Conversion occurs when consumers start visiting your website on their own. Before that happens a common concern among online advertisers is that “we don’t see orders.” Part of the reason is that advertising and web analytics is not linked together as discussed
in a previous post. The bigger reason is the lack of understanding of the consumer journey.
Here is a diagram that the folks at Google Think Insights have put out (about 2013) that shares data about how the consumer is influenced before she/he places an order. Using a variation of the AIDA (Awareness, Interest, Desire, Action) model Google describes how overall consumers move the buying journey and actually place an E-Commerce order.
The graphic above presents data (Google Analytics, Q4 2012. N = US: 130M conversions (12K profiles) Note that the purchase paths in this report are each based on interactions with a single ecommerce advertiser) and lets understand them in context of the AIDA model. Here is how the AIDA model plays out in digital markets:
- Awareness:Think of a prospect that is not aware of your brand or offering. To create awareness the data suggests that display advertising like banners help substantially.
- Interest: (Consideration in graphic above) is helped by Social media. In other words, a social media presence like a Facebook page or Facebook advertising helps to move the prospect along- when awareness exists.
- Desire: (or Intent above) is solidified with email campaigns and paid search
advertising like Google AdWords.
- Action:(or Decision in diagram above) is helped with paid referral and organic
search. The important point is that today once you vaguely remember a website or idea you simply search online for it. In other words you are aware, have interest and desire playing at the back of your mind. While steps 1-3 are the pre-conversion “assist” stage the conversion occurs when prospects realize that buying your offering is just right for them.
The Google Think Insights article clarifies the real nature of the sales funnel which is that at the buying stage prospects are already primed to consider you and buy your product or service. At that point if you show up through referrals or organic search you
have a huge chance of converting prospects. Probably you have prospects at each
part of the AIDA chain and different campaigns/vehicles will help convert them.
Before customers are ready to buy, they should be able and willing to find you