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Сustomer Journey Maps

Сustomer Journey Maps

In this brief review, we will explain what a customer journey map is, and how you can use it for your own business needs. 

CRM provides information with insights about your target client. If you are interested in reaching new customers for your business, check out our CRM service page .

In today’s digital marketing landscape, this mechanism might play a crucial role in establishing your business’ digital footprint. To understand the customer’s needs and challenges, you have to develop critical thinking marketing skills. 

The customer journey funnel helps marketers visualize customer’s experience, preferences and simply, increase audience engagement. Mapping is an illustration that helps to understand the decision-making stages that your consumer undergoes and create a better marketing strategy accordingly.

And there’s more. This type of consumer research provides insights on the gaps and weaknesses in your marketing strategy and helps understand reasons for liking or disliking. The main principle behind the customer journey mapping is to provide a clear picture of the product development strategy and form the basis for decisions in future actions. 

Read further to learn about how customer journey maps work and choose the right customer research method. 

What is a customer journey map?

A customer journey map is a piece of visual content that illustrates how your customers experience and interact with your brand. This content visualizes and narrates the customer’s movement, and how their interaction through each phase of the shopping journey.

These maps should not only include a representation of facts and important milestones through the customer journey, but they should also illustrate how the customer feels through this journey. A good customer journey map includes feelings such as frustration, confusion, excitement, and joy, as they all are defining elements.

More often than not, customer journey maps are created based on the customer’s chronological experience. A common timeline narration for the customer journey map starts at the customer’s first visit on your website and proceeds towards their first purchase.

It is the business that defines how the map should be architected and built. Different businesses have different needs, and different aspects that affect and create the customer experience, therefore there is no one size fits all solution to customer journey maps. In the end, the best way to make a map is by asking your customers. Detailed customer research is necessary to truly grasp how the customer’s mind works and how they make decisions regarding your product.

There is no point in a customer map that does not accurately represent the workings of your customer’s mind. But when a customer’s map is truly well researched it can give you precious insights in improving your business in new and creative ways.  

The importance of customer journey maps

Customer journey mapping is very important, as it gets your team out of confusion and provides you with the necessary information for a strategic approach. Through customer journey maps we can achieve a better understanding of the customer’s mind and expectations.

Without plotting the customer’s experience at every stage, it is impossible to optimize content and create personalized experiences.

Customer journey mapping is just as important for any company of any size. Smaller companies can also heavily benefit from a customer journey map. It does not matter what is the size of your company, your customers expect high-quality service, and they have every right to.

Some studies found that shoppers expected a higher quality experience from smaller companies. They believed that businesses with a smaller size put more value into the customer, and have more time for every individual.

That is why it is even more important to deliver a top-notch customer experience as a smaller size company. Customers tend to turn away from your business faster if they find that they are not delivered the service and care they expect. Bigger companies are everywhere.

Personalization is a must in the age of the internet. New studies discovered that over 52% of customers believe that the contents and offers they see must always be personalized. Customer journey mapping provides you with a chance of providing integrated personalized content across all the customer journey stages. All channels are included this way, and no channel is ever ignored.

Mapping the customer journey provides businesses with many benefits

  • Having a customer journey map allows you to bring the best out of your customer onboarding process. This means creating the best entrance and familiarization process for your leads.
  • A customer journey map allows you to compare and align what your customers are truly experiencing with their expectations of your business. It also aids you in making sure that you are delivering the customer experience you think you are.
  • By customer journey mapping you will be able to create separate customer personas to help with predicting each customer group’s behaviors and thinking. A group that shares a customer persona shares similar traits, desires, needs, feelings, and motivations.
  • A customer journey map allows you to grasp a logical understanding of the buyer journey.

With all these benefits in mind, the best part of customer journey mapping is that it provides you with a better and integrated understanding of your customers. By understanding your audience, you will be able to give them the content they desire.

Personalized shopping experiences have become necessary as more and more businesses have started to understand the benefits they bring. The more common personalized experiences become, the bigger becomes your loss if you keep up with the old-fashioned way of things. With the internet and technologies available nowadays, there is no excuse not to customize the content and experience delivered to different groups. Real-time analytics are easily accessible, and different tools are making it easier to align content and customer groups.

The omnichannel way of doing things

What is omnichannel marketing? Omnichannel marketing is creating a smooth integration and union between branding, messaging, and online and offline points of contact. Omnichannel marketing enables you to build an impactful customer experience.

Omnichannel marketing looks at the world from the customer’s point of view and focuses on customer-centric strategies and tactics. Omnichannel marketing allows the customers to engage and interact with your business through multiple channels.

Omni-channel marketing ensures that the customer experience is rich and consistent through each channel by including some key elements. These elements include:

  • Consistent and one of a kind tone and outlook
  • Customized content based on unique interest
  • Informed content that considers the buyer’s past behaviors and decisions and their current stage as well

When your brand’s name is identifiable, you will be easily recognized in the market. But customizing customer experiences will make it more likely for customers to engage with your brand’s content across channels. This personalization should be based on the customer’s history and interests.

Customer journey mapping allows you to follow a potential customer in each stage of their journey. This means that a customer that clicked on an ad can be followed and located as they interact with your brand on social media. This is what makes customer journey mapping perfect for creating personalized content and experiences and returning buyers that will later advocate for your brand.

The omnichannel is completed and backed up by omnichannel customer service. This way the customer can get their needed support from several channels, and the way they best prefer it. This includes methods such as calls, live chat, or in-person support.

That is the whole point of customer journey mapping, providing the customers with an integrated and harmonic shopping experience, understanding the customers well enough to deliver them exactly what they need.

The most important benefits to customer journey mapping 

Of course, your team already has a fair understanding of the stages your customer goes through and has tried different ways to get a good grasp on the customer experience and such. So you might ask yourself, why is the customer journey map so recommended and often found so helpful?

Why should everything be mapped out? We will attempt to list some of the top benefits of creating a map for your customers’ journey.

Empathy is the key to understanding where your business is not functioning well enough. There is no better way to plot the stages your customers go through and understand what they think and how they feel, other than asking them yourself. Different customers have different thoughts, and interact differently with each important point of contact, such as the website, your business’s social media, retail store, or even making a simple backup call.

Here are the top advantages of making a customer journey map in our opinion:

Defining the customer’s pain points, and thinking as they do

  Creating a customer journey map allows you to view every step the customer takes during their shopping journey from their point of view. This golden benefit is rooted in how the customer journey map is based on the customer’s perspective.

Constantly comparing and aligning the true customer journey, based on the facts that are represented through the customer journey map, with what is your idea of the customer journey increases the chances of errors happening.

Through empathy and thinking the way your customers do you will understand the challenges, they face through their shopping journey.  These pain points and challenges are threats that may guide your customers into a different buying channel and away from purchasing your product.

By analyzing and using this data you can later plot new strategies to solve these issues, improve the customer experience, and increase your sales.

Ending team silos

Customer journey maps are incredibly helpful in ending team silos.

What do silos mean? When team members are operating and working separately from one another, and in isolation, they are operating in silos. A team operating in silos is a team that is not synchronized. In such a situation, the team will not be brainstorming, sharing and creating new ideas, sharing important information, sharing goals, tools, skills, and even the team’s priorities will not be aligned.

This will lead to problems happening. Other than the many common errors that are rooted in the team not correctly communicating, when the team does not operate as a harmonized unit, the customer will have a fractured customer’s journey experience as well. 

An example of problems caused by the team’s communication inconsistencies is when one department is aware of important customer data and the other is not. By not having the necessary information, informed judgments and decisions cannot be made.

 Customer journey mapping will give your team a unified view, and way of interaction with the customers. The customer journey map will greatly help in bringing the team together and working as one. Through the correct use of the map, you will be able to create a precise customer profile including insights and engagement from different sections and teams. This data is key in keeping your customer engaged, solving potential customer problems, and creating new strategies in cross-selling and upselling services and products.

What an efficient way in guaranteeing a fulfilling and rich customer experience in every interaction. Team silos are one of the main barriers to providing high-quality customer service. 

All of your business departments can benefit from the shared information channel, and the annoying friction between different departments will be reduced.

Thinking as your client does

Although it is common sense, numerous studies can be referred to as proof that satisfied customers will lead to faster and more profitable business growth. For example, a McKinsey study found that businesses that provide the highest quality customer experience grow more efficiently and profitably.

These companies also save many dollars regarding their marketing costs, especially because of the many positive customer referrals they get. Their customers return more, and they are less likely to lose loyal customers. 

Why do businesses neglect such important marks?

Well, a great customer experience is hard to deliver. Most companies easily convince themselves that they are delivering a top-notch customer experience, and prefer to ignore it overall.

Bain & co once did a study on the matter. According to their study, most businesses believe they are delivering a “superior customer experience”. This means customer experience of the best quality, not just good, the BEST.

But in actuality when customers were asked about the experiences they had with the companies overall, well, the answers are easily guessable. Most of the customers did not evaluate their experience the same way. Just 8% of them believed that they were being delivered with a basic customer experience.

It is sad, but true, that more often than not, brands are not providing their users with the experience they believe. And the reason behind this is what we call the “empathy gap”.

Brands do not understand their customers. It is undeniable that when you are part of a business, you no longer think like the customer of that business. And that is because you will have different goals and will consider different elements. Your quest as part of the organization will be to sell, and provide services/products and try to understand your customer’s point of view.

Emotions are important and effective factors that most companies seem to miss.

Emotions are what truly engage the customer

Yes, you can structure a customer’s journey map based on a customer’s behavior and actions. When they first see an ad, visit your website, what they look at, the time they spend on your website, and their first purchase are important milestones, but the customer’s emotions will affect their future decisions.

You must step into the customer’s shoes, and think as they do. While predicting customer behaviors and decisions is an important crux, the decision itself is meaningless if we do not consider the emotions behind it. 

Customer journey mapping allows you to get past the point of predicting customer action and behavior and get to trying to understand their feelings and the depth of those decisions. By understanding what emotions are behind what decisions, and the main emotion in each stage, you can raise certain emotions when necessary and beneficial.

Marketing and branding can be made much easier. The visual content you put on your website can be evaluated and if they have no important contribution to the customer’s journey, it can be worked out and replaced.

All businesses must stop neglecting the customer’s emotions. By working out the customer’s points of frustration, upset, joy, and excitement, you can solve and use them to your advantage.

Relevant and up-to-date content marketing strategy

With the rapid speed and ever-changing nature of the internet, it feels like a herculean act to constantly source relevant and accurately targeted content.

In fact, according to a study done by IDG connect, more than 70% of businesses nowadays agree that content optimization is one of the biggest problems they constantly face. The study is based on the response of more than 100 marketers, working with different businesses all over the world, all with more than 1000 employees.

This study by IDG connect points out an issue, we get a better picture when we also add in the data provided in Segment’s Personalization Report. The report clarifies that over 70% of clients “express frustration when their shopping experience is impersonal”. On the other hand, more than 40% of the shoppers claimed that they become returning buyers when delivered a personal shopping experience.

The studies are proof that content optimization is often neglected, and companies tend to fail in delivering a personalized shopping experience to their customers. 

Customer journey mapping creates a foundation for content marketing success. By reading the customer journey map well, you will get an idea of each customer group’s behaviors, and how they move through the stages. A close reading of the map provides you with valuable data which can be addressed and analyzed to unravel customer pain points, barriers, and moments of confusion.

The customer journey map provides you with a better understanding of your advantages and appeals to the customers as well, giving you a chance to improve your highlights and best qualities. 

More flexible

The traditional marketing funnel focused on a linear shopping funnel, which often began with the first visit to the website, or the first time the customer saw an advertisement and ended with the purchase being made. Other forms of shopping funnels were invented after, to try and include a diverse variety of experiences, and move away from such a static understanding.

The circular shopping funnel is a more flexible, popular alternative. Here, the focus is on the main four stages of the customer’s journey. These stages include Consideration, Evaluation, Moments of Sale, and Post-Purchase Stages.  These stages are vague and that is what makes them inclusive. They can mean many things, and you can give them a meaning that is most suitable for your business. There can be more or fewer stages on the map, just as you might need.

All the important discoveries from the customer journey map are to be analyzed. They can be used to reveal how the customers think, what they think about, what they feel during each interaction with your business, and their behaviors and future actions. The map can also point out what the customers perceive to be the highlights and most important touchstones of their experience.

The next step should be categorizing these points of interaction on a scale of negative to positive. Not only doing this will provide you with a better-organized mind, but it will also aid you in figuring out future strategies. The map allows you to identify situations where content can be used to solve problems, answer questions, act as a motivation, or make the customer journey easier and better.

Creating personalized content

No customer’s experience is like another. To get the best results, you will have to make sure every customer is noticed, and you are missing nothing. All information about the customer is valuable and can be used to create customized and relevant content. This includes how they behave and the demographics, their attitudes, motivations, values, interests, and needs.

After getting a good read on the journey and identifying points of improvement, it will be time for creating personalized content with the psychographic profile data. The content created is used to target new and returning customers.

This cannot be made easier than how it is with a website. The technology is new, but the internet is a vast and creative space, and you have infinite possibilities with a website. Consult professionals and find out about the best ways to deliver personalized content just at the right time. This might be something as simple as the customer getting a personalized welcome email, or for the right messages and offers to pop up on the customer’s screen, or to suggest the most suitable product.

This can all be done through the website, email, and the app! The best part about these solutions is that you can instantly see how each content is doing in real-time. By not having to guess the outcomes of using each type of content you will be able to see which content is most effective and circle out the content that is not doing as much. It will be way easier to estimate a content’s return on investment, and experiment to see what new results new ideas may bring.

Building an easy and smooth customer experience

Your customers interact with your business and brand in many different ways. Different channels are not isolated from each other, but in fact, they overlap. Different users get to your business in different ways and methods. Different users understand and engage with your business from different channels and in different stages.

It is your business to make sure no matter where they enter your shopping channel, and how they interact with it, they are delivered a smooth shopping experience.

Customer journey mapping enables you to see the holes in your contact points with your customers, and the service you are providing them with. You can get an idea of where you can do more, and how unified different sections of your business are operating.

There are blind spots to every point of view; empathy is the key to getting a complete view of what is truly going on. By thinking and feeling like your customers, you get to see where you can improve, and important touch points which you have been missing.

McKinsey states that a smooth customer experience can be achieved by ensuring that you “understand how customers navigate across the touchpoints as they move through the journey”. This way you will be able to make sure they have the necessary information, when and where they need it.

Missing interaction occurs more than you might imagine. Some good examples of it might be nurturing emails, or triggering workflows.

By studying the customer’s movements, analyzing the information, and filling up the holes with efficient solutions, a seamless and smooth customer experience will be architected. A smooth customer experience decreases the possibility of the customer getting distracted or disappointed from a purchase by miles. A consistent and integrated buying journey is what it takes to increase sales, and retain loyal customers.

Foretelling the future

It is a marketer’s job to be able to understand customer behaviors and be able to predict and affect them. Every decision made in marketing is based on predicted customer behavior, and to influence the customers with your understanding of these behaviors.

Everything you do, from creating customer profiles to ad campaigns and such is done to encourage visitors to act while planning for their next step.

So the outlook is not merely out in the future or focused on the now, but it considers them both. The motivations of your customer through each stage matter, and you can reach a much better understanding of the customer’s goals, desires, behaviors, and emotions through an accurately plotted customer journey map.

You can locate each step of the shopping funnel in the customer journey map, and predict potential next steps that the client might take. This visual and data-focused representation of your business, and how it is to interact with it. You can visually follow the customer’s footsteps and predict and guide its future decisions and behaviors. This is how sales conversions are optimized and increased.

You must keep in mind that best results are achieved through combining customer journey analytics, with what is earned through customer journey mapping. The most complete understanding and the most accurate predictions are the results of combining marketing metrics and behavioral data.

What does a customer journey map include?

 In short, a customer journey map is made out of different components, such as:

Customer stages

This is one of the fundamental steps towards creating a customer journey map. In this step, you will have to identify the stages your customers experience through their buying journey.

 A customer journey map includes a minimum of four stages: inquiry, comparison, purchase, and installation. These four steps can take other forms as well. There are different schools of thought that choose different four stages or name these four differently, inquiry might be named awareness, and some marketers add in a fifth stage names loyalty and/or advocacy. Earlier we mentioned another set of four which included Consideration, Evaluation, Moments of Sale, and Post-Purchase Stages.

The customer profile or persona

A customer profile is made out of different samples of the same category of clients, as a representative of that market segment.

The customer experience teams can get a lot of use out of these profiles, as they help them in better predicting future customer behaviors and emotions. Customer or buyer personas are a very important part of the customer journey maps and an efficient and effective tool.

Customer touch points:

The moments of interaction with the team are deciding moments for the customer. It is in these moments that the team has the highest chance of truly earning or disappointing a lead.

These touchpoints define your brand’s image and prove its trustworthiness. All touchpoints that a customer might use are important, and none should be neglected. Even an interaction as small as the customer calling for backup during an installation can determine their future advocacy for the brand.

Emotions

Including emotions is a defining characteristic of customer journey mapping.

The main point of such a map is having a source that you can make informed predictions and decisions based on. There is no way to predict behaviors without truly standing in the user’s shoes, and thinking as they do. This includes the very important element of emotion.

Feelings drive us to make purchases and create loyalty. It is the emotions that drive us into clicking on an ad. It is a sheer layer of curiosity or excitement that brings the customer into the shopping funnel. And it is emotions that guide individuals into choosing the color red, or the same drink over and over again. Emotions play a big part in brand advocacy and loyalty. An emotion such as comfort can cause leads to become a returning buyer and advocate, earning you many other leads.

Humans are emotional animals after all, and understanding these emotions enables us to identify pain points and successes.

Customer journey mapping tools

There are many methods to customer journey mapping and each is more suitable for a business. Different methods require different tools, and we now intend to suggest some tools that might be just right for your business.

Customer journey maps are meant to be visual pieces of content, and some tools help with simplifying this process. These tools often use diagrams, flow charts, and other more complicated and technical charts.

UXPressia

If you are looking for a cloud-based tool to help with visualizing and aligning the different departments of your business UXPressia may be suitable for you. It helps in synchronizing the different parts of your team, as it provides you with tools to visualize, present, share, and better their customer journey maps.

UXPressia can be easily synchronized with different data sources and offers amazing features such as real-time online collaboration.

UXPressia’s user interface is simple and modern, with an intuitive drag and drop environment. It has many templates which you can choose from. These templates can be shared across different sections and teams. Some other features UXPressia offers include the ability to create flexible buyer personas, and impact map builders.

UXPressia is paid, and the prices start at 16$ a month.

Lucidchart

Lucidchart is heavily visual, and it aims to accurately capture the customer’s point of view. This tool offers flexible and customizable templates and formatting options. You can easily visualize and share your ideas, findings, and categories with different team members. Lucidchart enables you to target specific personas, engage your customers just right, and increase profitability.

Lucidchart offers both free plans and paid plans that start at €8.95 per user monthly.

Microsoft Visio

Microsoft Visio gives you the perfect tools for creating visual representations of your findings, including diagrams and flowcharts.

Many different types of built-in shapes, objects, and stencils are made available to you in the software. Microsoft Visio attempts to make visualizing content as simple as possible. Visio has succeeded in making diagramming simple and achievable with a very low learning curve.

Microsft Visio comes as an addition to Microsoft office. Visio has three plans: standard which costs 299$, professional which costs 589$, and pro for office 365, priced at 15$ a month.

Gliffy

Gliffy is completely web-based. With this visualization tool, you can edit and create diagrams.  Gliffy is simple and not meant for heavily technical goals. It is lightweight, and you will not have the option to collaborate on diagrams or create highly technical ones.

Instead, Gliffy provides you with many simple and practical features like Venn diagrams and organizational charts. Gliffy offers a free plan as well. In Gliffy’s free plan, all the diagrams you make are public and you can only create a maximum of five diagrams.

This makes the free version of Gliffy inappropriate for highly confidential co-operate projects.

The other plans include the professional plan for 7.99$ per month, the team plan which costs 4.99$ per user, per month, and they also offer an ultimate enterprise plan, which you have to request.

Custellence

Custellence is a platform heavily suited for teamwork. Custellence allows you to build and share customer maps smoothly and with ease. This makes Custellence perfect for freeing your team from operating in silos. Such a tool can increase engagement across channels, and unify your team’s work.

Custellence is especially suitable for small to medium-sized businesses. With the low learning curve, everyone can get the most out of it with a little time spent. This allows your business to get right into the important customer journey mapping stuff, and avoid wasting any time. Right on to business!

It creates a flexible and inclusive environment, where important customer journey elements can be presented accurately. It offers a unique image collection, a flexible map structure, and curve lanes that are used to submit customer emotions.

Custellence offers both free and paid plans, with the paid plans starting at €20 per user monthly.

OmniGraffle

This visualization tool can be used for various purposes, from wireframe design to interior design and more.

Omnigraffle provides you with what is needed to create accurate and organized customer journey maps that you can share across channels. OmniGraffle is a suited solution for professional artists, designers, and amateur data mappers. 

Omnigraffle offers plans from 12.49 per month for IOS/Mac to 249.99$ for Mac.

Smaply

Customer journey maps, buyer personas, and stakeholder maps can all be created in the flexible environment Smaply provides you with. The platform is heavily visual and allows different details such as storyboards, channels, backstage processes, etc.

Smaply is one of these customer experience management tools that can be extremely beneficial to your team’s harmony and integration. All teams and sections can share their customer experience maps, and comment on one another’s customer journey map. The content can then be exported in multiple ways and methods, including power points.

Different journey maps can be compared and linked to keeping both the details and the vaster view insight.

Smaply has a very interesting customer profile style which looks like real social user profiles. Smaply allows you to visually characterize each customer group.

The stakeholder mapping tool is also incredibly useful as it provides you with a great vision of the market ecosystem and how other businesses and brands impact you.

Smaply offers plans starting from 25€ a month. The regular plan is priced at 50€ monthly, and the business plan is priced at 100€ monthly. They also offer an enterprise plan which you must directly contact them for.

IBM journey designer

This platform is meant to be handy, and it is meant to be fast. Customer journey maps can be easily created through IMB in just a few minutes.

IBM journey designer is a great solution for synchronizing and aligning different departments and sections. Cross-channel journeys can be created through the participation of different

departments. All the different parts of the team can set shared goals, and create a smooth and integrated personalized customer experience for previous and future clients.

IBM’s environment is simple, and modern and includes a drag and drop interface.

Team members and different departments can share files, maps, have conversations and collaborate on each other’s projects, and even notify each other of the current project they are working on.

For further pricing information, you can take a look at IBM’s site.

How To Create A Customer Journey Map

To visualize and learn from customer experience, you have to create a customer journey map. You will see that a customer purchase journey is inconsistent – it is not just a straight line. Indeed, consumer buying choice is generally irregular and spontaneous, but it also has important implications for brand awareness and engagement.

For instance, you can research what devices consumers use to access your website; this knowledge might be helpful when creating a responsive website design. Further, think of your company’s technical strengths, and how you can use them to help meet your customers’ goals.

The information gathered will help your UX designer to create a product that provides the best possible user experience. 

Buying Behaviour Analysis 

You also need to be able to determine if your business is in trouble. Think of how you treat your customers – are you delivering the value they are looking for? Do you succeed in solving your customer’s problems? Knowing your business’s weaknesses helps you understand where to put your time and effort; whether the problem is limited to a single source e.g., CRM system, or exists all the time in one particular department. 

So why is it important to understand how people use your product? Customer journey mapping allows you to feel what the consumer feels, and follow in the steps they need to go through before they can reach the “awareness phase” of their purchase journey. 

The following components describe the typical stages a consumer goes through in the marketing funnel: 

  • Awareness. The customer first learns about your products and services. 
  • Decision. Then there’s the consideration stage when they try to make a buying decision. 
  • Action. The final step of the consumer decision process.

Naturally, customers do not talk with these terms to describe their buying experience i.e., no one is out there describing their experience like, “I’m in the awareness phase of buying sneakers.”, no, they’re just saying, “Hey, I’m taking this pair.”

Post-purchase analysis

Those steps are core indicators of your customer’s purchase journey. When you get to know your customer better, you are able to develop a powerful marketing strategy based on what they like about your products and services. At this point, your role as a marketer ends. The rest of the stages of the funnel process such as cases when the customer is not satisfied with the goods, the process of returning them etc., that all happens at the post-purchase evaluation stage. So you really get the chance to present your product only in the beginning of the customer’s purchase journey.

It’s critical to note that these challenges are not simply marketers’ alone – they concern every department of an organization. While marketers might be primarily responsible for market entry stages and revenue growth, there are many other parts of the organization that play an equally important role in fulfilling customers’ dreams. Your Customer Service, Finance, Operations Management departments, – those who are responsible for the operations behind the scenes, who never have to meet customers during their entire employment, like finance and IT-specialists.

Engaging Your Employees 

Customer journey mapping gives business insight into how their clients engage with their brand. These maps also enable marketers to find out firsthand what they need to deliver to satisfy and surpass the customer’s needs. It also might help employees in your company who are responsible for customer’s experience – they can feel the effect of advertising and what it’s like to be promised to as a customer.

Furthermore, it is really a good way to organize things differently, encourage your employees to take conventional approaches and re-strategize them towards sustainable marketing; try to engage them to build mutual relationships that will keep them committed to the company’s goal. People that work within one organization must respect the upper management values,  so maintaining a sense of respect between your coworkers is the best thing you can do. 

So how do you create a culture of collaboration in the first place? How to get every employee to understand the importance of mutual responsibility and accountability?

Journey Mapping Example

Before we examine the rest of the processes, let’s look at a simple method of journey mapping. The easiest way to map the customer journey is by using a whiteboard, some colored sticky notes and highlighters, or you can buy a package of recycled office paper. Try to use the bright stationary to find and highlight the main points of the journey map. Once you find them, mark them down using different sticky notes. Then use highlights to define colour values by customers’ touchpoints. Now choose a suitable wall space and hang your map on the brainstorming sessions to better analyze the customer journey.

As we mentioned previously, the stages of the buying process your customers go through might be different and involve various circumstances. Situations when you buy incorrect sizes online can happen at least once in anyone’s purchasing cycle. To not let that happen, you have to define metrics for every stage of customer journey. 

The following five stages framework provides a good outline of the customer’s buying process.

  • Interest. The customer searches for the product. Follows a link to a website/ finds site with Google Trends tool.  
  • Information search. The customer learns about your product. 
  • Evaluation.
  • Purchase. The customer buys your product. 
  • Post-purchase evaluation. The customer tries the dress on, but it’s not going to fit here. 

And now we get to the famous crux of disagreement between sellers and buyers. If the last is not satisfied with goods, they will naturally go to the brand’s website to find the return information. Next, they will call customer service and arrange a refund. Finally, the customer will send the product by mail , and then they’re going to drop the box off at the shipper.

You can use this basic example to visualize the journey mapping. The main goal is to understand each step your customers go through and map out everything your customer does during the buying process. Remember that your marketing, branding, and sales strategies depend entirely on buyer’s behavior. 

Again, if you decide to create a map using your own hands and office supplies, use some bright colours; it is really effective to use contrasting markers, like red and blue, when you need to differentiate the positive and negative customer’s experience. This can serve as a good illustration of the strengths and weaknesses of your customer service, and what important things you should focus on. 

Further, you can drill in all the controls, and start analyzing your customers’ feelings that target their behaviour. Try drawing tech trends across the company’s strengths and commonly-used features. You can also highlight all of the different communication channels that they’re using. Are they calling a support contact center? Do your customers visit the website? Do they use search engines when looking for your products? Whatever means of connection they use, based on the information analyzed, you can identify which department in your organization is responsible for every stage of the exchange process. 

In order to improve internal processes of your business, and increase productivity, we recommend conducting educational meetings with people from across your organization. For improving organizational communication, engage the employees from all of the organizational silos in creating your customer journey map. Gather all your best people from different departments, maybe some of your key partners at the brainstorming meeting, and map the purchase journey based on the best experience and interest of your customers.

But don’t jump to conclusions, because, very often, our conclusions do not represent the objective knowledge about customer experience, but rather traditional assumptions of customer needs. What you can do is introduce the gathered data to your customers and have them have them validate it. Indeed, using questionnaires can help arrive at a precise estimate of current strengths and weaknesses of your business. Share a clear customer journey map with the entire company to help them improve and maintain the customer’s liking and loyalty. 

Wrapping Up

We hope that this guide on customer journey mapping is going to be useful in improving your organization’s customer service. If you would like to strengthen your customer relationship, call our manager today! We will work with you, and together, will find the best custom solution for your business. 

FAQs

What is the purpose of a customer journey map?

Customer journey maps provide a visual aspect of the user’s journey. Customer journey maps can help a brand to tell the story of their user experience across social media, and platforms such as email or any other possible channel of communication. 
These maps are also helpful when it comes to customer interactions, for instance, having a customer journey map can keep you alerted when it comes to chances of interacting with your customers. 
It has significant importance since it can provide a better view of customers’ needs and pain points, and can be effective when it comes to UX.

How do I map a customer journey online?

One way to create a customer journey map is by creating them online. There are some steps to take when you need to create a customer journey map using online software. In the following we’re going to take a brief look at these steps:

Identify your map’s purpose clearly and based on what your audience want, need, and might need
You need to get insight into your customer’s goals therefore you shouldn’t forget about conducting persona research
Don’t forget to include touchpoints when you begin to map your user journey 
The next step is to recognize pain points and try to refine them
And finally, you can start your presenting and sharing process

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