Nowadays, a customer-oriented approach is necessary for launching and building a business. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, your business needs to be built around customers’ habits, preferences, and needs. Thus, you need to know your audience and understand their shopping behavior.
So what is the most effective way to get to know your customers? You need to learn to think and act like your consumer. It is also worth maximizing your efficiency by using customer journey maps.
What is Customer Journey Mapping
Customer journey mapping is the creation of detailed infographics that visually reflect the entire path of the customer’s interaction with your company’s product through various channels in a certain period of time.
Working with CJM allows you to:
- Increase customer loyalty, which in turn will help you reduce churn and increase repeat purchase rate. Customers that don’t face any challenges on the way to their goal will most likely keep coming back.
- Shorten the sales cycle and increase conversions. CJM helps remove unnecessary touchpoints and simplify the customer journey. And the faster the client gets what he wants, the less are the chances that he will leave.
- Boost the company’s customer focus. Customer journey maps help employees to understand how the company interacts with customers and how their actions affect the customer experience. Working with CJM helps to shift the focus from organizational issues to customer issues.
- Reduce the risk of new product failure. CJM acts as a tool for researching the needs of future customers, as it allows you to prevent problems before they occur.
- Find your company’s growth rate for existing products and services.
How to Build a Customer Journey Map
1. Preparation. Collection of Information.
Audience research and creation of marketing personas are generalized client images based on audience data. It’s important to remember that each person is unique, as are his fears, desires, and expectations. In other words, each customer likes different products. That being said, different people often buy the same product. All this means that you will need several characters.
Thus, you need to pay attention to the specific actions of the buyer, his problems, doubts, fears, the process of choosing between alternatives, and catching his triggers.
This is a fairly large amount of information, so it might take you some time to collect it all. You can use multiple source such as:
- Conduct research, polls, in-depth interviews,
- Collect customer feedback, which is concentrated in the center of your company’s support,
- Use your own experience,
- Attract mystery shoppers.
2. The Intersection of Customer Experience
At this stage, all the points where the customer comes into contact with your product are plotted on the map. There can be a huge number of options: from the website and the app to personal communication with the manager and meeting with the courier. Remember, the more points appear on the customer journey map, the more detailed the picture will be.
3. Identification of Critical Points and Barriers
Barriers prevent the client from moving from one point to another. These can be errors on the
website or spam letters, as well as doubts, loss of interest, and so on.
It is imperative to identify barriers and ways to overcome them. Otherwise, the buyer will have a negative emotional experience associated with a product or company.
4. Removing Barriers
Once the list of barriers is drawn up, you need to find ways to remove them. And if the customer journey has changed after you’ve implemented new solutions, create a new one to evaluate the results.
The ultimate goal of the CJM is to create a positive customer experience, continuous and successful customer interaction with the product. As a result, there should be few barriers, and the consumer’s movement along the map should be comfortable.
Critical points identify ways to optimize the product and the company. Everything from brainstorming to outsourcing consultants will do the trick.
Removing barriers usually requires improving the quality of service or updating the product. You may need to simplify the map and remove some touchpoints or completely rebuild the customer journey.
5. Repeating the Process
Once you have made a map and the customer’s path has changed after optimization, take the trouble to draw up a new map. Make sure to monitor the points of interaction between the buyer and the product. This will help you to avoid any barriers.
It is important to understand that CJM isn’t a magic wand. Creating CJM organizes customer relationships and helps them deliver the right content. You will most likely need to wait for at least 6 months after the map is finished and put into service to see the real impact of CJm.
At the same time, after the initial assessment and rendering, CJM needs constant adjustment: the needs of customers change, their needs are clarified, the impact of channels is measured, experiments are carried out with various types of content. Finally, the company is constantly improving its products and services.