To begin with, the purchase funnel is no more how it used to be in 1880s when Elmo Lewis proposed it first. The top-down hierarchy of the funnel is no more as rigid. Its boundaries are porous. So the first step of ‘Awareness’ mixes into the second step of ‘Opinion’, which feeds into the third step of ‘Consideration’, that leads to fourth step of ‘Preferences’ and finally into the fifth step of ‘Purchase.
Bluechip Callcenter understands that the customer in today’s times doesn’t follow that chronology of events. The phase of awareness, consideration and opinion formation are prolonged and continuous.
Marketing continues after the purchase
The funnel is shown to end after the customer finally buys the product. But in reality it is not a linear flow of steps. Rather it is cyclical, where even after the purchase customers form their opinion about it. They are judging the product while they are using it. If the product acts up, they expect the company to make help available through a customer support service.
This is the time when customers seek awareness from the company about troubleshooting of the product. Only if the company is able to provide solutions through its customer service, will the people continue to form a positive opinion. Otherwise the previous opinion which had led to the purchase will be reversed. The unsatisfied customers will warn their family and friends about their awful experience with the product and circulate negative awareness and opinion. And remember, no amount of advertisement by the company can ever counter a popular opinion leader.
Converting purchase funnel into a tunnel
Bluechip Callcenter knows that the role of good call center is to ensure a delightful customer experience during and post-purchase. In cases where the order has to be received via a phone call, like in inbound marketing or DRTV, it is important for the call center’s agent to be cooperative with the customer. The agent should answer all the product related queries so that the customer may feel confident about their choice before placing the order. After the order is placed, the agent ought to update the customer about the delivery status of the product. This service will facilitate the purchase process and make it a hassle free transaction. And once a purchase is made, the call center has to provide the crucial customer service.
An immaculate customer service, like we guarantee at Bluechip Callcenter, has the ability to convert a purchase funnel into a purchase tunnel. In a tunnel, the customer does not consider other competitors at all and doesn’t waste time in decision making. The customer trusts the chosen brand, and is willing to buy the same trusted product, or buy different products from the same brand. This alters the broad purchase funnel into a narrowed down tunnel. Now we can say that the company has earned the loyalty of its customers. But this doesn’t mean that the company should become complacent. It will take just one bad customer experience to spark off negative opinion.
So if you want to prevent defection of customers and cultivate brand loyalty, then you have to provide consistent customer service to satisfy the customers and retain hem in your purchase tunnel.