are kind of reflected deeper into the site as well, if you want to get more detail on it. We finished up the site, they then have a conference that they’re going to ┬ánext week. What have we done? We’ve built a different page from their landing page in order to achieve that.

This outlines the difference between the webpage and the funnel. The webpage, we don’t know who is going to arrive there, and we have to try to cater to the all-things-to-all-people that is always going to mean it’s never going to have the impact of dealing with a single audience with a single need and a single solution that you’ve got that you can present to them. On our homepage, we’re going to have people looking for jobs, people trying to sell to the company, we’re going to have some existing customers maybe, warm prospects, people that have never met them before that turn up through search.
Yet on our funnel, we know exactly who we’re talking to; these are people who have gone to a specific conference, with a specific need to find out about how to make their marketing to the Chinese better. We know what stage in the journey they are, they are almost always fresh people who we’ve not had any contact with. We know what our call to action for those people is, which is to help them to understand what bits they in place and what bits they might need in order to accelerate their marketing to China.

We have a chain which we then want to get them to follow through. We’re not giving the customer lots of options in this scenario, because we know who they are, we know the end result we want to get for them, and we know how we want them to get there. It’s down to us to lead the way. That’s really the biggest difference between the typical kind of hierarchical website and the more linear funnel, where you get them in and then [torture 00:02:54] them over a period of time.

The landing page doesn’t have a tonne of detail on it. Our real aim on that is to capture email addresses, because it takes multiple contacts to close that sale. Nobody’s going to arrive on a website and then sign up to the kind of services which these guys do, which are typically five figure projects and above. What we need to do is a couple of things; one is that we pixel them all over the place, so that we can get back to them with subsequent adverts and create more contacts and familiarity there. The other one is do everything that we can to try and get their email address, so that we can also torture them via email and follow that conversation through. We need to just get people not just in one step, but usually half a dozen. In a large sale like this, quite often maybe twenty contacts by the time we’ve brought in all the meetings and phone calls and workshop visits, all these sorts of things.

It takes a lot of familiarity and trust to make this sale, so the funnel goes way beyond this just one page. We’re not going to try to sell them a service off this page, but we want to find a way of moving them from an environment which we don’t control, such as Google, Facebook, or just SEO coming to our website, into one that we do. A pixelled audience, where we can target adverts at people who we know are in a particular stage, or email marketing where we can keep drip feeding conversation to them, or possibly even by mail where we can send them mailing pieces as well. Any of those kind of audiences where we really control it, and we can get back to them on multiple occasions over the course of a couple of weeks, we’re going to perform far better than hoping people get to the website, hoping they find the right piece of content on the website, hoping they don’t miss the important stuff, and hoping that we can get them back again through multiple visits.
If your web strategy feels a little bit like it’s running on hope, then I think you should try and follow through some of the principles that we teach on this website and some of my courses.

I’d love to know what you’re doing at the moment, where your challenges are.

If you’re watching on YouTube, there’s a link below this video where you can find a transcription and any comments on video. If you’re watching on our website, that’s just below, and I’d love to hear from you.