Lead Funnels: The Secret to Generating More Leads and Sales

Lead Funnels: The Secret to Generating More Leads and Sales

Imagine if you could attract more leads, qualify them more quickly, and convert them into customers more efficiently. What would that do for your business?

Lead funnels are the secret to making this happen.

A lead funnel is a process of attracting, engaging, and nurturing potential customers until they are ready to buy. It's a way to guide potential customers through the sales process, step-by-step, until they become paying customers. Lead funnels are essential for any business that wants to generate more leads and sales.

In this blog post, we're going to teach you everything you need to know about lead funnels, including how to build one for your own business.

What are Lead Funnels?

lead funnels

Lead funnels are strategic pathways or systems designed to attract, engage, and convert potential customers into leads and, ultimately, into paying customers. They are a fundamental component of digital marketing and sales strategies. Lead funnels guide prospects through a series of steps, providing them with valuable information and opportunities to interact with a brand, product, or service.

Key elements of lead funnels typically include:

  1. Awareness: Attracting the attention of potential customers by offering valuable content, solving problems, or addressing their needs.
  2. Interest: Building the interest of prospects by providing more in-depth information, showcasing product or service benefits, and engaging them with compelling content.
  3. Consideration: Nurturing prospects as they weigh their options, often through personalized communication and targeted content.
  4. Conversion: Encouraging prospects to take a specific action, such as signing up for a newsletter, downloading a resource, or making a purchase.
  5. Retention: Continuing to engage and provide value to customers after the initial conversion, with the aim of fostering loyalty and encouraging repeat business.

Types of lead funnels

types of lead

There are several types of lead funnels, each tailored to specific marketing and sales objectives. Here are some common types of lead funnels:

Email Marketing Funnel

  • Objective: Building and nurturing an email list for ongoing communication.
  • Stages: Lead magnet (e.g., eBook, webinar) > Subscription > Drip email series > Conversion (e.g., product purchase).

Sales Funnel

  • Objective: Guiding prospects through the sales process to make a purchase.
  • Stages: Awareness > Interest > Consideration > Purchase > Post-Purchase (retention and advocacy).

Content Marketing Funnel

  • Objective: Delivering valuable content to educate and engage prospects.
  • Stages: Blog posts, articles, videos, infographics > Content upgrades > Email subscriptions > Product or service promotion.

Social Media Funnel

  • Objective: Leveraging social media platforms to attract and convert leads.
  • Stages: Social media posts > Engagement (likes, comments, shares) > Click-through to website > Lead capture > Conversion.

Webinar Funnel

  • Objective: Hosting webinars to educate, engage, and convert leads.
  • Stages: Webinar registration > Attendance > Post-webinar follow-up > Conversion.

Product Launch Funnel

  • Objective: Promoting a new product or service to generate buzz and sales.
  • Stages: Teasers and anticipation-building content > Pre-launch offers > Launch day promotion > Post-launch follow-up.

Lead Magnet Funnel

  • Objective: Offering a valuable resource to capture leads' contact information.
  • Stages: Lead magnet creation (e.g., eBook, checklist) > Promotion > Landing page > Lead capture > Follow-up emails.

Affiliate Marketing Funnel

  • Objective: Collaborating with affiliates to promote products or services.
  • Stages: Affiliate promotion > Landing page > Lead capture > Sales or commissions.

Retargeting Funnel

  • Objective: Re-engaging website visitors who didn't convert initially.
  • Stages: Initial website visit > Exit intent pop-ups > Retargeting ads > Lead capture or conversion.

Customer Onboarding Funnel

  • Objective: Ensuring a smooth transition for new customers.
  • Stages: Welcome email series > Onboarding tutorials > Engagement and product usage > Upsell or cross-sell.

What are the Lead Funnel Stages?

Lead Funnel Stages

Lead funnel stages are the key steps or phases that a potential customer goes through in the process of becoming a lead and, eventually, a paying customer. These stages help businesses understand where prospects are in their buying journey and tailor their marketing and sales efforts accordingly. Here are the typical lead funnel stages:

Awareness Stage

  • At this stage, potential customers become aware of your brand, product, or service. They may have encountered your content or website for the first time.
  • Goal: Capture their attention and make a positive first impression.
  • Content: Blog posts, social media content, videos, and educational resources.

Interest Stage

  • In this stage, prospects have shown a deeper interest in your offerings. They may have engaged with your content, signed up for your newsletter, or visited specific product pages.
  • Goal: Nurture their interest and provide valuable information.
  • Content: Email newsletters, eBooks, webinars, and product demos.

Consideration Stage

  • Prospects in the consideration stage are actively evaluating their options. They are researching, comparing, and looking for solutions to their specific needs.
  • Goal: Provide detailed information and showcase how your offering meets their needs.
  • Content: Case studies, product comparisons, customer testimonials, and interactive tools.

Intent Stage

  • At this stage, prospects have a clear intent to make a purchase. They may have added items to their cart or requested a quote.
  • Goal: Encourage them to take the final steps towards conversion.
  • Content: Cart abandonment emails, limited-time offers, and direct sales outreach.

Conversion Stage

  • This is the stage where leads become customers by making a purchase or taking the desired action (e.g., signing up for a subscription, booking a demo).
  • Goal: Ensure a smooth conversion process and provide post-purchase support.
  • Content: Confirmation emails, onboarding materials, and post-purchase resources.

Retention and Loyalty Stage

  • After conversion, the focus shifts to retaining and building long-term relationships with customers. The goal is to encourage repeat business and advocacy.
  • Goal: Keep customers engaged and satisfied to foster loyalty.
  • Content: Exclusive offers, loyalty programs, and customer support.

Advocacy Stage

  • In this final stage, satisfied customers become advocates for your brand. They refer others, leave positive reviews, and help promote your business.
  • Goal: Encourage and reward advocacy to drive referrals.
  • Content: Referral programs, social sharing incentives, and customer success stories.

Lead pages vs Click funnels

Lead pages and click funnels are both marketing tools that can be used to generate leads and sales. However, there are some key differences between the two.

A lead page is a single page that is designed to capture leads. Lead pages typically have a form that visitors can fill out to submit their contact information. Lead pages can be used to generate leads for a variety of purposes, such as subscribing to an email list, downloading an ebook, or scheduling a demo.

A click funnel is a series of web pages that are designed to guide visitors through a sales process. Click funnels typically start with a lead page and then move visitors to other pages where they can learn more about the product or service, watch videos, read testimonials, and make a purchase.

Here is a table that summarizes the key differences between lead pages and click funnels:

Lead pages vs Click funnels

Which one is right for you depends on your specific needs and goals. If you're just starting out, a lead page may be a good option for you. Lead pages are relatively simple to create and they can be used to generate leads for a variety of purposes.

If you're selling a product or service, then a click funnel may be a better option for you. Click funnels can help you to automate your sales process and to guide visitors through a journey that leads to a purchase.

Here are some tips for choosing between a lead page and a click funnel:

  • Consider your goals. What do you want to achieve with your marketing campaign? Do you want to capture leads or sell products or services?
  • Consider your budget. Lead pages are typically less expensive to create than click funnels.
  • Consider your resources. Do you have the time and resources to create and manage a click funnel?

Best lead funnel software

The best lead funnel software for you will depend on your specific needs and budget. However, some of the most popular lead funnel software options include:

  • ClickFunnels: ClickFunnels is a comprehensive lead funnel software that offers a wide range of features, including lead generation, landing page creation, sales automation, and email marketing.
  • Leadpages: Leadpages is a lead generation software that helps businesses to create high-converting landing pages. Leadpages also offers features such as email marketing and A/B testing.
  • Instapage: Instapage is a landing page creation software that offers a variety of features, including drag-and-drop design, A/B testing, and heatmap tracking.
  • Unbounce: Unbounce is a landing page creation software that offers a variety of features, including drag-and-drop design, A/B testing, and smart traffic routing.
  • HubSpot: HubSpot is a customer relationship management (CRM) software that also offers features such as lead generation, landing page creation, and email marketing.
  • ActiveCampaign: ActiveCampaign is an email marketing software that also offers features such as lead generation, landing page creation, and sales automation.
  • GetResponse: GetResponse is an email marketing software that also offers features such as landing page creation, sales automation, and webinar hosting.
  • Kajabi: Kajabi is an all-in-one platform that offers features such as lead generation, landing page creation, sales automation, email marketing, and course creation.
  • Teachable: Teachable is an all-in-one platform that offers features such as lead generation, landing page creation, sales automation, email marketing, and course creation.
  • Thinkific: Thinkific is an all-in-one platform that offers features such as lead generation, landing page creation, sales automation, email marketing, and course creation.

How to build a lead generation funnel for your business?

Building a lead generation funnel for your business involves creating a structured process that attracts potential customers, engages them, and guides them towards becoming leads. Here are the steps to build an effective lead generation funnel:

1. Define Your Target Audience

Identify your ideal customers and create detailed buyer personas to understand their needs, pain points, and preferences.

2. Create Valuable Content

Develop content that resonates with your target audience. This could include blog posts, eBooks, webinars, videos, or other resources that address their problems or questions.

3. Build a Landing Page

Create dedicated landing pages for your lead magnets (e.g., eBooks, webinars) with a clear call-to-action (CTA) and a lead capture form.

4. Implement Lead Capture Forms

Place lead capture forms on your landing pages to collect essential information from visitors, such as their name and email address.

5. Offer Incentives

Encourage visitors to provide their information by offering incentives like free downloads, discounts, or exclusive access to content.

6. Drive Traffic

Use various marketing channels, such as social media, email marketing, SEO, and paid advertising, to drive traffic to your landing pages.

7. Nurture Leads with Email Marketing

Set up automated email sequences to nurture leads over time. Provide them with valuable content and build a relationship.

8. Implement Lead Scoring

Assign scores to leads based on their interactions and engagement with your content. Focus your efforts on high-scoring leads.

9. Use Retargeting

Implement retargeting campaigns to re-engage visitors who didn't convert on their first visit.

10. Offer Solutions and Recommendations

Tailor your communication to address the specific needs and pain points of your leads. Provide solutions and recommendations that align with their interests.

11. Track and Analyze

Use analytics tools to track the performance of your lead generation funnel. Monitor conversion rates, identify bottlenecks, and make data-driven improvements.

12. Optimize and Test

Continuously optimize your funnel by testing different elements such as headlines, CTA buttons, and lead capture forms to improve conversion rates.

13. Qualify Leads

Implement lead qualification criteria to distinguish between marketing-qualified leads (MQLs) and sales-qualified leads (SQLs).

14. Hand Off to Sales

When leads reach the SQL stage, pass them to the sales team for personalized outreach and closing.

15. Measure ROI

Evaluate the return on investment (ROI) of your lead generation efforts. Calculate the cost per lead and compare it to the revenue generated from those leads.

How Manifest AI can help you in generating leads?

ai shopping assistant

Manifest AI is a GPT-powered AI assistant that can help you in generating leads in a number of ways, including:

  • Targeted lead generation: Manifest AI can help you to identify and target potential customers who are most likely to be interested in your products or services. It does this by analyzing the behaviour of your store visitors by communicating with them and collecting their information.
  • Personalized outreach: Manifest AI can help you to personalize your outreach to potential customers. It can answer your store visitors in a personalized way and improve their purchasing experience.
  • Lead nurturing: Manifest AI can help you to nurture leads by nudging them with automated customer behavioral content. This can help to keep your leads engaged and moving through the sales funnel.
  • Product recommendation: AI driven by GPT technology can assess customer preferences and previous interactions to deliver tailored product recommendation. This capability of directing customers to appropriate products can enhance sales and improve customer satisfaction, minimizing the reliance on live agents for product advice.


In the realm of digital growth, lead funnels shine as the unsung heroes. They are the silent architects behind the scenes, weaving a path of discovery, engagement, and conversion. By unraveling the secret of lead funnels, you're not just generating leads and sales; you're crafting a journey that resonates with your audience. So, remember, it's not just about the destination, but the steps you take to get there that truly define your success.