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What is a customer journey map?

What is a customer journey map?

Virtually the entire buying process of the customer is mapped with a customer journey map. The processes are viewed and visualized from the customer’s point of view. This shows at which customer journey touchpoints the customer experience can be improved.

Customer journey mapping in 5 steps

Customer journey mapping involves a few steps:

  • Step 1: Know who you are as a company and determine the purpose of the customer journey.
  • Step 2: Create customer personas.
  • Step 3: For each persona, complete the customer journey and customer journey touchpoints.
  • Step 4: Analyze the customer journey and identify areas for improvement in the customer journey.
  • Step 5: Create an action plan for changes and get started.

Define customer journey goals

In general, then, customer journey mapping should lead to better customer relationships in order to achieve certain predetermined goals of the business. Therefore, first determine the purpose of your customer journey. This should include who the company is, why you do what you do, how the company does it and what makes your company unique. Only then can you create a good customer journey map. One model that can help with goal setting is Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle.

Creating customer personas

Determine who the target customer is, as this forms the basis for forming customer personas. A customer persona is a characterization of a particular type of customer. This includes the following characteristics; age, gender, interests, place of residence and estimated income. Customer personas can provide good support when setting up multiple online marketing activities provided the persona is of good value. Creating customer persona is an essential part for a customer journey model because a customer journey is different for each customer. Using customer personas, you can generalize the customer journey for an entire target group.

Side data for customer journey mapping

To properly map the customer journey, a lot of customer journey data must be collected for each customer persona. In doing so, the following questions can be asked:

  • What different customer journey touchpoints might the customer encounter?
  • How are the responsibilities within the organization distributed at these touchpoints?
  • On which touchpoints does the company already score optimally?
  • Where does the company not score well or where are improvements possible?
  • How do customers experience the different stages or phases in their customer journey?
  • What is the decisive moment for the customer before purchasing a product or service?
  • Which customer journey touchpoints are most important for the company to address?

Making analysis of the customer journey map

When analyzing the customer journey map, all phases of the customer journey are considered. These include 1) phase of latent and/or concrete need, 2) the orientation phase, 3) the consideration phase, 4) the decision moment, 5) the purchase phase, 6) the delivery phase, 7) the use phase, 8) the loyalty phase and 9) the ambassador phase. This involves looking at what questions, emotions or problems each customer persona has in this phase and how the company can respond to them. It is advisable to do this in a brainstorming session or workshop with several people within the company in order to get as much input and insights as possible.

Action plan and optimizing the customer journey

All the ideas can be summarized into an overall picture. Now it is time to see what is feasible, which problems or challenges in the customer journey map need to be addressed immediately and which can be addressed in the longer term. This creates a practical roadmap; a roadmap of customer needs and action points. The implemented solutions can then be measured again in order to optimize the customer journey as best as possible along the way.

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