Are you struggling to get more leads through your middle funnel? You’re not alone. Many businesses find themselves in this situation, and it can be tough to break through the bottleneck. In this blog post, we’ll break down how to identify and remedy middle funnel bottlenecks to help you increase your lead conversion rate and get more sales.
Table of contents
- Understand your lead funnel
- How to know if you’re bottleneck is in the middle of the funnel (MOFU)
- Step 1: Track your funnel activities
- Step 2: Analyze your lead funnel data
- Step 3: Identify the best solution
- Step 4: Action on your solution
- Quick recap
Understand your lead funnel
Top of the funnel (TOFU)
This is the awareness and attraction stage, where an organization’s marketing efforts are often focused on getting new leads. You are trying to attract a new audience by showing them what your brand is like or raising awareness of a particular problem.
Middle of the funnel (MOFU)
The middle of the funnel is where you start to work with the leads you’ve brought in, including qualifying them. For your leads, this is when they are learning more about their problem and exploring options.
The middle of the funnel is where you want to concentrate your efforts on developing interest in your product as a potential solution to their problem and creating a desire to buy. In the middle of the funnel, sales begin to engage prospects by sharing case studies, providing demonstrations, and sending initial sales material.
Bottom of the funnel (BOFU)
Now is the time to sell your product or service. This is where you should be positioning your business as the best in the marketplace and encouraging leads to take action – and convert.
The middle of the sales funnel doesn’t get as much love as the top or bottom. It’s common for a marketing team to focus on the top of the funnel while sales focuses on the bottom, causing a disconnect in the middle.
How to know if you’re bottleneck is in the middle of the funnel (MOFU)
If you have a high number of leads, but they aren’t converting into customers, it’s time to turn your attention to the middle funnel.
At this stage of the sales funnel, understanding your target audience and keeping their attention is critical. Your audience is likely evaluating their options and trying to learn more about their problem. Your content should help them do that by providing valuable information to help them make a decision.
Now that we’ve laid out sales funnel basics, let’s dive into the step-by-step guide to breaking through the middle funnel bottleneck.
Step 1: Track your funnel activities
Assemble everything you need to track your funnel activities. Maybe you already have funnel documentation. Whatever the situation is, choose a tool to track funnel events. A simple spreadsheet works well here. Combine all information, from both your marketing team and sales team.
Step 2: Analyze your lead funnel data
Review your lead funnel
Walk through your customer journey, and make note of each step a lead goes through. Make note of even the smallest actions. You’ll bounce these findings off of your list in step one to ensure you’re capturing the complete user journey.
Log current conversions at each activity or step
With your list of lead funnel activities laid out, open your analytics or business intelligence tool and begin documenting conversion rates at each step.
Identify low data points
Now that you have data attached to each step, make note of which conversion rates are particularly low compared to the others.
Determine why people dropped off the path
Go back through your user journey and notice at which points conversions drop off. Begin brainstorming why they could be dropping off at that point.
Step 3: Identify the best solution
Once you’ve identified drop off points in your lead funnel, it’s easier to identify a solution. Focus on the activities that will make the biggest impact on your funnel. Consider cost, revenue, and timing here. Ask yourself:
- What will it cost for an employee to work on a resolution?
- How much revenue will this solution bring in?
- How long will it take to implement a viable change?
Here are a few solutions to consider depending on the data you captured for your lead funnel:
- Fix low lead quality from the start
- Boost leads with segmentation
- Optimize with lead scoring
- Reduce hand-off friction with content and context
Step 4: Action on your solution
Fix low lead quality from the start
Use data – both in-house and market – to target and qualify high-quality leads. If you’re attracting low quality leads from the start, no type of lead funnel will magically transform them into a good fit.
Look at both the quality of content you’re using to engage potential leads as well as the specific marketing activity. Depending on your industry and market, certain marketing activities – say quizzes or other interactive content – will produce hotter leads.
Boost leads with segmentation
Oftentimes, a potential middle funnel lead will drop off the user journey because they don’t feel it’s relevant for them anymore. Remedy this issue by using segment personas. You can then send them an automated email with targeted information to keep them engaged or retarget them with paid ads that feature more relevant information. This should help push them along in your funnel
Optimize with lead scoring
You can track how many leads came from a campaign’s various activities, such as email clicks, website visits, whitepaper downloads, webinar registrations, and social media interactions. You can find out which behaviors are the most reliable indicators of intent to buy by performing this research across multiple actions.
Reduce hand-off friction with content and context
Marketing can help salespeople distribute case studies, whitepapers, and other educational materials to leads as a preliminary step. A marketing team can also develop optimized content experiences for leads by connecting one piece of content to another (for example, if a lead watches a video, provide them with a related PDF guide). It’s important that marketing and sales teams are aligned in the complete funnel strategy to ensure a seamless flow of quality leads.
Here’s the recipe to break middle funnel bottlenecks:
- Collect data from your website or app that’s aligned to your user journey
- Analyze that funnel data to see where customers are dropping off
- Prioritize fixes that address those drop-off points
- Action on the most effective and efficient solution