Master the eBook Sales Funnel: A Solopreneurs Guide to Creating and Selling Digital Products

If you’re like us the idea of selling isn’t very appealing at all. Nobody wants to be pushy and try to get people to buy their ebooks but thankfully you don’t have to be that way.

It sounds like a fantasy but it’s possible to sell without selling.

How? By using an ebook sales funnel that nurtures and helps your audience as they move along their own journeys.

In this post, we’re going to show you how to put together a sales funnel that makes you feel good instead of needing to take a shower to wash the stench of sales off of you.

More importantly, you’re going to learn the art of selling 24/7 without being around the computer.

Oh, and if you haven’t created an ebook yet then here is how to create an ebook.

Is a Sales Funnel Worth It?

This is a legit question to ask because if you’ve been through a big-time marketer’s sales funnel then you might not have left it with the best feeling. They can be a bit too much in making you feel bad if you don’t buy whatever the offer is.

That’s not what we want here. We want our Hero to feel as though we are the perfect guide for them on their journey. Someone who they can rely on to get the outcome that they want.

And that’s the beauty of a sales funnel if done correctly. Instead of feeling like a sales funnel, you can make it feel like a journey where each step leads someone closer to the outcome they desire.

That’s the art of selling without selling. Instead of making them feel guilty about having to buy something you can make it feel like the next logical step.

But that only happens if done correctly.

We should note that if you plan on publishing on some of the ebook publishing platforms then none of what you see here might apply to you. The type of funnel that we’re going to cover works well for those who are self-publishing an ebook and selling it on their own site.

What Is the Importance of an eBook Sales Funnel?

It’s the 21st Century. You know this but that doesn’t mean you make the most of it. What we mean is that you can have systems in place that act as you while you aren’t around.

In a perfect world, you should have a sales funnel set up that allows people to join it at any time and from any place in the world. That means you are generating sales 24/7 whether you are on the computer or not.

This is how a single person can easily scale to a 7-figure business on their own without the help of anyone else.

But there is another aspect of a sales funnel that often gets overlooked.

The Key Is Building Relationships

While you do want your sales funnel to convert it’s more important that it strengthens the relationship between you and your audience. Now you might be thinking that relationships don’t make money but you couldn’t be further from the truth.

In today’s online world where every single person is trying to get the attention of everyone else, the people that make money are those that have relationships with the people they are talking to.

People buy from those they like and trust so it doesn’t matter if you have the best information in the world. If a person doesn’t know you or like you then they won’t buy from you.

This is what can make a sales funnel so valuable. Because it’s done through email you are given time to nurture a relationship with each reader. By the end of the sales funnel, they’ll know if they want to stick with you or not.

Your Ebook and Your Audience

Where a lot of people seem to mess up with their sales funnels is that they try to get everyone to join them. That shouldn’t be the case.

A sales funnel is only as effective as the people you put in it.

If you get 10,000 people into your sales funnel that might feel like a win, but it’s not a win if they aren’t the right people. It’s no different than inviting vegans to a sausage factory and asking them to try samples.

So before you even think about creating your ebook sales funnel you need to make sure you understand who you want to target. In theory, it would be the exact same person who is meant to read the ebook.

And unfortunately, the answer isn’t “everybody”.

Take this post as an example. There are tons of people who want to write ebooks every year, but there is a smaller percentage who want to write and find success with their ebooks.

If we try to target everyone that enjoys writing ebooks then we might not use the right language or message for those people desperate to make money with their ebooks. It’s important that we target them (aka you) because those are the ones that want to move further.

It might not seem like a big difference but it’s something that has a huge impact. It helps to dictate your social media content, landing page copy, opt-in choices, and what you put in your emails.

So before you even think about creating a funnel take the time to understand who you’re trying to attract.

How to Capture Emails With a Lead Magnet

First things first. You need to build an email list and the best way to do that is to make a trade. You’ll give someone something amazing in exchange for their email.

You’ve probably seen this a thousand times and there is a reason why. It works!

With the right lead magnet (also known as an opt-in) you can convince someone not only to give you their email address but also to listen to you. And that’s what is important because if you can’t get them to listen to you then you don’t stand a chance.

There is a very simple framework that we follow here at Odd Noodle that we apply to every single business that we build. It also applies to every single business in the world.

  1. Get them to notice you
  2. Get them to pay attention to you
  3. Get them to trust you
  4. Convert that trust into money

Business doesn’t work if you do not do all of these steps and that’s the purpose of having a sales funnel. It ensures that you can walk people through each step until they want to hand you their money.

Emails handle steps 2, 3, & 4. We work on them first because it’s important that we work backward.

So what should your lead magnet be? It needs to be something that ties in with the book. You don’t want to create a disjointed experience. For example, if you’re book is about growing tomatoes then a mini-book on soil composition doesn’t make sense.

However, a checklist of things to do to grow amazing tomatoes could work really well with the book offering more details and other tips & tricks that a checklist simply can’t offer.

Your lead magnet doesn’t have to be the world’s greatest gift. It simply has to promise that it will help people with one thing. That’s it.

You don’t need to make it complicated. Just make it good enough to help so that people begin to trust you more (remember the framework above).

The Lead Magnet Landing Page

There is no reason to complicate this. Have an image of your opt-in (if it’s a PDF) and then a brief description of what it’s about. The main thing that needs to be shown is the book with a solid cover design.

Here is the landing page for one of our leading magnets the Odd Noodle Playbook.

Create an Email Sales Sequence

Once you’ve captured someone’s email then you need to send them emails and this is where a sales funnel truly shines. Because you can write 5 emails and let them do the rest of the work for as long as you want.

But this is also where a lot of people tend to get tripped up because they overthink things. They want to believe that they need to be great at selling to make their sales sequence work and that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Let’s make it easy. Your book solves a problem (hopefully). Once someone solves this problem they are able to achieve an outcome. That’s what is important.

So what are your emails about?

Smaller problems that people will face on their way to trying to achieve the outcome. For example, if we wrote a sales sequence about how to create a sales sequence we would address the following things:

  1. You don’t know what to write
  2. You don’t know how to sell
  3. You don’t know how to put everything together

We would address these things in 3 separate emails. Each email hints at the next problem someone will face so that they stay interested in the emails that we are sending.

This is called creating an open loop. Each email would also offer a solution to the problems that we discuss so people understand that we can guide them to a bigger outcome.

The final 2-3 emails would be what we call the hard sales. They would go over exactly what outcome someone should expect after reading the book and if we have any testimonials covering those as well.

And there we go. Now we have a 5-day sales sequence that anyone can put together.

The Tripwire Funnel

There is another type of funnel that you can implement that can work very well for an ebook. Why does it work well for ebooks? Because ebooks are relatively inexpensive. You don’t see many ebooks that are more than $30 which means people have no problem making them impulse buy.

How does a tripwire funnel work?

Once someone signs up for your lead magnet they are presented a sales page for your ebook. It usually comes at a discounted price to encourage the reader to take action. And it’s only available for a limited time.

Our student, Rachel Fairchild, does this really well with her Freezer Meal Guides. Her audience signs up for a free opt-in and then she presents them with a tripwire offer that helps her make 5 figures a month.

So should you do a tripwire funnel? That’s up to you to try. Everything you do with regard to your funnel is going to be an experiment.

You might try a tripwire and it works really well or you might find that you need a little more time to build a relationship with the customer and if that’s the case then you simply walk them through the 5-day sequence we talked about above.

Driving Traffic to Your Funnel

Now the fun part. Your funnel is nothing if nobody is in it which means that most of your time is going to be spent driving traffic to your landing page so you can capture emails.

This is a task that is neverending. You don’t get to do it for a month and then stop forever. Your business revolves around your ability to drive traffic to wherever you want.

It’s the law of distribution and that law rules the online business world.

So the question is how do you drive traffic to your landing page and there are a number of ways to do it. Paid ads are one way to do it and it’s a great way if you have the budget and know what you’re doing.

We don’t teach that, not because we are opposed to it, but because there are people much better at it than we are.

But there are also free ways to do it and these are the ways we truly love because everyone can play this way.

Leverage Social Media

Love it or hate it social media is one the best ways to drive traffic to your landing page from day 1. While it can be extremely frustrating it’s also important to understand that it’s free and you always have a chance of getting in front of millions of people.

However, you don’t need millions of people to make your funnel work. Maybe you only need 1000 a month (30 a day). But how do you drive them to a landing page?

Most social media platforms allow you to have a link in your bio. Here is my bio on Threads (it might’ve changed by the time you read this). As you can see I have a link driving people to our 12-Hour eBook Method landing page.

All I need to do from there is create content that people find interesting so they check out my bio. As you can see there is no hard selling. It’s creating content that helps people and if I do it well enough then they’ll check out my bio, click the link, and the sales sequence will take care of the rest.

Good Old Blogging

The other free method that we love is blogging. Before you roll your eyes or ask if people still read blogs, it’s important to understand that blogging could be the most beneficial thing for your ebook.

Think about it. You’re trying to sell a product that requires people to read therefore it makes sense to find an audience that is okay with reading.

Guess what people need to do on a blog? You got it.

We believe that blogging is never a waste of time.

But it also goes beyond that because when you start to blog you start to enter the SEO arena. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and it’s the practice of trying to get your content to rank highly in search engines.

Search engine traffic, also known as organic traffic, is usually the best kind of traffic to get because it’s traffic with intent. That means that people who come to your site via search engines do so with the intent of finding out something.

Maybe you arrived here via a search query and because of that, you’ve gotten this far down into the post because you’re intent on learning how to build a successful ebook sales funnel.

The biggest benefit to organic traffic is that it’s passive. Once it starts to roll in then there is a good chance it will continue to roll in for many years to come. Yes, it has its ups and downs but unlike social media traffic, once your site begins to rank it will continue to do so as long as you keep the quality up.

So while social media can get you traffic sooner, blogging can get you higher-quality traffic in the long term. It’s not a choice of one over the other. It’s figuring out how you can integrate both within your business strategy.

If you’re interested to learn more about blogging then be sure to check out our Blogging Resource Library.

Analyzing and Optimizing Your Ebook Sales Funnel

When you have your funnel set up how do you know if it’s working? Wait, that’s the wrong question.

A better question is how do you know it’s working as efficiently as it should? Because it’s obviously working if people go through and are able to buy. But how do you know whether or not you should be getting more people to buy?

Here’s the thing and you’re not going to like this. There is no right number for your conversions. It doesn’t exist.

Your goal is to set a baseline and then work from there. In our case, we like to start with a 1% conversion rate. That means for every 100 people that go through our funnel, 1 person makes a purchase.

Now, we will be honest and say that we would be disappointed with a 1% conversion rate, so it’s only where we start. The actual number will vary depending on the offer.

For example, a $29 eBook should have a higher conversion rate than a $499 course. However, that eBook needs a MUCH higher conversion rate to match the revenue the $499 course will make.

So it’s a give and take.

The things that you want to track are:

  • Conversion Rate
  • Bounce Rate
  • Average Order Value
  • Click-Through Rate
  • Email Open Rate
  • Email Conversion Rate

Instead of explaining each one you can click the links above if you really want to dive into each of these metrics.

How to Build a 6-Figure eBook Sales Funnel

In this post we’ve been using an example of the eBook being the offer, but what if the eBook was the lead magnet and the offer was a more expensive course, workshop, or coaching program?

An ebook can be a great lead magnet for something high-ticket because it can help to build authority and give you more time to build trust.

The sales sequence would have to be slightly adjusted because you can’t expect someone to read your book in 5 days and then make a decision on a big purchase.

And it’s not that you can’t follow everything that you’ve read so far and build a 6-figure funnel. You most definitely can as we talked about with Rachel and her Freezer Meal Guides.

But if you don’t want to go after a massive volume of people to achieve that then your best bet is to use the eBook as a lead magnet that then leads into a bigger offer.

If you’d like to see how we scale eBook sales to higher ticket items then check out the Odd Noodle Playbook.

No Matter, You Should Have an Ebook

No matter what your business there is a benefit to having an ebook. It’s one of our favorite digital products to create because it can be done on a weekend if you want.

It’s also a great way to build authority and trust with your audience and as we already mentioned it can be used as a lead magnet, an offer, or a bonus to an offer.

Either way, when looking to build a funnel that can help to scale your business it’s hard to go wrong with some type of ebook sales funnel. And if you want to dive further into how you can drive traffic to your landing page then be sure to check out our 10 ebook marketing strategies.

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