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The phrase, customer buying journey, has gained a lot of traction lately, so I wanted to help you understand how valuable it is for businesses to embrace it. From first catching their attention with an enticing headline or offer, to when they hit the “Buy Now” or “Subscribe” or whatever call-to-action (CTA) you use, you need to guide a shopper through the buying journey step-by-step.

According to Salesforce, 80% of marketers polled say a customer purchase journey analysis (mapping) was crucial for their success. Which begs the question, “What is a customer journey map?

A customer buying journey map is a management tool that graphically illustrates a customer’s experience through the sales process.

Competition is as fierce as it’s ever been in the current business environment. A business must to break through the crowd, customer distractions and other “noise” out there. Thus, by creating a clear visualization of every possible way a customer can interact and connect with your brand, the more engaged your potential customers which will result in more conversions (sales).

Furthermore, gone are the days of marketing based upon the specific features of a service or product. Consumers care about your brand as a whole. How do you solve their pain point(s)? How are you going to make their lives better? Their buying journey must be easy, quick, secure, and focused. Mapping this process and analyzing it gets to that goal.

Step #1 : Define The Customer Buying Process

How does a potential consumer (a lead) move through your marketing content to eventual purchase? This will determine how many touchpoints a customer has with the brand and how each touchpoint feeds into the next. 

A Typical Conversion Funnel…

conversion funnel - buying journey

Step #2 : Think Like The Customer

Every consumer is different. So, how can you lead them to a sale? You have to align their wants/needs with the various steps in the buying journey — moving through the process yourself. Knowing this, with effective copywriting within your conversion funnel, you can guide your potential buyer to a sale. Furthermore, analyze each step from the point where you grab their attention in social media or the search engine to the landing page, and finally, the check out process.

Step #3 : Implement The Buying Journey Map

Create a map which graphically depicts the purchase journey. Design the steps in the process in a visual sequence. If necessary use the services of a graphic designer (or a big whiteboard). Moreover, use the data from Google Analytics and other sources to pinpoint the user’s pain points that need to be improved or eliminated.

Consumers want their journey to be as simple and easy as possible. Creating a journey map is not easy. It takes time and self-analysis on the part of management. In the end, your business wants to offer current and potential customers a streamlined, enjoyable, seamless, yet secure, online journey to drive sales. Prepare a journey map and study it. The more it adheres to what has been outlined above, the better your conversion rate will be.

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This article originally appeard on 4M Performance

About the Author(s)

 Jim  Lavorato

Experience at the forefront in cinema technology and helped spearhead the movie industry's transition to digital presentation and distribution.

Certified SCORE Mentor, Instructor, Entrepreneur, 4M Performance
ecommerce buying journey