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Lesson 3: Serving Browsers, Shoppers & Buyers

Problems:

  • You are targeting people at random stages of your funnel (not targeted) so your bounce rate is high or visitors are not converting.
  • You are not giving people everything they need to be able to make a decision to buy.
  • You are not satisfying visitor intent by creating content that delivers value early on and throughout their exposure to your products or services.
  • You are not targeting Bob’s well enough, trying to reach too many people and you might be paying a lot for that.

Solutions:

  • Being selective and not spending time or money on people who aren’t your customers.
  • Taking them through a process where they sell themselves.
  • Giving them satisfaction and answering their “obstacle” questions at every opportunity so they can move to being a potential buyer.
  • Promise and deliver by sending them to the right places on your website from outside sources.

Without Having To:

  • Spend months or years paying for unqualified traffic to test what you think might work.
  • Guess what your audiences want and how to give them that  – so you build trust before they are ready to buy.

When people browse the internet, they are doing so for a multitude of reasons. Sometimes people use the internet and particularly social websites purely for social reasons, other times they use it to research products and services, to fulfil a want or desire, or solve a problem.

If you are not online with the intent to buy something, then ads or content that is commercially motivated is an interruption. Sometimes it’s a welcome interruption – if the content is relevant to your interests. Other times it is an annoyance.

If you are an online business paying for the opportunity to capture an audiences intention, it would make sense to know who you are presenting your content to.

Obviously paying for the attention of people who are the most likely to be interested in the content, and products or services on your website makes more sense than trying to advertise via interruption marketing. Why market to a group of people who only a small percentage of which, are likely to buy.

Instead, you can focus on qualified audiences.

What is a qualified audience?

There are several different categories of potential buyers online.

As I stated above, sometimes people use the internet and particularly social websites purely for social reasons, other times they use it to research products and services, to fulfill a want or desire, or solve a problem.

People buy products or services to make them feel something. It’s not the thing they want, but the feeling or outcome that thing will give them as a result of buying it.

If you ask someone who bought a product or service that they liked about it they might say it was because of:

  • brand familiarity
  • comfort
  • style
  • looks cool
  • to be trendy
  • like the color or style
  • to solve a problem
  • to make life easier in some way

If they are looking for a service online they might say they bought it to:

  • have more time
  • impress the boss
  • work more efficiently
  • feel more in control
  • make more profit
  • save money

The common theme here is that behind every purchase is a desire to FEEL something or get some emotional payoff from making the purchase. If you were to do market research on what your customers or audience want or want to avoid, you could (and will soon) create a list of these reasons. We break these down further into who, what, why, where, when and how questions which we delve into in an upcoming lesson.

The key point here is that behind every internet search is an intent which you need to understand in order to be able to satisfy that intent with your content!

There are generally three different types of “buying” audiences: browsers, shoppers, and buyers.

They all have different intents- or more specifically – are all at different stages in the buying process. Think of your Bob and where Bob is at along his or her buying process.

Browsing Shopping BuyingBrowsers…

…are online for social reasons with no immediate intent to buy. For example, they may be visiting their Facebook page or reading the news.

This group of online users may see something they like while browsing, but they didn’t begin their online session with the intent to buy something.

Shoppers…

The next group is people who have already shown a small to moderate interest in a brand or type of product or service. They may not yet have a specific idea of what they want – rather they have a general interest in something. For example, they may like training shoes but are not sure what brand, style and color they are interested in.

These people are just looking around to narrow down what they may want. I call these people shoppers.

Buyers…

The next and what I like to nickname the hottest group of internet users are what I call buyers. These folks are the ones that know what type of “thing” or “service” or even brand they want and what specific features and benefits that product or service needs to provide to fit their requirements.

These people are in a different frame of mind from browsers and shoppers. They are looking to buy and are looking for indicators of value and trustworthiness. They are looking for WHO is most likely to give them the best post-sale satisfaction.  They may want to know WHAT the best deal is. They aren’t necessarily looking for the best price, but rather the best value, which means they’re looking at who are the best or right people or which is the best company to deliver the item or service they want.

This group of people are very sensitive to how well you handle their wants, fears, concerns and desires. They will be scrutinizing everything, whether consciously or subconsiously, maybe both.

There are really only three reasons “buyers” who arrive on site won’t buy:

  1. they don’t want what you have.
  2. they don’t understand or believe that you can deliver what they want through your products or services.
  3. they don’t trust you enough.

Why it’s important to define and categorize different online users.

Remember that people are generally using the internet for one or more of these three reasons:

  • to solve a problem.
  • to find something they want.
  • to be entertained and connect with other members of their tribe (other people like them) in some way.

Just like clubs, groups of friends, social groups etc, so too online users generally hang out in tribes. Every tribe has its own personality, etiquette, language, common interests, pet likes and pet hates.

Your job as an online marketer is to know which of the hundreds of online groups specifically relate to your product or service and who the most likely people are that you can best satisfy. Then you as a marketer need to meet them WHERE THEY ARE AT in their buying process.

Ask yourself: “From my target audience, who are the people to whom I can deliver the MOST value to through my content, products or services?”.

Once you have clearly established this, you can now come up with content that is customized for each of these groups.

Think about each of these types of people, and come up with a list of topics that are relevant to each group.

  • How to’s
  • Pictorials
  • Instructions
  • Top questions
  • Top concerns people have about your types of products and services
  • Things that are interesting to them
  • Things that are entertaining
  • Educational information
  • Product tutorials

In this course we don’t tell you exactly what to write for your own business, that needs to come from you based on your audiences unique needs, wants and desires as discussed in the last lesson.

If you want to join our webinars or consulting sessions however, we will take you step by step through this process and help you map out your content – existing or future content – to ensure every visitor that could become a buyer, has a high chance or becoming one.

We show you how to capture as many opportunities to as you can to convert visitors into buyers.

We can, however, help you to stimulate ideas that are likely to be important to your audience.

You can move people through the stages of browser >> to shopper >> to a buyer, by offering them value and building trust through your content.

You can do this in an organic, or paid sequential manner when you have Facebook or Adwords visitor tracking on your website.

Start by writing down what each of your Browsers, Shoppers and Buyers want. This process makes it much easier to know what content to create, content they will respond well to.

What does each type of online user need to move to the next step.

I don’t expect someone who is online checking their Facebook page to go to my store and buy my products or services.

But if I know if a specific group pf people have a problem I can help solve, or help make a decision about something that is important to them, there might be an opportunity to create a relationship with them.

That may be a relationship that develops to the point they become a customer, if that is nurtured along the way.

Knowing what your audience wants, and when they want it, is an art.

So your homework for this lesson, is to separate your audiences into three different categories, browsers, shoppers and buyers.

The important task for you in this lesson is to determine what questions your Bob is asking at different stages of Browsing, Shopping and Buying.

Then think about what content you can produce on your website and offsite to satisfy your Bob at whatever stage he/she is at.

Bob Funnel

Thinking about your audiences, what do they want to know at each of the three stages above?

If they are at the browsing stage, what would capture their attention so you can follow up with them later?

If they are at the shopping stage, what questions could you answer or what could you teach them?

If they are at the buying stage, what do they need to feel to be confident enough to make a decision to buy?

How can you build trust along the way with social proof (reviews), an https secure website, guarantees and most of all having demonstrated value repeatedly.

Don’t be afraid to talk about your “weaknesses” and mistakes. If you’ve had grumpy customers, but they have ended up happy after you’ve corrected something, show that.

Show you are real, and that you learn and grow by listening to your customers. It’s a powerful and refreshing way to build social proof.

So, if you know who your Bob is by now, and you understand what Bob wants and dislikes, then the next thing to consider is where Bob is at in his buying processes. Help your Bob get comfortable with all things he needs to know before he’s ready to buy. Now, if we stretched your circle out lengthwise and turned that into a funnel, it would look like this.

Sales Funnel

At the stage of browsing, Bob isn’t necessarily very particular about the things that he wants from a product because he is not yet close to the point where he’s ready to buy it, but by the time he has shifted from being a browser to a shopper, he’s starting to ask some deeper questions about what he wants from your products and services.

For example, he’s starting to get an idea of the colors he might like or possibly if it was something that had options for a certain capacity or size, he’d be starting to think about how the size of the product and service may fit his requirements.

He has moved from browser to shopper mode, and now he’s starting to shop around for the things that he wants in a product or service like yours.

The next phase for Bob is that of a buyer. Buyers are much more critical and fussy about what it is they want and how they want it. By the time your Bob becomes a buyer, he or she is going to be interested in things like warranties, guarantees, or how you help existing customers when something goes wrong.

You can help reassure Bob – your audiences – that they can have confidence in themselves and their decision. They also want to know sometimes whether or not they’re justified in purchasing something if there is something else that they could spend the money on.

This thought usually comes in right at the end when they’re about to get their credit card out and commit to something, so you need to remind Bob why it is that he needs your product and service and why he can be reassured that it is a safe thing to do. Show him or her that he/she are going to be happy and satisfied when they have done business with you.

A great way to do this is with reviews, add them to general pages and just prior to checkout. All of your content should be broken down into browser, shopper, and buyer content because where you send your visitors from your offsite content such as social media and ads, etc, needs to send your Bob to pages that satisfies browser, shopper, or buyer intent.

This is why we take you through a map of where your Bob is in his buying process.

When you send traffic to your website, you should understand where they are at in their buying process from the very first step, such as a social media post, and to send them to a strategic page on your website that satisfies them, and again we’ll call them your Bob, at the stage they are at with the questions they want answered.

If you do a really good job of meeting their needs and satisfying them at every point that they are at, or every stage that they are at, you will be building trust and a solid relationship with your Bob. By the time you send Bob to a buyer page and helped Bob overcome all of the obstacles he/she has, Bob will be primed and ready to buy. It will be because he’s ready to do so, not because you have had to do any hard selling.

The best sales people in the world lead somebody to a sale by knowing what that person needs, when they need it, and delivering value early on, so the person essentially sells them self.

A website and marketing plan that is set out with this in mind converts far better than a random website with randomly laid out content. Whenever you add content to your website, you should know where that content fits in your map for browsers, shoppers, and buyers.on.

Write down all the ways you can think of to serve your audiences at the stage they are at using the worksheet attached. You can map out the different needs of your Bob and which content matches their needs. If you don’t have content yet, you can use this template to create your own map.

This map forms the basis of the first level we take you through when coming up with content for your own audiences. It is one of the key elements we take clients through to make the process of creating high converting content funnels for your website.

Download the Lesson 3 worksheet

Your Bob:

So, if you know who your Bob is, and you understand what Bob likes and dislikes, then it is time to consider where Bob is at in his buying processes. Help your Bob get comfortable with all things he needs to know, before he’s ready to buy.

At this stage of browsing, Bob isn’t necessarily that particular about the things that he wants from a product. He might not be close to the point where he’s ready to buy it, but by the time he has shifted from being a browser to a shopper, he’s starting to ask some questions about what he wants from your products and services. For example, he’s starting to get an idea of the colors he might like, or if it was something that came in a certain capacity or size. He’d be starting to think about how the size of the product and service may fit his requirements.

Bob has moved from browser to shopper mode, now he’s starting to shop around for the things that he wants… A product or service like yours.

The next phase for Bob is that of a buyer. Buyers are much more critical and fussy about what it is they want and how they want it.

By the time your Bob becomes a buyer, he or she is going to be interested in things like warranties, guarantees, or if anything goes wrong and how easy it is to fix.

They seek evidence that the decision they are about to make buy buying is a good one. They want to know they are spending their money wisely and that it is justified. This thought usually comes in right at the end when they’re about to get their credit card out and commit to something, so you need to remind Bob why it is that he needs your product and service.

Bob needs to be reassured that buying your stuff is a safe thing to do and that he will be happy and satisfied after he has made that commitment. Reviews on your web pages are one simple way to show him that other people have been thought the same thing and it’s been a good experience for them.

All of your content should be broken down into browser, shopper, and buyer content because where you send your visitors from your offsite content such as social media and ads. You need to send your Bob to the right pages with the intent to satisfy either their browser, shopper, or buyer intent.

When you send traffic to your website, you should understand where people are at in their buying process from the very first step, i.e. a social media post, and send them to a strategic page on your website that satisfies your Bob. If you do a really good job of meeting their needs and satisfying them at every stage of this process, you will be building trust and a positive relationship with your Bob.

By the time you send Bob to a buyer page, you have helped him/her overcome any obstacles to buying, and hopefully he/she is primed and ready to buy.

The best sales people in the world lead somebody to a sale by knowing what that person needs, when they need it, and delivering them answers to those things as they need them, so the visitor is essentially selling themselves.

A website and marketing plan that is set out with this in mind converts far better than a random website with content randomly added to it over time. Whenever you add content to your website, you should know how that content relates to browsers, shoppers, and buyers.

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