How do people typically research products online?
As a business owner, one of the most important things you can do is determine how people are going to research your goods and services. You know that your products can be beneficial. You know that there’s a market for them, and that they have a very clear value. But you still have to connect the consumers who are looking for those benefits with your products or services. They may know that they need something in your industry, but they may not know what or where to get it. So where do they do their research?
Naturally, research tactics change over time. People used to often rely on things like word-of-mouth recommendations or television and radio commercials. But with the rise of the internet, you’ll find that most consumers turn to the web in 2023. Before making a purchase, they’re going to do their research online to find out what they want to purchase, what options they have, how much they should expect to pay and where to find those products and services.
The majority of consumers use Google
At 51%, a very slight majority of internet users have admitted to using Google when they’re thinking of making an online purchase. Prior to buying anything, they will run a Google search to find more information. They may be looking for spec sheets, reviews from other people who have purchased the same products or something else entirely. But they have a few questions before they make a purchase, and they’re going to use Google to find those answers.
Another thing that has happened with the popularity of smartphones is that people will look for things in their geographical location. Someone isn’t just looking for a sushi restaurant, for instance. They are looking for a sushi restaurant near them at that very moment. Since their phone can track their position in real time, they can then search for the nearest locations, making geography – rather than just reviews, prices, or options – a critical component of this online search. In one study, a full 74% of people who did end up making a purchase in a brick-and-mortar store said that they found that location via the internet. Foot traffic isn’t what it once was. The internet guides consumers to businesses they may not have found otherwise.
Integrating new technologies
What all of this shows is that you need to update your approach as technology changes. This doesn’t mean that word-of-mouth recommendations never make sales or that other types of TV and radio commercials are useless. They still can help. But the statistics also make it clear that more and more consumers are turning to the internet first, even when they do end up making an in-person purchase. It is the information that they find on the internet that actually makes that sale, not the salesperson in the store – and, potentially, not even the product itself. The person has already made the decision to make that purchase when they leave to go pick up the product.
If you’re a business owner, your internet presence is incredibly important. You have to provide the information and answers that your consumers are looking for. You need to know what search terms they’re going to use when looking for those products and services so that they can find you. You need to consider evolving technologies, such as location-based searches. For help with all of this and more, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team here at Content Customs.