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What you need to know about customer journey mapping

What you need to know about customer journey mapping

First of all, we need to understand that there is no single customer journey map, each company can choose its own approach or template. In any case, you start with the 5 stages of the customer journey as the main components of your map: orientation, consideration, purchase, use and loyalty. Under these 5 stages you are going to subdivide all possible touch points with your customers: billboards, online ads, word of mouth from a friend or acquaintance, contact with sales staff in a physical store, telephone contact with a customer service representative, etc. In addition to including all touch points, it’s also important to incorporate your customers’ needs and expectations. This way you have a complete overview, and you can adjust your products and processes accordingly, improving the customer experience.

Types of customer journey maps

You may need different customer journey maps if you have both online and offline market presence, and these processes do not run together. You may also need different customer journey maps per country if you have different processes per geographical unit. Furthermore, a B2B customer journey map will also differ from a B2C customer journey map, and sometimes the customer journey mapping may even differ by target audience. It is up to you to decide how far you go in segmenting different groups for which you create a different customer journey map. In any case, you should keep the goal in mind – to better understand the customer journey and touch points, and the ways you can improve this journey for your customers.

Customer journey map – best practices

Some tips you can use to set up your customer journey map in the best way possible:

  • Focus on your target audience. Often we try to create a customer journey from a company’s point of view, whereas this map should revolve around the customer and their journey. Therefore, when creating a customer journey map, focus on the customer and his/her expectations, needs and wants.
  • Customer journey mapping periodically. There is no golden rule about when you should update your customer journey map, but every 3-5 years is certainly a good guideline, especially taking into account the rapidly developing digitalization. You should also update or expand the customer journey map when introducing a new sales channel, for example.
  • Put real customer experiences first. Especially when talking about pain points or positive experiences, your best move is to get this information from real experiences. Do a market survey so you stay on top of what the pain points are, and integrate them into your customer journey map. After this, you can look for solutions to current problems, but also see them in the larger context of the customer journey mapping as a whole.

Benefits of customer journey mapping

Customer journey mapping not only gives you a better understanding of the journey that customers go through within your company, but also a clear picture of what you can improve about this journey. Put the customer and customer satisfaction at the center of your business, and make sure that you adapt to changes in your product’s customer journey as best you can.

How can you ensure better flow from one stage to the next? How do you make a customer who is in the consideration phase choose your product and proceed to purchase? How do you ensure that a customer who is already using your product becomes a loyal customer and starts to spread the word among friends and acquaintances? What pain points prevent a customer from buying after several touch points with your product? You can get this and so much more from your customer journey map analysis. Once your customer journey map is created, you can also use it to evaluate your customer relationship management strategy, and adjust it to the customer journey where necessary.

It is also a useful tool to compare different sales channels, trying to direct your customers to the channel that gives the best results. Overall, you can see the extent to which your customer journey is satisfactory to customers, and meets their needs and expectations. You can identify and resolve the pain points in this journey, and thus improve the customer experience.

Read more about this at Reveall!