If you are not using Think With Google yet then I am glad you stumbled upon this post. It will change the way you think about your customers and the way they interact with your business online. Google offers a wealth of information for free through their interactive tool at Think With Google.
Lets look at this one segment of the tool that analyses customer journey to checkout for different sectors and countries. Its provides incredibly valuable data on where you should be investing your money in order to drive conversions.
The link above is already pre-filtered to small business in the internet sector in the US:
Click here to view the interactive results.
So here google is telling you that for small business in the internet sector in the US, customers discover your business through search engines (organic & paid) but convert via email and direct. This shows the importance of a good email list and email marketing campaign as this is where you will get your customers and list members to pull out their credit cards and make a purchase. It also shows the importance of SEO and paid search for small business. Note that organic search here most likely includes web and local search channels.
Now lets just quickly flip this same search over to large business (click here to filter) and now see how social is an important channel for engaging your customers for the first time through social branding campaigns. Note that sales are primarily driven by direct traffic in this particular sector. Organic, paid and email marketing tend to convert better for larger companies due to the trust factor a search prospector may not have with small business. The further to the right the channel is, the more likely it is going to convert the visitor to a paying customer.
Google also give you channel position on the path to purchase. Take a look for example at the small US business in the internet industry for visitors coming from generic organic search. Note that these visitors are not yet ready to purchase (only 16% buy) and are largely prospecting (41% beginning and 43% continuing to investigate your offerings).
Now when you switch this over to a branded paid search channel take a look what happens. There is now a 20% change of conversion and 58% of the visitors have already experienced the brand and are returning and continuing their journey to an eventual sale. Only 22% are experiencing the brand for the first time.
The customer journey is becoming a complex topic with all the digital channels and connection points between consumers and businesses. This tool allows you to better understand how customers are engaging with your brand and the intent they have, so that you can make better decisions on how to engage your customers at different steps in the customer journey and also allocate more efficient budgets to the various digital channels.
Go and check it out! www.thinkwithgoogle.com