When it’s time to create journey maps for your customer base, the different approaches may seem overwhelming. You can look online for advice and variations of the task, but you’ll end up wondering why they’re all so different, where you should start, and how to know which approach would be the most effective. Where do you even get a journey map template to begin with? Take a look at these tips that will help you create an excellent customer journey map for your business.
Where to begin
The first thing you should do is to decide what type of customer you’re targeting. Is there a certain type of customer that your journey map would best be suited for, or is it for potential customers? Is it for a segment of customers?
Clarifying who it’s for is step one, and you can do this by looking at your overall business goals. For some, it may be that you need to establish a journey guideline that would apply to all of your customers in order to build a common understanding of customer stages and goals. From there you could also focus more on the planning of how you will invest in customer experience-driven growth, optimizing the customer experience, understanding how one customer segment differs from another particular buyer persona, or targeting a new customer to grow the business.
Think of personas as the archetypes of your customers with different expectations, behaviors, and needs. Now you can link your customer journey map to the personas you’ve defined or start to develop new ones.
Next you’ll want to build your journey map through defined stages in your customer’s perspective. Organizing by stages or phases helps to determine major goals that your customers want to achieve. Rather than focusing on your internal process, use this step to focus on your customer’s goal or journey. These stages can be broader or narrower. Put your stages in order of one after the other to look at how your customer’s behaviors flow.
After that you can look at your customer’s wants, needs, and expectations. The customer be: “I want to pay a fair price” or “I want all of the options.” Understanding your customer’s goals at each stage of the journey helps you figure out if you are delivering at each step or if an area is neglected. It’s a great tool when it comes to your business decisions because it helps you to evaluate things.
Look at how your customer interacts with your brand
Now you’ll want to look at the various ways your customer is interacting with your brand to determine if all of these “touchpoints” are meeting your customer’s goal or expectation. Gaining insight on the various touchpoints of your customer’s journey is going to help you tremendously. Examine these touchpoints by exploring the ways your customer interacts with your company–such at through your online presence or by phone.
If you want to skip this stage, you can create a map with the inventory of tools or resources you offer — but most likely you’ll want to see how your customer engages with your company to achieve a goal. If you ignore these touchpoints, you will miss important pieces of your customer experience.
Tracking customer emotion
You’ll want to be sure to capture your customer’s emotion during the journey to better understand their experience. How does your customer feel at each stage of interacting with your brand? If there are positive emotions at each stage, you’ll create a memorable experience and end up retaining old customers and gaining new ones. You can track emotion by paying attention to words like “frustrated” and “delighted” or through phrases, icons, and visual symbols that represent emotion.
How would your customer evaluate their experience? Assess your customer experience by listening to emotional cues, assessing company touchpoints, finding what the customer values, and evaluating the time and effort it takes for your customers to reach their goals.
Finally, look at which areas are worth highlighting and which moments were unnecessary or problematic. Where can you grow to improve the experience? Where did you make a low impact and where did you excel? After this thorough evaluation, you can look at your internal processes–including the people involved in delivering the journey, the processes it required, and all of the systems involved.
By creating a great customer journey map, you’ll gain the information you need to take action on improving your business and customer experience.