The Six Stages of the Buyer Experience Cycle. Stage Six is Disposal.

Disposal. This is a huge stage in the buyer experience cycle. Today, more than ever, how your product is disposed of after use or whether or not it creates waste or by-products is extremely important.

Let’s take a quick look again at the preceding components or stages of the Buyer Experience Cycle. Click each link to see the post written associated with that stage if you wish to review it.

Purchase -> Delivery -> Use -> Supplements -> Maintenance

The grid used in Blue Ocean Strategy work associated with the Buyer Experience Cycle and its associated levers is call the Buyer Utility Map.

Buyer Utility Map

The Buyer Utility Map features the six stages we’ve discussed in this series of posts on the horizontal axis. On the vertical axis, we see what are called levers. When you ask appropriate questions around buyer utility you begin to uncover blockages to value.

Customers may call them frustrations, you may call it in e-commerce circles an abandoned shopping cart or in product design, it shows itself in a failed component that ends effective use of the product.

In a service business, it may be your requirement to do business in person when doing business via phone or Zoom was sufficient all along.

  • Today’s stage is disposal. These are a few of the key questions.
  • Does the use of the product create waste?
  • How easy is it to dispose of the product?
  • Are there legal or environmental issues in disposing of the product?
  • How costly is disposal?
  • In a digital environment, once I’ve transacted my business with you, how easy is it for me to remove my data from your digital environments?

If a customer has to ask about these issues, it’s safe to say, you have not communicated your disposal policy well or managed the expectations of the customer appropriately.

Always view the questions that come up from the buyer experience cycle as important ones. I’ve been guilty in the past of taking product design issues personally. What a big mistake! Every block in the Buyer Utility Map that ends up with a mark in it demonstrates a blockage to a customer’s best use of the product or service. With this in mind, I may now sincerely, authentically ask my customers about issues they may have with certain stages of their relationship to my products. As a result, I uncover significant opportunities to maximize value for them and value innovation for my company.

If you have an interest in discussing any of the topics found in my Blue Ocean Strategy posts or strategic planning or marketing at any stage, I’m interested in hearing from you. Feel free to schedule a free hour with me. Slots fill up quickly, depending on the week so make that appointment sooner than later.

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Sherman G. MohrSherman G. Mohr is an Insead Certified Blue Ocean Strategist residing in Nashville, TN.