Stages Of Sales Pipeline- A Guide

With the increasing competition in the workplace, everyone is looking to upskill in one way or another. While some choose distance education, others opt for flexible full-time courses for upskilling. The demand for online courses has grown exponentially in the upskilling industry in recent years. As the demand increased, so did the competition from the universities, institutes, and educators who provide courses in almost every subject.
As an educator or institute offering online courses, you might find it challenging to plan and execute the best sales plan. Your courses may be finer than the same ones being offered by others, yet it refuses to take off. The article guides you through the stages of the sales pipeline and the right strategies to adopt at each stage in order to be a successful online course creator.
What is a sales pipeline or sales funnel?
A sales pipeline is a system that includes the plan to sell a course to a learner. It includes all steps from the beginning to the end: attracting, informing, and the final sales to the learners. The end goal is to make the learner buy your course.

Understanding the importance of sales pipeline for course creators
A sales pipeline is crucial for course creators because it allows you to automate the sales process. You can then easily focus on other parts of course creation, such as including relevant trends and terms with time, which also helps with sales growth. Automation of the sales process will also help you monitor progress and find the areas where things could be improved for better results. It is not a single action process but a dynamic one, which takes more than a few stages to attain. Every step of the sales pipeline will help bring the learners close to buying the course.
The sales pipeline estimates the learner base, focuses on the right audience while you promote your course, and suggests the best mediums to get more learners hitched to your course. It also informs you of the problems and bottlenecks that may be preventing learners from enrolling in the course.
Stages of Sales Pipeline

Finding prospect

Finding the right audience for your course is the first thing you would do down the sales pipeline. While creating a course, you must have an audience in your mind; that is, your prospect. You can use ads, videos, paid promotional links, or any other promotional activities for the prospects to find you. Device a targeting parameter to deliver the message to potential learners, who either fit the existing learners base or are ideal learners for your course.

Understanding learners’ need

While the learners have been informed about your course, their needs can be understood through the clicks on your page. Understanding what they need can help you tweak and include what they are looking for in the course. You can also offer several links to similar free resources to find out the most demanded part of the course. This stage of the sales pipeline will also help find the faulty areas and mend them.

Writing a proposal

A learner has landed on your course after going through the first two stages. What do you do next? You need to write a proposal informing the learners about the offerings of your course. It should not just be a list of what they can learn, but also why they need to learn it from you and how it benefits them. Start from the basics like a list of subjects, describe why they are essential, and add a certificate. Such a proposal will build the audience’s trust in your course.

Hitching the learners

When everyone offers almost the same content, how do you, as a course creator, hitch the learners for your course? The answer is simple and a significant part of the sales pipeline for a course creator. You can offer some freebies, emails, webinars with experts, or a particular landing page where you give all the offers and freebies. The freebies could be anything from a link and free resources to a PDF, eBook, or a small lesson related to the course. You can keep the learner with you by building a relationship with them through email. You can create an informative automated email sequence that helps their learning, but be careful not to spam them.

Post-purchase or follow up

The post-purchase stage of the sales pipeline will help you keep and expand your business. You need to continuously monitor the purchase of a course and the learners’ progress so you can offer the best experience, which will keep them coming back for more courses. It would be best if you planned for an easy-breezy yet exceptional service starting from enrollment and payment to the certificate. Make it easy for them to access everything.
While many learners will purchase your course at the end of the sales funnel, some will fall out of it for various reasons. Though the sales funnel provides a concrete plan to stop them, no plan is perfect. So, you must learn how to follow up with a potential customer. Follow up with emails of offering more, freebies, and retargeting ads. Design this part to bring them back to your course after checking the trend of what went wrong.
Across industries, the sales funnel has helped the big companies and small entrepreneurs with the sales of their products and services. As a course creator, it is time for you to jump into the big leagues to find your learner base and grow in the learning world with the sales pipeline.
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