The customer’s buying cycle is the process that customers trail when buying products or services. In order to improve your marketing efforts, you need to understand, on a deeper level, exactly what your customers are thinking and doing at any given time in the customer’s buying cycle. You need to know their goals, their motivations, their frustrations, and their pain points.
Visitors who find your website will be in different stages of the customer’s buying cycle. Some will have just realized a need or pain point. Others will be deep in research by the time they find your company’s site. Others will seek out your site because they’re ready and able to make a purchase.
To improve marketing results—and sales—you should be optimizing your website for every stage of the customer’s buying cycle, including the awareness, consideration, and decision stages.
We’re going to help you do just that.
Optimize for the Awareness Stage
Typically, your visitors will enter the customer’s buying cycle at the awareness stage. This is when they’ve just begun to realize that they might have a need that they want a solution for. However, the problem is often ambiguous and the solution isn’t clear yet. It’s your job as a marketer to describe both the problem and the solution clearly and explicitly.
First, you’ll want to tailor some of your content to their problems and core desires. You’ll want to create content that speaks to them, and that they can relate to. At this stage, your visitors are likely novices, so put yourself in their shoes. The content for this stage of the cycle will need to offer immediate benefits and value so they’ll want to learn more from you.
For this stage, it’s also the ideal time to focus on lead generation, especially from your blog. Use calls to actions and landing pages. Then, make sure you have email nurturing campaigns that you can kickstart once you have converted these readers into leads.
Optimize for the Consideration Stage
Prospects in this stage of the customer’s buying cycle know what they need; they know their end goals. They might have already subscribed to your email list and read a lot of your awareness-stage content to become more informed and knowledgeable. They’re no longer novices.
At this point, they’re seriously considering purchasing your product or service, but they haven’t quite made a final decision yet. You’re in the running, so don’t lose the prospect now.
At this point, your content should be focused on what exactly you offer and what differentiates you from the competitors that the prospects are also considering. Showcase your unique selling proposition at this time. You’ve already succeeded to gain their attention; now it’s time to earn their trust with benefit-driven copy. Talk about your product features, the services you offer, the support you offer, the warranties you offer, and anything else that makes your product or service unique.
Optimize for the Decision Stage
At the decision stage, your prospects are just about ready to take action—they’vedecided to buy. You’re at the cusp of being able to close the deal, but make sure you don’t take this last stage for granted. You need to follow through to get the deal. Think about it—just because someone has added a product to their online shopping cart doesn’t mean that they’ll actually purchase. They might abandon the cart before check out.
To optimize your website for this final stage, you need to focus on your price points, your terms and conditions, and your delivery methods—anything that would stop a prospect from finalizing a purchase. Your content should eliminate ambiguity, make the final steps clear and easy to follow, and make the offer seem highly valuable.
Optimize your website for the awareness, consideration, and decision stages of the buying cycle and you’ll successfully improve your conversion and close rates.