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What is the Buyer’s Journey? (How to Define Yours)

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How do buyers go from thinking about a problem they have (“Hmm, what’s going on here?”) to choosing a solution for that problem and making a purchase (“Okay, this sounds good. Now, where did I put my wallet…”)?

They go through a process called “the buyer’s journey”.

We have all heard this term being used by marketers before. But what exactly is the buyer’s journey, and how does it impact your own business?

What is the Buyer's Journey? | Handmade SEOWhat is the Buyer’s Journey?

The buyer’s journey is a framework for understanding how buyers make decisions. It refers to the research and decision making processes your prospects go through before making a purchase.

The buyer’s journey consists of 3 stages:

1. Awareness stage: The potential buyer realizes she has a problem (“My head hurts and my eyes feel watery. What’s wrong with me?”). Since 67% of the buyer’s journey now happen online, chances are, your potential buyer will use a search engine to look up their problem.

2. Consideration stage: The prospect understands what the problem actually is and looks for ways to solve it (“Okay, I’ve probably spent too much time in front of the computer. What are my options for fixing this?”). The potential customer keeps researching their options using Google search, Amazon reviews, and individual company websites.

3. Decision stage: The prospect chooses a solution and becomes a customer. (“Everyone seems to be loving this product. I’m going to go ahead and order it off of Amazon!”)

How Do You Define Your Business’ Buyer’s Journey?

There are significant differences between how Business to Business (B2B) customers and Businesses to Consumer (B2C) customers make decisions, and the buyer’s journey can vary between different industries.

To understand your company’s buyer’s journey, you can conduct interviews with past customers or send out a survey to your email list. Here are a few questions to consider:

1. Awareness stage

  • How do your buyers describe their problem?
  • How do they educate themselves about this problem?
  • Are there any common misconceptions your customers have about addressing this problem?
  • How/why do your buyers decide to prioritize solving this problem?
  • What are the consequences of inaction for the potential buyer?

2. Consideration stage

  • What solutions do your buyers investigate?
  • How/where do they educate themselves about these solutions?
  • How do they perceive the pros and cons of each solution?
  • Finally, how do they decide which category of solutions is right for them?

3. Decision stage

  • What criteria do your buyers use to evaluate their options?
  • Who needs to be involved in the decision making process?
  • What expectations do buyers have around your products or services?
  • When looking at your offerings, what stands out about them (in a positive or negative way)?
  • Do your buyers need to do any additional work after the purchase, such as going through complex implementation procedures?

After you have answered these questions, you can create marketing content that speaks directly to your customer at every stage of the buyer’s journey

Need a Little More Help?

What is the first thing your potential customer sees when they google something about the problem your business solves?

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