We have previously discussed different metrics to assess and analyze customer experience like the NPS or methods to supervise it, like customer experience management. But there are some other concepts that offer a business the chance to pave the path together with the customer and help Improve the experience even before it is created. Customer journey mapping is an ultimate tool that no one can deny its importance nowadays.
Customer Journey Mapping is an essential CX tool that is categorized as a part of a bigger concept called customer journey management. With its help, your business can ensure that every interaction with the customer is well known and ideally well-optimized.
In this article from Pisano Academy, we will talk about customer journey mapping, one of the most crucial instruments your CX toolbox should be equipped with. We also will talk about the reason why it is considered necessary, as well as how you can benefit from it.
What is Customer Journey Mapping?
Customer journey mapping essentially refers to creating, or literally illustrating, a customer journey map. But what is a customer journey map?
CJM, as it is widely known this way, is a blueprint of the path a potential customer walks through. It begins since the very early stages of the journey when the customer becomes aware of the existence of the business, its products or services and lasts when the customer is an ambassador of it.
The customer journey map is usually divided into segments, each labeled as the stage of the journey the customer is positioned. This journey differs from one industry, business or at some points product to another. This is the reason why all companies nowadays strive to have a unique customer journey map.
The Customer Journey
However, this journey typically starts with the awareness stage, where a potential customer learns about the business, product or service. Then comes the consideration stage, where the still potential customer takes it into consideration while weighing up different options.
The next step is the purchase, the point at which the potential customer is converted into an actual customer. The purchase step is where the sales and marketing efforts pay off. Despite many traditional businesses calling this step the end of the road, it is now considered the first step of a million more.
The retention phase is where most businesses are now struggling to improve themselves. This is where you try to improve the CX somehow that not only will the customer not terminate the relationship with your company, but it also gets ready for the next and final stage of the path: Advocacy.
An advocate is a customer so satisfied with the company and its services that they will act as a brand ambassador for it. These customers will use the power of word of mouth to encourage their family and friends to use the services and products they are satisfied with. This powerful recommendation is where all CJMs are leading to.
How Can the Customer Journey Mapping Boost Your CX
While it earlier was considered something extra that was not necessary at all, Customer Journey Mapping is becoming more and more popular among the business every day. A report in 2018 revealed that two-thirds of organizations reviewed are using customer journey mapping, which shows how popular CJM is. Meanwhile, the same report also stated that 85 percent of these organizations expressed customer journey mapping delivered a positive or very positive impact, which is remarkable enough to encourage all businesses to give CJM a chance.
These simple-looking blueprints serve as a map depicting all customer interactions and their pain points. When illustrated, you have a big picture of the entire lifecycle of a potential customer. Having a bright idea about how a customer moves within various stages of your business journey, you can simply find out where you are more in danger of losing them and where you have more chance of facilitating their transformation into advocates.
The data offered by CJM is beneficial not only for the purpose of improving your customer experience but also to boost other teams’ efforts. Most companies express remarkable marketing, logistics and distribution improvements after utilizing customer journey mapping. This is due to the fact that when mapped into CJM, some problems are uncovered that was not even visible before that.
How to Create a Customer Journey Map
To illustrate your CJM, you first need basic information that will serve as the infrastructure of every customer journey map. Prior knowledge about the purchasing stages is most importantly required, in addition to a thorough understanding of the buyer persona of the brand. After gathering this fundamental information, you can go ahead with analyzing the path and creating the customer journey map with a detailed review of the touchpoints as well as customer interactions and decisions.
As there indeed is more than one journey to map, make sure you know which one you are mapping. Try to include the people, processes, touchpoints and measurements as much as possible to make the map closer to reality.
In this article from Pisano Academy, we described one of the most valuable tools in every business CX toolbox, customer journey mapping. We discussed how important it is and why the companies utilizing it are experiencing a remarkable positive impact. Also, at the end of the article, we briefly talked about the process and fundamentals of creating a CJM.