Customer Journey: 5 Simple Steps to the Knowing it
The customer journey is otherwise referred to as ‘the customer purchase process’ or ‘digital customer journey.’ It is the path a customer undertakes before making a purchase.
It is imperative that salespeople understand the customer journey thoroughly, as it will help them enhance their lead generation and develop brand awareness as well as their overall sales strategy.
Here, we reveal the five stages of the digital customer journey and how you can effectively utilize this in purchase journey marketing each stage to grow your business.
Table of contents
- PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 1. RECOGNIZING A NEED OR IDENTIFYING A PROBLEM
- PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 2. GATHERING INFORMATION
- CUSTOMER JOURNEY PART 3. CONSIDERING THE ALTERNATIVES
- PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 4. TO PURCHASE OR NOT TO PURCHASE
- PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 5. POST-PURCHASE BEHAVIOR
- DIGITAL MARKETING AND THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY
PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 1. RECOGNIZING A NEED OR IDENTIFYING A PROBLEM
Let’s start with the basics. This is often viewed as the most imperative step in the customer journey. In the diagram above, you can see how the digital customer journey has been made into a customer journey map.
In the awareness stage of the customer journey map, consumers will first recognize a need or a problem before deciding to purchase a product or service.
This need or recognition of a problem can be triggered through internal means like hunger. External stimuli can also be important.
Some instances could be Facebook ads, Instagram ads, or the by word of mouth through friends and family. It is important to identify pain points at the start of the customer journey mapping process.
There are many examples of customer journey maps. We recommend you base your customer journey maps on one of these templates.
PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 2. GATHERING INFORMATION
The next stage of the customer journey and the customer experience is to find out information about the product or service. In the customer journey map, this is known as the consideration stage. Even for an existing customer, this part of the digital customer journey should not be ignored.
The consumer does this so that they can identify and consider the resources that are related to their purchase decision. Potential buyers might find this information through videos, publications, and other online media.
It can also be found through word of mouth too. Customers may speak to those with experience with the product or service. In terms of customer experience, word of mouth is similar to a review of a product or service in the buyer’s journey.
The recent pandemic has affected our ways of life. Many consumers now tend to place a greater emphasis on online research.
Therefore, as a company, you should take advantage of the burgeoning digital landscape and SEO (search engine optimization). SEO can give your brand the exposure, popularity and platform it needs to find as many new customers as possible.
Remember, don’t let your marketing team ignore SEO when making a customer journey map.
CUSTOMER JOURNEY PART 3. CONSIDERING THE ALTERNATIVES
People will want to analyze the various products and brands based on the ulterior attributes of the product. Let’s look at backpacks as an example.
Customers in their digital customer journey may have studied a variety of brands before making their purchase. For instance, They will consider the capacity, color, security, and other features of each backpack. They will be more than likely researching multiple channels as part of their consumer journey.
These are the products that can provide the customer with the same benefits regarding the product they are searching for. The attitude of the consumer can greatly affect this part of the buying process.
In this part of the customer journey phase, the consumer is hoping that their customer expectations will be met. Their pain points or problems will be solved by the offer of the product or service.
Another important factor is the involvement that impacts the consumer’s evaluation process. In fact, a consumer with a positive buying attitude and have a greater level of customer interactions.
They will consider several companies or brands. However, someone with a less positive attitude and lesser involvement will do the opposite.
PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 4. TO PURCHASE OR NOT TO PURCHASE
This is the stage of the customer’s journey in which the purchase takes place in the buying process.
The final decision to make a purchase can be impeded by numerous factors. One factor is like receiving negative reviews from other consumers. One way to combat this is to encourage loyal customers to share their customer experience.
You may want to consider using customer surveys. The results of which you can place on your website. Customer surveys are also a great way to improve repeat purchases.
Another is, how much authority the seller holds in the industry. Even location is a factor, whether the physical store’s location is inconvenient.
For instance, consider once the consumer has gone through the earlier three stages. They then decide they would like to purchase a new jacket.
However, once looking at the webpage, they find negative reviews regarding the jacket. Therefore, they opt against purchasing it in favor of another brand.
PURCHASE JOURNEY PART 5. POST-PURCHASE BEHAVIOR
This part of the customer journey map is known as the retention and advocacy stages. The consumer will then compare the product.
The product or service will be compared to similar products they have bought in the past and then judged accordingly. This is the stage that is most important for retaining customers and having customer loyalty.
The outcome of this stage can also influence the buying journey for similar customer decisions in the future. As you can imagine, it can have a huge affect on repeat purchasing decisions too.
If they like the product they received, they will be more likely to buy from your company in the future.
In some cases, they may even help you sell your products. They will advocate to others by influencing other potential customers through social media. On social media they will share their customer experience with others as a way to show brand loyalty.
DIGITAL MARKETING AND THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY
As a brand’s digital marketer, you must be familiar with the above five steps of the purchase journey. Knowing the potential customer’s purchase journey is essential to convincing more people to purchase your product or service.
There are multiple ways in which competitive businesses can utilize digital marketing to engage their target audience. Of course, this is to lead prospects towards their product. These include:
What value to create during the customer journey?
- Remember to provide relevant, quality and valuable content. This will increase brand awareness, you will be able to attract and acquire a greater number of potential customers. A solid digital marketing strategy will help convert audiences to become organic customers and eventually, retained clients also.
What to influence during the customer decision process?
- By creating quality digital content, you will have greater potential to influence the customer journey. It is wise to complete steps such as updating your Google My Business and allowing customer reviews. This will establish a positive brand impression. Doing so will create the notion that your company is an authority in the industry and worthy of purchasing from.
How does digital marketing help brand loyalty?
- Quality digital marketing can help put your business at the forefront of your industry. You can be the first choice for customers when considering and researching their potential purchases. Your happy customers will then be able to assist with boosting your company’s brand awareness. They will be providing social proof to your target market that you are a reputable brand.
You now know the process in which consumers make purchases in the customer journey. Also, you know how digital marketing can affect this process. Learn more about the customer journey by reading our piece Discover the Type of Facebook User Your Target Audience Is.
Are you may be a busy business owner? We would love to assist you in your digital marketing. Please look at SEO service as a way to engage your customers on their customer journey.