Understanding the buying funnel in consumer journey marketing

Consumer journey marketing focuses on optimising the consumer’s experience by providing helpful content that is relevant to the various stages of their buying journey. Reaching them when they need you most increases your ROI.

Understanding the buying funnel in consumer journey marketing

The Buying Funnel

A typical buying funnel, AKA purchasing funnel, begins with consumers becoming aware of your brand. Prospects then move on to evaluating and considering their options before making a decision. Once converted you have the opportunity to ensure customer retention and generate advocacy. Reach consumers in the moments and places they need you because  8 in 10 consumers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience.

Brand Awareness

During the awareness stage, the buyer is experiencing a problem or symptoms of a “pain”, and their goal is to alleviate it. They search for informational resources to better understand and name their problem. A Google survey discovered that 53% of shoppers research online before making a purchase to ensure they are making the best choice.

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Your goal is to help the target audience define their problem and make them aware of you. This can be achieved by providing informative content and resources through repetitive display marketing that generates familiarity.

Grab Attention

Promoting your brand values at this stage is important to attract a like-minded audience. The more people see your brand the easier it is to recall, and brand recall builds trust. Repetition and consistency is key to promoting brand recall. Visual marketing on display networks such as the Google display network and social media can be effectively used to attract customers – it takes time to build familiarity. Strong brand awareness is a result of multiple simultaneous efforts that extend beyond trying to get paying customers.


When a person has reached the consideration stage of their buying journey they have clearly defined their goal or challenge that you have previously made them aware of. At this stage, they are committed to researching and understanding all available options to solve this problem.

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Now is the time to offer your products or services as a viable resolution to their problem while they determine what is right for them. Your objective is to build trust while providing content that helps them make a decision.

Offer Solutions

SEO and search campaigns should provide relevant solutions to search queries. Email and SMS marketing can be used to educate, engage and encourage prospects. These types of content usually include how-to guides, research and reports, online calculators and information that will guide them to making their choice.


Once buyers have decided on a solution, they will move on to evaluate the different service providers before making a purchase. Your sales objective is to make a positive impact by providing value that converts prospects into customers. Understanding their potential objections will empower you to convert the sale.

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Promote unique selling points that differentiate you from competitors. These may include after-sales care, ease of use, or a unique benefit that provides added value to the person.

Provide Value

Providing five-star reviews can also help convince your prospective customers. Email and SMS marketing are great tools that can be effectively used to encourage and convert prospects.


Customer retention focuses on turning customers into repeat buyers and preventing them from switching to competitors. Studies have shown that it costs five times as much to attract a new customer as it does to keep an existing one.

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In today’s digital age where online social sentiments are prolific, customer retention and business sustainability rely on exceptional aftercare, product and services delivery.

Extend Aftercare

Providing added value in the form of free ongoing helpful information through newsletters, education programs and communication calendars will build trust with customers and keep your brand top of mind. Email marketing targeted to segmented lists of previous buyers is a great way to generate repeat business.


A customer who is loyal to your brand and prefers your products over others won’t have to do much additional research. However, loyalty program’s play a crucial role in retaining and attracting new customers.

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A company that provides loyalty program benefits enjoys an advantage over their competitors.

Give Rewards

Loyalty programs that reward customers for their continued support keep customers happy and coming back for more. Additionally, 73% of consumers are more likely to recommend brands with good loyalty programs.


Once a customer has bought into your brand and enjoyed a positive experience it’s time to get them to share their sentiments. Statistics show that 87% of consumers read reviews before making a purchase and 93% say that online reviews impact their buying decision.

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Review collection strategies are simple. They provide the most effective solution to harnessing the power of social sentiments. However, customers do need to be prompted to do so through email and SMS campaigns.

Generate Reviews

Customers are also willing and happy to recommend brands that they trust. 77% of consumers agreed they would leave an online review if prompted by a local business. Generating reviews from happy customers through Google and other social platforms is easy and provide an effective evaluation strategy for potential customers.

Integrated Marketing

An integrated strategy encompasses a set of smaller objectives to reach consumers at every stage of their buying journey. Delivering relevant, helpful content at the various touchpoints provides an impactful customer experience that drives conversions and increases ROI.

The key to developing a successful marketing plan is to understand your audience. Knowing their needs, behaviors, and preferences will enable you to target them and provide them with solutions at the right time in the moments when they need you.

Smart Goals

Smaller marketing goals provide a clear and more manageable direction to achieving the overall objective of a consumer journey. SMART goals enable you to firstly determine projections based on industry standards and secondly track the progress through data analytics at the various stages of the buying journey.