Imagine the path your customer has to go through to:
- find your eCommerce in the web,
- purchase a product or service, then make a payment,
- use the purchase in the online store,
- build in your head an image of your brand and a portfolio of products or services,
- recommend your eCommerce website to other customers.
It’s not hard to notice that the road is full of bends and forks. Therefore, it is worth dividing it into smaller stages that can be analyzed one by one. The tool – Customer Journey Map – comes with the help. It is a visualization of each step of the customer’s journey during they interaction with the brand. Each of these steps should be carried out at the highest level, which translates into making a purchase or using the service. In the previous article, we described the Customer Journey Map tool, the purpose of which is to create the most pleasant experience with the brand in the purchasing process. We call the image of a customer journey around an online store the Customer Journey Map.
STAGE I – DEFINING USER PERSONA
User Persona is the most important and basic tool for analyzing data about users of a given brand. It is a fictional character created with the help of previously collected information about a specific target group. What is certain is that we will not find two users who will behave the same in a given situation. However, by using the patterns of their actions and behavior on websites, we can isolate certain dependencies. Define who your audience is and develop their characteristics – what are their needs, goals, expectations and limitations. Focus on finding his needs for your brand. Try to create at least two or three unique personas to be able to test different patterns and reasons for using your online store’s products or services.
STAGE II – DETERMINATION OF THE CUSTOMER’S TOUCHPOINTS WITH THE BRAND
Touchpoints are places where there is an interaction between a user persona and a brand, both in the online and offline world. This is a key stage in which employees from different departments of your company should be involved. Knowing the touchpoints helps you see what the customer is actually doing when visiting the online store. Unfortunately, not all brand-customer interactions are controlled by us. The contact points are also information and opinions about the brand, products or services widely available in social media.
When creating a Customer Journey Map, it is worth simplifying the path and distinguishing 3 phases:
- before the purchase – the customer learns about the offer, verifies it by looking for the necessary information, then compares it with the competition’s offers;
- during the purchase – the customer finishes the purchase in the online store;
- after making a purchase – after-sales service, issuing an opinion, recommending an offer and using loyalty programs.
STAGE III – DEVELOPING A CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAP
After defining the user persona and brand touchpoints, you can start creating a customer journey map. The most convenient way to create a Customer Journey Map is on a large piece of paper or a board, using colored sticky notes. The process should involve employees from various departments of the company who freely express their thoughts and ideas. Then define where the map, i.e. the customer’s journey, begins and ends. For example, a map can start when a customer has a specific need and seeks to satisfy it. The end of the map is to make a purchase in the online store. We map the previously defined points of contact, while wondering which of them generate positive emotions and which are problematic. It is worth answering the question of what the customer feels at the moment of contact with our brand, what are his expectations and encountered difficulties.
STAGE IV – DEFINITION OF WORK PLAN
After developing a customer journey map, consider what actions to implement to ensure the best shopping experience for them. It is important to designate a measurement method to monitor the change in customer satisfaction on an ongoing basis. What’s more, look for elements that evoke negative emotions, as improving them will increase the likelihood of making a purchase. You may find the following formula helpful:
How can we help [user persona] with the [problem] he faces at [touchpoint] so that [effect]?
STAGE V – UPDATES OF CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAP
Every day, customers are inundated with new offers, products and services. Therefore, it is crucial to keep your finger on the pulse and update your Custom Journey Map to maintain customer satisfaction and strengthen your relationship. It is worth approaching the map as a tool that fosters the emergence of innovation, because it constantly stimulates the need to look for new solutions so that the customer can cope with exceptional performance.
Tips for preparing a Customer Journey Map:
- The map should be created together with your team, with the participation of people from various departments of the company;
- Use the existing customer knowledge base;
- Benefit from survey and industry research;
- Don’t be afraid of mistakes and corrections;
- Remember to create a persona;
- Put the information you care about on the map.