The 2 Major Benefits of Sales Funnels Over Regular Websites

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "Dotcom Secrets" by Russell Brunson. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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What is a sales funnel? What are the benefits of sales funnels over regular websites?

A sales funnel is a type of website designed to guide a customer through a series of steps leading to a purchase. Unlike a regular website, which typically displays a menu with multiple pathways, a sales funnel is structured in a way where each page leads to the next one and nowhere else.

Keep reading to learn how sales funnels work and why they’re superior when it comes to converting customers.

Why Use Sales Funnels?

According to Brunson, high-quality sales funnels are the key to a successful online business. In his book Dotcom Secrets, he highlights two benefits of sales funnels over regular websites:

Reason #1: Sales Funnels Convert Visitors Into Customers

Brunson contends that sales funnels are the most effective way to convert visitors to your website into paying customers. To explain why, let’s contrast funnels with an ordinary business website.

Most websites look like a menu of options: A customer can click to different pages depending on what they’re looking for. However, Brunson argues that this layout is really bad at attracting new customers because complicated websites with a multitude of menu options are confusing and difficult to navigate, even if people already know what they want to buy from you. Unfortunately, when your website confuses your visitors, they’re more likely to leave than put in the hard work necessary to figure things out.

On the other hand, when your website is a sales funnel, you avoid presenting a confusing menu of options. Instead, you show all new visitors the same message about your product and give them one place to click if they’re interested in moving forward. They then enter a series of pages persuading them to make a purchase, each of which links to the next one and nowhere else. This structure prevents visitors to your website from getting lost or confused, and it presents them with a single refined and persuasive message, maximizing the chance they’ll become customers.

Brunson explains that each kind of product you sell requires a different sales funnel on your website—the path on your website that convinces customers to buy a book will look very different from the one selling access to an overseas retreat. We’ll go into more depth on what a sales funnel should look like later in this guide.

Reason #2: Sales Funnels Get Each Customer to Spend More

Ideally, your sales funnels do more than turn website traffic into paying customers. They also get each customer to purchase more than they otherwise would have by getting them to spend more at one time and encouraging them to return and buy again in the future.

Getting each customer to buy more is the secret to business growth, according to Brunson: Every new customer costs significant marketing expenses to acquire, but getting each customer to spend more gives you more revenue at no additional marketing expense, resulting in vastly more profit. These massive profits then allow you to spend more on marketing, creating a virtuous cycle in which every sale you make funds the acquisition of the next several sales. This empowers you to grow your business exponentially and dominate the market.

In contrast, most online businesses fail to achieve this virtuous cycle. Often, when businesses aren’t getting as much website traffic as they want, they make the mistake of trying to improve their marketing so more potential customers click through to the website. If they instead improved their sales funnels so each customer spent more, they could increase traffic to their website through heavier investment in marketing.

The 2 Major Benefits of Sales Funnels Over Regular Websites

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Here's what you'll find in our full Dotcom Secrets summary:

  • What separates the million-dollar startups from the unprofitable failures
  • Why your company's website should be organized as a sales funnel
  • How to attract customers to your site and make a compelling marketing message

Darya Sinusoid

Darya’s love for reading started with fantasy novels (The LOTR trilogy is still her all-time-favorite). Growing up, however, she found herself transitioning to non-fiction, psychological, and self-help books. She has a degree in Psychology and a deep passion for the subject. She likes reading research-informed books that distill the workings of the human brain/mind/consciousness and thinking of ways to apply the insights to her own life. Some of her favorites include Thinking, Fast and Slow, How We Decide, and The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

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