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Maria Skolgata 83
Stockholm, Sweden

Blog Posts

A consumer’s Path to Purchase is never linear

October 19, 2021

Sam Richardson

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Understanding the Omnichannel Path to Purchase is no longer a nice to have, but a must have if you’re to truly succeed in aligning strategy with the drivers of growth such as:

  • Where and how to increase penetration, where and how to drive impulse purchases?
  • Where and how to increase trade up spend?
  • Where and how to optimise digital strategy/the role of eCommerce?

The great news is that you will undoubtedly have existing insights and data that look at individual parts of the journey! But how do they all connect and where are the insight gaps?

Our approach creates an end-to-end holistic view of shopper journeys based on their behaviours & attitudes in relation to specific needs & occasions. We understand all aspects from what they are influenced by, how they might research or search, to where, how and why they eventually make a purchase decision.

In short, we create single ‘paths’ of data, connecting the dots from existing insights you may already have.

Connecting the dots

We blend passive data and stated data in a bespoke study to understand exactly what shoppers are doing, thinking & buying, over a whole purchase cycle, depending on their needs for specific occasions or moments.

We look at every piece of data that matters. For example, we can see in app journeys on Amazon and ad exposures on YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

So what?

The collation and outputs of our modelling + advisory approach provides the who, what, when, where, why insights for Brand, Channel and Customer teams. We identify the key touchpoints which drive conversion, who uses them, when in the journey they use them and why they are being used; enabling you and your teams to focus investment where it really counts.

Each study is fully tailored to your specific objectives and business challenges. It is also enables a competitive edge as the approach analyses the buying behaviours and motivations of shoppers in the entire category, and therefore the role your brand plays within this context.

Building on what you already know

Our approach builds on consumer and shopper insight frameworks you already have (occasions, need states, missions etc.) to make sure that all the outputs can readily be translated into the current language of the business. In partnership with you, we create action plans to drive category & brand growth by providing a ‘Playbook’ for where to play and how to win in an Omnichannel world.

This provides not only a strategic roadmap for the next 2-3 years, but also a clear framework for how and where to optimise specific implementations and plans such as price, POSM, campaigns, promotions, JBPs, new product innovations.

We create globally scalable and actionable insights for all teams that are key to delivering Omnichannel growth – Sales, Brand, eCommerce, Shopper Marketing, Media teams.

We are experts in delivering Path to Purchase studies in all markets and regions, globally.


Want to know more about path to purchase? Contact our P2P-experts and we’ll tell you all about it!

Blog Posts

Omnichannel Revolution Requires New Marketing Measurement

April 04, 2019

Sam Richardson

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The new solutions that help marketers thrive

Marketing measurement and analytics needs a new playbook. Learn how understanding the new omnichannel Path to Purchase and a revamped Marketing Mix Modeling strategy can tee up your organization for success in today’s omnichannel environment. Enjoy the following sections:

– Looking beyond traditional methods and metrics to map a better understanding of the shopper journey

– A shopper-centric approach to understanding the omnichannel Path to Purchase

– A better understanding of Marketing Mix Modeling, which has had a breakthrough of improvements powered by advances in technology and data integrations

Download here

Blog Posts

Path to Purchase – Connecting Dots in the “New Era of Shopping”

May 31, 2018

Sam Richardson

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Recently we covered the basics of Path to Purchase in our Q&A with Matt Nitzberg. This week, we’re talking to Lindsay Cowan – who was invited to speak on understanding Omnichannel shoppers at the upcoming ESOMAR Shopper Experience Summit (June 6th, Amsterdam.)  Lindsay provides us a great preview of her talk on how leading brands are  connecting the dots to generate more sales and build a stronger brand.

First, why is it important for organizations to understand path to purchase?

It’s important because organizations are missing growth opportunities by not understanding the role and value of online and offline touchpoints in this “new era of shopping”.

Companies use path to purchase insights to optimize media investments across all paid, unpaid, earned and owned touchpoints. This understanding is helping companies create integrated communications and campaign strategies for different shopper mindsets.

You mentioned we’ve entered a “new era of shopping.” How do you see new consumer behaviors creating new opportunities for marketers that understand path to purchase?

Marketers that see beyond the generic, one-size fits all stats we hear over and over again like “70% of all decisions are made before the arriving at shelf,” are winning the battle to convert new shoppers at different points along the Path to Purchase. Consumers are increasingly taking non-linear journeys to buy products, smart marketers that connect these dots across online and offline channels will better understand how touchpoints trigger or influence action at different stages of the journey. The opportunity then is for marketers to invest more effectively to attract new shoppers, get on the shopping list, optimize conversion and increase penetration.

In the new era of shopping what are some of the new KPIs marketers should be watching?

We focus on developing “touchpoint effectiveness” rankings so that investment and focus can be prioritized to the right areas to create optimum shopper conversion. I believe that any approach should isolate why, where, when and how shoppers are converting or not converting – and measure the role of each touchpoint individually, as well as in combination with other touchpoints. To determine this, we track the impact of all offline or online interactions to understand which ones influence and which ones convert.

In your presentation you’ll be talking about discovering hotspots and opportunities after diagnosing path to purchase data. Do you have any examples of “Ah Hah!” moments when Nepa helped a client improve their strategy?

Being that the path to purchase is unique for each category, each project we’ve done has several “ah hah” moments. One key area is to understand how shoppers research before buying…..even in a low engagement, high penetration category. Interestingly this is not just true for categories in developed markets, but also for emerging markets. Even where the majority of purchases are still made in store in these markets, shoppers are still researching and using offline touchpoints as vital influencers in their decision making. So, the “Ah Hah” moments have come when a client understand specifically which touchpoints they need to target to which customers and when.

A specific insight that I will share in Amsterdam is that a brand that operated on the traditional belief that 70% of consumers had made their decision before shelf identified that only about 45% had fully planned their purchase – we helped them understand what type of shoppers could be influenced. In a category where influencing just 5% of these undecided shoppers to make a category purchase equals over 3 million pounds per month, this knowledge was a true game changer.

What’s the most important take away from your presentation that you want to emphasize?

To win in this “new era of shopping” brands must master the path to purchase by understanding the effectiveness of every touchpoint, both online and offline, and as part of an interconnected shopper path.

And finally, for those of us that will not be in Amsterdam, how can we learn more?

Immediately, you can pop over to blog posts by colleagues, Robert Beatus and Matt Nitzberg, that provide additional perspective on the challenges marketers face amidst changing buyer journeys. After, the presentation in Amsterdam, I will be hosting a webinar with the same content – and you can register your interest in that here. And, for those that are very eager to understand their consumers purchase journey, contact me here. 

This has been a real pleasure, Sean. I’m excited to create the webinar for all who are interested.

Thanks, Lindsay – we really appreciate the insight. Have a great time in Amsterdam – it sounds like the ESOMAR audience is in store for a really insightful presentation.

Blog Posts

Path to Purchase – What’s New and Emerging

May 18, 2018

Sam Richardson

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Shopper Marketing expert Matt Nitzberg recently joined Nepa as the Chief Client Officer of Nepa US. Matt brings a wealth of global experience helping marketers make better decisions. To help understand the dramatic changes in shoppers’ journey to buy products and services, we sat down with Matt for a short Q&A about the evolution of the path to purchase.  Read on for Matt’s timely observations, encouragement, and watch-outs for brands that want to master the path to purchase.

Let’s start with the basics: What is the “path to purchase?”

“Path to purchase” (P2P) describes the process shoppers execute and experience as they move toward a buying decision. It includes the active efforts of shoppers (such as researching a product or downloading coupons) as well as their passive experiences (such as seeing advertising when watching online videos).

What’s changing in the P2P?

I’ll mention three broad changes that are relevant for brands.

  1. New expectations: When I can click a few images and have items delivered to my car the same day, it reframes what it means to “go shopping,” doesn’t it? Amazon and other customer-centric organizations are creating new expectations for personalization, availability, ease, and fulfillment.
  2. New influences: The range of touchpoints shoppers can seek or experience is expanding through new media options, platforms, apps, IoT interactions, and self-guided research. Of course, individual influences have interactive aspects as well, so each new touchpoint creates multiple new combinations. We recently completed a category project which measured the impact of more than 50 online and offline touchpoints and many sets of combinations.
  3. New, nimble competition: New, direct-to-consumer brands and business models (such as the various online marketplaces, subscription services and clubs) are creating new options for shoppers.

What complications does that create for brands?

The evolving path to purchase creates complications for brands on two fronts:

  1. With shoppers: Besides choosing a category and brand, shoppers have many options regarding the buying and fulfillment process. This can challenge both mass and niche brands, unless they adjust their strategies. For example, in laundry detergents, both Tide and Seventh Generation have achieved higher market shares in ecommerce than in brick-and-mortar stores.
  2. Internally: Brands have always faced upward pressure on growth, downward pressure on costs, and challenges around marketing effectiveness. As the P2P becomes more complex, with more touchpoints and influences out of a brand’s direct control, it’s become even more challenging to connect cause and effect and operate with clarity and confidence.

What additional changes should brands expect in the next 2 – 3 years?

Brands will continue to experience an incredible amount of change in the path to purchase ahead. Some of the main areas to watch-out for are:

  • Rising shopper expectations: Now that shoppers have enjoyed years of continuously improving shopping experiences, ongoing progress is expected. Standing still will be seen as moving backward, and the rate of change will continue to accelerate.
  • Increased competition from retailers: Retailers have first-party data, the physical or virtual real estate, their own brands, control over price, and increasingly sophisticated analytical and marketing capabilities. They’ll look to leverage these advantages and increase market share and margins for their own brands. Amazon is investing in its own brands, and shoppers are investing time in Amazon: 55% of online product searches start on Amazon.
  • Increased automation in shopping: The rise of voice-first assistants and AI will shift the decision-making locus even further from the real or virtual shelf. Traditional brand preferences may be further cemented or constantly challenged, based on the instructions given to digital assistants and on their sophistication. How will you convince a robot to put your brand on the shopping list?
  • Improved effectiveness: The pressure to tie all activities and touchpoints – individually and interactively – to their influence on purchase decisions will increase, as organizations look to offset many of the challenges mentioned above through deeper shopper understanding and more effective strategies and tactics.
Thanks Matt! Any last thoughts to share?

This is a complex and fast-changing topic. We’d be glad to get any follow questions about mastering the path to purchase at