The internet has changed how consumers buy goods and services. People don’t go to a physical location right away then buy what they want. They go to amazon, eBay, google to find options to solve their problem. Whether it is to buy a new phone, clothes or search for service providers. They go through a process before making a decision. What is this process and how does it affect your online marketing efforts?
Consumers conduct research before they buy anything
The first part of the consumer buying process is the research phase. This is where they go to search google, to learn more about a problem they have. This could be anything, back pain, a need to buy a new TV, repair a broken phone, food recipes, anything. These are common problems consumers have that they will go to google to research options. When they start their research, they are at a point of wanting to solve their problem and want a solution to solve it.
When they are at this point two things happen, they either ask a friend or google recommendations. this affects your marketing by you being apart of the conversation. By doing this you are “ top of mind” hence inline to be chosen as the solution.
Your online presence may take the form of posting articles on your blog, doing a podcast episode, youtube channel or content on your social media pages addressing the issues your potential customers have.
Customers Compare solutions before making a decision
The next step in the process once they found a solution during the research phase, is to narrow down the options found. This is where everything about the various offers is looked at and examined in detail. This answers the question of what will they get, and how much will it cost.
Your job as a business owner during this stage is to prove the value of your offer to the consumer. Sometimes people will buy from you based on trust. They know that you do good work, and make their decision on that alone. The price will never be an issue for them as long as you prove your value. That’s the beauty of putting out regular content, through your various online channels to answer their questions. This builds trust with the consumer which makes their buying decision easier.
CustomersMakes a decision to buy when…
At this final stage of the buying cycle, customers narrow down the choices to one. This is where they click and select the add to cart button on amazon or your website and makes a purchase. If your business doesn’t sell products online this is where they book an appointment. All the helpful content you put out online will play a key role in getting them to that stage.
As was mentioned earlier these decisions are made when they trust you and your solution. In addition to that, your offer has to be irresistible to push the consumer to pull the trigger. This can be done by adding extra items as an incentive to increase the value of your offer, at a price they think is a bargain.
You see, understanding how consumers buy makes it easier for you to create content, to market your business. In the end, it will make it easier for them to buy.