Lindsay Sakraida
Director of Content Marketing @ Yotpo
May 25th, 2023

From the first “hello,” to becoming a loyal fan.

Table Of Contents

Today we’re setting off on a thrilling journey into the captivating world of eCommerce customer lifecycles. Whether you’re a business guru or just a curious shopper, get ready for an enlightening ride as we explore every step of the eCommerce customer lifecycle, from the first “hello” to becoming a loyal fan!

What does the term “eCommerce Customer Lifecycle” mean?

Imagine this as the ultimate path that each customer follows when they interact with an online store. It’s like a fantastic adventure, filled with different stages that shape the entire customer experience and relationship with the brand.

What is the difference between the eCommerce Customer Lifecycle and the eCommerce Customer Journey?

Great question! The eCommerce customer lifecycle and customer journey are like two peas in a pod, but they’re not identical twins. The lifecycle covers the entire journey from start to finish, including every purchase and interaction. On the other hand, the customer journey is like a detailed map of the individual steps taken during a specific purchase—sort of like a mini-adventure within the whole experience.

The 5 eCommerce Customer Lifecycle Stages:

The customer lifecycle is like a thrilling story, with each stage representing a new chapter in the customer’s journey. From the first spark of awareness to becoming a brand advocate, it’s a delightful adventure that businesses and customers embark on together.

Let’s dive deeper into each of the five captivating stages that make up the eCommerce customer lifecycle.

Awareness Stage

Here’s where the magic begins! You’ve stumbled upon a cool new brand—maybe through a catchy ad on social media. This is the moment when you become aware of their existence. For businesses, it’s their time to shine! They need to create eye-catching content, show off their products in the best light, and make your first impression absolutely enchanting.

Consideration Stage

You’re intrigued now, right? You want to know more about the products or services this brand offers. In the consideration stage, you become an investigator, checking out reviews, comparing prices, and doing your research. For businesses, it’s all about providing valuable information and building trust. They want to be your go-to choice!

Conversion Stage

You’ve made your decision, and it’s time to take the plunge! The conversion stage is where you hit that “Buy Now” button and make your first purchase. Congratulations, it’s a big moment for both you and the business! In this stage, the business focuses on providing a smooth and easy checkout process so you can sail through with a smile.

Retention Stage

The party doesn’t stop after the first purchase. Oh no! The retention stage is all about keeping you happy and coming back for more. Stellar customer service, personalized offers, and maybe even a loyalty program are some of the treats in store for you. They want to make you feel like a VIP!

Advocacy Stage

Prepare to be a superstar! At this stage, you’re no longer just a customer; you’re a brand advocate—a true champion of the brand! Your positive experiences lead you to spread the word to your friends, family, and anyone who will listen. The business will do a happy dance because they’ve won your heart, and now you’re sharing the love!

Why should you have a lifecycle marketing strategy in eCommerce?

Alright, adventurers, here’s the secret sauce for success! Having a lifecycle marketing strategy in eCommerce is like having a magical spell that enchants your customers and keeps them coming back for more. It’s about understanding what makes them tick at each stage of the journey, so you can wave your wand and provide the perfect experience. With this strategy, you can boost customer loyalty, reduce churn, and see your business grow and shine like never before.

The Steps to a Successful Customer Lifecycle Management

From collecting valuable data to setting sail with personalized experiences, these steps will ensure a smooth voyage through the eCommerce customer lifecycle.

Take Advantage of an eCommerce Customer Lifecycle Template

Who doesn’t love a handy map? Using a pre-designed template can help you visualize the entire customer journey, making it easier to spot the key touchpoints and create a seamless experience.

Focus on the Right Data

Data is like treasure! Collecting and analyzing the right information about your customers’ behaviors and preferences helps you understand their desires and expectations.

Sync with Your Customer Journey Map

Remember, the customer journey and lifecycle go hand-in-hand! Align your customer lifecycle management with the steps in the customer journey to create a cohesive and delightful experience.

Be Clear on the Marketing Channels for Each Customer Lifecycle Stage

Not all channels are created equal. Choose the right ones for each stage of the journey, so you can reach your customers at the right time and in the right way.

Get Clarity on Current Marketing and Sales Strategies for Each Customer Lifecycle Stage

Ahoy, explorers! Take a good look at your current strategies and figure out what’s working and what needs improvement. This way, you can make your ship even more seaworthy!

Map out the Major Drop-Off Points

Navigating rough waters? Identify potential obstacles or drop-off points in your customer journey, and work on smoothing out the ride.

Focus on Improving the User Experience for Each of the Stages

User experience is like a treasure map—you want it to lead your customers smoothly to their destination. Make sure each stage offers a delightful experience to keep them engaged.

Remember the Need for Loyalty and Advocacy

Loyalty and advocacy are like golden nuggets in your treasure chest. Invest in loyalty programs and encourage your customers to become your biggest fans!

Figure out how to Lower the Customer Acquisition Costs

Lowering your customer acquisition costs means more treasure in your chest. Find ways to be efficient and effective in gaining new customers.

Test and Improve

Arrr, matey! Keep your eye on the compass and be open to testing and optimizing your strategies. This will keep your ship sailing smoothly and help you discover new treasures along the way.

The Most Important Customer Lifecycle Metrics For eCommerce to Look Out For

These valuable metrics act as guiding stars, helping businesses navigate their way to success. From open and click-through rates that measure the impact of your messages to churn rate, which warns of rough waters, each metric provides crucial insights into your customer’s journey.

Open and Click-through Rates

Ah, the sails of your email campaigns! Keep an eye on open and click-through rates to see how engaging your messages are to your crew.

New Customers Acquired

Ahoy, new recruits! Track the number of new customers you gain over time to assess the success of your customer acquisition efforts.

Upsell Rate

Show your crew the hidden treasures! The upsell rate indicates how successful you are at convincing customers to upgrade or add more items to their cart.

Churn Rate

Don’t lose sight of your crew members! The churn rate measures the percentage of customers who disengage or leave your ship altogether. Keep them on board for a smooth journey!

Customer Retention

Keep your crew happy, and they’ll stay loyal to your ship. Measure customer retention to see how many customers keep coming back for more adventures.

Customer Loyalty

Ah, the trusty compass of customer loyalty! Metrics like Net Promoter Score (NPS) help you navigate the waters of customer satisfaction and loyalty. A high NPS means you’ve got a crew of loyal fans ready to spread the word about your fantastic offerings!

Now that you’re well-equipped to sail the seas of the eCommerce customer lifecycle, it’s time to embark on your adventure. With a solid lifecycle marketing strategy and the right tools at your side, you’re destined for success. Chart your course, engage your crew, and set sail towards a horizon of growth, loyalty, and advocacy. Bon voyage, fearless explorers! Happy sailing!

Contributed to the article: Lindsay Sakraida