Mapping out a Customer Journey
It is no easy task to identify customer experiences for an organization. Analyses are made, information is gathered, meetings are had, and a lot of time and effort is spent. But with all of this, how necessary is it to gather customer experience information? Will this data represent all information needed to truly understand the customer? Once all the information is gathered, what should be done with it?
This is where a Customer Journey Map comes into play. Customer Journey Mapping is becoming more popular because it helps businesses understand their customers. It ultimately improves the service design which enhances the interaction between the provider and the customer. Within the next few years, it will become imperative for businesses to have since it truly depicts the actions and experiences of customers throughout their life cycle with the product or service.
What is a Customer Journey Map?
The Customer Journey Map is a story telling visual aid that describes the experience of customers, from the beginning stage of contact until the end. You can think of it as a large infographic since the maps usually include numerous visuals to help paint a picture of the customer.
The map represents the customers’ point of view, opinions, and feelings throughout their engagement of your product or service. It shows where in the process your customers feel a particular emotion, like satisfaction or dissatisfaction, and why they are feeling this particular emotion.
There is no definite amount of information that needs to be included but in most maps, there are at least these important points:
- Personas: Describing the user and their thoughts, feelings, and opinions.
- Timeline: A specific amount of time needs to be established to show where the map begins and finishes.
- Emotion: Points or marks that illustrate the users’ feelings (happiness, frustration, etc…)
- Touchpoints: The users’ interaction throughout their experience; showing exactly what they are doing.
- Channels: Where the user is interacting and with what means (website, apps, in-store, etc…)
Why are Customer Journey Maps Important?
It is great to understand what Customer Journey Maps are, but how is it beneficial for your organization to learn directly from the customer?
Going over a Customer Journey Map with your team is very important for everyone to not only understand the range of customers you are working with, but also to understand the needs and feelings of the customers.
To be able to walk in a customer’s shoes, your business will have a better understanding of your customers likes and dislikes, what they are having trouble with, and what doesn’t work for them. This is all necessary information to have in order to encourage your employees across all departments to think outside of the box and improve your product.
Creating Customer Journey Maps in Conceptboard
In Conceptboard, there are many tools that can be used to create these maps. There is no right or wrong way to create a Customer Journey Map. Create line graphs, bar graphs, Venn diagrams, anything that will help to make your information look clear. The goal is to make it easy-to-read so people can look at it quickly and understand everything.
So once you have combined all your data, here’s how you can start building a Customer Journey map using our template and the various tools in Conceptboard:
Select the line tool icon to create a line on your board. Click and drag with your mouse to create the size of the line that you need. You can change the color, line width, and type (solid, dashed, or dotted) from the menu options while the line is selected.
Use this tool to create line graphs and to connect similar information together.
Free Hand or Scribble
Use the free hand or scribble tool to mark up your content. You can change the line width, type of line (solid, dashed, or dotted), and color from the menu options.
Use this tool to make edits in your maps or to create simple symbols like check marks.
Select the arrow icon to create arrows in your boards. Click and drag with your mouse to create the size of the arrow that you need. You can change the color, size, and type (solid, dashed, or dotted) and switch the direction of the arrowhead or make it a double arrow.
Use this tool to connect important or similar ideas together. This can also be used to represent a timeline or to help the reader continue to the correct section of the map.
Rectangle and Ellipse
Select on the rectangle or ellipse tool icons to create shapes in your boards. Click and drag your mouse to the appropriate size of the shape that you need. You can change the color, size, and type (solid, translucent, or outline) from the menu options.
The rectangle tool is great for creating bar graphs and for demonstrating the touchpoints in your map.
The elliptical tool is great for creating Venn Diagrams. It can also be used for the points plotted in your line graphs.
Click anywhere on the board to create a text box. Type or paste text and click outside of it when you are done. All text boxes can be included in your board sections outline by clicking on the ‘Outline’ icon.
Text boxes can be used to explain a customer interaction, how they are feeling, or what the next step is in the process. You can change fonts, the size of your text, and the color of the box and font.
Click and drag anywhere on the board to create the size of the sticky note you need. You can type or paste text inside the note and click outside of it when you are done. All sticky notes can be included in your board sections outline by clicking on the ‘Outline’ icon.
Sticky notes can be used for explanations or small comments in your maps to help the reader get a clear picture of it’s representation. Since you can change the color of the sticky note, try setting up a color coded system to further help others better visualize the information.
Click anywhere on the board to create a headline. Type or paste text and click outside of it when you are done. All headlines are automatically included in your board sections outline.
Headlines are perfect to name different sections and charts in your maps. You can create a horizontal headline by pressing ‘Enter' after every letter.
Click and drag with your mouse to create a comment. The arrow should point exactly to the element you are commenting on since a snippet preview of the comment with its surroundings will be shown in alerts.
The comment tool is great to use for creating general comments, discussing a particular item, or giving specific feedback in a map.
Customer Journey Maps do not have to be extravagant, as long as they help visualize the correct information that will help your organization to understand the mindset of the customer. Knowing this information and being able to communicate it correctly to others will greatly improve not only the experience of the customer, but also your product or services.