What is the process of a sale or a purchase and how can businesses better understand this process? When customers purchase a product, they usually do so to fill a need, a need that can be meet through a professional service or product. The Buyer’s Journey conceptualizes this process by drawing in the metaphor of a journey. The journey is outlined in steps from when a buyer or customer understands that they have a need, all the way to the sale of a product that fulfills the buyers need. The customers become voyeurs on a business journey, progressing through each stage in order to arrive at the end of their journey, as a valued customer. Businesses that have a strong understanding of the the Buyer’s Journey will benefit from the ability to insert and market themselves within their journey.
The Awareness or Interest Stage:
During this portion of the Buyer’s Journey, the customer becomes aware that they have a problem and that they have a certain need to be fulfilled. The buyer may either realize what the problem is or they may not, regardless, the buyer has an inclining that there is something wrong and they begin to think try to find the source of the issue. Say you are selling tires, a buyer in this specific Buyer's Journey would think, “AH the tread on my tire is very low, my car is not driving as well as it used to!” If the buyer pays enough attention to this issue, they will move onto the next stage of the journey.
The Consideration Stage:
During this stage of the Buyer’s Journey, the customer has recognized what the issue or need is and is now in the process of finding a solution. This is normally where, as a business, you can insert yourself and guide the customer towards your product as their solution. In the consideration stage, it’s important to have a good understanding of your marketing strategies, in order to convey to the buyer how you are going to provide a solution to their problem, as quickly as possible. Being one of the first options towards the buyer can go along way, and that coupled with a good business model and a strong understanding of the customers needs puts your business in an optimal position to make the sale. In the Buyer’s Journey of the tire customer they would be thinking, “The problem is definitely my tire. How can I solve this, should I purchase a new one?”
The Decision Stage:
Nearing the end of the Buyer’s Journey, the potential customer is getting closer to making a purchase. In this stage, buyers have weighed their options by possibly make a pros and cons list of a specific product over another, or they have compared price points and the specific features of the product in order to narrow down the best option for them. This is yet another stage where businesses can insert themselves into the buyer’s journey, by understanding the process of the journey, implementing effective marketing tools, and providing the optimal product that can meet all of the buyer’s needs. In the Buyer’s Journey of the tire customer, during this stage, they are thinking, “I think I will go with this tire company because I was able to quickly and easily view their prices and specifications, all of which fully meet my needs.”
Understanding the stages that your customers go through from awareness of a problem to decision making is key because it allows you to position your marketing efforts to reach your buyer in the exact places that they are looking for their solution.
At Skigital, our expert marketing team takes time to understand the target demographics for each of our clients, mapping our their journey from awareness to decision so that our marketing efforts are always right on target. To learn more about how we can help your business reach its target audience, contact us!