What is a conversion funnel?

View all blog posts under Articles | View all blog posts under Online Master of Business Administration

Understanding the consumer’s journey from first contact to final transaction is one of the most important elements of being a successful marketing professional. Also known as funnel marketing, this is an ideal tactic used to lead customers to a sale of your product or service.

Professional analyzing pie chart

Below, we’ve provided a definition of the conversion funnel, a step-by-step guide through the process, and information about how the University of Alabama at Birmingham can prepare you for a future in marketing.

What is a conversion funnel?

Accion defines the conversion funnel, also known as the sales funnel, as the visual path that begins with consumers learning about your business and eventually leads them to become customers. While you will certainly market your products to thousands of consumers, only a fraction of those contacts turn into leads, and an even smaller number turn into customers who decide to purchase your goods and services.

Why is it so important?

A conversion funnel is meaningful to marketers for many reasons. It’s essential to understanding the customer journey and helps marketers look at how customers were converted in the first place. As Optimizely notes, the sales funnel is the framework that marketers and professionals can use to analyze a business plan at its core to identify strengths and weaknesses. Because of the sales funnel, businesses have the opportunity to pull apart their marketing strategy, determine what isn’t working, and capitalize on such improvement to ensure more people make it all the way through the funnel to enhance the conversion rate.

Understanding each step of the conversion process and its importance

Maximizing the overall efficiency and effectiveness of your sales funnel will help you ensure leads become customers. Each business may have a different idea of achieving a conversion, but the general step-by-step layout looks as follows, according to Accion:

  1. Attract customers: Maintaining an active online social media presence is key to attracting customers. Think about which platforms make the most sense for your brand and execute properly to get people interested in your business. Make sure to emphasize brand consistency across all platforms and campaigns to remain professional, but also to become recognizable down the road.
  2. Collect information: When consumers visit your website, you have the opportunity to turn them into customers. Make sure your landing page provides vital information about your business, products, and services. Include a “contact us” box somewhere on the page to help move those interested in your business down the funnel.
  3. Encourage action: What will you do with all of this contact information? One way to keep your business in the minds of your next potential customers is by sending them coupons, discounts, or special deals for first-time buyers via email. Create email campaigns that are on-brand, clear, and simple, yet pack a memorable punch. Always end an email with a call to action so consumers are encouraged to shop or learn more about your business.
  4. Convert: When you convert a lead into a customer or client, it means they took your desired action, which could be signing up for a newsletter or purchasing a product or service. As you continue to make conversions, be sure to keep your website and social media presence updated to attract more users. If you notice fewer conversions, your landing page and social media accounts may be the first place to consider making improvements.
  5. Stay connected: Guiding customers through a sale doesn’t mean the job is done. Use email marketing techniques to keep your business in the minds of past customers and encourage them to continue buying. Sending follow-up emails for feedback is a solid improvement method to consider for future customers and transactions down the road.

Learn more about real-world marketing practices at the University of Alabama at Birmingham

The online Master of Business Administration program at UAB isn’t only for students who have bachelor’s degrees in business. It’s also for those who have earned degrees in engineering, sciences, or liberal arts. The degree is designed to prepare you for all aspects of business activity, no matter what career path you plan to pursue. Some of the concentrations include finance, management information systems, health services, and marketing, so you can dive deep into the conversion funnel and learn just how to navigate it in the future.

Two courses that can benefit your career as a marketing business professional include Marketing Strategy and Marketing Analysis and Decision Making.

Marketing Strategy (MBA 651) focuses on planning, implementing, and controlling marketing activity. You’ll get to know the processes that guide marketing decisions, which can ultimately help you grasp the sales funnel.

Marketing Analysis and Decision Making (MBA 653) analyzes the fundamentals of market-based management and profitability. You’ll learn how to navigate marketing tools and understand key performance metrics.

No matter your goals as a business marketing professional, pursuing your online master’s degree in business administration at the University of Alabama at Birmingham can help you achieve greatness. This curriculum is perfect for those with a busy work schedule who need a flexible learning environment. To learn about the UAB MBA program, get in touch with an academic advisor today.

Recommended reading:

Certified public accountant: Explore careers and the value of an online MAc

How a finance degree can put you on the path to a career as a real estate broker


Digital Analytics Association

How to build a conversion funnel that will triple your profits

What is a sales funnel and why is it important

Sales funnel basics

Conversion rate optimization

Optimizely – Sales Funnel glossary


UAB MBA Course Inventory