Why Businesses Need A Customer Journey Map & How To Create It

customer journey map how to create buyer journeys inbound marketing sales funnel lead conversion

To satisfy the needs of the people you are targeting, you need to step into their shoes. Let’s not get into the textbook definition and keep it simple. Customer Journey Mapping is the pictorial representation of the experiences you offer to your customers. 

However, some businesses and brands fall short in considering customer’s experience and this ends up being a big serious problem. Those who are running the business often see the product through their own eyes. The effect of this negligence can be seen both on the sales and the way the customer perceives the business. A business ignoring the steps and experiences involved in the customer’s journey from discovering the need for a product or service to end up buying one, the business prepare for the consequences. 

Good experience builds trust and loyalty. Bad experience sends a clear signal that you don't care about the customer. What’s next in bad customer journeys? 

● 56% of the disappointed customer will abandon you for good. 
● 14% of them will share their disappointments on social media. 
● 20% of them will post online reviews. 
● 25% of them will tell their friends and family members to stay away from you. 

You will be paying the cost of ignoring customer experience and providing a bad buyer journey. 

cost poor consumer experience customer journey map importance

What Is A Customer Journey Map?

A Customer Journey Map can serve the purpose of a tool that can forestall these serious problems. Customer journey mapping can endow a business with the ability to be in the circumstances of the customer and experience what the customer is experiencing. You can reap the following two benefits by utilizing the inputs you get from digital marketing customer journey map: 

1. You can make your UX more customer friendly and improve the all-around experience for your customers. 

2. You will see a decline in the number of customers you lose. You will sell more and get more returns. 

Why Should You Build A Physical Customer Journey Map? 

You might think that you know the way your business works. You are doing business by producing something for your customers and when you don't know your customer, believe it or not, you don't completely know your own business. 

When you create a consumer persona in digital marketing for businesses, you can spot some weaknesses in the marketing strategy, you can effectively allocate your resources and also know your business. You will be able to fix those weak or broken links and eventually improve customer experience. 

According to Millward Brown Digital, 55% of marketers can’t even say that they completely understand their customer’s journey. Recent data also shows that 63% of marketers do recognize the importance of customer journey marketing strategy. While bounce rates can be important metrics, there are many aspects you should consider to create a map containing all important customer journey stages. You can create a useful customer journey map only when you consider every important channel for your brand. Include your website, social media accounts, your apps and every other channel (phone, email etc) you are using to interact with your customers. 

It is pretty easy to build a marketing journey map. You need not to involve any external consultant for that. You need to engage and understand the experience of your customers through the following five customer journey stages: 

1. Discover 
2. Research 
3. Purchase 
4. Delivery 
5. Aftercare 

How To Create A Customer Journey Map 

When it comes to creating a map for customer journey engagement, there are following five key rules you should follow: 

Step Into The Shoes Of Your Customers 

You need to think like a customer to create a meaningful customer journey map. Don't be someone who is working for the business. This is a difficult thing to do because you cannot forget the aspects of your business. It is not easy to approach the business with fresh eyes. Another source of trouble can be the types of customers you sell to. For example, you are selling three different types of products. So, create a customer journey map for your ideal customer. 

You can spend some time on the websites of your competitors. Do it like a customer. Use your own website. Note down the similarities and differences between the user experience offered by your website and your competitor’s website. For example, see how far a customer needs to navigate to get a piece of information on your website and your competitor's website. 

Be Holistic With Your Customer Journey Maps

It is important to be holistic to recreate the exact customer experience. Consider ordering process as an example. There are two points in the ordering process which are annoying your customer. You find these annoying points too small to include in the map. However, you need to be a customer while creating a customer journey map. You can’t ignore these points. 

Find ‘Pain Points’ In Your Mapping

Pain points are the areas in which your business is failing in meetings the expectations of your customers. These pain points can be on your website, social media marketing, customer support services or anywhere your customer is interacting with your business, before the sale or after the sale. In simple words, find out why and where a customer is abandoning you or disappointed with you. You can do this by creating a ‘customer satisfaction’ line graph. Analyze your sales funnel and find out on which stage your customers are leaving you. In order to address these pain points, you need to find these pain points. 

Quantify For Customers

When you are creating a customer journey map, you are dealing with concepts that are difficult to quantify such as emotion, decision-making and brand perception among customers. However, you can use metrics to avoid these difficulties and collect information you can analyze, test and quantify. Use this information to develop a hypothesis. 

Set Some Goals And Aim High

For example, from searching for a product to check out, a customer needs to click 5 times. The goal can be reducing the number of clicks to 4. Implement the required changes to meet that goal and see how this is helping in increasing your sales. 

Implement And Reinvent

Now you know what your customer feels, you have identified pain points, collected information and set goals. It is time to make changes in your website, app, social media strategy and other channels you are using to interact with your customers. Address both small and major issues during your customer journey mapping. 

Develop an overall strategy to address some question such as how your UX should be. Use the customer journey map to make changes in your marketing strategies and business practices. 

Customer Journey Map Example: WebSpero

Jordan works in WebSpero Solutions and for the first time, he’s going to invest in the share market. He is looking for an advisor. There will be the following phases involved in the complete purchase process. 

customer journey map example buyers journey sales funnel case study

Self-Awareness Phase 

First of all, Jordan will ask his knowns to recommend some advisors who can help him in making a calculated and informed decision. His friends recommended him the top 3 advisors and you are included in this list. So, Jordan gets what he wants. 

Jordan gets a positive experience in the self-awareness phase. 

Research And Consideration Phase 

As you are at the top of the list, Jordan visits your website first. Within two or three seconds, he is on your website. That’s a good experience. However, your website is too complicated to navigate to the information Jordan needs. The kind of language used on the website is a little beyond the understanding of a beginner. He is unable to get what these color pie charts and graphs on the website are all about. The entire content on your website about your journey, your experiences and your achievements. There is hardly anything that can educate the first time investor. 

Not a good experience for a beginner. 

However, the magic of words of mouth is still working and Jordan now considers reading customer reviews and ratings. You have got some great positive reviews. 

One positive experience in the research and awareness phase. 

Purchase Phase 

Encouraged, Jordan once again visits your website. However, things become problematic when you ask him to fill out a long application form. Except for his first name, last name, address and other personal details, he has no idea what you are asking for. Jordan is going to invest for the first time and your form is for someone who is an experienced investor. 

Not a good experience. 

A little disappointed Jordan now gets your phone number from the contact us page and calls you. And from the other end, he hears ‘your call is important to us. Please stay on line’ and then the same old boring solo flute. Not a good experience. 

After waiting for long 15 minutes, someone from your side attends Jordan. That someone listens to his needs, explains options available to him and then helps in filling out that long form. Satisfied with this good experience, Jordan decides to count on you. 

Post-Purchase Phase 

You have a satisfied customer now. So far so good. Now Jordan wants a follow-up. And this time he is quickly answered that too without listening to that annoying solo flute. 

It’s a great experience. 

Pain Points In This Example 

● Navigation and kind of language on the website are too complicated for a first timer. The content is all about you. Add content that educates the customer. Simplify navigation and content. 

● The form you expect the customer to fill out is too long and complicated. Keep it short. Provide a little explanation of the information you are collecting. 

● The customer has to wait for up to 15 minutes to hear from you. Don't do that. Answer quickly. Despite these many pain points, Jordan does not abandon you. However, some other customer can. Now you are aware of the improvements you need to make. 

Some Points To Remember 

The customer journey map is easy to create but difficult to practice. There are numerous factors affecting business and customer experiences. However, you can rely on following key points to keep things on track: 

Keep It Simple 

Customer Journey Map can be a great diagnostic tool. However, you should keep it simple as you are identifying micro issues by using a macro view. 

Think Like A Customer 

Try to understand how a customer is interacting with your brand. Instead of relying on what you think about your customer, involve your customer. 

Find Areas To Improve In The Customer Journey Mapping Process

Set a new standard of quality you want in your business. Neutralize the negativity in the customer’s experience and turn it into positivity. That’s why you are creating a customer journey map and this is exactly what you should do.

Official Bootstrap Business Blog Newest Posts From Mike Schiemer Partners And News Outlets