Identify customer touchpoints before purchase

1. Review and filter the acquisition report in your website analytics platform to see external online touchpoints that drive customers to your site.

In Google Analytics, for example, filtering your acquisition report by: Organic Search shows search engine touchpoints. Social reveals social media touchpoints. Referral reveals specific third-party website touchpoints. Paid Search shows which ad networks drive customers to your site. If you have the technical expertise and resources, consider using UTMs for improved user tracking, and a deeper understanding of different touchpoints, especially if you run complex ad campaigns or drive traffic from a multitude of third-party platforms.

2. Review your flow reports in your website analytics platform to see internal online touchpoints that drive customers to your site.

Your on-site user journey will show the internal customer touchpoints before a purchase and help you identify what pages lead to conversion, such as product pages, contact pages, case study pages, and pricing pages. In Google Analytics, for example, use the following flow reports: Behavior Flow outlines how users navigate from one page to another, helping you find pages that they want to visit on your site. Goal Flow helps you learn if your prospects are completing set goals and shows you if users are leaving your site in the middle of the journey.

3. Interview your marketing and public relations team and make a spreadsheet of all online and offline marketing and promotional activities.

Include the following columns in your spreadsheet: Channel. Campaign. Where customers are told to go after hearing about your brand or products.

4. Interview your sales, customer service, and customer success teams about pre-purchase interactions they have with customers.

Example touchpoints that your teams may incorporate include: Sales calls. Product demos. Presentations or webinars.

5. Conduct customer interviews and ask where customers first heard about you, and what they read, researched, or looked up before making a purchase.

Not every lead or sale can be attributed to a concrete touchpoint. Asking something as simple as Where did you hear about us? on customer feedback surveys can net you a lot of qualitative data and identify trends that can’t be captured through pure analytics, including: Customer referrals. Overheard conversations. Ads in offline channels, such as a radio ad or a printed ad. Affiliate referrals that weren’t properly tracked through a link.

6. Consider trying post-purchase surveys on your thank-you landing pages, and Net Promoter Score surveys anytime someone interacts with your site.

The following survey tools can run both NPS surveys and general customer surveys: SurveyMonkey. Typeform. Form. Qualtrics. SoGoSurvey.

7. Review the pre-purchase touchpoints your competitors are using to identify possible touchpoints you’re not currently using, and also help you refine your strategies.

Use competitive analysis tools, such as Ahrefs or SEMRush, to identify your competitors’ marketing and promo channels and the specific touchpoints these promotions point to. Example touchpoints your competitors may use include: Social media. Online advertising. Referrals.

8. Map the touchpoints you identified back to your customer journey.

Review where these current touchpoints fit in terms of buyer stages, such as identifying a problem or researching a solution.

9. Highlight stages of your customer journey where you’re lacking a touchpoint.

10. Fill any necessary gaps in your customer journey touchpoints.