Customer Journey Maps: Everything You Need To Know

Customer Journey

To understand the importance of customer journey maps you must first look at the overall importance of customer experience. In 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. The brands that offer the best experiences will have higher levels of customer loyalty which increases revenue growth and can also reduce cost.

It is vital that companies understand their customers and one of the best ways to do that is to see the world through their eyes. This enables them to ensure every interaction is as good as it can possible be.

Many companies understand the importance of CX but struggle with how to effectively deliver an exceptional one. That is where the customer journey maps come in as a core tool in your overall CX strategy.

What is a Customer Journey Map?

So, you are bought into the idea that CX is important, the question then becomes how can you identify the weaknesses in your customer journey. By identifying and addressing those issues you can improve customer satisfaction.

By better understanding your customers, you can better deliver on their expectations.

So, what is a customer journey map?

A journey map is usually a high-level map of the end-to-end experience that can help you identify any sources of friction and frustration. Journey maps are often created by those responsible for delivering the customer experience and documenting what they think is happening. Although this can often be a good start, it is essential that actual customers opinions are represented.

It is a technique that allows companies to visualise the path a customer takes from the first exposure through to the final purchase. This can often also include the post-purchase experience as well.

A customer journey map is a tool used to visualise a customers experience of interaction with your brand. This should be done from the customers point of view as it forces you to look at how your customers actually experience your brand rather than how you think they do.

Touchpoints Vs Journeys

There are many terms used around customer journey maps, touchpoints, feedback maps and more. All have subtle differences and it can be important to understand the difference.

A customer journey map can cover the entire experience from the customer first defining a problem to using a product or service weeks or months down the line.

Often companies will create customer personas to make journey maps more relevant to different types of customers.

Once you identify all touchpoints you can then look at ways to improve this experience. To do this you can use a touchpoint map to identify the specific areas you want to measure and address. From this a feedback map can be generated. This then allows you to survey your customers can collect feedback on each relevant touchpoint. Your results can then be placed onto your feedback map, allowing you to see a visual representation of your customers experience.

This can then highlight customer pain points and the highs and lows of your customer journey.

Simply creating a map alone is not enough. You need to understand how your customer feels during the overall journey and at each touchpoint. This is where customer feedback is essential to help you improve this experience.

Taking your journey map and overlaying customer feedback data can start to shed light on the touchpoints that need your attention.

Ask customers to identify which touchpoints are important to them, perhaps rating different aspects of your service to help you understand their prioritise against your own.

How To Create A Successful Customer Journey Map

There are some key elements to keep in mind when setting out to create your Customer Journey Map.

  • Don’t look from the wrong perspective: The journey should be based on your actual customers experience and not one based on your internal view on what the journey should be.
  • Capture the entire journey:  It is important to understand the entire end to end journey. This helps get an overall picture of how your customers interact with your brand.
  • Identify moments of truth: Isolate the moments that can result in make-or-break decisions for your customers and ensure you are delivering at these key moments.
  • Make It Actionable: Creating a nice looking map is not the objective here. It should become an integral part of your CX tool kit which is being monitored and updated frequently.

Benefits of Customer Journey Maps

McKinsey found that maximising satisfaction with customer journeys can increase customer satisfaction by 20% and also increase revenue by up to 15%. It can lower the cost of serving customers by up to 20%. Basically, if you implement a successful customer journey map program it will optimise your overall customer experience and improve your bottom line.

Let’s take a look at a few more benefits of utilising Customer Journey Maps.

  • Improve Visibility: Get a wider view of your overall customer experience
  • Identify Pain Points: Pin point areas on your journey map that are causing customer pain.
  • Prioritise Improvements: See what issues are having the biggest impact on the overall experience and implement changes to improve them.
  • Bridge Internal Gaps: Many companies have a siloed approach when it comes to communicating with customers and fail to exchange data which stops them providing a seamless experience. Journey mapping allows the whole organisation to see the big picture and how all elements work together.
  • Create better experiences: By isolating touchpoints where you are not meeting customer expectations you can address them to improve the overall experience.
  • Engaging Employees: Journey maps are a great opportunity to engage employees and increase motivation.
  • Kick Start Your CX Programme: Often companies struggle with where to start their CX programme. A Customer Journey Map can be a great starting point to start thinking about your customers experience and identifying where you can make improvements.

Conclusion

The evidence shows that companies that utilise Customer Journey Maps get rewarded and they help create a better understanding of their customers. However, creating the map is just the start of your own journey. Converting this into an actionable feedback map then enables you to visualise your customer feedback and identify those areas in the journey that need addressing.

Wizu understands the importance of customer journey maps and that is why we have our own journey mapping software built into our conversational survey platform. Simply select a relevant map template or create your own and Wizu can automatically generate a survey based on those touchpoints. Then our reports will overlay your customer feedback onto your journey map, giving you the ultimate view of your customers experience and helping you identify where improvements can be made.

Get in touch with us today to see a demo of Wizu in action.