Anyone with half a clue in e-commerce understands that an effective sales funnel is an essential ingredient to their marketing mix.

What makes or breaks their efforts is how thorough their sales funnels are.

That involves further developing these basic components:

Internet sales funnel

Believe it or not, this concept originated back in 1898.

That’s when an enterprising dude named Elias St Elmo Lewis used it to explain how to sell life insurance.

Elias St Elmo Lewis sales funnel

Admittedly, if you’re going to make a living selling life insurance, it’ll likely take a setup like this to get the job done.

Now, in the 21st century, with its ever-burgeoning opportunities — and fierce competition — in e-commerce, it’s time to give kudos yet again to the esteemed Mr Lewis.

The best way to be successful in cyberspace is to focus on marketing and let your system do the selling.

This should involve deploying a more elaborate funnel to thoroughly engage your prospects through all stages of the buying cycle. Here’s an example that’s been a proven performer for high-end products and services:

High-ticket sales funnel

The good news is this: if you’ve got a professional sales staff working for you — and the best high-ticket programs have them — you don’t need to be au fait with all the skills involved.

You just need to get the prospects into the process.

A proven method of finding them is to build a funnel of your own. But not just any funnel. You should deploy one that targets a niche within a niche.

That’s a micro-funnel.

Tanner Larsson is a top-tier e-commerce entrepreneur who’s made a science out of micro-funnel marketing. Here’s an example he provides for what is meant by digging deep inside a niche to target a specific group of prospects:

Tanner Larsson micro-funnel

This graphic comes from a 97-page e-book he authored on Simple Micro-Funnels. Download it here for free.

Micro-funnels serve two purposes:

  • They’re an effective tool to draw cold traffic, ie- prospects who weren’t seeking your product or service but are intrigued when made aware of it, and
  • They facilitate your task of applying the 80/20 rule to your respondents.

If you can narrow your marketing down to a pool of potential purchasers based how your product or service relates to their interests, you’ve got a shot at warming up prospects who don’t even know you and probably never considered buying what you’re offering.

Then, it’s a matter of using the 80/20 rule to identify the action takers and direct them to your primary sales funnel.


Odds are they’ll take it from there, but if they need a boost in getting into buy mode, you’ll have the sales pros on your side to seal the deal.

By then, your only task will be to nurture the rapport, because a satisfied, trusting customer will be back.

All thanks to your drilling deep enough to make both of you happy.

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