How does a marketing funnel work

Digital marketing funnel

Online marketing measures along the customer journey

Digitization has long since arrived in marketing. It offers the marketer a wide range of online marketing measures and touchpoints along the customer journey in order to implement his marketing and communication goals. The online marketer is constantly faced with new challenges due to the constantly growing advertising opportunities in the field of social media, on Google or Apple. The big challenge is when the potential customer is optimally addressed with the right online marketing measure in the course of the customer journey or the buying process in order to achieve the set goals.

© rawpixel /

From the classic marketing is already the AIDA formula known. This means: First of all, attention is generated, then interest is aroused, so that the recipient will want to own this product - and ultimately buy it, i.e. an action will take place. (AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action).

This model is being expanded even further in online marketing because the “customer journey” has become more complex and varied as a result of digitization. Interested parties can use the online search engine to find out more about a product, about alternatives to a product, about competitors and, of course, about prices. Your potential customer therefore has the opportunity to look around for alternatives quickly and easily on another page. In the past, you had to go to the individual stores and speak to the sales staff. Alternatively, you could also ask by phone. Today you can do everything with one click. Google and Co. offer comprehensive lists of search results about which the user can find information. This raises the question of what options online marketers have to keep users on the desired customer journey. The so-called "digital marketing funnel" is ideal here.

The "digital marketing funnel"

As in the AIDA formula, the funnel, also known in specialist circles as the “funnel” (English for “funnel”), starts with “awareness”.


There are several ways to get your target audience's attention. You can place paid advertising via social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. This gives you the opportunity to display your advertising in a way that is appropriate for the target group. For example, Facebook offers you the option of selecting age, gender, relationship status, hobbies, occupation and other interests in order to avoid wastage. This means that only those who are actually interested in your products will see your advertising.

Google, the search engine in Germany with a market share of over 95 percent, offers you excellent opportunities to attract the attention of your target group with Google Ads (formerly Google AdWords). Depending on the target group and the definition of your goal, you can draw attention to yourself via search text ads, display ads, video campaigns or universal app campaigns. Here, too, there are options for target group-specific control in order to avoid wastage and to use your budget profitably. For example, you can run your campaign in the following ways:

Due to the changed user behavior due to digitization, content marketing has established itself as a relevant component in the online marketing mix. The aim here is to create search engine-optimized and unique content that offers target groups added value. Examples of content are blogs, guides, infographics, templates, videos, e-books or checklists.

The Online PR represents an important building block for generating attention and should by no means be underestimated. The term “public relations” already means that the public is informed. PR and especially online PR contribute Dissemination of relevant information Yours Company, Of their Products and services and to Brand awareness at.

You can inform your existing customers about current offers via newsletter. Here the barrier is much lower than when acquiring new customers.

Last but not least SEO: The search engine optimization of your online presence is essential in order to increase the ranking and thus the findability on Google. Here we come to the next step of the funnel: The interest!


If the user's attention was attracted in the first step, he or she clicks on your advertisement and gets to the one linked to it Landing page. At this point it is important to find an optimal User experience and simple operation (usability) to be provided in the navigation. If your landing page delivers what your advertising promises, you have a stone in the board with your potential customer. The user must "feel comfortable" on your side. This means that he gets all the information he wants easily and quickly. Make a serious impression and show that the focus is on the customer and their needs.

If interest is aroused here, they will ideally leave their data directly or move on to the buying process - depending on the goals you are pursuing with your campaign. As a rule, however, the customer will “reinsure” himself again and search for other sources and providers on the Internet. Here we come to the consideration phase.


At this point your potential is The customer is interested, but not entirely convincedthat your offer is also the right one. While he is looking at other providers, you can remind yourself with your offer. This is done via Remarketing measures. This can be done via Google Ads or Facebook, for example. If you use tracking tools within the scope of the GDPR, you can allude to the users here again with advertising measures. These can be, for example, display ads, search text ads or a posting.

If you have already generated a lead that has confirmed the double opt-in within the framework of the GDPR, you can write to this again via mailing. The next phase shows whether you have convinced the prospect.


If the desired action is carried out, for example from a completed purchase process can exist, a conversion has been generated. Congratulations!

Since sustainable marketing should be the goal in order to turn new customers into enthusiastic regular customers, the After-sales phase online marketing measures asked.


In order to turn unique customers into regular customers, they have to be enthusiastic. Not only the product and the service should be right, but also the customer care. You can inspire and retain your customers over the long term via social media channels, newsletters and mailings. As part of your content marketing strategy, offer unique content in the after-sales phase that not only offers added value, but also inspires. Your customer should get a good feeling that the purchase decision made was absolutely correct. This lays the foundation for repeat purchases as well as for up- and cross-selling.

Up- and cross-selling

Do you have enthusiastic customers? Great! You may also be interested in other offers from your product range. The entire range of online marketing measures is available to you here: You can pull out all the stops, from paid advertising on Google Ads or Facebook to sending out newsletters. The only important thing is: the interests of your customer must be the focus of your efforts.


Digitization has permanently changed user behavior and thus the “customer journey”. A constantly growing range of advertising options means that online marketing has an unprecedented wealth of measures and touch points. The "digital marketing funnel" offers a basic guideline that the online marketer can use as a guide when planning. Whether classic marketing or digital marketing: Your customer, a person with their needs and wishes, is the focus of all activities.