The Changing Path to Purchase

It’s no understatement that the recent explosion of digital has changed our lives. Spending a little time on our phones before going to sleep is a nightly ritual, and the beeping or buzzing of those phones wakes us up in the morning.

Our devices are portals to the connected world, and they’re always less than an arm’s length away. So of course, digital has shaped the path to purchase for today’s consumer as well.

Pre-digital’s path to purchase

Let’s travel back in time for a moment.

Today’s path to purchase

Fast forward to today’s digital world and that same scene looks pretty different.

Old vs. New Paths

Today’s consumers have more information at their fingertips than ever before. Your mobile devices give you instant access to customer reviews, videos, price comparisons – everything you could want to research a product.

There’s no need anymore to drive to the store and depend on a salesperson for the information we need to make a buying decision.

There are many stimuli around to spur your interest in products. These micro-moments move you along the convoluted, mobile-dominated path to purchase.

Non-linear micro-moments

The micro-moments that pique a customer’s interest happen in bursts, usually during short moments of time – an elevator ride, waiting for the subway, standing in line for coffee. They can be sequential, but more often are non-linear.

I-Want-to-Know Moments

Raj saw his friend post a picture of some delicious pasta she made and was amazed that she made the noodles herself. He opens another tab in his browser and starts researching what kinds of pasta makers are available now.

I-Want-to-Go Moments

Antonia is relaxing with her friends after a soccer match. While everyone’s complaining about how sore they are, one friend mentions a new ice pack shaped like a sleeve. Antonia decides she needs one, so she whips out her phone and finds a nearby store that has them in stock so she can pick one up on the way home.

I-Want-to-Do Moments

Kat just moved in and wants to learn more about the area around her new home. She thinks a city tour would be a good way to get started, so she searches on her phone and books an open-top bus tour with a nearby company.

I-Want-to-Buy Moments

Kenji’s buying a few new clothes for the new semester from an online store he likes. He’s been having a hard time seeing outdoors since he lost his sunglasses, so when he sees a cool pair while browsing the site, he adds them to his cart.

Ecosystem of touch-points

As you saw, there are many kinds of micro-moments a consumer can experience. There are also tons of different kinds of touch-points that can create these micro-moments. As a digital marketing agency, these diagrams also show you how we are different from a traditional marketing agency.

See how these touch-points relate to the digital realm.

Digital touch-points in context

The path to purchase varies by the size of the business, industry sector, and location. See how customers interact with digital touch-points on the path to purchase. Let’s say you are a bookseller interested in reaching customers in the U.S.

Main takeaways

The digital marketing landscape and the path to purchase are changing now, as customers are exposed to many stimuli and have instant access to research info.

As your trusted digital advisors, we will recommend digital to you based on your touch-points in your specific market.

Call us to schedule a free consultation or call 757-250-7338, or fill out this form and we’ll be in touch:

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