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What is a customer journey map? (+ free journey builder tool)

customer journey
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customer journey map
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Divya Kandwal
December 30, 2022
6
mins read

What is a customer journey map? (+ free journey builder tool)

Do you see the world the way your customers do? This may seem like a weird question but think about it for five seconds. The way you view your company is often really different from the way your customers do. When companies try to improve their customer experience, they work towards optimizing individual touchpoints. The assumption is- If your customers are happy with specific touchpoints (like service, store experience, renewal, etc), they must be happy with the entire experience. This is partly true. Customers don’t see individual touchpoints- they the entire experience as a whole. This is what makes mapping the customer journey so important. You can make meaningful improvements only by seeing the journey from your customer’s perspective.

What is a customer journey map?

A customer journey map is a visual representation of every interaction your customer has with your product or service. This includes before, during, and after they buy your product.  Customer journey maps stretch across multiple online and offline touchpoints and last anywhere from some days to months. 

A customer journey map allows you to step into your customer’s shoes.  It helps you in understanding their behavior, perception, needs, and wants. This is great since according to Salesforce

66% of customers expect companies to understand their needs.

Customer journey stages

A modern customer journey spans numerous

  • Touchpoints
  • Channels, and 
  • Days

As per Harvard Business Review, “73% of customers prefer shopping through multiple channels.”

Customers often 

  • Search for a product on Google on their mobile
  • Visit the official brand website on their laptop
  • Check out prices on aggregator e-commerce websites, and 
  • Finally buy the product for the brick-and-mortar store

This simplified journey (that doesn’t even include social media) spans multiple devices, touchpoints, and websites. 

The point is- the modern customer journey is chaotic. There is no one-size-fits-all because no two customers behave the same way. But there are certain stages that all customers usually go through.

These are- 

Stage 1-  Awareness

When a prospective customer finds out about your brand through an ad, social media, website, or word of mouth.

Stage 2- Engagement: 

They consume your content, chat with your bot, sign up for more details, and request a callback from you. Your sales team explains the product further and makes them aware of the benefits. 

Offline, they visit your store and talk to the store executives. 

Stage 3- Conversion

They get convinced that your product is a fit for them and buy. 

Stage 4- Onboarding

You onboard the customer, set up the product for them, and give them a demo (in the case of consumer durables)

Stage 5- Service and support

As the customer uses your product, they contact customer care for resolving upcoming queries. For automobiles and consumer durables, they periodically visit the contact center for servicing. 

Stage 6-  Retention and Referral

The customer keeps using your product. They are so delighted by your product that they recommend it to their friends and family.  

Customer journey builder- how to build a customer journey map

Customer journey maps are incredibly helpful. Your ideal customer journey maps depend on your industry, customer base, and other unique business elements.

[Free online customer journey builder- Try now]

The challenge lies in building maps that produce useful insights. How can you build these? 

Step 1- Set goals 

Define why you’re creating customer journey maps. Is it to uncover customer problems, continually improve the experience, discover product issues, and more?

How will you implement the insights obtained? 

Mapping customer journey is not a data-collection exercise. Establishing goals and processes before you start will set you up for success. 

Step 2- Gather customer data

The next step is to populate the journey map with customer data from various sources like

  • Website
  • Survey data
  • In-app feedback
  • Customer support interactions, etc

Step 3- Select key touchpoints

Understand and select the points of interactions that you want to see on your customer journey map. Ideally, these should be high-impact touchpoints that you can improve to boost customer experience quickly. 

Step 4- Start mapping 

Once you’ve selected your goals, customer segments, and touchpoints, you’re all set to start mapping the customer journey. 

We’ve launched a free journey builder to help you build your customer journeys quickly. 

Click here to get started 

Benefits of building customer journey maps

A good customer experience must last the entire customer journey. In a survey by Emplifi

86% of consumers said they would leave a brand after as few as two poor experiences.

Customers expect excellent customer experience every time they interact with your product or service. Building a customer journey map can help you exceed these expectations and improve revenue. Here’s how. 

1. Customer journey mapping helps in visualizing customer behaviour and pain points

Customer journey maps show you the buying process from the perspective of the customers. They visualize how customers interact with your product, and where they get frustrated and drop off. 

Journey mapping allows you to dig deeper into customer’s frustrations and pain points. You  gain a deeper understanding of customer behavior and realize that your customers don’t always act the way you expect them to. 

2. Customer journey maps help to identify high-impact touchpoints

Some touchpoints are more important than others. Mapping the entire customer helps you identify touchpoints that have the highest impact on customer experience, repurchase, and revenue. 

3. Customer journey maps may help in reducing churn

Did you know that the average cart abandonment rate across all industries is 69.57%?

Sending cart abandonment emails and messages may provide the final push to some customers. But observing the entire buying journey from the customer’s point of view will show you WHY they didn’t complete the purchase. 

4. Deliver a personalized experience with customer journey map

Personalization is key to creating a great customer experience. Mapping customer journey lets you understand customer behavior and intent, allowing you to deliver a personalized experience across important touchpoints. 

5. Align your company around the customers

A complete customer journey spans across many departments- sales, marketing, product, delivery, customer support, and more. 

This means different departments and roles must work together to understand and solve customer issues. This ends up creating a non-siloed, customer-centric culture in the company that translates into better customer experience and growth. 

Customer journey builder- the ultimate growth hack

Customer journey mapping is not a one-time experiment. 

Customer behavior, intent, and needs are continuously changing. Customer journey mapping allows you to keep up and anticipate these shifts. Use our customer journey builder to easily map and improve customer experience across all touchpoints. 

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