What does a customer journey map look like? What does it consist of? What are the benefits? How can it help your organisation focus on the one thing that truly matters?
A customer journey map tells the story of your customer’s experience. From initial contact, through the various points of engagement, to the eventual long term relationship.
The customer journey map can focus on one particular part of the story or it can give an overview of the entire experience. Either way, it should always identify the key interactions a customer has with your organisation.
It’s within these interactions where you will find out what the user is feeling, what their motivations are during each phase of the journey and surface any questions they might ask when interacting with each of the touchpoints.
The goal of a customer journey map is simple: to teach organisations more about their customers.
You’ll find that throughout this entire exercise, it will always come back to the customer.
A customer journey map helps you focus entirely on the most crucial person to your business, as they’re the reason for your continued existence. And improving their journey is paramount to keeping them happy, engaged and coming back for more.
Ultimately, a customer journey map creates shared goals and a common vision throughout your organisation.
You could think of journey mapping as the roots of a tree. It’s what keeps an organisation solid. A good journey map will help you establish how successful your customer experience is across the customer lifecycle.
Journey mapping places focus on the the customer experience during the entire customer lifecycle.
There are three crucial prerequisites in any customer journey map: the actor, the scenario and the journey lifecycle.
From these facets of the journey map, you’ll be able to gather insights on how to improve the customer experience.
UX Research 101
There are three possible ways to identify the scenarios to use as part of your customer journey map, although there could be more.
If the scenario is what you create, the journey phases are what your customers surface when they interact with your property.
The experience of your brand or product will involve many different journeys undertaken by many different people, but you will have to decide which one to focus on for your journey map. You may want to focus on the most common one, in order to smooth over any rough edges. Or you’ll want to explore a more unpopular one, in order to bring it up to speed with the rest of your journeys.
The phases within these journeys will help you paint a comprehensive view of the entire customer lifecycle.
At last, the bit you’ve all been waiting for: an example of a customer journey map. Your customer journey map doesn’t necessarily have to look exactly like this one – and different organisations have different ways of presenting their own. Some maps are much fancier than the one shown below, others are just a bunch of coloured post-it notes stuck to a board.
Whatever aesthetic form your map takes, there are three important parts of the customer journey map that you must include. We’ve split them into Zones…
Zone A is the lens – this is what you’re seeing the journey through, i.e. the actor and the scenario. The journey is through their eyes.
Zone B is the experience – this is comprised of the journey phases (the chunks of meaningful behaviour that provide high-level organisation of actions, thoughts and emotions) and the actor’s actions, thoughts and emotions throughout the journey.
From this you can head to Zone C, where you gather the insights and opportunities for improvements. As well as defining who is in charge of implementing those insights (internal ownership).
Which brings us to the ultimate point of the customer journey map… how do you spot the stuff that you can fix?
There are plenty of ways to analyse the journey, and every organisation provides different journeys through their properties, so no two journeys will necessarily highlight the same opportunities. However, to help you get started, there are a few things to look out for…