The Buyer’s Journey: What is the Consideration Phase?

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What is the Consideration Phase

Understanding each phase of a buyer’s journey is crucial to creating better content for them. This article will provide an in-depth explanation of the “consideration phase,” the second phase of the four-step buyer’s journey. Here you will learn how to attract more traffic, create content for buyers in the consideration phase, and tips to market yourself to a sale.

What is the Consideration Phase? 

The consideration phase is the point at which buyers have recognized a problem with their inbound marketing techniques. These prospects have started exploring possibilities to correct it.

Now that we have defined the term itself, it is time to decode what stage of the buyer’s journey your prospect is in. After all, you want to market to each prospect effectively!

How do I figure out what stage of the buyer’s journey my prospect is in? 

When examining a prospect, keep in mind the markers and milestones of each stage in the buyer’s journey:

Stage #1: Awareness

  • Buyer is becoming aware of a problem
  • Buyer begins research to understand problem

Stage #2: Consideration

  • Buyer is fully aware of the problem
  • Buyer begins exploring options available

Stage #3: Decision

  • Buyer has explored all problem solving options
  • Buy has selects a provider to help

Stage #4: Delight

  • Customer (formerly buyer) is hoping to be “wowed” by service
  • Customer is hoping to build a long standing relationship

For more information regarding stages of the buyer’s journey, review the post written by HubSpot. You have an idea of where your prospect is in the buyer’s journey. Where do you go from here? Put yourself in your buyer’s shoes. Think like a buyer in the consideration phase.

What are the thoughts a buyer has in the consideration phase?

  • How do I get more customers?
  • What are some ways I can increase traffic to my site?
  • How can I create better email marketing or nurturing sequences?
  • What are other techniques that would convert visitors to leads?
  • How do I create a growth driven website?
  • What is the best way to manage my social media?
  • How do I map website content?

Understanding these thoughts, concerns and needs will help you understand what your buyer is likely to be querying in the search engines and what keywords they are using. Secondly, it provides the insight you need to know what content to create and what keywords to leverage in your content.

questions-consideration-phase

What are buyers looking for in the consideration phase? 

Potential clients in the consideration phase are comparing the different solutions that would resolve their problem. It is your job to deliver answers that are helpful and relevant to them. According to Pardot, 72% of buyers are simply searching for information during the consideration phase.

The online world is seeping with intelligence. When marketing to prospective clients, it is imperative to understand not only what they are looking FOR, but also what they are looking AT. Focus your efforts on the material that is most viewed by buyers. With a little competitive research, you can determine what your buyer is responding to.

What pages are prospects visiting when they are in the consideration phase?

These buyers are visiting the pages that include keywords they are searching for. Be sure to include key phrases in your content to attract the most attention. Keep in mind that in the consideration phase buyers are most responsive to:

  • Blog posts
  • Email marketing
  • Downloadable information

Prospects want to make decisions based on logic, even though it is known that buyers are persuaded by emotion (the fear or something or the desire to have something because of what it means to them). Marketing Interactions uses data to explain. This is your opportunity to speak to the problem and their logic, while using quantifiable data that compels them emotionally (what they have to lose and win) to choose a particular solution.

Know and explain the strategies that will work for them and provide examples or case studies that showcase examples of real client outcomes. Use your industry intelligence and deep understanding of the applied value of your solution. Speak to the quantified value of the existing gap and its long-term cost if left uncured.

Your well-written, compelling content that addresses your buyer’s specific needs and helps them understand the various challenges and cost of the problem, as well as the value of your applied solution is your best sales tool.

You are the expert. You see these issues over and over. Depending on your product or solution, your buyer likely only experiences these particular challenges once or twice in the lifetime of their business. Give them a 30,000-foot perspective. Just be sure it’s relevant to the buyer persona you are addressing.

What offers perform best for prospects in the consideration phase?

To gain your buyer’s trust, you need to prove you understand their business and their problem. Examine your client. Ask yourself:

  • What is this buyer’s user behavior?
  • What are your buyer’s research and information needs?
  • What keywords or relevant terms will this buyer use as they search for information?

To write excellent, searchable, conversion-driven content, you must tap into your deep understanding of how your buyer uses your product and translate it so that it speaks directly to the heart of their concerns and their goals. Here’s a quick list of topics you should speak to using their language – not your company-speak:

  • The buyer’s (company) buying and approval process
  • Their unique environment and processes they must follow to implement and maximize the results
  • The challenges they typically encounter on their way to the successes that are possible
  • The opportunities that emerge when they are achieving success as a result of your solution
  • All of the unique experiences a particular buyer persona experiences from the recognition of a need, to the diagnosis of the problem, to the hiring of a vendor or the purchasing of a solution

Buyers in the consideration phase will respond best to content offers in these formats:

  • Comparisons
  • Pros and cons lists
  • Live interaction
  • Expert advice.

consideration-phase-content

What is the best way to refresh or repurpose older consideration phase content? 

  1. Inventory all content
  2. Edit or delete verbiage that is vague or not clear
  3. Update and refresh the facts with recent studies
  4. Use existing content to create a compelling offer
  5. Create a (or modify an existing) landing page to provide your new offer

A landing page (where your buyer will “land” after clicking on a link) is one of the most important marketing opportunities a business has. Well developed and effective landing pages are your businesses online gold mine. Your targeted buyer is willing to exchange a certain amount of high-value information to you in exchange for your irresistible offer. Your offer is going to help her get closer to resolving her problem.

The design and the elements that make up a successful landing page are very purposeful.

What elements should be on the landing page of a consideration phase buyer?

Relay information in an organized and engaging approach. This means including:

  1. A Strong Offer Title

Include keywords and phrases your buyers might be searching for (“how to,” “tips to,” etc.). Don’t forget to state specific terms pertaining to your services (“real estate,” “marketing,” etc.)

  1. A Short Explanatory Paragraph

Here you are describing what is being offered to your prospects. Explain why both parties will benefit from a relationship.

  1. Bulleted Impact Statements

These are the key points you want your buyer to focus on. They should be easy to read while breaking down the value of the offer.

  1. A CTA Button

This is your “call to action” for the buyer. By creating a “clickable” link, you persuade your prospects to complete a specific action. Follow instructions from Kissemtrics for a “CTA that converts”).

  1. Form Fields

Offer your buyer the option to fill out contact info or even ask more detailed questions. Less is more in this instance. Limit your form fields to maximize your responses and submissions.

So you’ve created the ideal landing page. Now how are you going to direct your prospects and leads there? By creating content that is relevant and informative, of course!

What key terms should we use in our content for consideration phase leads?

As discussed earlier, buyers are searching for options to solve their issue. Maximize your online traffic from prospects by including specific keywords into your phrases.

Remember to add your meta data to your new landing page. Incorporate the most likely search phrase your buyer is going to use. It’s important to know that this search phrase and meta data must be present in your page content.

Here are some various examples. You will want to personalize them to your industry.

  • Solution type terms

These phrases include a solution to their problem (example: “improve,” “redesign, and fix”).

  • Solution

Make sure your landing page will be a part of the results for buyers hunting for specific answers for a “solution to poor website traffic” or “solution to low survey responses.”

  • Provider

Prospects want reassurance you are qualified to handle their issue appropriately. Use effective keywords while including your industry term for “Provider of…” type verbiage.

  • Service

Call attention to the fact that you are a provider of a service, for instance, a “web design service” or “wealth management service.” 

  • Supplier

Including the word “Supplier” in keyword phrases provides effective text in the search result to compel your buyer to click through to your website.

  • Tool

Whether prospects are searching for a marketing tool, a design tool, or a search tool, highlight your assets in your content.

  • Device

“Device to track online traffic” or “device to track leads” are possible searches from prospects. Using the term most relevant to your solution will help optimize your content for your buyer demographic.

  • Software

Call attention to your landing page by sharing your company’s “fix.”

  • Appliance

“Appliance to solve…” or “appliance to incorporate” could both be relative terms to a client. Be sure to use the phrase most likely to be used by the specific buyer persona you are targeting in this content.

Landing page description? Check.

Ideas for potential key words? Check.

Where else should you place these phrases and words?

Where should these key terms appear? 

These are the concepts most important to buyers in the consideration phase. They should be mentioned often and placed strategically. For SEO and buyer search purposes, placing your key words in your:

  1. Offer Title

The first statement your prospect will read should have an impact. Put the main keywords at the beginning of the title, if possible.

  1. Landing Page Copy

Incorporating these key words within your bulleted points and body paragraphs is crucial.

  1. Your CTA Button Copy

Your final statement to your potential clients should recap what you are offering, leveraging the main keyword or phrase.

  1. Email Copy

If your buyer has opted in to anything on your website, they should be receiving email from you. Repeat how you can help. Be specific to a need and use your keywords with consistency.

  1. Email Subject Line

State your purpose immediately using relevant, professional and emotionally compelling terms.

  1. URL

Placing keywords in the URL will engage search engines in your content.

  1. Post Title

Using keywords that speak to your buyers solution in the blog post title will increase the chances of getting email and search engine click throughs.

  1. Social Posting

Employ your keywords effectively and interact with prospects using one of the best platforms for marketing.

Once you have attracted traffic to your site, the next step is converting your lead. Your next assignment: guiding buyers into the decision phase of the buyer’s journey.

consideration-phase-nurture

How do we nurture the buyer through the consideration phase and decision phase?

Building a trusting relationship with your client is key. If they are not ready to move on to the decision phase of the process, keep in touch with them. Use strategic email sequences. Monitor the open rate and page clicks.

They might need reassurance and some hand-holding! Build a reputation as the “problem solver” and build a trusting relationship. Stay connected with them in a relevant and value-based way by sending links to:

  • Customer success stories
  • Product comparisons
  • Company news
  • Provide continuous research that helps them better understand your solution

The continued interaction keeps you in the buyer’s thought process. New customer surveys and company research may change and influence their decision. Maybe they lost a significant client or gained new business. Through constant communication you will have the opportunity to be part of their next steps.

At what point does marketing need to pass the lead to the sales team or when is it time to make actual, one-to-one contact with the lead?

How do I know when to pass a marketing lead to the sales team? 

The hard work is done. You have an established lead and have been providing value to them regularly. Every company has different triggers that indicate when is time to pass a lead to the sales team. This is a matter of testing, measuring and tweaking the indicators and process to determine what works best for your company.

Some of the most obvious triggers for transition may be:

  • The lead has visited specific pages your company has identified as “sales- or decision-ready” content
  • The content the lead is downloading is no longer consideration phase type content
  • The lead has visited your pricing or plan pages
  • The lead has requested contact with a sales representative

Having the tools to get started is the key to success. You now have the inside intel to effectively engage prospects in the consideration phase and to nurture them to the decision phase.

If you haven’t yet downloaded the Buyer’s Journey Template and Guide, you’ll want to get it so you can begin mapping out your buyer persona’s content journey through each of the buyer phases.

If you get stuck or need someone to do this for you, reach out to me via FacebookTwitter, Email, or even the old fashion way – give me a call.



buyers-journey-guide

Jillian Vanarsdall
Jillian Vanarsdall
Founder of Blue Iris Marketing. An inbound marketing agency assisting businesses, from start-ups to high-growth firms, to phenomenally tell their unique story in a noisy digital world. Our services include inbound marketing, Wordpress web design and development, SEO, and social media.

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