What is the buyer’s journey?
Modern marketers have learned that the purchase process is a journey, and consumers advance through a process the industry has called ‘the buyer’s journey.’
The buyer’s journey is a framework that acknowledges their progression from the research and decision process ultimately culminating in a purchase.
Transformation of the buyers journey
The consumer buying journey has been in a state of transformation in the last couple of years due to worldwide smartphone and tablet adoption. Today consumers are choosing and creating their own buyer’s journey.
To illustrate this change we introduce George the Gorilla. He is looking to buy some bananas.
"Today consumers are choosing and creating their own buyer’s journey."
Back in the day George’s buyer’s journey was linear...
This was a heavily brand controlled process.
- George watches a TV advert for extra large bananas from the Canary Islands.
- He then reads an informative article in a magazine listing the benefits of these extra large bananas when compared to smaller ones.
-He goes into the store and buys the extra large bananas as seen on TV.
- Post purchase: George receives coupons via email or in the mail to entice him to buy more extra large
- He tells his gorilla friends about these new extra large bananas.
"This was a heavily brand controlled process."
I love bananas...
Today’s buyer’s journey
journey is now non–linear, more dynamic, personal and chosen by the consumer.
Nowadays, George’s buyer’s journey might look similar to this:
George sees a post of a friend with some extra large bananas on his Facebook page on his mobile device.
- He Google’s it and clicks on an advert in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page)
- He reads up on this new extra large bananaHe is remarketed to by the banana website he has just visited
- At lunch time he visits a banana review page
... The journey does not end here. As a client, George starts seeing relevant display ads and newsletters with client specific discounts and promotions etc…to entice him to buy more products.
It is worth noting the markets with longer buying cycles will see this the most.
3. Offline awerness
On his walk home he sees a billboard promoting the extra large bananas
"We are able to track the consumer’s journey from the beginning, through research, comparisons and right up to the purchase phase. At every different stage we have a chance to entice the consumer to convert."
How does this impact our marketing efforts
From a consumer's point of view this new process is great. You are in charge.
However from a business tracking point of view this can prove to be problematic to analyse.
Google Analytics helps in this regard with the USER-ID tracking functionality. This works with a business that requires the user to register and login.
Each user is assigned a unique ID number that is tracked on computers, smartphones and tablets enabling the marketers to follower their various actions.
We are able to track the consumer’s journey from the beginning, through research, comparisons and right up to the purchase phase. At every different stage we have a chance to entice the consumer to convert.
Of course, the buyer’s journey will differ according to the type of product, available avenues for purchase and target market. If you need assistance in identifying your customers and creating the most effective buying journey options, contact Redline Company.