3 Easy Ways to Simplify the Online Customer Journey

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Here are three easy ways to simplify the online customer journey.

The customer journey is a process describing an individual’s interaction with your business to achieve a goal, be this by purchasing a product or subscribing to a service.

The customer journey is a relatively simple process at heart, but it can easily become convoluted and confusing if not properly understood. After all, the process is always evolving, particularly in a hyper-social online world where interaction never ceases.

Mapping the journey of a customer through each stage of the marketing funnel — awareness, consideration, and conversion —  is essential for any modern marketer breaking into the world of ecommerce. Why? Because it paints a visual story, creating a personal experience that logically underpins the process of converting leads into sales.

With this in mind, read on and discover three easy ways to simplify the customer journey.

1. Highlight personas and address customer pain points

Assuming what your customers want is a fool’s errand, so just ask them.

Questionnaires and other various forms of user testing can provide valuable insight into the customer journey, as well as build an understanding of character types and demographics your business can target in the future. These are known as personas — a process of mapping out the types of customers most likely to interact with your business.

When mapping out the online customer journey towards your service, follow the path of one persona at a time. This will provide the most accurate reflection of customer experience.

The online marketing company Hubspot provides a useful free tool that helps you identify buyer personas. Using this template you can learn how to conduct research that builds your personas profile, as well as create a detailed bio to use as a reference when understanding, marketing, and selling to your audience.

2. List digital touchpoints and streamline communication

The fewer steps between the customer and your service, the more sales are converted.

Touchpoints along the customer journey refer to an instance where customers might form an opinion of your business, good or bad. This is often a place where the individual comes into direct contact with your service. For example, a 404 error on your product page constitutes a touchpoint along the customer journey, one that might send the customer off in the other direction and into the hands of your competition.

That said, your business exists beyond its website, so it’s essential you’re aware of all potential touchpoints and project a cohesive brand image across all avenues of communication. Think display ads, online reviews, outreach emails, and social media accounts — these are all potential touchpoints along the customer journey you can improve.

Consider listing all the actions your average customer might conduct while interacting with your business. For some this might simply be a Google search for relevant keywords; for others, this could involve clicking through emails you send to customers. Either way, the key here is to recognise when a customer is having to take too many steps to reach their goal.

3. Motivate purchases with prize draw incentives

Sometimes converting a sale requires a little encouragement.

Understanding and researching the online customer journey is essential for nurturing your audience through the sales funnel and onto a product page. But we’re not at the finish line yet. Just like a classic brick & mortar salesman, you need to close the deal and sell them that pen. Or in other words, motivate the purchase.

Prize draws and giveaways are proven sales techniques that invoke a sense of urgency in your customers. On most sites, you’ll find these draws are time-sensitive. This influences someone to make the purchase at that very moment rather than leave the site to conduct more research and return to the consideration phase.

To see the motivating power of prize draws in action, look no further than the lottery. The online platform Lotto247, for instance, uses a live countdown between draws to invoke urgency and encourage sales. Using the incentives of various life-changing jackpots, from cash4life to the US Mega Millions, the ancient game of luck has found a new home online.

So, whether it’s a simple giveaway or offer of a free trial, find inspiration from these motivating tactics and convert all your hard work into well-earned sales.

The customer journey describes the actions someone takes before making a purchase. Given today’s hyper-social world, this can be convoluted and difficult to understand. From highlighting personas and listing touchpoints to motivating purchases with prize draws — these are three easy ways to simplify the online customer journey.

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