How To Build Sales Funnels Profitably [Get MAX Conversions]

There’s no doubt that figuring out how to build a sales funnels is difficult…

Trying to figure out how to build sales funnels that are profitable ?

Well, that can seem almost impossible when you’re just starting out.

I’m going to go through the anatomy of a sales funnel and give you a step-by-step walkthrough of how to do it.

Let’s get started.

What Is A Sales Funnel? [The Basics]

A sales funnel is a streamlined process of converting a prospect into a customer. Online sales funnels typically have only one call-to-action in order to avoid the distractions of a typical website or blog.

A sales funnel in its most simplest form can be explained in 4 main stages of the customer journey.

In order to build a profitable sales funnel, you need to take the customer through all four steps with your sales funnel alone.

Here’s an overview of each of the sales funnel steps:

  • Stage 1: Awareness
  • Stage 2: Interest
  • Stage 3: Decision
  • Stage 4: Action

Even though there’s four stages to the customer journey, it doesn’t mean your funnel should be exactly four pages.

In fact, you may want to create a simple two page funnel to get an opt-in with a thank you page that could sell something. The real magic then comes with your email marketing,

By sending out emails to your customer, you start to build a relationship and a foundation of trust.

From there, it’s much easier to present the product and draw interest in it.

At that point it’s a matter of sending them over to a sales funnel that takes them through the decision and awareness stages of the customer journey.

Audience Stage 1: Awareness

Let’s talk now about the first stage of the customer journey in a sales funnel which is awareness.

Unless you’re promoting a well-known brand name as an affiliate, you’ll need to make your audience (the person who’s going through your sales funnel) aware of the product.

Your customer has a problem that they may or may not be already aware of. In other words, there’s lots of questions that are floating around in their head that you need to answer with your sales funnel.

Typically, the content you create online will act as the awareness step. However, if you’re running paid ads then you’ll want to do the best you can to condense this step onto a single landing page.

It’s important that you establish trust by backing up your claims with credible sources and truthful testimonials.

The goal of this stage is to clarify the problem that the customer has in a way that is geared toward what your product has a direct solution for.

Audience Stage 2: Interest

At this point, the customer has clarified what their problem is and now need specific questions to be answered.

In particular, these questions should be answered in your sales funnel to point to the solutions that your product provides.

This step and the remaining steps can all be done on the sales page of your funnel.

This allows for an efficient approach to getting your customer to take action.

Audience Stage 3: Decision

When in the decision making stage, your customer has already been exposed to your product.

They’ve seen your arguments for how it provides the exact solution to their problem and answers their questions.

It’s time to make a decision…

The decision stage can be influenced with testimonials and bonuses.

When you provide testimonials, you’re giving outside evidence and proof that others have already gotten the results they desired. And they have gotten their problems solved as a direct result of using the product being presented.

It’s important to provide truthful testimonials.

With bonuses, you’re adding on additional items that the customer can get completely free with the product.

These bonuses should complement the product. This can be done best by providing more of the same thing if it applies.

Audience Stage 4: Action

The final stage is taking action.

Your customer has just made the decision to either buy your product or exit out of the page.

The important part with this step is that you make it easy for someone to figure out how to purchase the product.

This means you need to reduce the steps required to buy.

I recommend either creating a separate page purely for checkout or having the form at the bottom of the sales page.

How To Get Traffic To Sales Funnels

Now, it’s time for the all important question…

How do you get traffic to sales funnels?

There’s two main ways to drive traffic:

  • Paid Ads
  • Free Content Marketing

If you’re like me, you didn’t start off with several grand lying around to learn paid ads with.

So, I recommend you drive traffic for free with content marketing.

In particular, by focusing on search engines you’ll get targeted traffic to your blog posts or YouTube videos.

From there, you can get them on your email list as a subscriber and start to send them to your sales funnels.

How To Optimize Sales Funnels For Conversions

If there’s one thing you need to be doing to have a profitable sales funnel, it would be testing.

In other words, split test practically everything in your funnel.

Whether it be the headline, a single word, or the background color it’s imperative that you run split tests.

Determining which variation produces the highest conversion rate means more sales and money in your pocket at the end of the day.

That’s why testing is fundamental to a profitable sales funnel.

Measuring The Success Of A Sales Funnel

Measuring whether a sales funnel is performing well or not might seem a little vague at first on how to do it.

If you’re focusing on content marketing, then one of the big things you’ll want to measure is which posts are driving the most traffic to your sales funnels.

You can then emulate that post for new posts or updating old posts.

In terms of the sales funnel, a key metric is the optin rate.  This is simply how many people become a lead by putting their info when presented with a contact form.

Another key metric is how many of those leads are converting to sales right away.

Both of these statistics are likely going to be very low percentages. So, you can expect around 1% convert to a sale.

The email marketing you do as follow up helps to increase this percentage.

All of the key metrics for sales funnels and tracking links can all be done easily with the right tools.

The tool I use for all my tracking is a software called Clickmagick.

You can learn more about it in my ClickMagick Review and also check out my Clickmagick Bonuses as well that you’ll get upon signing up.

Best Profitable Sales Funnels Examples

The best way to build sales funnels is by modeling others or doing what is often called “funnel hacking”.

There’s tons of different ways to go about building sales funnels.  Whether you’ve got a sales funnel integrated into your main website or separate funnels, driving traffic and optimizing conversions is the name of the game.

The goal with these examples is to potentially choose one or parts of some that you can put together to create your own funnel.

Sales Funnel Example 1 – ClickFunnels

ClickFunnels is a sales funnel builder.  It’s what I use to create and build my own funnels.

There’s over 100 thousand users worldwide of the ClickFunnels software.  Plus, there have been over 4 billion dollars processed by ClickFunnels sales funnels.

The main focus of their funnel is to have people sign up for the free 14 day trial.

ClickFunnels has lots of other products they sell besides their main software.  In these cases, the 14 day free trial of ClickFunnels is offered as an upsell after purchasing a separate product initially.

Steps in the sale funnel:

  1. Homepage: The homepage of the ClickFunnels website acts as the landing page.  The majority of traffic driven to the website is through paid ads. The focus of this page is to present the advantages of using ClickFunnels and why you need to use sales funnels.  This drives people to move onto the free trial page.
  2. Free Trial Sign Up Page: This page acts as an opt-in form to get the contact info before putting in any credit card info.  This allows for email follow-up if someone doesn’t purchase right away.
  1. Checkout Page: The checkout age only has the order form to help the visitor stay focused on finishing the checkout.

Why the sales funnel works:

It’s noticeable that there’s really only one action to take on each page that will allow the visitor to move forward.  

This single call-to-action approach is the main thing that helps maximize conversions.  Check out my ClickFunnels Review or the ClickFunnels pricing to learn more about the funnel building software.

Sales Funnel Example 2 – One Funnel Away Challenge

The One Funnel Away Challenge is a 30 day challenge that’s perfect for those looking to get started using sales funnels.

The goal of the challenge is to outline the underlying principles of digital marketing and how they play out in a funnel.

Plus, by the end of the challenge you should have gone through all the steps necessary to get your first sales funnel up and running.  You’ll be driving traffic, optimizing with split testing, and generating sales.

Thousands of entrepreneurs have gone through the 30 day challenge and have gotten their start online and building sales funnels with the One Funnel Away Challenge.

Steps in the sales funnel:

  1. Traffic: The incoming traffic comes from primarily paid ads and acts as the pre-frame to the sales page. These could be Facebook ads, Google ads, inline ads, and tons of others.
  2. Sales Page: The sales page focuses on having customers move toward the bottom of the page where visitors can checkout on the same page.

Why the sales funnel works:

The traffic entering the sales funnel is targeted traffic that were pre-framed with the ads and content.

This targeted traffic sets things up for a single page of long form sales copy.  At the end you then have the checkout form to immediately buy. 

You can learn more about the challenge by reading my One Funnel Away Challenge review or take a look at my One Funnel Away Challenge bonuses.

Sales Funnel Example 3 – Backlinko

Backlinko is a blog by Brian Dean that focuses on driving in traffic with Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

The focus of the blog is to provide actionable tips to help with content marketing to drive traffic.  In turn, a portion of the visitors will sign up as a subscriber on Brian Dean’s email list.

Steps in the sales funnel:

  1. Traffic: Super targeted traffic is generated using search engines by targeting specific keywords with blog posts.
  2. Email Opt-in Form: At the end of each blog post there’s an emailoptin form to get more traffic tips that aren’t readily available on the blog.  Additionally, there’s a separate Newsletter page with only the email opt-in form and there’s also one on the homepage as well.

Why the sales funnel works:

By targeting the right keywords, the specific visitors that are desired cam be sought after and potentially become subscribers.  

The in-depth content creates trust and value to cause someone to be interested in subscribing for more.

Sales Funnel Example 4 – Surfer SEO

Surfer SEO is a software that provides a way to get data driven results with SEO.

Your content can then rank higher in the search engines and drive in more targeted traffic into your sales funnels.

Steps in the sales funnel:

  1. Homepage: The homepage of Surfer SEO draws people in to sign up for a 7 day trial of the software for $1.
  2. Pricing Page: There’s three pricing plans to choose from and it starts at $59 per month.

Why the sales funnel works:

The homepage of Surfer SEO is streamlined to focus on having the visitor click on the button to sign up for the trial version.

Social proof is also used by including quotes from top marketers who have used and benefited from the software.

Find more about Surfer SEO.

Sales Funnel Example 5 – Elementor Pro

Elementor Pro is a web page builder that allows you to fully customize your WordPress website.

It has millions of downloads and a super intuitive user interface.

There\’s both a free version of Elementor with less features and a paid version of Elementor Pro with the full suite of features.

Steps in the sales funnel:

  1. Homepage: Elementor’s homepage is fairly unique since it has the option to view the pricing plans or get the free download.
  2. Pricing Page: There are 3 main plans for Elementor Pro.  The plans are for either 1 site, 3 sites, or 1000 sites.  

Why the sales funnel works:

The sales funnel for Elementor works by making it instinctively noticeable to the visitor to get Elementor.

The unique part is that there is a free version of Elementor to download as well.  This provides a way to follow-up with those who are very interested in the Pro version of Elementor but weren’t initially ready to invest in it with a new blog.

You can learn more in my Elementor review.

5 Best Tools For Building A Profitable Sales Funnel

Here’s a list of all the best tools to build sales funnels compiled together.

I personally use all five of these tools to run my business and recommend you look into them.

#1 ClickFunnels

ClickFunnels is used by over 100,000 entrepreneurs and business owners.

With an emphasis on building complex sales funnels in a quick and intuitive manner, ClickFunnels is the category king of sales funnels.

I’m a long-time user of it myself and have been able to build out everything I’ve needed using tons of free templates and also custom-made funnels.

I focus on modeling other funnels that already work and modify things to match the products I’m promoting.  This allows for a much higher probability of achieving success earlier on and having a profitable sales funnel.

All that’s required to increase conversions is testing and lots of it.


  • intuitive funnel creation with drag & drop
  • easily share funnels with anyone
  • amazing affiliate program with 40% commissions
  • software is frequently updated and improved
  • integrate with tons of email autoresponders
  • integrate with payment providers
  • lots of funnel templates to choose from

Price: 14 Day Free Trial and $97 per month after that

Learn more by reading my ClickFunnels Review and check out all my ClickFunnels bonuses.

#2 ActiveCampaign

I personally use ActiveCampaign for my email marketing to follow up with my email subscribers on autopilot.

When you grow your email list, you’re growing something that you own.  It doesn’t get any better than ActiveCampaign when it comes to automation capabilities to send out emails to targeted subscribers.


  • Next-Level Automation Capabilities
  • Highest Deliverability Rates Of Any Email Autoresponder
  • Customizable Contact Tagging
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Detailed Contact Profiles For Each Contact
  • Free Expert Migration Service If Switching Autoresponders

Price: 14 Day Free Trial and $15 per month after that for the lite plan with up to 500 contacts

Learn more by reading my ActiveCampaign Review and check out all my ActiveCampaign bonuses.

#3 ClickMagick

ClickMagick is the best click tracking and link tracking software out there.

In order to effectively split test funnel steps and headlines, you need to be able to track the data automatically and easily determine the effect of a change.

ClickMagick can track all of the statistics necessary to build a profitable sales funnel. 


  • Automatic Bot Filtering
  • 24/7 Link Uptime Monitoring
  • Dynamic Affiliate Links
  • Quick Dashboard Statistics

Price: 14 Day Free Trial and $27 per month after that

Learn more by reading my ClickMagick Review and check out all my ClickMagick bonuses.

#4 Elementor Pro

Elementor Pro is a web page builder that is super intuitive and easy to use.

If you’re looking to build your own blog, then I definitely recommend going with Elementor Pro.  

There’s tons of widgets to work from that allow you to build your website without coding and in a drag and drop interface.

Everything is customizable as well including the header and footers of your site.


  • Fully Customizable Page Builder
  • Create Templates and Global Widgets
  • Built-In Sticky Headers, Sidebar, etc.
  • Create Pop-ups And Forms To Integrate With Your Email Autoresponder (no plugin needed!)
  • Easily optimize for desktop, tablet, and mobile views
  • Intuitive Interface With Live Front-end Site Development
  • Template And Block Library

Price: Elementor Pro with all the features is $49/year

Learn more by reading my Elementor Review.

#5 Thrive Leads

Thrive Leads is a list building plugin for WordPress.

I use it for my own site and am able to fully customize 10 different types of opt-in forms.

Plus, you can split test entire opt-in forms created with Thrive Leads and also view statistics on the back-end.


  • 10+ Customizable Optin Forms
  • Multiple Optin Reports And Statistics
  • A/B Split Testing Of Opting Forms
  • Integation With Email Autoresponders
  • Affordable One-Time-Fee
  • Great Support

Price: $67 one time fee for 1 site install

Learn more by reading my Thrive Leads Review.

Frequently Asked Questions

A sales funnel streamlines the buying process for a customer.  Without it, you’re simply leaving money on the table when only using a traditional website.

A sales funnel will also help you to maximize conversions and ultimately increase the profits of your business.

Creating a sales funnel is easy if you’ve got the right tools.  I recommend using ClickFunnels to build your sales funnels and you can even use one of the templates provided.

It’s a good idea to model other funnel designs that you know are already doing well.  This ensures you’re likely to have higher conversion rates.

There are a total of 4 stages of the sales funnel.  Here’s an overview of what they are:

  • Stage 1: Awareness
  • Stage 2: Interest
  • Stage 3: Decision
  • Stage 4: Action

The only cost to build a sales funnel would likely be the funnel building software.  If you’re using ClickFunnels, then it would be $97 per month.

Final Thoughts On How To Build A Sales Funnel 

Now that you’ve got a solid grasp on how to build a sales funnel, it’s simply a matter of using the right tools to get the job done.

Be sure to find a sales funnel similar to what you’re trying to do and model it. In doing so, you can have a much higher chance at creating a profitable sales funnel.

Lastly, you should always be testing. Running split tests might seem tedious at first but is well worth it once you’ve got the traffic flowing through.

Every percentage higher for the conversion rate to sale means that much more profit at the end of the day.

Leave a comment below with the tool you’re currently using or are planning to use to build profitable sales funnels of your own.

Affiliate Disclaimer

I hope you enjoyed this post. This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to purchase through my links at no additional cost to you.  I'm an independent ClickFunnels Affiliate, not an employee. I receive referral payments from ClickFunnels. The opinions expressed here are my own and are not official statements of ClickFunnels or its parent company, Etison LLC.

  • Very informational post!

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