If you’re in the 50% of the organizations planning to invest more in customer experience innovations, the first step is identifying the key touchpoints on your customer’s journey. Once you’ve identified those touchpoints, you can analyze each of them, identifying room for improvement to ultimately boost your customer retention.
Understanding the customer journey becomes much easier when laid out visually. This is where a customer journey map template comes into play. Use our free template and read on for a simple guide on how to complete it online.
What is the Customer Journey? [2021 updated]
A customer journey is a roadmap that highlights all the experiences a customer has when interacting with your company. This journey documents the full experience of being a customer. It starts with initial awareness all the way through to post-purchase retention and every side-step, backtrack and hurdle in between.
Generating a positive customer experience boils down to ensuring that they have an equally positive experience at every moment. Just one negative experience can undo other positive experiences throughout the journey.
What is a customer journey map?
The customer journey map is a visual story-telling aid that maps the experience of customers. Gain a better understanding of the buying experience by visualizing it through the eyes of your customers.
Use the map to illustrate the customer’s attitudes and feelings at each touchpoint. This information can be sourced from customer satisfaction surveys, customer support tickets and emails, product or feature requests, group discussions, or from staff who deal with customers regularly.
How to create a customer journey map using a template
There are a few important steps you need to take before you start filling in the template, to ensure your map is as accurate as possible.
Step 1: Information Gathering
Gather information you’ve already gathered through user research or feedback surveys. If you find that your data is lacking, delay your mapping until you have collected some more relevant, complete data through surveys or staff feedback.
This data is used to:
- Identify the main touchpoints at each of the five stages
- Gain preliminary insights and feedback
- Create a list of actions performed by your customer at each stage
Step 2: Create a user persona
A user persona is a fictional character that represents the goals and behaviors of your average user. If you haven’t created one yet, this article will guide you through the process. You should include basic demographic information, as well as a description of their needs and goals, uses of your products, and pain points.
Step 3: Begin mapping
Now it’s time to open the customer journey map template and begin filling it in.
Sections of the customer journey map template
We’ve created a simple, easy-to-use collaborative template that you can use to create your own customer journey map.
The template is broken down into the five key stages on the customer journey:
- Awareness: advertising, social media, blogs, and emails.
- Consideration: website, FAQs, sales
- Acquisition: homepage layout, customer service, product range, photography quality,
- Service: personalization, chat-bot interactions, load speed, payment options, packaging, postage, product quality and price.
- Retention: product quality, follow-up offers, loyalty memberships, returns process, reviews.
Pro tip: Run a quick Google search of your business to see all the pages that mention you. Then check your Google Analytics to see where your traffic is coming from.
Within each of these stages, you should consider the following questions in order to fully understand your customers.
What do users want to accomplish in this stage?
Describe which actions users need to do to reach the goals.
Touchpoints and channels
How do users get information to make a decision or reach goals?
What are users thinking or expecting during these actions?
Overall customer experience
What are the users’ feelings in this stage? (e.g.: happy, frustrated)
What are the problems or negative experiences that users are facing in this stage?
Opportunities to improve
How can we help users to reach the goal? Identify opportunities that could be improved or insights.
Understanding the typical customer journey and being able to communicate it visually will greatly improve not only the experience of the customer but also your products and services.
Example of a customer journey map
Using the customer journey map template, we’ve created an example of the typical customer journey in an e-commerce store. Check it out below and use it to inspire your customer journey.
Now you’ve created your customer journey map in Conceptboard, share it with your marketing and sales departments, customer service staff, managers and key stakeholders. Anyone who is involved with customers has the ability to act on this information to improve your customers experience.
Conceptboard is the perfect canvas for your team to collaborate together on, wherever you are in the world. Give it a try for free today.