Marketing, sales and service leaders and managers are challenged to maintain some control over how customers and prospects proceed through the buying cycle.
The buying cycle is something all customers and prospects go through. The challenge for the seller is twofold
- To understand how customers and prospects proceed through the cycle, including why and how they enter it in the first place
- To manage, as best they can, progress through the cycle
Fundamentally, customers enter a buying cycle because they have a need. They stay in a buying cycle because the need persists and their requirements to meet the need become clearer to them. They progress through a cycle as those individual requirements are satisfied to the point that the need is met. Customers exit a buying cycle having purchased, or not. They also leave with a perception of how well, or not, companies understood their needs and requirements and addressed them through the buying experience.
Success in such a need-centric process demands a deep understanding of the customer.