What Is the Buyer’s Journey, and Why Does It Matter in Marketing?

Understanding the buyer’s journey allows you to customize your marketing funnel, content, and sales processes for the buyer. But what is the buyer’s journey from lead to customer, and how can you tailor your sales and content to match?

In this article, we will explore the prospective customers’ path from the buyer’s perspective and highlight where the buyer is in your sales funnel at each stage.

Key Takeaways:

  • The buyer’s journey, or customer journey, is the path a potential customer takes when buying a product or service.
  • There are three stages to the buyer’s journey: awareness, consideration, and decision.
  • Understanding and effectively leveraging the buyer’s journey in your marketing tactics, branding, sales approaches, and content creation is important to reach new customers with relevant content at each stage of their purchase process.
  • Tracking customer performance throughout the buyer’s journey will help you better target them with tailored campaigns for higher conversion rates on products or services.
what is the buyer's journey

A Brief Definition of the Buyer’s Journey

The buyer’s journey, or customer journey, is the path a potential customer takes when buying a product or service. There are multiple stages within the buyer’s journey, including awareness, consideration, and decision. Understanding and effectively leveraging each stage in the customer journey can give you an edge in marketing tactics, branding, sales approaches, and content creation.

The value of understanding how potential customers progress through their purchasing decision includes improved customer engagement and higher conversion rates for products or services, and better targeting for advertising campaigns. The buyer’s journey provides insight into what consumers need at each stage of their purchase process so you can tailor your approach accordingly and offer potential solutions that entice buyers.

What Is the Buyer’s Journey Important?

Understanding the buyer’s journey is important for your business because it helps you understand your target consumers and what influences them throughout the purchase process.

The buyer’s journey can inform your decisions about content creation, advertising campaigns, sales tactics, and overall marketing efforts to deliver what your leads are seeking. By mapping out each stage of the buyer’s journey from awareness to decision, you can better understand where potential customers are in their purchasing decisions and tailor your approach to help them reach a decision.

How Can You Use This Information?

For example, during the awareness stage, you could use content marketing tactics such as blog posts and social media posts to draw potential customers in with helpful information about your product or service. Then, during the consideration stage, you could use email campaigns or webinars to provide more detailed information about your product or service so that customers can make an informed decision.

Finally, during the decision stage, you could use discounts or other incentives like free shipping to entice them into purchasing with you rather than going elsewhere. Mapping out the journey can also help you calculate customer lifetime value, which is an important piece of information for you to have.

Breaking Down the Buyer’s Journey Stages

buyer's journey stages

The buyer’s journey can be broken down into three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision. You can customize each section of your sales funnel to each stage of the buying process to enhance and influence the customer experience.

Top of the Funnel (TOFU)

Customers first become aware of your product or service in the awareness stage. At this point, customers are at the top of your funnel and seeking potential solutions for their problem. During the awareness stage, leads are not yet sold on your offering and need to learn more about it. The goal is to increase brand visibility and educate them on your offer, so you can get them to the next stage.

Content for the Awareness Stage

At this stage in the buyer’s journey, leads are researching what is available to solve their problem. They are gathering information about potential products or services to meet their needs. The customer may check out reviews from other customers, compare features from different vendors, and look for guidance on topics related to their purchase.

They usually begin with a Google search, so if your content ranks high on the search engine results pages (SERP), you have a higher chance of making a connection. The awareness stage is a great opportunity to use targeted content based on the customer’s pain point that answers their questions and showcases your brand as a valuable resource for their needs. This could include blog posts, videos, social media posts, infographics, and podcasts.

Middle of the Funnel (MOFU)

During the consideration stage, leads narrow their purchase options and compare different products or services from different vendors. At this point, most customers have an opinion of the solutions on the market and a narrow list of those that will meet their needs. They begin evaluating vendors for themselves and should receive more tailored content in your sales funnel.

Content for the Consideration Stage

At this stage, customers are more actively engaged with your brand and evaluate the details of your offer. They are near the end of their research and decision process, ultimately culminating in a sale. Customers look at pricing and product features to determine if the product will meet their needs.

They assess your customer support options, company reputation, reviews, and the overall value proposition between brands to choose the company that offers the most value. The consideration stage is a great opportunity to provide relevant content they can use to make an informed decision, like webinars, white papers, ebooks, comparison blog posts, in-depth guides, and explainer videos.

Bottom of the Funnel (BOFU)

At the decision stage, leads are ready to commit to a product or service. They are actively seeking assurance that this is the right choice for their needs and preferences. You can persuade the customer your product or service and company are the most valuable solution to their problem through content.

The content in your funnel should have powerful calls to action and create a sense of urgency or fear of missing out to urge the customer to act fast. However, urgency alone will not close the sale. You must also convey value.

Content for the Decision Stage

At the decision stage, customers try to consider all factors before committing to a purchase. They may seek customer reviews, case studies, free trials, FAQs, product landing pages, and demos of your product or service. The decision stage is the last opportunity for you to win their business and show them why your product or service is worth the investment.

Your content should bring leads toward closing the sale or getting them to speak with your sales reps to bring home your tailored value proposition.

How to Track Each Customer Journey Stage

Tracking the stages involves collecting data from lead sources, website traffic, social media interactions, and sales information. Doing this allows you to assess where leads are in their purchasing decision. It lets you target them more effectively with appropriate content for that stage of their purchase process. Let’s look at some ways that you can effectively track each stage.

Analyze Your Customers’ Behaviors

The first step in tracking each stage is to analyze your customers’ behaviors. Pay attention to what actions they are taking on your website, such as clicking on specific pages or watching certain videos.

By analyzing customer behavior, you can gain insight into where customers may be in their buying process and why they may be making certain decisions. This can provide valuable insights into how well your website or product is meeting customer needs and which areas need improvement.

Track Conversions

Another way to track the stages is with conversions. You can do this by setting up goals within Google Analytics that measure when a customer has taken a desired action, such as filling out a form, downloading an ebook, or purchasing something from your site.

By tracking conversions, you can determine which points in the buying process have been successful for customers and which need improvement. For example, if you find that many customers are abandoning their shopping carts during checkout, there is probably an issue with that part of the process that needs to be addressed.

Test Different Strategies

Finally, you can test different strategies to see which ones work best for converting potential customers into actual customers. You can use A/B testing tools such as Google Optimize or Unbounce to test different landing pages and see which versions perform best when it comes to attracting new leads and converting them into paying customers. By testing different strategies, you will gain valuable insights into what works best at each stage of the buying process so that you can optimize it accordingly.

How to Create Content for the Buyer’s Journey

Understanding how best to craft effective content for each step will help you create meaningful relationships with customers while also increasing conversion rates over time. By taking an intentional approach and creating quality content tailored for each part of this process, you’ll set yourself up for success both now and in future marketing campaigns as well.

Here’s a look at how to create effective content for the buyer’s journey:

Create Buyer Personas

Creating content to reach customers at each stage of their buying journey involves identifying the buyer persona that best fits your product and brand. The buyer persona is a detailed profile of your ideal customers so you can tailor content specifically for them. When you create buyer personas for your content, you can attract, inform, and educate potential leads that better align with your ideal customer. You can guide the lead along the buyer’s journey and easily convey the value of your product or service and brand.

Showcase How You Will Solve Their Problems

At the awareness stage, you should create content with captivating visuals and headlines that grab customer attention quickly. Content should provide basic information that addresses the customer’s pain point. Most importantly, it should highlight how your product or service solves the problem for customers.

Reach your target audience with blogs, Instagram, Pinterest, and clips on Youtube or Tik Tok. Your buyers should easily find your content on Google and other search engines.

At the consideration stage, content should address potential customers’ needs and how your solution can help them. Demonstrate expertise and use compelling visuals and statistics in your content to convince interested leads of the value your brand offers.

At the decision stage, content should help leads ready to make a purchase decision by reinforcing their confidence that you are the right brand for their needs.Showcase customer success stories or feature detailed demonstrations of your products and services to show leads why you offer the most value. It is also an opportunity for a sales rep to offer outreach and address customer hesitations before they commit to buying.

Tailoring Your Sales Process to the Buyer’s Journey

buyer's journey

The sales process should also be tailored to each potential customer. Each lead has different experiences throughout the buyer’s journey, so adjust your approach based on their needs.

Tracking the buyer’s journey and tailoring your approach to the buyer’s persona and each stage provides the following advantages:

  • More precise targeting in marketing campaigns
  • Improved customer engagement
  • Higher conversion rates on products or services
  • Insight into potential consumer needs and purchasing decisions
  • Engaging and persuasive content at each stage of the buyer’s journey

Tracking and tailoring your approach helps maintain customer engagement, increase conversions, and ultimately leads to a better return on investment (ROI) for your products or services.

Here’s how to tailor your sales process to the buyer’s journey:

Personalize Your Pitch

Once you better understand who your buyers are, it’s time to personalize the pitch. This means tailoring each interaction with a customer to show that you understand their individual needs and goals. For example, if a prospect is looking for ways to increase efficiency within their organization, highlight specific solutions that have helped other organizations achieve this goal. Or, if they’re interested in cost savings, focus on how much money they can save by using certain products or services. The more personalized the pitch, the better chance of closing the sale.

Follow Up and Follow Through

The final step in creating an effective sales process is following up and following through with customers after the initial sale has been made. Ensure customers are consistently updated on order status or any changes affecting them going forward. Additionally, check in periodically with customers after they’ve purchased something from you; this will allow them to share feedback about how satisfied they were with their purchase or service experience and whether there’s anything else they need from you going forward.

Summing Up

Now that we’ve answered the question of what is the buyer’s journey, you know it’s essential for effective communications and marketing. It can help you build a persona of the ideal customer and reach customers at each stage in their purchase decision with tailored content. By tracking customer performance throughout each stage of their journey, you can better target new customers with tailored campaigns that increase engagement and ROI.