Bryan Eisenberg

Do you know what your customers think of you? (No, reviews aren’t enough.) Are you aware of how your customers act on your site? And do you know who your customers are, and what kind of buyers they are? Maybe you have a slight idea, but it is time to stop assuming – instead, you should know! I have spoken with the man who knows all about customer experiences to find out how to improve them – the man is Bryan Eisenberg.

Bryan Eisenberg has worked with many massive companies, such as Google, Chase, Bing, Dell, NBC, and the list goes on, helping them to optimize their customer experience to increase conversion rates. He is still helping a few select clients here and there and is the co-founder at a startup in Austin called Idealspot. Besides that, he has written a couple of books, most recently the book Buyer Legends.

Here are the major takeaways from the Bryan Eisenberg interview

  • Analyse the buying process backwards to get more precise information on what you could potentially do better to improve the experience.
  • Eliminate the doubts your customers might have about your product by showing them what value they get from it – that can be done by including more product images.
  • Identify the personas. Some are very spontaneous and some research everything. There are loads of tools to help you do that.

If you are keen to learn more about identifying personas, improving the customer experience, and with that, your conversion rate or wonder what a good (and a bad) customer journey is, you should keep on reading!

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Pick your customer journey apart and analyse it

The customer’s experience is so important because ecommercers and everyone else make so many assumptions about how they think customers buy. The common thought is that the buying process is linear. They enter your site, they buy, and they leave, but we don’t make the connection to how they got from point C to point D.

You have to analyse the process backwards to find out what worked and what didn’t. When you examine the process backwards, it is very hard to make assumptions, because you get an entirely different perspective. That allows you to identify holes in the journey, which you can improve.

Forget everything you thought you knew

The customer experience or journey has changed a lot over the last five years. First of all, Bryan made it clear that the client’s approach to your brand begins with research. More and more studies show that people browse mostly on small screens such as mobile phones.

Then, many people make the assumption that mobile conversion rates have to catch up with desktop conversion rates. Wrong! It will never happen because when customers are browsing on their small screens, they are in the very early part of their research phase, meaning that they probably won’t buy anything. Once it is time to buy, they will go to the desktop version.

That fact is changing, though – all the new interfaces are going to change it even more, and Bryan mentioned Amazon and its Echo and Dash solutions as a fantastic example that makes it possible for customers to buy easily on mobile versions.

Such innovators are changing the way consumers act as they work on keeping up with and staying one step ahead of their customers.

 

Avoid creating bad customer experiences

A bad customer journey is one in which you don’t meet the customer’s needs, or you leave them with questions, doubts or concerns. There are endless things that could go wrong – actually. Bryan has identified a shocking 1,100 factors that impact conversion rates! (Recently, he has narrowed it down to 30 overall factors… phew!) He agreed to let me in on three major ones.

Hear Bryan explain what the most important factor is:

The next key factor is value. The customer should always know why your product is the right product for them.

Thirdly, it’s CTAs. Not the buttons or the colours of them, but you have to make it obvious what the customer needs to do next and, thereby, closing all the objections they might have. One major way of eliminating all doubts is by including enough product images.

All your different kinds of customers need to see how they can benefit from your product, and you have to make it clear that your product is useful for anyone. If you are selling a barbecue, visualize all the different settings the barbecue can be in: big gardens, small terraces, maybe even apartments or parks. As Bryan said, ‘It is not hard to include more than one product image’.

Identify the personas

In Bryan’s book, ‘Waiting For Your Cat To Bark’, he talks a lot about personas. Personas are a part of common language, but people don’t use them to their full potential. Listen to what personas there can be and how they act:

The reason that personas are important and identifying them is even more important is that once you have identified them, you can find out how they shop, and then you can target your approach.

First of all, the personas represent the modes of buying behaviour. All personas’ patterns change depending on what they buy – if it is a bigger and more complicated product, the level of spontaneity decreases compared to buying golf balls or simpler products. Everyone from your stockroom to your boardroom should be aware of the personas as you should use the personas to create empathy.

Some personas will investigate and research every single aspect of the product before they make a decision to buy. Others make quick decisions, and, therefore, they will spend a very short time on your page before they decide to leave if they can’t find the right information.

That is why everyone in your company must understand how the personas act and what will make them buy – and thereby create that all-important empathy.

Bryan used Wall-E as an example: He doesn’t really say anything in the film, but everyone feels so much empathy for him. That is because Disney managed to create a great story. The same goes for the personas: understand what makes them tick, and create a believable story – that could be a few paragraphs or several pages long.

The story should answer the personas’ questions and fulfil their needs.

Oren Greenberg, who is the founder of Kurve, explains further what the power of identifying personas is in this blog post.

Three useful tools for identifying personas

Bryan proclaimed himself a ‘tool junkie’ as he loves to experiment using new tools.

Usertesting.com – a great way to get into the minds of the customers

Facebook – a forgotten and incredibly effective way to gather insights into who your customers are and what interests they have

Abandonaid (soon to be Cartessentials) – a startup Bryan is currently a part of is working on a plug-in, which, once finished, will be very exciting news for all ecommercers

The future of the customer journey

Everything is constantly changing, and the customer journey is no exception. As the technology is advancing, the ways customers shop are going to change with it. Listen to Bryan’s exciting and interesting thoughts on the future of the customer journey:

Free Exclusive Bonus: Download Bryan Eisenberg’s recipe for world class customer service now.

Wrap up

This interview has truly resulted in some interesting and very different approaches to understanding the customer better – and if you understand your customers, you will certainly have an easier time increasing your conversion rate. Did you not quite understand? Are you hungry for more? Bryan is happy to answer your questions. Simply comment below.

Emil Kristensen
Emil is the CMO and co-founder of Sleeknote. When he’s not busy with writing awesome content and building the Sleeknote brand, he spends his time reading and watching vlogs on YouTube (big fan Gary V). Fun fact: between the co-founders he is the fencing champ.

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  1. Wow, simply wow! I’m gonna share this article with my colleagues right away.

    Reply
  2. Informative post. I am looking forward to see in which direction mobile conversion rates are heading in the future, with Amazon and their Echo and Dash solutions.

    Reply
  3. Bryan Eisenberg!
    Emil, I’m impressed how you have managed to get interviews with the very best within e-commerce. Keep up the good work!

    May i suggest a blog post about how you did?

    Reply
  4. You went over many great points. Knowing your personas is crucial! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

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