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The customer journey is the different phases a consumer goes through before, during, and after purchasing. Each stage of this journey is critical. Therefore, businesses must understand how to connect effectively with their customers at each stage of this journey. Having a good understanding of the customer journey is key to creating a solid brand.
If you are starting with a brand-new business, you can make good guesses about the customer's journey. However, if you already have a business or are unhappy with your brand image, it can be tricky to know exactly what the customers are thinking. Does this mean you will need to interview your existing customers painstakingly? Not necessarily!
Suppose you're familiar with the Customer Journey Mapping Method. It's a methodology gaining plenty of traction in online marketing circles.
You are trying to understand the customer journey if these questions sound familiar.
Whenever we speak about the customers' journey, we link it with the customer experience. There is more than one experience. The customer journey is the path your audience or customer takes through their thoughts, actions, or emotions. It begins with awareness of a problem or need.
It is no question the customer journey is designed to help improve your conversion rate. Unfortunately, so many brands are stuck on understanding how it all works. So let's break it down!
A customer journey map is an easy-to-understand visual guide. The guide helps marketers understand the customer experience with your product or service at each touchpoint along their path. In addition, it provides a comprehensive overview of all aspects of the customer's experience. The elements consider the positive and negative experiences to improve the overall customer experience.
The idea behind developing a customer journey map is to create an actionable plan for how you will:
You will use this map throughout their entire life cycle with your business. For example, a customer life cycle can be divided into three main stages:
These stages are then further divided into key points. These key touch points represent meaningful interactions with customers at each stage.
One of the most important benefits is that it helps you survey your customers to understand what they want from your product or service. It can also help you prioritize features and reevaluate how you market your products.
The difference between the two is quite simple. A customer journey map and a user journey map are two different ways of expressing the same information. Customer journeys are created using tools like Visio. While user journeys, on the other hand, are made using tools like Excel.
A customer journey is a diagram that helps you visualize how customers move through their buying process. It's typically presented as an outline with each step or phase of the buying process outlined in a different color or shape. This tool aims to help you understand how your customers think and feel about your product or service to create better experiences for them. In addition, customer journeys help teams identify opportunities to improve customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention. Finally, they track how customers interact with your product or service across all touchpoints in their journey. User journeys are typically created using Excel spreadsheets. They are often used alongside customer journey diagrams as part of an effort to understand customer needs better. Visio is a diagramming software that has been around since 1987. It creates and shares graphic representations of information and data flow across systems, processes, and people. User journeys are typically created in Visio because they focus on how users interact with products or services.
It illustrates how a business gets feedback from its customers.
Customer journey mapping focuses primarily on users and what they do with your product. User journey mapping mainly looks at users and their needs and wants. The main goal is to determine how those needs and wants influence their interactions.
Customer journey mapping doesn't focus on end-users. Instead, it focuses primarily on business stakeholders, decision-makers, designers, developers, marketers, and salespeople who use the product. Customer journey mapping can help you make sure you're catering to the right person (end-user).
If you're not getting feedback from your core audience, you might miss an opportunity for growth or expansion.
Consider internal stakeholders like product managers, designers, or developers and external stakeholders like customers or potential customers. Depending on your team's roles, you may have some overlap. For example, internal stakeholders will communicate the value of your customer journey map to others on your product team. In addition, they'll likely do the development work represented in your customer journey map. Plus, they will take ownership of the maps as a whole.
External stakeholders in your organization will look at your customer journey map from a much broader perspective. They may not be working directly on your product. However, they still belong to an audience that will benefit from it. Their interest in knowing what you've built often stems from a desire to understand their clients' pain points. Hence, this can be through their account of service or product experience.
Yes! Evaluate all your channels to understand the best fit for your business and the type of customers you want to attract. When you do this for the first time, you'll often find different channels are better suited for other customers and even the same person over time. Customers will often decide on a track based on what they perceive as their needs. This will happen before they've even made a purchase decision. So look at different channels to best capture what people want. That's how they can bridge the gap between what they want and what they buy.
It's virtually impossible to know which one will convert the best. We can, however, make a few educated guesses based on what you know about your customer. The more data you collect, the better the likelihood of identifying the right channel that will give you the most sales.
You want to make sure your customer experience is smooth every step of the way. That includes when there is a need to switch between channels. Let us say, for instance, your customer is reaching out to you from social media through a live chat.
If your answer is the former, then you are good to go. If it is the latter, then more work is left for you and your team members to do on the user experience end first. Communication channels should be easy to use. Any technology or tool used should improve the experience and not cause more issues.
Prioritize your goals in how your business is set up to make the most of them. For example, if you're in an eCommerce business, your plan might be to sell more products. That goal might excite you about building a store, reducing inventory costs, improving margins, etc.
If you have a business focused on selling shoes to women over 50, you don't necessarily need to build a specialized website to satisfy customer needs. Instead, you can sell them through eBay or Amazon, where you'll have access to the same kind of buyers who are already familiar with your brand.
When prioritizing your goals, you have to consider your team. What role do your employees play in your goals? You can then understand how to prioritize based on wants or needs. It's also essential to consider what is achievable in the short term and why it's vital to know what you want from your customers when setting your marketing strategy.
We've all watched customers take an hour to decide on the right product. Of course, no one likes to see this happen. So, what is the best way to handle it?
Most people will go through their customer's journey with that one question: "What if the customer's journey doesn't go as planned?" Of course, these scenarios are rare. However, when they occur, it can be a recipe for disaster. No need to make things worse by becoming defensive or blaming your customers. Instead, take a long look at what went wrong. See if there's something you can do to improve your product offering. That might include adding limited-time features, modifying your product description, or improving your website copy.
Make sure users have easy access to your customer service button. It should be easy to speak to a customer service rep if needed. Sometimes, customers can get confused and could use some help. This goes a long way in ensuring customer satisfaction. It's essential to understand the different personas you're targeting.
Your customers are always looking for ways to save money and time. So it would be best if you kept up with the latest trends. You'll find new products and services that are easy to use and very popular with your customers. Keep your content short, concise, and easily accessible. Make it easy for your visitors to find the information they want quickly. Your content should be simple to understand, so your visitors can quickly take action. Avoid complex language or terms that aren't familiar to most people. Use simple examples and don't overcomplicate things.
Stay relevant by getting new insights on the journey of your customers. Then, be sure to provide the right product at the right time. If you want to keep your business solutions relevant, focus on your customers' journey. Do this by checking how your products fit into their lifestyle. Then, look for ways to help them live a more fulfilling life. Try to be part of their dreams and aspirations in real life. Finally, help them achieve their goals.
Today, whether you're a B2B or a B2C company, adequate research and data analysis are required before creating your customer journey map. There's no reason to rely on assumptions when you have data on your customer base to inform you. Your ability to address customer pain points is the foundation of a better customer experience.
So, take a closer look at user needs to get insights on how to attract new customers. Then, after attracting them into your funnel, you will need to nurture them through the different stages of the entire journey.
A great start is understanding different customers will have different needs. For example, you will have customers from older generations and younger generations. You want to create the ideal customer experience for their specific journey. That includes everything from your website's design to the approach of your sales team.
Want to learn how to have a positive customer journey? To talk to one of our growth specialists at gardenpatch, today!
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