A customer journey is the process or sequence of steps that a customer goes through when they interact with your business or brand, from the moment they become aware of your product or service until they become loyal fans and advocates. A customer journey helps you understand your customers’ needs, pain points, emotions, and goals at each stage of their interaction with your business.
Customer journeys help you design better solutions that meet your customers’ needs and expectations. By mapping out the customer journey, you can identify the gaps and opportunities to improve your product or service, as well as the touchpoints and channels where you communicate and interact with your customers. A customer journey also helps you align your team and stakeholders around a common vision and strategy for your product or service without getting lost in the details.
Image: Example customer journey
Benefits of customer journeys
Some of the main benefits of creating customer journeys are:
- Increased customer satisfaction and loyalty by delivering a consistent and seamless experience across all touchpoints and channels.
- Reduced churn and increased retention by anticipating and solving customer problems before they become deal-breakers.
- Higher conversions and sales by providing relevant and personalised offers and messages at the right time and place.
- Optimised use of resources and better targeted investments by focusing on the most important and impactful aspects of your product or service.
- Increased innovation and creativity by discovering new ways to add value and delight to your customers.
- Improved internal communication by aligning behind a shared understanding of your customers and how they interact with your brand.
Creating customer journeys
While every customer journey is different, since they reflect how they interact with your brand, there is no standard solution for creating one. However, the steps for creating one typically include:
- Defining your customer segments and personas. Who are your target customers? What are their characteristics, behaviours, preferences, and motivations?
- Defining your product or service goals. What are you trying to achieve with your product or service? How do you measure success?
- Mapping out the current state of the customer journey. What are the steps that a customer takes from awareness to advocacy? What are their actions, thoughts, feelings, and pain points at each step? What are the touchpoints and channels that they use to interact with your product or service?
- Identifying current gaps and opportunities. Where are the pain points and friction points in the current journey? Where are the moments of delight and satisfaction? How can you improve or eliminate the pain points and enhance or create the delight moments?
- Mapping out the desired state of the customer journey. How do you want your customers to experience your product or service? What are the actions, thoughts, feelings, and goals that you want them to have at each step? What are the touchpoints and channels that you want them to use to interact with your product or service?
- Validating and iterating. How do you test your assumptions and hypotheses about the desired journey? How do you collect feedback from your customers and stakeholders? How do you measure the impact of your changes and improvements?
It is important to remember that creating customer journeys is not a one-time activity, but an ongoing process. As your product or service evolves, so do your customers’ needs and expectations. By creating customer journeys, you can make sure you stay relevant for your customers and deliver products and services that make them happy and loyal.
To actually deliver a service you need to involve people, systems, data etc. and you need to orchestrate how they come together to create a cohesive user experience. To do this you can create a service blueprint, which is an extension of the customer journey.
So, if you want to get started with creating your first customer journey or need help updating existing ones, reach out to us here at Riimu and let’s discuss what the right approach for you looks like.