According to Google ZMOT is “Whether we’re shopping for corn flakes, concert tickets or a honeymoon in Paris, the Internet has changed how we decide what to buy. At Google, we call this online decision-making moment the Zero Moment of Truth, or simply, ZMOT.
The ZMOT refers to the moment in the buying process when the consumer researches a product prior to purchase.”
Why we started with the ZMOT’s definition derived by Google?
I started this discussion with the definition derived by Google for the term ZMOT. This is important because, the term ‘ZMOT’ is introduced by the Google itself.
If that definition is little bit unclear for you, then let me explain it for you in easy terms.
ZMOT or Zero moment of Truth means, “The moment when you decide to buy something and you have some idea about the product or service as well. But internet makes a lot of things easier for us, so we start doing some research on internet in the search of better deal or alternative.
Why we use to do this, because we are not completely convinced. And that’s why it called “ZMOT”, “Zero Moment of Truth”
Background of the concept ZMOT or Zero Moment of Truth
As you can see, Zero moment of truth concept seems the very first step in purchasing. But you may amaze after get to know that this is the latest concept derived in sales journey by Google.
FMOT (First Moment of Truth) and SMOT (Second Moment of Truth) was derived earlier this concept.
What is FMOT?
FMOT is abbreviation of First Moment of Truth, this term was introduced by the global major consumer goods global brand P&G.
P&G derived it as “a customer looks at a store shelves and decides in 3-7 seconds whether or not to purchase a product.” It was revealed in the consumer behavior survey.”
This was the first step in user journey before the introduction of ZMOT (Zero moment of truth). But after that there was one more concept, that was SMOT.
What is SMOT?
SMOT is abbreviation of Second Moment of Truth.
It is a marketing theory, which means. “Customer takes a purchased product home and actually uses the product to judge the quality of the product and decide whether to purchase the product continuously. “
Rapid Spread of Internet is the reason behind this change in Decision-Making models
The rapid adoption of the Internet has transformed the purchasing decision-making model.
A new step called ZMOT was added before FMOT and SMOT.
Previously, customers would go directly to the store and decide which product to buy. This is the FMOT theory.
As a result, companies focused on popping their products and improving their packaging to make them more prominent in the sales floor.
Then, the customer decides the next shopping after considering not only the experience before purchase in FMOT theory but also the experience after purchase such as “whether it was easy to use” and “was it actually useful”?
This is the rise of SMOT theory. In accordance with this SMOT theory, companies focused not only on improving the quality of the products themselves, but also on the careful aftercare and regular information provided to customers who purchased the products.
But as the Internet has spread, the behavior of customers when shopping has changed.
Now, before I go directly to the store, I carefully check the products and decide which one to buy before going to the store.
This shift has led companies to focus more on “how to reach consumers with product information” before customers come to the store.
With such changes in purchasing behavior by consumers, marketing methods have also changed.
In other words, in the past, it was important for companies to make their products stand out at stores and convey the appeal of the products.
But now, it’s becoming more important to make your products attractive to your customers before they come to your store.
ZMOT theory in marketing
What is the importance of ZMOT-conscious marketing?
According to a survey conducted by Google, 84% of people who have decided to purchase a product have decided to make a purchase at the time of researching about it online.
Also, 70% of Americans say they check the reviews on the internet before buying a product.
In this way, the customer decides which product to purchase on the Internet before going to the store, so product PR on the Internet has a great influence on the customer’s purchase.
Means of collecting customer information at the ZMOT stage
So how do customers collect product information in advance?
According to a Google survey, the most commonly used means of gathering information are “search engines” such as Yahoo, Google and Bing.
Now that “when you want to get some information, use a search engine for the time being” is becoming commonplace, it is important how much you can publicize to potential customers on the search engine.
In other words, how much your company’s products can be displayed on the search result screen greatly affects the sales of the company.
Here you can download the ebook, introduces by Google on ZMOT.
How to actually apply ZMOT theory to your own marketing
First of all, you need to know where your company is currently at ZMOT and how well you can take measures. Please try each section once as a way to know the position of your company.
- Enter your product name in the Google search box. What keywords does AutoComplete (keyword completion function) suggest automatically before inputting?
- When you search for keywords that are closely related to your product, is your site or message displayed within the third page of the search results?
- What is your brand’s rating and reviews on the review site?
- What kind of page is displayed in the search results when I search for the catch phrase that my company uses in TV commercials?
The answers to the above questions and the search results will be your current position in ZMOT.
So does that position match what the customer wants?
With access analysis and keyword tools, you can see what kind of information customers want to know.
By accurately grasping the information that the customer wants to know and providing the information that meets the customer’s needs, it is possible to beat other companies at the ZMOT stage.
With the increasing use of the Internet, it is expected that competition for customers at the ZMOT stage will become more intense than ever.
Under these circumstances, it is important for us to quickly understand customer needs and provide the necessary information in order to compete with other competitors.
If we can differentiate ourselves from other companies at the ZMOT stage, we may be able to make a big difference in the growth of companies.