How to Improve Your CX with Customer Journey Mapping
Customer experience stands at the forefront of almost every business’s strategy.
And there’s a reason for it – 84% of companies that take the time to improve their customer experience see an increase in revenue.
Moreover, 96% of customers say that customer service is important when it comes to brand loyalty.
This is exactly why so many companies are looking for different ways to improve their customer experience – and one of these is Customer Journey Mapping.
Hence, here’s everything you should know about customer journey mapping and how it can improve your customer experience.
What Is Customer Journey Mapping?
To put it simply, customer journey mapping is the process of researching your customers’ actions and feelings to create a map that illustrates how they get from the point of first contact with your business to the point of purchasing from your company (and beyond).
A customer journey map is a visual illustration of this journey.
A customer journey map takes into account customer actions, feelings/emotions, pain points, problems, interests, and more to create accurate customer personas for audience segmentation.
A map like this usually consists of five phases (awareness, consideration, purchase, retention, advocacy) and structures the journey through touchpoints.
Why Is Customer Journey Mapping Important?
While customer journey mapping may sound scary at first, it’s actually quite doable.
Moreover, it is essential for delivering good customer experience.
Here are five reasons why you need to use customer journey mapping in your strategy:
- It helps you better understand your target audience through extensive research.
- It allows you to increase personalization by segmenting your audience and creating customer personas.
- It gives you more control over your customers’ actions.
- It aids you in customer acquisition and reduces customer experience-related costs.
- It lets you improve your customer experience and, in turn, increase your revenue.
As you can see, there are many reasons why customer journey mapping is essential for the success of your business, both short-term and long-term.
What follows are eight best practices to follow when using customer journey mapping for your business.
8 Tips on how to improve your CX using Customer Journey Maps
#1 Plan Out Customer Journey Map Phases
Customer journey maps consist of five phases and planning out (and understanding) each one is important to make your map usable.
Here’s a rundown of each phase:
- Awareness: At the first stage, your potential customer becomes aware of your brand’s existence. Their first contact could be through an ad, a recommendation from a friend, and so on.
- Consideration: The second phase is when your potential customer considers making a purchase from your business. At this point, they are gathering information about your brand and your products to compare them with other available options.
- Purchase: At the third stage, your customer decides to make a purchase and buys products or services from you. This is when a potential customer turns into an actual (existing, current) customer.
- Retention: Once the purchase is completed, the customer moves to the next stage where you try to retain them. This is where you can use targeted ads, email marketing, and other tactics to turn a one-time customer into a returning one.
- Advocacy: The final stage is when your customer becomes an active advocate for your brand. They not only buy from you but also spread the word about your company attracting more customers.
#2 Map Out Every Single Touchpoint
Another important practice for customer journey mapping is to map out every single touchpoint in your customer journey.
Every stage will have several touchpoints, but it’s also worth keeping in mind that there could be different ways a customer’s journey could go.
For example, you could have two customers who see an ad about your brand on social media.
One of them ignores the ad while the other clicks on it.
The first potential customer could then get a recommendation from a friend, remember about your brand, check out, and decide to make a purchase.
The second one might get to your site from the ad and immediately make a purchase.
This way, two customers start out at one touchpoint but jump to different ones.
#3 Utilize Customer Personas for Segmentation
Speaking of the different ways a customer’s journey could go, this is exactly why you need to be utilizing customer personas for segmentation.
By collecting information about your current customers and analyzing their past journeys, you will be able to segment your target audience and work with each segment separately.
Each segment will need to have a customer persona attached to it.
To create each persona, consider the different characteristics of your customers.
Try to focus mostly on such things as pain points, problems, actions, and emotions.
#4 Focus on Pain Points and Problems
The pain points and problems of your customers are probably the most important determiners of whether you will be able to guide the person from the start to the end of their journey.
By understanding what their problems are and what “causes them pain”, so to say, you will be able to offer better solutions.
Mariam Goddard, an expert from the custom writing reviews site Writing Judge, explains it this way, “Pain points and problems are always present.
Your job is to solve them by offering the right products or services to your audience.
If everything fits, you will prosper.”
#5 Consider User Actions and Emotions
Likewise, you need to take into account user actions and emotions.
What your potential customers think and feel determines what they do.
Consequently, by influencing their thoughts and emotions, you can influence their actions.
Once you know what your customers’ pain points and problems are, you will be able to understand what they feel and think.
When you offer them a solution, they will have a particular response.
Moreover, at every touchpoint in their journey, they will be feeling and having particular emotions and thoughts that will prompt them to act in a certain way.
#6 Calculate and Use Your Resources Wisely
Even though you might have a customer journey map ready, you still need to consider the practical side of it.
Ask yourself: do you have the resources needed to execute all the necessary processes to put the map in motion?
If you don’t have enough resources, you can narrow down your focus to work with a particular set of segments.
#7 Represent the Journey Map Visually
An essential part of customer journey mapping is representing it visually.
If you don’t have a visual representation of the map, you can’t use it correctly.
When creating the visuals, try to make them simple but descriptive.
If you make the map too complicated, it can become unusable and won’t do you any good.
#8 Apply, Assess, and Improve the Map
Last but not least, you need to apply your customer journey map to your strategy and start using the technique in practice.
Once you set it in motion, assess its performance.
By seeing what works and what doesn’t, you will be able to improve the map and get your customer experience to the next level.
To sum up, customer journey mapping may take some time to master, but it will be totally worth it.
As a result, you will be able to improve your customer experience and grow your revenue, brand loyalty, and more.
This article will help you create your own customer journey map and start using it to improve your customer experience.
- Learn: View our Customer Journey Mapping Online Course
- Read: How to build your own CX Measurement Framework
- Download: Our Customer Journey Mapping Template
- Engage: Search an industry list of consultants who specialise in Customer Journey Mapping
- Listen: To our podcast on Customer Journey Mapping