The process buyers go through to become aware of, to consider and to decide to purchase a new product is called 'The Buyer's Journey'. In recent years it has evolved dramatically. Marketing practices and methods have had to change to keep pace with the buyer's journey. Companies adopting out of date marketing practices find themselves falling further behind.
During Awareness Stages, buyers will research online.
In fact 73% of buyers making a purchasing decision will begin their research online*.
Just think about it, what do you do?
We're guessing, as soon as you recognise a need or want for a product or service, the chances are the first thing you will do is reach for your mobile device or laptop and begin your research online.
Yes, that's right, buyers are no longer reaching for trade publications or putting on their rain macs and heading to trade exhibitions at this stage of their buyer's journey.
Buyers begin their research in awareness stages by heading online.
This means that companies that are best represented online, with engaging websites, rich in content, infographics, explainer videos and information are the most likely to be engaged by potential buyers in the awareness stages of research.
Just let that sink in for a moment......
When a buyer has considered all options available to them, they will research further still and this is called the consideration stage.
Often buyers return to those websites providing the best information in their awareness stage and seek further information to help them consider and reach their decision stages.
At this stage buyers will expect to see case studies or explainer guides informing them how they might get the best out of a product or service.
SMART websites will recognise returning visitors and may offer different pages, different but relevant product information or content, automatically, each time a buyer returns.
At the Consideration stage buyers may want to talk with an expert and will often make contact via online chat, chatbots or by booking online meetings, all steps they see as helping them towards their buyer's decision.
Companies able to fulfil and meet these needs, having the right information available online at the time the buyer chooses, are most likely to succeed.
This makes downloadable content, explainer videos, infographics, case studies and even chatbots the most valuable of tools.
At the decision stage of a buyer's journey, a buyer is ready to commit and place an order.
This may be online, this may be by email, but hold on a moment, what if they want to check a few details first.
They may choose to do this with an online chat tool, social media (Twitter is particularly strong in this area) or by calling.
Are your sales teams geared up to handle responses in the manner in which your buyer deserves?
This is where CRM tools, sales automations and pipeline management strategies should be deployed.
Have you reviewed your business' processes?
How easy is it for a buyer to buy from you, at a time that suits them, rather than a time that suits you or your sales teams?
There are still millions of companies worldwide adopting old tactics, spending large sums of money on old marketing tactics and wondering why sales numbers and audience engagements are reducing.
And there are still millions of companies without online or digital marketing strategies who are missing out on providing the best service possible to customers.
If you think this might be your company, we'd love to hear from you to help you move your marketing strategies forward.
Adopting Inbound Marketing strategies will enable you to attract, engage and delight your customers, new and existing.
Read more about the buyer's journey here or watch this video here:
Hobbies include running, yoga and walking Ora, our pet Spanish Water dog. I'm also an avid football fan but don't hold that against me. Also known to hold a camera in my hand every now and again....