Win Potential Shoppers with Buyer Journey Mapping on Google

The writer’s views are totally his or her personal (excluding the unlikely occasion of hypnosis) and should not at all times mirror the views of Moz.

In case your web site is like most others, there’s possible a mismatch between the content material you present, and what your potential clients seek for on Google.

This text is about understanding your potential clients and their dialog with Google through the use of the buyer journey mapping methodology to offer them with one of the best content material. The thought got here to me when watching inside person expertise groups at our company, and I hope it can encourage you as an Web optimization to go away your spreadsheets for a second and begin working with sticky notes (yeah, sticky notes).

Later within the article, for example of the tactic, I’ll present you ways a Danish insurance coverage agency managed to come back out of nowhere and dominate the dialog for a strategically necessary insurance coverage product.

I’ve constructed +100 buyer journey maps during the last 12 months, so I’m excited to share my data with you.

I’ll come again to this later, however let’s get just a few definitions in place first:

What’s a buyer journey?

The client journey is a mannequin, which describes the phases a potential buyer goes by as a way to convert to your answer. It’s a means for us as entrepreneurs to grasp what challenges a person confronts throughout their journey. Once we perceive it, we all know how our advertising efforts ought to present up at each stage.

There are lots of totally different buyer journey fashions, however I choose the traditional AIDA mannequin, including the Loyalty stage on the finish.

Here’s a description of the 5 phases with examples of typical Google queries:

Consciousness: The prospects understand that they’ve an issue or need and actively begin looking out on Google. For instance, they might suppose, “Hey, I am coughing. How do I do away with it?” and seek for “ cease coughing?” (40K month-to-month queries within the US).

Curiosity: The prospects begin looking out for easy answer queries. An instance is “cough medication” (59K month-to-month queries). On this stage, they can even search for substitutes (e.g. “honey ginger tea”).

Need: The prospects turn out to be extra educated and refine their search to search out the correct answer for them. They seek for totally different attributes of the product resembling segments (“toddler cough medication”) and kinds (“non drowsy cough medication”). That is additionally the shopper journey stage the place customers subsequently get into the shopping for mode with finest/most cost-effective/low cost queries (e.g. “finest coughing medication for dry cough”). In addition they start to seek for manufacturers. Typical queries on Google could possibly be “Delsym cough medication” (5.2K month-to-month queries) and comparability queries, like “Delsym vs Robitussin” (1.6K month-to-month queries).

Motion: The prospects have made their alternative and are able to take motion. A typical search can be “Delsym close to me” (90 month-to-month queries).

Loyalty: The prospects have become shoppers and will have questions concerning the newly bought product. A typical instance could possibly be “Delsym negative effects”.

What’s buyer journey mapping on Google?

Buyer journey mapping is a standard train when working with person expertise (UX), attempting to visualise the standard touchpoints for a person and thereby perceive learn how to create a frictionless expertise.

As I discussed within the intro, I had a lightweight bulb second watching our UX groups. Why couldn’t SEOs undertake this observe and map up the shopper journey with Google knowledge? The place UX groups use qualitative interviews, eye monitoring, shopper suggestions and intestine feeling, Google knowledge is the arduous knowledge that’s lacking.

The thought of doing buyer journey mapping on Google was born.

We now have the info proper at our ft. With Google’s personal knowledge sources (e.g. Google Search Console) and third occasion instruments (e.g. Moz Keyword Explorer), SEOs can map out a big a part of the shopper journey.

Simply take a look at your person knowledge in Google Analytics, and you will note how dominant Google is. In line with a study by GrowthBadger, throughout industries 50-90% of all site visitors got here from Google. Whereas social media is a good activation channel in 2022, prospects nonetheless go to Google when they should educate themselves earlier than they contact you.

By mapping the whole buyer journey on Google we perceive:

  1. What are the key matters that potential shoppers are querying on Google?

  2. What’s the search intent behind the dialog potential shoppers are having with Google, that may match our USPs?

  3. The place are the “peak ends”, that means crucial dialog touchpoints on Google, that may win or lose a future buyer?

  4. What’s the timeline of search intent, so we perceive learn how to prioritize content material improvement?

Why you must use buyer journey mapping on Google

There are three important arguments for why you must use buyer journey mapping.

1) Concentrating on particular key phrases is outdated. We have to concentrate on proudly owning person intent as a substitute.

Particularly with Google’s introduction of BERT in September 2019, they perceive searches higher than ever. And with their MUM replace, the search expertise will turn out to be much more spectacular. This additionally signifies that we, the SEOs, need to adapt to those advances, focus much less on concentrating on particular key phrases, and as a substitute focus on the user intent.

To offer an instance, all of the key phrases under have the identical intent and needs to be seen as one:

The overall month-to-month search quantity for this search intent is 4,000 month-to-month queries within the US, so this can be a large touchpoint to miss in your content material, when you promote sleeping luggage.

2) We have to share Web optimization knowledge insights with advertising groups – and do it quick.

It needs to be our purpose to interrupt out of the Web optimization silo and be certain that Web optimization helps advertising methods and actions.

Individuals in your advertising division might not even know that Google Search Console exists, and even fewer might have entry, so SEOs have to share the insights from this goldmine of information.

Web optimization silo evaluation can take weeks, however when aligning with the remainder of the corporate, velocity is essential. Choices in advertising are made every day, so SEOs want to have the ability to present knowledge shortly. A buyer journey map could be created inside just a few hours, and is a good way to visualise knowledge in ways in which any non-Web optimization can perceive.

3) Matter clustering doesn’t provide the full image.

Are you already working with matter clustering and suppose that buyer journey mapping feels like the identical? It’s not.

A standard matter cluster solely covers the Curiosity/Need phases within the buyer journey. A subject cluster consists of the primary web page (the cash web page), which ranks for crucial key phrase (e.g. “automobile insurance coverage”) and numerous supporting pages (pillar pages), which is able to rank for secondary key phrases (e.g. “automobile insurance coverage for teenagers” and “automobile insurance coverage calculator”).

Buyer journey mapping covers the total buyer journey together with the early a part of the funnel and the post-sales stage. These two phases are necessary to concentrate to, as a way to be seen as a topical authority by Google, and naturally to assist your potential shopper alongside their whole journey.


Studies have shown that serving to a person early within the course of will make them keep in mind you in a while. At an early stage of the journey, the prospect just isn’t but conscious of the answer, so they may do symptom queries. The sort of question isn’t really easy to determine, however this additionally signifies that your rivals are most likely lacking out on them. This generally is a nice alternative for further site visitors.

To analysis symptom queries it’s essential to suppose like your prospect. What would they seek for once they aren’t positive what they’re searching for? A solution to validate if the symptom queries are related for you, test in “Associated searches” on the backside of web page one on Google, if any answer queries are listed. It’s an indicator, if it’s a related question or not.

One other necessary side is to coach the prospect in order that they received’t select the fallacious answer. In my final Moz Weblog publish on SEO sprints, I confirmed an instance of prospects trying to find yellow-tinted glasses for driving at evening. That is the fallacious answer, as a result of opposing automobiles have blue lights. That is necessary content material to offer your viewers, as a way to lead prospects in the correct course. What’s a false impression in your trade?


The post-sale queries are very invaluable, as a result of these are queries completed by precise shoppers. This isn’t solely about serving to them out with their precise downside, however it is usually an necessary touchpoint to heat them up for his or her subsequent conversion.

If you wish to determine post-sale queries shortly, then use this regex components in your Google Search Console:

b(clear|damaged|wash off|shattered|polish|downside|deal with|doesn’t work|exchange|doesn’t begin|scratch|restore|guide|repair|shield|renew|protection|guarantee)[” “]

If you don’t rank nicely for the queries that present up, then you probably have a content material hole.

Not all your content material will convert straight. Some content material is extra apt for micro conversions (see a video, learn one other piece of content material, obtain pdf). With buyer journey mapping, you’re pressured to put the search intent so as of look. This may enable you perceive learn how to construction your content material and what a bit of content material ought to do.

construct a buyer journey map utilizing Google knowledge

Let me stroll you thru the method.

Step 1 : Outline your persona and your goal

What will we wish to get hold of, and who’s our persona/s? This necessary first step ensures that we create the scope for the mapping.

Step 2 : Get the info and map out the intents

Subsequent up is to map out the person intent. I’ll initially use the shopper’s Google Search Console.

I’ll filter 12 months of information for a particular key phrase. I’ll then undergo my key phrase checklist. On this instance I’m doing a map for “Pure playgrounds”. One intent is “pure playground gear”. I’ve marked three queries under, which have the identical intent: Pure playground gear, Nature playground gear and Nature play gear.

That is one intent recognized. Normally, I write the intent on a sticky notice with the search quantity and the typical rating. Right here is an instance under from a session.

When I’m not capable of finding extra intents in Google Search Console I’ll add knowledge from third occasion instruments resembling Moz Explorer. Right here I’ve inserted the key phrase “Pure playground” within the suggestion field, and an inventory of related key phrases seem.

Step 3 : Map the post-its in a funnel

I then draw up a gross sales funnel on a whiteboard, the place I place the sticky notes. I’ll transfer them round and cluster them, the place it is smart. I’ll finally revisit my instruments to get extra knowledge, if I see gaps within the funnel. This needs to be a fast course of. That is how my whiteboard finally ends up wanting:

When I’ve accomplished this train I’ve an ideal understanding of the prospects’ dialog with Google. The following step is to insert the intents in PowerPoint, so it may be introduced to the shopper. Right here is an instance. The site visitors lights present how the location performs (Inexperienced = Rank 1-3 in Google. Yellow = Remainder of web page 1. Pink = Web page 2 or worse.). The dimensions of the bubbles signify the search quantity.

When a map like that is introduced, it can naturally kick-start a concentrate on how we will convert all of the intents to inexperienced.

How a Danish insurance coverage agency received prospects with buyer journey mapping

Købstædernes Forsikring is without doubt one of the oldest insurance coverage companies in Denmark, established in 1731. Traditionally, they haven’t targeted on Web optimization, so when I started helping them, that they had little or no non-branded presence on Google.

Step 1 – We wish to personal the dialog on Google for “wage insurance coverage”

“Wage insurance coverage” is a product provided by all of the insurance coverage trade gamers. Should you lose your job, then with this insurance coverage, you may cowl 90% of your wage. This can be a strategically necessary product for Købstædernes, and Google is a giant touchpoint of their prospects’ buyer journey.

Step 2 – Let’s get the info for “wage insurance coverage” and create a buyer journey map

To get an understanding of potential buyer search intent, we created the next buyer journey map. Every bubble represents a search intent. The dimensions of the bubble exhibits the relative search quantity and the colour represents their common rating. I exploit site visitors gentle colours to visualise this (Inexperienced: ranks in prime 3, Yellow: Rank 4-10, Pink: Outdoors web page 1 on Google).

To map out the dialog with Google, I used their Google Search Console knowledge, supported with third occasion instruments resembling Moz Key phrase Explorer. Moreover, I held an interview with the product staff to grasp the potential shopper profiles higher, so I may determine the preliminary symptom searches.

For the reason that advertising staff at Købstædernes aren’t Web optimization savvy, then a buyer journey map was a good way to elucidate that we weren’t a part of the dialog in any respect. They instantly grasped our place to begin, and will assist by figuring out the attention-grabbing conversations we needs to be a part of. Moreover, they may take the dialog insights and use them in the remainder of their advertising combine.

Step 3 – Executing on the insights from the shopper journey map

When the advertising staff signed off on the journey map, we moved on to the second half, which was to grasp what content material to construct, repurpose, and optimize. To have the ability to match matters between prospects’ dialog with Google and the content material on the web site, we would have liked to optimize 10 pages and create 5 new pages.

As with most organizations, Købstædernes doesn’t have limitless sources. Thus, the shopper journey map was an ideal asset to grasp learn how to prioritize their efforts. Content material within the decrease funnel needs to be produced first.

Over a interval of two months, my small staff managed to carry out these duties. Whereas it isn’t the subject of this text I want to point out {that a} mission administration software resembling Asana,, Trello or different is important to make sure an environment friendly course of. Should you use a spreadsheet (Excel, Google Sheets or different) concentrate on duties can simply be forgotten. With a mission administration software you may assign duties, set deadlines, describe duties and sub duties, insert tags and so forth. I see it time and time once more that when key workers go away a Web optimization mission is placed on maintain. I’d due to this fact strongly urge you to make use of certainly one of these instruments to keep away from mind drain and focus.

The outcomes after 10 months

Right here is the event after 10 months. As you may see, we have now managed to personal a giant chunk of the dialog:

Visitors has regularly elevated, with 100% development for the final three months in comparison with the prior interval.

In abstract

Google is by far the most important touchpoint in most buyer journeys throughout industries, so it’s apparent that tough knowledge from Google Search Console and third-party instruments resembling Moz Key phrase Explorer can assist us perceive person intent. Buyer journey mapping on Google is a mannequin to allow the info by visualizing it, making certain that the total advertising staff understands the prospects’ dialog with Google.

On the identical time, it provides a transparent overview of content material prioritization, which is a crucial level, since most groups have restricted sources.

Let me finish with just a few tips on buyer journey maps:

  1. Ensure you have a transparent objective together with your buyer journey. If there’s multiple objective, break the shopper journey into a number of totally different buyer journey maps.

  2. Perceive your USPs to concentrate on the related search intent. If vital, break down the broader person intents into smaller ones on underlying buyer journey maps, to get a greater overview.

I hope this weblog publish about buyer journey mapping has impressed you to consider how one can perceive your prospects’ dialog with Google in a brand new means. Pleased mapping!

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