When was the last time you took a long, hard look at your sales funnel? 

Most entrepreneurs like to imagine their marketing pipeline as a well-oiled machine. Leads come in — customers come out. Like clockwork. 

But I’m sure you know that it doesn’t always work out that way. 

In reality, even the highest-converting funnels are leaking leads left and right. Prospects don’t buy; visitors don’t opt in; you name it. 

That’s why today, we’re going to talk about how you can “plug the holes” in your marketing funnel, and start converting more paying customers… all without having to drive more traffic. Sound good?

Excellent! Then let’s start with the biggest “leak” that most business owners overlook…

Pictured: man in a blue shirt stands next to a funnel with pipes labeled "leads"; he is holding a wrench and smiling, having fixed the marketing funnel and stopped the leads from leaking out

 

Leak #1. Visitors leave way too soon

The biggest leak in your marketing funnel happens right at the very top — a.k.a. just before leads enter your pipeline.

Here’s what I mean:

The average landing page conversion rate across industries is just 2.35%! That means, over 97% of new visitors will leave your website without converting into leads. And out of those 97 percent… the majority will never even get to see your opt-in!

This is a huge waste of potentially high-quality leads, who might make amazing customers down the line. And for anyone who wants to fix their funnel (as I assume you do), I would recommend addressing this problem, and capturing some of that massive number of lost leads.

How? Let’s investigate!

 

How can you fix it?

Now, I’m assuming that your website traffic is highly targeted, and your opt-in offer is in alignment with what your visitors want and need. So what else can you do to get those visitors to stick around long enough to have a chance to opt in?

Well, you can…

  1. Improve their on-site experience, so they stick around longer. And if you could do just one thing to address this… reduce your page loading speed. Visitors bounce off slow-loading websites like you wouldn’t believe — so make sure yours runs smoothly!
  2. Intercept them before they leave. Serve your visitors an exit-intent popup with a killer opt-in offer, so they get one last chance to convert. Those things can boost opt-in rates as much as 600% (not a typo — see this case study from WPBeginner).
  3. Bring them back with remarketing ads. Remarketing ads are cost-effective and really helpful for recapturing lost leads. So rather than waste your hard-earned ad bucks on paid cold traffic, invest them in a remarketing campaign instead!

OK, now you know 3 ways to reclaim website visitors who would otherwise leave and never come back — but how do you turn them into qualified leads? This brings us to…

 

Leak #2. Visitors don’t opt in and become leads

Now, we move on to the second-biggest bottleneck in your funnel — converting visitors into leads.

Even though sharing their contact info might not seem like a big deal (after all, it’s free, and you offer massive value), it still takes a not-insignificant leap of faith on the part of your customers. 

Every other business online is fighting to get their attention, too… so why should they choose you? You want to make their decision as much of a no-brainer as possible, with a compelling opt-in offer and a persuasive form that’s easy to use.

And with that in mind, here’s what you can do to capture more high-quality leads for your business…

 

How can you fix it?

In my experience, there are three main variables you can tweak if you wish to boost your conversion rate on new leads: the opt-in form, the opt-in offer (lead magnet) — and the first piece of communication your leads will receive from you, a.k.a. the confirmation email.

If you’re currently converting less than 2% of your website traffic, you might want to…

  • Optimize your opt-in forms. Change their placement, experiment with the design, modify the call to action, etc. — oftentimes even a few simple tweaks can create a substantial lift in conversions! Also, make sure your landing pages are dialed in.
  • Rethink your lead magnet. Your lead magnet needs to be irresistible to new visitors and highly effective at qualifying potential buyers. This guide to lead magnets will help you create an asset that excels at both.
  • Rewrite your confirmation email. Oftentimes, leads will opt into your funnel… only to get stuck on the very next step, which is confirming their email. Poorly written confirmation emails are one of the most underused assets in any pipeline. Rewrite yours so it immediately charms new leads instead of driving them away — here’s how.

And now that we’ve figured out how to turn your visitors into leads, the time has finally come to plug the most common “leak” by far…

 

Leak #3. Leads never become prospects / buyers

When a qualified lead enters your funnel, it’s far from guaranteed that they convert into a paying customer or client. And even if they do, the timeline to the sale could vary wildly: from hours and days to multiple years.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, though — people buy when they are ready, and not a moment too soon. A high-converting funnel is not the one that converts everyone quickly (that’s impossible)… 

…but one that converts leads at the right time (for them).

And if that sounds vague and complicated, allow me to demonstrate a few strategies that will help you turn leads into paying customers.

 

How can you fix it?

In terms of their readiness to buy, you can divide leads into three groups:

  1. “Eager sneezers,” who are ready to purchase almost right away (bless them).
  2. “Slowpokes,” who need to see the same offer multiple times before they even consider buying.
  3. And “bargain hunters,” who need a significant additional incentive to purchase.

Here’s how you can enhance your funnel to capture all three types of buyer…

  • Use a nurture sequence that culminates in a sales pitch. Not all of your leads will be ready to buy so soon after they opt in… but enough of them will be open to the idea that you’d want an effective nurture campaign! Make sure that all new leads see a paid offer from you within the first week of signing up. For extra credit, try to enhance it with a limited time, one time only condition.
  • “Launch” your offer multiple times a year. Even if you don’t do launches in the classic sense (i.e. your offer is available year-round), this is still a great strategy to convert leads who didn’t buy the first time around. And hey, there are lots of other ways to create scarcity and urgency — experiment with them as well!
  • Offer an irresistible deal. Normally, I advise against relying on discounts to drive sales, but… Seasonal promotions and once-in-a-blue-moon special offers can be a good way to capture some value from leads who haven’t bought from you yet — and possibly never would have without this incentive! Just don’t make it a habit.

 

Want to build a high-converting lead funnel for your business?

For many entrepreneurs, the #1 challenge of lead generation isn’t even about optimizing an existing funnel… it’s about getting started at all.

There’s just so much to learn about leads, nurturing, conversions, friction, and a bajillion other things that it’s very easy to do nothing, and keep descending that research and learning rabbit hole.

But research and learning count for nothing without implementation.

Are you ready to take action — and finally start getting results from your funnel? Then you will love the 5-Day Lead Challenge created by Russell Brunson — Founder of ClickFunnels and a friend of The Draw Shop!

Check it out below:

Learn more about the challenge and create a high-converting lead funnel in 5 days


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