How to start your customer journey map design process
1. Gather data and build a story
Without data, acustomer journeyis just a story – but without a story, data is just data. Building a cohesive journey for customers means using your data to create a story for your audience to follow.
A customer journey map detailsthe sequence of events that happen when a customer experiences your brand– but knowing exactly what is happening through data analysis is vital to create a story that has weight. Make sure you’re not just gathering information, butturning data into insightsthat can be used to tell a story to your customers. A customer journey map is a visual representation of your data and knowledge about your customer and the processes they undergo, but it’s also the brand story your customers will remember.
2. Select a customer persona to target and a customer journey to map out
Your route to designing a customer journey map starts withcustomer personas, complete with characteristics such as name, age, job role, and more.
3. Appoint a diverse mapping team
Your customer journey mapping team members should cover all areas of your company. With frontline staff, management members, and other individuals at various levels of your business, you can create a customer journey map that covers every aspect.
Find out how we can help you to improve your customer journey mapping capabilities
Customer journey mapping process steps
To help make the customer journey mapping process clear, we’ll use ourCustomer Journey Templateand an example customer journey.
The customer journey map template
Our tried-and-tested customer journey map template will help you to clarifywhat your customer is aiming to do,how they feelabout their interactions with you and how you need to set up their experience. This will help you to create an effective customer journey map.
This template helps you narrow down, for each step of the customer journey map:
- Customer behaviour:What is your customer’s desired outcome or goal for this step?
- Customer attitudes:What are your customers feeling? What are they telling you?
- The on-stage experience:What interaction is your customer experiencing during this step, and with whom?
- The off-stage experience:What is going on in the background of this step from your side of the business? Who needs to be present for this step to proceed?
Customer journey mapping example
Let’s use the following customer persona, goal, and journey to help us map out the steps we’ll need to take.
Job role:Hospital director
Family status:Married with children
Professional goals:Creating a sympathetic and efficient healthcare environment for patients, helping staff to grow professionally Personal goals: Wants to be able to make purchases quickly as she is time-poor, prefers in-person interactions when making big decisions
Joan wants to purchase a new vacuuming device from an e-commerce organisation to replace one that is broken.
A new buyer journey for your e-commerce business’ product or service
You might also want to consider your customer’s pain points based on their personato help tailor your journey. For example, Joan’s pain point might be that she needs something quickly but feels unable to make a choice without speaking to a person before making a purchase.
Mapping the first step in the customer journey
As Joan is a new customer, it’s likely that her initial step might be to search for a new vacuum online.
We can use our template to build out this first step.
- Joan’scustomer behaviour: Going to an online search engine and looking for a new vacuum cleaner
- Hercustomer attitude: Looking for a good price or a deal
- Theon-stage experience: Search engine, your e-commerce website, search engine advertising
- Theoff-stage experience: Your marketing agency (Advertising and SEO), internal marketing team, device manufacturer
The above covers this step on a basic level. However, for an effective customer journey map, each stage needs to be built out further.
We also need to consider:
- Moments that matter
Though it might seem that Joan is the only person involved in this step, there are many individuals on your side of the interaction that need to have their input to make it a reality.
For example, your product managers will likely have decidedwhich products to offerto your customers, based on data for what will sell. Your marketing team and senior management may have worked with a web design agency and an SEO agency to create a website that appears top of search engine results, perhaps using advertising to help catch the eye of potential customers above your competitors.
Making sure that you understand who is behind the off-stage experience of this step will help you to understand who to consult about this customer journey section. If there are representatives for your business who will directly interact with the customer during a step, those people need to be noted and considered for their input on the on-stage experience.
As mentioned, Joan might potentially be interacting with several aspects of your brand, for example:
- An online search engine
- Your company’s e-commerce website
- An advert your company has created
Ideally, her interaction with parts of your brand and processes you have control over –such as advertising, or your website – should lead her to the next step of the customer journey.
Considering the data behind these processes can help you to make this step more effective. For example, if you find that your advertising isn’t leading potential customers to your products or your website isn’t helping customers complete their desired tasks, adjusting your marketing approach or website processes might help you to create a more effective customer journey.
Your customer’s attitudemight start out being basic – in this case, Joan seeking a good price on an item that she needs – but to create atruly successful customer experience, your customer should feel emotions such as satisfaction, or elation.
In this example, Joan could feel excitement at a great offer on a vacuum that you’ve advertised on a search engine. She could also feel relief at finding something quickly, or satisfaction that she’s able to source a new vacuum easily.
Moments that matter
Creating moments that matter is vital forretaining customers throughout their journeywith your brand. Each time a customer takes a step on their customer journeywith your brand, you should be aiming to identify thegreatest moment of emotional load. Their attitude should be transformed from the banal – completing their journey – to havinga memorable experience.
In this example, creating that emotional sense of relief, excitement, or satisfaction for Joan in this step will encourage her tochoose your brand over competitors.
Understanding and anticipating Joan’s needs will help you to create a customer journey map that fulfils her goals. This is where drafting a persona from user research helps you to develop a journey that meets expectations and exceeds them.
In this customer journey map step, knowing what Joan might be searching for and offering her an advert or website product description that matches that search will fulfil her need. Offering her a deal takes that fulfilment to the next step by providing an additional emotional component such as elation or satisfaction.
Creating each step of the customer journey is the first process that you need to complete, but the work doesn’t end there. Once you’ve traced out your journey map stages, you’ll need to track progress and analyse the data you collect to make sure your steps are accurate and are optimised for the best user experience.
Measuring your customer experienceusing metrics and insights is the best way to make sure that customers like Joan are having the best experience possible, and improving the areas where they’re not.
Subsequent steps in the customer journey map
Planning the next steps
Using data on how your customer currently moves through the purchasing journey can help you to pinpointhow to optimise the customer journey, and make it as easy as possible for the customer. Each step should be considered using the template and the further aspects outlined above.
An important factor to remember is thatcustomer behaviour and attitudesmight not reflect the internal stages you think are part of the customer journey. Remembering to design the customer journey based on data you’ve collected from the real world and the emotional journey you want to provide is key for success.
Subsequent steps for Joan’s customer journey could be:
- Step 2:Visiting your e-commerce website via your search engine advert
- Step 3:Browsing your online product directory for other options and comparing products
- Step 4:Purchasing a vacuum and going through your payment process
- Step 5:Receiving the vacuum and setting it up
Additional steps might be:
- Using aself-service help centeron your website to understand your delivery process
- Speaking to a frontline employee via chat to ask a question about the vacuum
- Calling yourcustomer service centeronce the device has been delivered to get set-up assistance
- Leavingcustomer reviewson your social media or third-party review platforms
These might become subsequent customer journeys in themselves. These could be:
- Issue resolution through customer support (such as an issue with the device)
- Renewal of services (such as a warranty on the vacuum)
How to improve your customer journey maps
Choose the appropriate touchpoint
Understanding how to tailor the customer journey is key for a successful customer-focused approach. How every customer interacts will be different – so make sure youtake customer feedback into accountwhen deciding how best to interact with your customers. Each touchpoint needs to address user pain points and meet their needs – this is how you improve the customer experience.
Read our guide to customer touchpointsto learn how to craft a memorable experience for your customers.
Use an effective customer experience platform
We’ve provided a very simple example of customer journey maps, with only one journey outlined. Often, customer journey maps can become incredibly complex, with multiple trajectories, touchpoints, personas, and personnel to consider.
How do you create an effective customer journey map? ›
- Set goals. First, you need a clear goal. ...
- Define your personas. Determine which customer personas you want to target when creating maps. ...
- Determine your touchpoints. ...
- Map the current buyer journey. ...
- Map the ideal buyer journey.
Philip Kotler, the five stages (Awareness, Appeal, Ask, Act and Advocacy) allow marketing and sales professionals to create a map of the customer's needs and priorities during the different parts of their purchase process.What is customer journey map example? ›
A good customer journey map includes all the touchpoints where a customer interacts with your brand. It should include the various stages of the marketing and sales cycle, customer touchpoints across your product and website, and map out customers' actions, thoughts, and feelings at each stage, as well as KPIs.What is a customer journey map briefly explain with an example? ›
A customer journey map is a visual representation of the customer journey (also called the buyer journey or user journey). It helps you tell the story of your customers' experiences with your brand across all touchpoints.How do you build a simple customer journey? ›
- Nail down your buyer persona. The first step in creating a customer journey map is understanding who your customers are. ...
- Understand your buyer's goals. ...
- Map out buyer touchpoints. ...
- Identify customer pain points. ...
- Prioritize and Fix Roadblocks. ...
- Update and Improve.
A customer journey map is a visual storyline of every engagement a customer has with a service, brand, or product. The creation of a journey map puts the organization directly in the mind of the consumer, so they can see and understand their customer's processes, needs, and perceptions.What makes a good customer journey? ›
Clear goals and actionable insights. For a map to be effective, it must have a clear goal and include insights that you can act upon. So, include all your discoveries, whether positive or negative, then determine any correlations among them and the behavior of your customers, as well as their expectations and goals.What are the four pillars to create a customer journey? ›
When starting your journey strategy, we recommend addressing your preparations in four main areas: audience, data, content, and channel.What are the 4 elements of the customer journey? ›
- Audience engagement.
- Leads converting into customers.
- Nurture the customers.
- Fulfill the customer expectations.
- Clicks. Clicks show visitors engaging with website elements, media content, links, and CTAs: a click means a user is looking to trigger an action. ...
- Click-through rate (CTR) ...
- Cost-per-click (CPC) ...
- Engagement rate.
What are the 3 essential pillars of the customer experience? ›
These pillars are your purpose, your mission and your values.What are the 3 key guest journey stages? ›
It's pretty much agreed that there are three key stages in the customer journey: the awareness stage, the consideration stage and the decision stage.What are the 3 reasons that a customer journey map is important? ›
Helps create personalized experiences
Show relevant social media ads to potential customers browsing online. Provide personalized support over multiple channels. Improve onboarding by tailoring the process to each customer.
The most important part of creating a great customer experience is understanding the entire journey a customer takes. You need to think about your customer journey map (or if you don't have one, create one). This will help you understand every touch point that you have with your customers.How do you start a journey map? ›
- Define the scope. Creating a helpful user journey map starts with defining your goals. ...
- Build user personas. ...
- Define user goals, expectations, and pain points. ...
- List out touchpoints and channels. ...
- Map the journey. ...
- Validate and refine the map.
The components of a customer journey map are persona, scenario & expectations, timeline/phases, emotions/mindsets, actions, and opportunities. Customer journey maps can help organizations understand how customers interact with their product or service and identify areas where they can improve the customer experience.What are the 4 C's of customer service? ›
To set yourself apart, you need to incorporate the 4C's, which stand for customer experience, conversation, content, and collaboration. Look at them as pillars that hold your client service together. Working on these components in unison and actively managing them will transform your business.What is customer journey Framework? ›
A Customer Journey Map (CJM), tells the story of your customer's experiences with your brand across every touchpoint – all on the same canvas. or Customer Journey Map (CJM), as a key tool to improve the customer experience. Depending on the objective of the CJM, it can be more or less complex.What are the 5 essential customer service elements? ›
- Engagement. How happy and engaged is the employee? ...
- Energy. ...
- Influence. ...
- Quality. ...
- People skills. ...
- Technical ability. ...
What are the six strategies to attract customers? ›
- Offer quality products. Good quality is the most important reason cited by consumers for buying directly from farmers. ...
- Cultivate good people skills. ...
- Know your customers. ...
- Use attractive packaging. ...
- Let customers try samples. ...
- Be willing to change.
- Be consistent with the release of information. Consistency in delivery is something many customers seek from a company. ...
- Sell differences in the product or service. ...
- Use testimonials to bolster reputation. ...
- Know your audience. ...
- Make it searchable.
Conclusion. So these are the five key pieces to customer success. Onboarding success, product success, customer success, company success, and team success. These 5 key aspects to customer success need an ideal focus and attention if you are to ensure your company's present and future success.What are the 4 P's that improve customer service? ›
Promptness, Politeness, Professionalism and Personalization: these 4 characteristics are the key ingredients to any successful service interaction, and when you think about it, they are the basics you expect to receive as a consumer.What are the four 4 key principles of good customer service? ›
There are four key principles of good customer service: It's personalized, competent, convenient, and proactive. These factors have the biggest influence on the customer experience.What are the 3 C's of a customer driven service marketing strategy? ›
The 3 Cs are: Company, Customers and Competitors - the three semi-fixed environmental factors in your market. As the 4 Ps and 3 Cs all need to be considered in relation to each other, it doesn't really matter in what order you define them. Product: This is where you define your product or service.What are touchpoints in customer journey? ›
A customer touchpoint refers to any time that a customer comes into contact with an on or offline experience, service, or showcase related to your business along their customer journey. A common example of a customer journey with multiple touchpoints is that of an airline.What are the types of customer journey? ›
- Customer journey simplification.
- Customer journey mapping.
- Customer journey innovation.
- Story-centered customer journey.
They offer five stages: novice, advanced beginner, competent, proficient, and expert. Novices acquire know-how, which is the tacit knowledge of how to perform a task or function through practice, and sometimes painful, experience. Mostly a person's know-how is invisible to that person.What are some of the most common mistakes to avoid in customer journey mapping? ›
5 MISTAKES TO AVOID
- They focus on touchpoints and not the journey. ...
- They don't include customer input. ...
- They make one map for every customer. ...
- They create maps from just a marketing standpoint. ...
- They think of it as a one-and-done project.
Which are the 3 key tips to creating a usable experience map? ›
Designing your experience map
- Keep it simple: any viewer should be able to make sense out of the map at one glance. ...
- Keep it self-contained: The experience map should stand on its own.
A customer experience (CX) strategy encompasses three dimensions, the three dimensions on which services can differ are: goals, breadth and depth, and is not to be confused with a CX plan, which is the execution of the strategy.What are the 4 main customer needs? ›
- A fair price.
- A good service.
- A good product.
- To feel valued.
To build a more useful customer journey map, managers need to gather customer information and identify both critical and less important touchpoints. We encourage managers to follow HPM's approach and directly ask customers which touchpoints they experience when making their journey through a service organization.