In our blog "eCommerce: more than just facilitating online purchases" we wrote that a successful eCommerce implementation starts with insight into the customer journey. In this blog we will go into this in more detail and zoom in on the specific phases of the customer journey.
The customer journey is roughly the journey that a customer takes when he or she buys a product. This starts with the orientation but also continues until (far) after the purchase. We use a total of five stages to map out the customer journey.
By asking the right questions and obtaining answers at every stage of the customer journey, you quickly have a good idea of the current and desired role of eCommerce within the customer relationship.
In the first stage, someone orientates himself. Your potential customer is aware that she has a need or problem and is actively looking for possibilities or answers that can solve her problem or need. Consider this stage of the customer journey as a potential customer's first impression of your organization.
The potential customer has conducted her initial research and is weighing up a number of providers. However, she is still looking for more information to make a good choice.
This is the stage in which she compares the product(s) or service(s) of your organization with other solutions on the market. Here she makes price comparisons, reads customer reviews, looks at competitors and learns about the details of your product(s) or service(s) to see if it matches what she's looking for. For example, clearly show your USPs and that you have the right knowledge with blog articles in which you help the potential customer.
In this stage, a potential customer has made the choice to buy the product. The shopping experience is central in this stage. Offer your customers a flawless experience when making a purchase, taking into account the speed and ease of ordering on different devices.
After the purchase, we enter the service stage. Important contact points in this stage are informing the customer about the order status, delivery and after sales. Services such as an overview of orders (history), delivery notes, invoices and returns are also important features in this stage.
The important question in this stage is: how do you ensure that the customer returns for new purchases after the purchase? The loyalty stage therefore focuses on creating loyal customers through, among other things, the use of marketing automation.