How to Create B2B Lead Generation Funnel – The Complete Guide

The biggest challenge for B2B marketers is the consistent flow of leads for the business. Everything that a B2B marketing team does is generate quality leads that can be moved into the sales funnel for closure.

Lead generation is the process of attracting potential customers and strangers who might be interested in your products or services and converting them into leads – someone who shares their data and can be nurtured to become paid customers.

To generate quality B2B leads for your business, you need to have a good road map that guides unknown visitors and prospective customers from the first touchpoint on your website to the conversion. This road map is what we call a lead generation funnel.

In this blog, I will walk you through each stage of the lead generation process and show you how you can build an effective lead generation funnel on your website.

Before going further, I want you first to understand that, unlike B2C businesses, the lead generation funnel for B2B businesses doesn’t end up giving you a bunch of paid customers.

This funnel is more about filtering out most potential customers from all the users that entered into the funnel, i.e., site visitors that you can put into the nurturing funnel.

So, while creating a lead generation funnel for your business, always keep in mind that its objective is to give you many potential customers that you can pour into the lead nurturing funnel to drive them to convert into paid customers.

According to the B2B marketing funnel, the lead generation process comprises 3 stages – Awareness, Interest & Action. But the customer touchpoints and journey differ for every business. 

Remember that there’s no ideal lead generation funnel for a business – it entirely depends on your target audience and their behavior. To tailor a funnel for your business, you first have to identify your customer touchpoints and define a customer journey map to understand the path people take on your website to become your client.

To design a lead generation funnel for your business, you have to map the customer journey with each stage of the lead generation process.

Awareness Stage – Top of the Funnel (ToFu)

At this stage, your objective should be to create awareness about the brand and drive quality traffic to your website. 

You can get traffic from three sources –

  1. Social Media (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  2. Search Engines (Google, Bing, YouTube)
  3. Referrals (Guest posts, listing websites, reviews, etc.)

Generating quality traffic is the first stage of the lead generation funnel, and to get decent traffic, you need first to identify the most relevant platforms where your prospects spend more time and create an authoritative presence.

When a company looks for a reliable vendor for their requirements, they look for all the available vendors across different channels like business listing websites, search engines, LinkedIn, etc. So, you’ve to make sure that you’re also visible to them and, most importantly, stand out among others to grab their attention.

You know that the awareness funnel for the lead generation process starts with creating a presence on different platforms and then driving traffic to the website. This can be illustrated below.

Awareness Stage Funnel

Interest Stage – Middle of the Funnel (MoFu)

After having people visit your website, you want them to spend more time on the website to explore and learn more about the company and its offerings.

When a visitor lands on the website, that’s the first conversion point to take them toward the next stage. So, what happens is critical for the entire funnel because if you lose a  potential customer at this stage, you may never win them back.

At this stage, your objective should be to drive visitors through a journey & build their interest in your offerings. The best way to do so is by guiding them through different pages available on the website.

For example, if a visitor lands on one of your blog pages through Google, adding links to popular or related blog posts in the sidebar would be one of the best ways to keep the visitors engaged on your website site.

Similarly, links in the menu bar and footer can also help you guide visitors through different pages like products, services, features, case studies, etc., so that they can learn more about your company.

So, the interest funnel for the process is all about guiding traffic from one page to another. There can be a variety of funnels for users at this stage, and the simplest one based on the above example can be illustrated like this –

Interest Stage Funnel

Action Stage – Bottom of the Funnel (BoFu)

Now you have the most potential customers spending a lot of time on your website. So, at this stage, you want them to share their contact information in one or other ways.

Since the people are already engaging on the website, you know they are interested in your offerings but still considering the other viable options before connecting with you.

At this point in their journey, you can leverage lead magnets like ebooks, whitepapers, and webinars to showcase your expertise in the field. But to get access to these resources, they would have to fill up the forms with all the relevant fields.

Once they submit the form, you’ve their contact information and data to nurture them further in the buying process. And that’s what we call a lead.

To get these leads, you have to make sure that you’re not interrupting the user experience but enhancing it by providing additional value to their interest.

You can use popups to showcase related resources that they might like to download. Retargeting Ad campaigns can also be a powerful option that you can leverage to target such engaging visitors with more resources on social channels like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.

Landing pages are also very crucial to this process because this is where the visitors land from social media ads or pop-ups to learn more about the resources and download them. So, make sure that the landing pages are compelling, informative, and convertible.

Finally, the action funnel gives you many potential customers for your business which you can forward into the lead nurturing funnel. The journey of prospects at this stage can be illustrated like this –

Action Stage funnel

So, this is how the entire lead generation process works at every stage of the funnel. If you compile the whole journey of converting an unknown visitor on your website into a lead as described above, here’s what a B2B lead generation funnel should look like –

B2B lead Generation Funnel

Wrapping up

Building an effective lead generation funnel for a business requires a complete understanding of your customer’s buying behavior and online activities. And you must agree that behavior changes with time and emerging technologies.

So, you have to ensure that the funnel is updated with the changing customer behavior or preferences by conducting regular interviews and surveys with your clients and teams. Only this way you’ll be able to optimize your website content strategy and boost the conversion rate.

Finally, here’s a checklist of everything you need to do to build an effective B2B lead generation funnel on your website-

  1. Map out the customer journey in your business.
  2. Identify the key customer touchpoints on the website
  3. Create quality blog posts.
  4. Drive traffic to your website from multiple sources.
  5. Create multiple lead magnets.
  6. Create convertible landing pages & opt-in forms.

Now, it’s your turn to create a lead generation funnel on your website that provides you with a consistent flow of leads through your sales and marketing pipeline.

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