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Your customers shop in micro moments

by | Jul 29, 2021 | Strategy & Analysis

Many of us relate to Freddie Mercury when he sings, “I want it all, and I want it now!” We’re now an instant gratification society and we expect to get whatever we want right away. Your customers have a lot of “I want” thoughts every day and these are called micro moments.

Google defines micro moments as follows: “They’re the moments when we turn to a device—often a smartphone—to take action on whatever we need or want right now.” Micro moments can occur at any time. It is your job to deliver immediate solutions to their needs and wants.

Take advantage of micro moments

Your goal as a business owner is successfully identifying these micro moments when your customers are most vulnerable. Responding to them quickly with helpful information or the answer to their questions, you leverage the power of instant gratification for them. 

Consider these four I wants when marketing to your target audience:

  • 1. I want to know
  • 2. I want to go
  • 3. I want to do
  • 4. I want to buy

I want to know moments

People search with their fingertips, whether they’re in the car, in the doctor’s office, at a restaurant or home on the couch. This is the Google Zero Moment Of Truth – the second when a question pops into someone’s mind and they’re inspired to look for an answer.

When a consumer is still in the research/investigation stage, but not quite ready to make a purchase, they are experiencing an I want to know moment. People in this stage of the buyer’s journey have a sense of what problem they’re trying to solve but not necessarily how to solve it. That’s where you come in.

At this stage, it’s important to give potential customers all the information they want or need to make an educated decision. At the same time, it’s critical that the information be easy to find, easy to digest and relevant to the consumer’s needs and preferences.

This is where the rubber of search engine optimization meets the road. Determine which questions you are the best answer to. Then, develop the content that convinces Google that you’re the best answer, which will earn you the opportunity to show up in top search results.

I want to go moments

This is not just for tourism or hospitality destinations. This is about being found, physically. If you have an office, a café, a restaurant, a store, a space – anywhere that people have reason to visit – pay attention.

My local dry cleaner said to me, “Oh, don’t look on Google for our address or phone number. That’s an old listing for a location that closed 10 years ago.” That’s bad! If people can’t find you, they will find the dry cleaner down the street.

Stop saying, “I should update the Google My Business listing,” and do it right now! You’ve got everything to lose and a lot to gain by being clear about:

  • Where you’re located
  • How to contact you
  • What products and services you offer 
  • And other specific information your customers and prospects look for

We’ve written about the importance of updating and optimizing your business’ Google My Business listing. We also offered tips on the most-important aspects to update. (You’re welcome.)

I want to do moments

I want to do moments describe the instances when a consumer is looking for help performing a specific task, or wants to try something they’ve never done before. Think about making dinner micro moments, where a home chef wants to try something new. They’re looking for recipes,  instructions, videos – education on how to make the perfect meal. They seek information about ingredients, how to choose them and where to buy them. They’re learning about techniques.

If you know how to do something that your customer wants to know about, do yourself a favor and answer those questions! The customer may search for a question on Google or ask on social communities. Marketers can use content marketing and social media marketing to approach the customer. Regularly sharing useful tips/tricks is a good strategy.

I want to buy moments

Customers shop during micro moments, according to IBM’s Meet The 2020 Consumers Driving Change report. “Rather than being a planned, discrete activity, shopping occurs whenever and wherever the mood strikes today’s always-on consumers — and this is increasing while they are doing something else. Seven in ten consumers surveyed say they shop in these so-called ‘micro-moments,’ and 35% do so at least weekly,” the report states. “Moreover, the top requirement of all surveyed groups is for brands and retailers to ‘simplify my life.’”

People consult their phones in the moments before they’re about to make a purchase. These are the I want to buy moments. They happen when a consumer is ready – or nearly ready – to buy something, but needs help deciding which product, version, brand, price or level best meets their objectives and budget. These people need your advice, expertise, knowledge and general guidance in choosing the right product or service for their needs. In this type of moment, you want to be the authority on the topic, so there’s no question who they should go to with inquiries.

Customers may be in a store looking at products. They may even have a couple of choices in their hands. In these situations, consumers often consult with a trusted advisor – their mobile device – for the best answer. In these moments, you need to be able to provide the fastest and most hassle-free solution for consumers who are ready to make a purchase. Help them make the right choice quickly, and that choice is obviously one of the products or services you offer.

How to win the I wants

There are a few key strategies to attracting customers in each of the I want moments.

Show up for your customers

If your business isn’t showing up in search engines, if your information isn’t accurate on local listings, if your product information isn’t easy to find or if your site isn’t easily accessible on a mobile device, you aren’t showing up for your customers. Frustrated consumers will go elsewhere to find solutions for their wants. Are you so convinced of your customers’ loyalty that you’d make it hard for them to do business with you?

Be relevant

Perhaps this is common sense, but in addition to simply being there for consumers, you also need to provide relevant and useful solutions to their needs. If you arrive on the scene with solutions that don’t fit your consumers’ specific needs or don’t clearly explain how you can solve their problems, your messages turn to noise and you’ve lost your opportunity.

Speed matters

Let’s not forget the importance of speed. Slow and steady does not win the micro moment race (or any online race, for that matter). If your mobile presence is slowing down the consumer from arriving at the answers they’re looking for in a timely manner, you’ll be left in the dust. According to Google, “40% of shoppers will wait no more than three seconds before abandoning a retail or travel site.” And don’t think that because you’re not in retail or travel this doesn’t apply to you. It does. Don’t keep them waiting.

You’ve got to find ways to provide consumers with timely, fast, efficient, relevant and easy solutions to effectively leverage the power of micro moments. If you agree but still struggle with where to start, take a micro moment and reach out to me.

I want my MYMMTV!

Make Your Marketing Matter is a twice-monthly email with short videos talking about strategic, satisfying — and a little sassy — suggestions for small to medium-sized businesses.

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