You’ve probably heard of it in online marketing: the customer journey. This “journey” is the road it takes a customer from first contact with your company all the way towards a purchase. This gives you insight into the so-called touchpoints: all the moments you and your customers are in contact with one another. Whether that is via social media, e-mail, your website or an outside billboard.
When you map out the customer journey, you get insight into the steps a customer takes before he makes a purchase from you. With this information you can tweak and optimize the journey so that the customer’s experience is easier and more pleasant. And purchases happen more often! But how do you do that? We explain it to you through the five stages within the customer journey.
The phases of the customer journey
The first phase is the awareness phase. In this phase, you make sure the customer is aware of your existence. There’s a difference between brand recognition and recall, in which the latter is the most important. The goal in this phase is to let potential customers know you exist. Do this, for example, by advertising with banners, social media ads or distributing a video.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is also very important in this phase. You want to bring your brand to the attention of the customer, so it is important that you’re easy to find online. Make sure your website is SEO-proof and that you rank on relevant keywords for your target audience. We can help you make your website easy to find with search engine optimization.
Do you notice that your brand awareness does not generate quality organic traffic? Then it’s an idea to invest in online campaigns and a SEO-proof website in this phase. This will ensure that you reach customers in the first phase of the customer journey.
The second phase is when a customer has identified a need for your product or service. But you’re not there just yet. He or she is still orienting companies that sell this product or offer this service. In this phase it is therefore important to ensure that the customer favors you instead over your competition. So leave a good first – and second – impression. Show why the customer should choose you instead of the competitor.
A good, attractive website is therefore extremely important at this stage. Your website must convince the customer to choose you. Show what distinguishes you from the competition, for example, through a personal approach or years of expertise. Show your knowledge through blogs. Also make sure your website is user-friendly, so the customer quickly arrives at the desired page.
In this phase it is also good to set up campaigns. You now know that the customer’s need exists. So now is a good time to target specific search terms. In our case that would be “online marketing Haarlem” for example. This way you attract visitors who are interested in your product or service to your website.
In this phase, the customer is just about ready to make a purchase. The customer made a choice between the different providers in the market and is ready to spend some money. It is necessary in this phase that the purchase process is easy and fast for the customer. In a physical store, customer-friendly service is important. After all, no one wants to buy from an unfriendly employee. In an online purchase, the website should be user-friendly. Make it undeniably clear to the visitor how to proceed to the payment. So be sure to remove all obstacles and barriers that may stand in the way of the customer’s purchase.
Do you notice that many customers walk into your store, but the sales figures are disappointing? Perhaps the service is not up to standard or the products don’t live up to the customer’s expectations. Do you see that many visitors on website drop out halfway through the ordering process? In this case, it is good to look at how user-friendly your website is.
Once the customer has purchased the product or service, the customer journey doesn’t stop. You want to give your customers a positive experience with your company, so they might come back in the future. In a webshop, the delivery of the product takes place in this phase. You can improve the service by informing the customer about the status of the delivery of the package, for example through e-mail or SMS. In this phase it is also important that you make clear to the customer that you are there for them if they have a question. Web-care and customer service should be in order at this stage.
This final phase revolves around aftercare and is designed to increase customer loyalty. The goal is to build a lasting relationship with the customers so that they buy from you more often. As a company you want to stay in the picture with the customers who have already bought something from you. You can do this by sending out a newsletter once a month or through social media. This is also the time to ask the customer for feedback. If someone has bought a product from you, send him or her an email and ask how he or she liked the product. This step not only helps to build a relationship with the customer, but also helps you to improve the quality of your product or service.
Map your customer journey
So mapping the journey your customers take gives you a lot of valuable insights. With the journey, you can see where customers get stuck and what touch points in the journey could be improved. Address these points and make the journey easier for the customers. As a result, you will see the number of converting visitors increase. Do you need support with your customer journey? We would love to map it out for you! Contact us and ask for the possibilities.