“If we had an in-depth understanding of how consumers behave once they decide to purchase outdoor power equipment,” our manufacturer client told us, “we could develop a comprehensive marketing and product strategy to influence choice.”
Our response was a comprehensive research program designed to map purchase decision journeys from the moment consumers identified their need through research, shopping and purchase of an OPE product.
We began with a series of ethnographic sessions with consumers who were just starting their purchase journey. These sessions covered products ranging from handheld trimmers to riding lawn mowers.
When the session were completed, each subject's individual Purchase Decision Journey was mapped, along with the various triggers and touchpoints that influenced their decisions. From these we created a master map that combined all the different behaviors, steps and pathways. Next we surveyed a large sample of consumers to validate our map, and to help us determine the percentage of consumers that exhibited certain behaviors (i.e. who was influenced by which factors, which consumers followed different pathways, etc.).
The data revealed the extent to which consumers relied on the internet, social media, friends and family networks, dealers and salespeople for their various product purchases.
As a result of the study the client was able to developed a new digital strategy to grow awareness and increase exposure on review websites. The client also undertook an initiative to better position themselves on partner retailer websites.
Their improved understanding of the chronology of consumer website usage – reviews, manufacturer and retailer sites — helped them to communicate the right features and benefits information at the right time. Lastly, the client was able to train retailers and dealers in identifying specific points in the decision journey, so they could more effectively encourage purchases.