In the hyper-growth stage of your business, your primary concern will be how to outperform your biggest competitor. Going through their strategies and results is, after all,  the best way to gauge how well you need to strengthen your foothold in the market. Through this constant comparison, you find yourself looking for ways to get easier and faster results. Welcome, funnel hacking.

This is why we’ve compiled this guide. At the end of this guide, you’d single-handedly hack funnels and gain better results for marketing campaigns with it.

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What is Funnel Hacking?

Funnel Hacking is simply analyzing your competitor’s marketing strategy, understanding all the sales networks, and implementing these findings in your own strategy. Funnel hacking is actually quite common when you think about it because it is the fastest way to get your sales funnel working. 

From testing keywords to email patterns, you’ll get an insight into what will work for you too, and what wouldn’t. Please note that funnel hacking doesn’t mean copying every single part of your competitor’s plan or stealing everything they’ve worked hard for. It’s just using them as a guide to kickstart your own funnel.

Think about it as a form of research. When creating a marketing campaign, one of the key items you’d need is a buyer persona which gives a rough estimate of what your leads are like. The estimate is what your targeted campaigns will revolve around. And if they are a wrong guess, chances are, your campaign won’t be as effective. Funnel hacking gives you a bearing to work with.

Why Should You Consider Funnel Hacking?

funnel hacking

While you’re struggling with creating a functional sales funnel, someone else already has a working funnel that is maximising profit. Doesn’t it make sense to draw inspiration from those already working funnels?

Also, all that time you’d spend on testing variants will drastically reduce because now you’d have an actual direction with the data you’ve gotten. View it as doing a more defined split test. You’ll be able to understand the interests of your prospective leads and design your funnel to fit those interests.

When you have a direct focus, you’ll save a lot more by no longer optimizing areas of your funnel. With an organically effective funnel, leads will transform into customers without you spending a lot trying to convince them on why you are the right choice. 

Asides from funnel hacking acting as a guide for you to work with, you’ll also be able to see what your competitors aren’t doing right and implement that. Capitalizing on these errors will give you an edge and in no time, you’d see other companies hacking you as well. Although the results won’t appear overnight, you’d start seeing changes in the way your leads perceive your brand.

Over time, the results will start to show. And even if you haven’t created a whole sales funnel, your approach will be a lot more defined.

So if your sales aren’t doing so well lately, you crave for stability and consistent revenue, you should really consider funnel hacking.

Funnel Hacking Methods

  1. Email Hacking: Emails are one of the biggest ways to communicate with your audience. When you’re not engaging them enough, it will affect the open and click rates you receive. Or if you don’t know how to start creating emails for the type of contacts you’re amassing. A quick study of the emails your competitors send out will give you an insight into what you can be doing better or where to start from.
  2. Lead Hacking: By lead hacking, I don’t mean stealing the entire contacts from your competition. What I mean here is taking the pattern of the lead generation they use. Check out the landing pages, forms, and the design of it all. You’ll also see the contact information requested. With this, you’d determine the methods they use in contacting their leads.
  3. Retargeting Hacking: Observing the retargeting ads other companies use to gain leads is equally a method you can use to hack your current funnel. It’ll help you know how to redesign your current ads and what channels will be more beneficial to your type of brand. Plus, you’d know what type of audience to also target. Remember in funnel hacking, the goal isn’t just to acquire leads but maximising profit every step of the way.

How to Hack Funnels

Funnel Hacking

Although there is no defined way of funnel hacking, the goal is simple; hack until you maximize all available profits. Below is a list of things to follow to funnel hack your competitor’s strategy.

1. Create your goals and vision board

Before you start hacking away, you need to have a purpose. What do you hope to achieve with the data you’re going to get? How many percent increase are you hoping to gather at the end of the hack? If possible, estimate an actual amount you hope to get at the end of your funnel.

Who is your own target audience? Create a buyer persona and see how they’ll fit into what your current funnel will look like. Finally, give your business a time frame. How long will this research window take? After the research how long will it take to implement what you’ll gather? With this insight, you’ll be able to work towards achieving it. Plus, your goals help you find what to hack

2. Research on Viable Competitors

Attractive funnels and effective funnels are two different ball games. Something might look good but it doesn’t mean that it’s bringing the right results for you. Also that a sales funnel is working well for a particular company doesn’t also automatically mean that it’ll work the same way for you too.

Finding the balance is the essential factor when sourcing for competitors to hack. Your target is companies who are growing and killing it with an effective sales funnel. Start by noting down all the competition you currently have. They don’t have to be those in the same range as you. They could even be bigger. After all, the point is to find out how they are winning. Once you have a list of companies or businesses you want to hack, you can now proceed to the next phase.

3. Create a Document to store the information you gather

Start by creating a doc or sheet to document all the data you gather. The data here are trends you’ll discover when you start going through their landing page and other components of their sales funnel. Remember that you’re not just documenting trends from one competitor but several. So you’d store this data in a comprehensible format.

The goal for this step is to have a reference point you can easily revert to when you have questions.

Once you’ve created this, document trends like the type of social icons they use, if they highlight their prices and how, the type of web copy they use to describe their products/services, what is their content strategy, what does their design look like along with many other questions.

When you place these data side by side, you’ll start to see the similarities these successful businesses have. From this pattern, you can now begin to draw your own plan according to what is working from them.

4. Follow their trends as a consumer

This is where the major hacking comes in. By patronizing them as a customer, you’re accessing premium features their leads get. This means their social media following, email newsletters and campaigns. Also when you actually buy, you get to see their sales funnel in motion. You know what happens in every stage and what their strategies are.

For instance, when you subscribe to their newsletters, you get to see the content they send out to their customers and leads. The type of offers, how often, are they like surveys, discounts, webinars or ebooks? 

Also, check out the forms, landing page, pop-up ads, and other lead generation strategies as well. These will give insights on what methods get them the right leads. You can further choose to implement these methods or similar ideas you conjure. Ensure you find out all the methods of funnel present there. This is the most important part of your funnel hack.

5. Follow trends as a competition

As a competition, you’re focused on the tools your counterparts use. This means finding what marketing tools they use to achieve the results you got as a consumer. Now although it’s impossible to find out the backend of their marketing strategy in one glance, certain marketing plugins exist that’ll help you do this.

An example is BuiltWith Profiler. Simply install the extension on your browser and visit the website you want to hack. By tapping on the extension icon, a dropdown will appear showing you all the exact tools that the site is using. Now you’ll be able to know if they use retargeting, what type of conversion tools they use, and even their social media strategies/ads.

Now that you know what they use, you also have to find out what drives their traffic.  Although there aren’t simple plugins to help locate this, we still have marketing tools that show you all their traffic both organic and paid. Keywords, where they are placed on search, backlinks their site has and so much more. A tool that can help you get this is SEMRush

6. Implement the knowledge you’ve acquired(Frontend and Backend)

Digging through for information and patterns that make other companies succeed is the hard part. Once that’s out of the way, it’s time to put what you’ve learnt into action. Earlier on I emphasized on documenting all data in a comprehensible way. It’s time to pick it up and utilize it. Find the weaknesses in your funnel and shape them to strengths. 

For instance, you might discover that other sites have a faster load time. Now, you can simply optimize yours to load just as fast if not faster. Analyze all the components of your current sales funnel and redesign it to be better. 

If you want to redesign the frontend of your sales funnel, like the look of it, we are here to help out with that. From landing pages, graphics, videos, forms, and pop-ups to your entire website design, FunnelJoy has tested templates that’ll optimize your entire sales funnel exterior. Plus, if you’d prefer to customize yours, the option is equally available.

Redesigning your sales funnel backend means your email flow, retargeting ads, URL, affiliate programs, and all other mechanical framework you need to get your sales funnel running. Optimizing these carefully with what you’ve learnt will help you improve the number of conversions you get. Over time you won’t have to worry about your current rates.

Important notes to make before hacking

  1. There’s a line between funnel hacking and copying: Once you cross this line, you will lose the results you expect to get from hacking. This is because the entire point of hacking is to optimize your current funnel. By copying, you might lose what you need to interest your current audience. After all, no matter how similar you think your leads are with another business, there’s always going to be a difference regardless of how tiny it is. So what works for them may not completely work for you.
  1. Funnel Hacking is not the magic key to getting insane results overnight: What you’re doing is simply changing your business approach and you’re getting that by emulating thriving businesses. It will need time. In as much as there will be changes, don’t expect unrealistic results.
  2. It isn’t some shady business or cunning approach: It is a learning process that has real testimonials to back it up. So if you want to entirely steal your competition’s hard work, you might have to reconsider using this approach. 

And there we have it. Your guide through funnel hacking. Remember, you’re adopting strategies relevant to your business. So focus on emulating steps that will resonate and engage with your target audience, the kind of traffic you get and the current state of your sales funnel. With these in mind, you’ll get the best results with funnel hacking.

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