How studying customer behaviour can help your business

How studying customer behaviour can help your business

Whether you want to find out about the lifestyle, personal values or even past experience of a customer the most important thing to do is ask them. Not everything that needs to be known about a customer can be found through data and website statistics. For more personal information and preferences do things like taking surveys that find out what they like when shopping online, what challenges they have with it and even how they find shopping on your site or with your company in general. Use this information paired with your data to find and give to your customers what they really want. Follow their customer journey and see where they tend to drop off or where they start to make a sale. But overall it is important to keep your customers involved and thank them for their input wherever they offer it, make changes based on their points because after all, it is these people you are trying to impress. Using these kinds of surveys can open a lot of doors regarding marketing, some of the things you could find out to better accommodate your customers are as follows.

The first step to understanding your customers is finding out why they buy, understand what makes your products so attractive to them and for recurring customers find out why they came back. Take again the customer journey and find out what lead them to their purchase, find at what point they decided to make their purchase and what it was that influenced their decision, if anything. It is also good to note the reason behind their idea for purchasing, whether it is out of necessity or out of want. Depending on which of these is most common in your shoppers it can change your approach to them. For example, if your customers purchase is something they buy because they need it, try selling to them with more factual information, advertise the benefits of your product well and do a good job of selling your products efficiency. Whereas if your main audience buy your products because they are something they personally want, it is useful to take more note of the kinds of things they view regularly and offer them similar products alongside it, show many pictures of the product to help influence their decision. Whatever the reason for your customers purchase however build up a personal connection with them, ask them if your service was satisfactory, if not what would they change? Become a company they know they can rely on to accommodate for them and rely on for a good level of quality, satisfaction and personal connection.

Once you’re pretty sure exactly why your customers buy from you it is time to look into how often they buy these products. The frequency of purchases may be directly linked to whether the purchase is a necessity or not, but it may not be. Finding out how often your customers are buying your products helps you know when to market for the best results. Such as if a certain product is particularly popular in summer, the best time to market it would be just as summer is starting, and possibly throughout if the purchases are frequent enough. Otherwise, if your customers buy products on a regular basis, advertising throughout the year can be just as beneficial and will yield good results. Both of these approaches will make sure your marketing will target your ideal customer as and when they need your products. To further personalise this, look deeper into these statistics for each individual customer, and personalise your marketing on a one to one basis. Resulting in your customers feeling more catered and cared for, and more sales for your company.

Knowing why and how often your customers buy from you can help specialise your approach to marketing for them. But to narrow this down even more, you can even find out what they are buying from you. Take a look at the products you offer and find out what sells best, whether a particular product or range whatever sells best should be your main product. This can also be found out through survey, extra details about why this is your best selling product can also be found. When you have your best selling products be sure to use them as your main route of marketing and make them easy to find on your website, this gives your customers what they want from the offset. Your most popular products may not always stay the same, and this is okay. If you have a customer base whose shopping habits change depending on the season or a special occasion, find the most popular products for each of these seasons and switch your marketing focus from one to the other where appropriate to fit customer needs. Also where your sales are lacking, find out where your customers are getting these products from, if they are buying them at all. Take the time to figure out why they would be choosing this other store over you, take these reasons and improve upon them in your own business and more offering your customers a new reason to buy from you, convincing them to switch supplier. The same goes for purchasing method, if you have customers who prefer to shop over the phone or in store and you are a online only company, find out what it is that makes their preferred form of shopping so attractive and try to utilise it somehow on to your website for internet based purposes and convert them again by understanding just what they want.

Depending on your line of business, you can also check who your customers are buying for. This is particularly applicable in industries that sell gifts or specialise in products for certain age groups such as children. If this is applicable pay close attention to both the age range of both the purchaser and the intended age range of the product. If your customers tend to buy mostly for themselves it is a little easier, as your marketing has to appeal to them only, meaning it can be highly personalised to suit them. So put all your time into learning what they like to see and what process of shopping suits them best. However with things such as child products, you may need to appeal to both the purchaser with information but also for the child with bright colours and an overall attractive appearance to keep both the shopper and gift recipient happy. For this you will not only need to find out what will appeal to the gift recipient, which can be difficult if this is a child, and also what makes purchasers of this kind of product happy and what they would like to see.

For those not only looking to be a place of sales for their customers. It is also good to keep an eye on where your customers go for information, and how they got to you in the first place. This can give an insight into where your customers find their most trusted sources of information, whether it be a search engine or through social media influences, allowing you to conveniently appear wherever they do. Be present or advertise on whichever source of information your customers prefer and use it is promote your brand for what it is. Find a way to express and showcase your brand through these platforms and find what kind of information your customers are using these places to find. If social media is the chosen choice for information, use the platform to express your brand thoroughly and build awareness, but also provide information at the same time to build up reliability. The same can be done for customers who use search engines more too, but rather than building up a social profile it is more worthwhile to express your brand through your website. Offer the same level of information, if not even more in depth and make it all easy to find. If done properly you will not only be a store to your shoppers, but also their information source too.

About the Author
Laura
Content Manager