Reports state that the buying decision is nearly 60% by the time a consumer contacts your business or another supplier. It’s common knowledge that the majority of consumers research a product or service before making a purchase decision.
Your potential customers have been using search and educating themselves before they ever contact you or ask any questions.
That’s why we’re going to focus on digital marketing in this piece. The more you work towards improving your digital experience for customers, the better your chances potential customers are going to find you and engage with your business.
Your business must create a customer experience that is positive, supportive, and memorable to engage, convert, and retain customers.
5 Ways to Improve Your Digital Experience for Customers
1. Define Your Customer Persona(s)
Most businesses don’t just have one type of customer. Your business probably has a couple of different categories of customers.
If your business is software development, for instance, you may have application customers, services and training customers, and support customers. Each of these might be represented by a unique persona. The application buyer may be different from the customer that is requesting support.
These very distinct groups of personas usually ask different kinds of questions. They have different priorities and different needs, and they are looking for different business solutions.
By identifying your different customer personas, you will be better able to bundle your solutions, services and content to address their distinct needs.
What’s more, you’ll be able to dive right in and better understand the commonalities that are associated with each person better understand what makes each of them unique.
2. Identify Keywords for Each Customer Persona(s)
We know prospects and customers are using search to educate themselves and research options and business. Understanding how your prospects use keywords and what keywords they use will help you develop a positive customer experience with content and recognizable terms on your website.
Your potential clients are busy people. Make finding information easy for them.
Depending where your customers are in the purchasing process, the terms are going to change. To start, the words could be fairly general. As your prospects move from awareness to consideration, their search terms are going to become far more specific.
For example, if you sell software, prospects may start with words like “accounting software” or “accounting application” and then move on to specific categories and phrases, such as “job cost software,” “church budgeting software” or “accounting software for software development business”.
3. Chart Your Persona’s Buying Process
Once this list of search terms has been properly organized, you should chart the keyword you think they will use in the buyers journey or process. Most people view this as a funnel.
At the top, where a funnel is usually widest, the search terms tend to be the broadest (for example, “best transportation software products”).
Towards the middle of the funnel and terms become more specific and more about evaluating options. Keyword phrases might contain filtering words like “cloud-based”, “affordable” or “easy to use”.
At the bottom of this funnel, the terms tend to indicate the intent to purchase. They can be a lot more specific and action-oriented. Keyword phrases might include terms like “do a free trial” and “demo” or “buy.”
4. Put On Your Persona’s Digital Shoes.
The next step is to imagine yourself as one of your specific persona going online.
- What information are they looking for? Do we have that information? Is it easy to find and access?
- What will the prospect need to know next? Is that apparent? Is the flow of information obvious and consistent?
- What are the emotional outcomes we want our prospect to feel when they are interacting with us?
- What actions do we want the prospect to take? Is it obvious to the prospect what action would be best at that moment of their journey?
5. Turn Your Research into Action
When you have thoroughly gone through your persona’s online customer experience, you will have the information you need to start taking action.
Start by developing a content plan and calendar to regularly publish fresh and relevant content.
Your content plan should identify what content is needed, how and when it will be developed, and how and when it will be used. This includes a blog, website updates, visual content, audio, and video content.
Make a checklist for your content usage that includes;
- A schedule of when items should be posted – pick a day and time to be consistent
- Readable meta data – Meta descriptions and title tags that are understandable and useful
- Social media posts – make multiple post titles for each of your channels
- Strong calls to action
Ensure you are making every effort to be found by prospects by claiming directory listings and cultivating existing customer reviews. Every instance of your name, address, and phone number should be up-to-date and correct.
Move next to your website and ensure the customer experience is designed to deliver positive reactions. Confirm that the website design and navigation help to guide the prospect on their buyer’s journey. Ensure your content, resources, tools, and other items are easily found and accessed.
Remember social profiles too; they’re important in the experience too. How your business appears on platforms such as Google+, LinkedIn, and Facebook matter and can help build or destroy trust and confidence.
Think also about what happens when the prospect or customer leaves your website. If they have subscribed to your processes, you can proactively continue their information and assistance quest by proactively sending them next steps and relevant information.
Keep Customer Experience Consistent
While the focus of this article was an online customer experience, it does not mean your research and actions are restricted to online. Your persona(s) are real people, and they may want to do business in person. Ensure your physical presence is given the same attention as online and
Customer experience is an area that can separate your business from the competition. Valens Point helps businesses like yours build positive customer experiences using the Duct Tape Marketing Marketing Hourglass™. Feel free to download this eBook that that explains how to build a business by focusing on customer experience.