Customer Decision-Making and the Path to Purchase

February 09, 2017

Awareness → Interest → Desire → Action. Seems obvious, right? Although most of us probably learned about the consumer “Path to Purchase” in Marketing 101, you would be surprised at how few marketers use this as a base for marketing strategy. Path to Purchase modeling makes it easy to connect marketing back to business outcomes by breaking the consumer path down in small, digestible pieces.

The best Path to Purchase models are unique to each industry and relevant enough to identify specific action points. Companies with multiple outlets for consumers to arrive at the end goal of purchasing could have a unique Path to Purchase model for each. For example, a retailer that has a brick and mortar shop and an ecommerce website could create a separate Path to Purchase model for each of those outlets.

Path to Purchase modeling allows you to determine where and how consumers are interacting with your brand and how marketing can be present at each of those areas. It will help you discover barriers to purchase that may exist so you can come up with ways of eliminating them. Impacting the right steps in the model with marketing and advertising will help you get consumers further along the path to whatever your end goal may be: purchase, registration, conversion, etc.

Simplicity is key. Complicated Path to Purchase models with too many points and directions are often too difficult to understand and act upon. The model needs to be simple enough to outline key steps and flow of the purchasing process so that ways of impacting each of the steps can be determined. Below is an example of a simple Path to Purchase model for a brick-and-mortar retail store:
Path to Purchase Modeling - Brick and Mortar Retail Store

Written By: Janell Rowland

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