As a startup, you need to have a clear understanding of the experience that customers are having with your brand.
Without understanding your customers’ pain points, it is very unlikely to create an excellent customer experience.
One perfect approach you can use as a startup, to completely understand your customers’ experiences at various touchpoints with your product is – Customer Journey Mapping.
What is a Customer Journey Map?
A Customer Journey Map is a visual representation of the path customers take when interacting with your brand or product.
It starts with Awareness, which is when they first learn about your company/product and it goes through to the end when they make a purchase or become a repeat customer.
Why Is A Customer Journey Map Important?
Your customer journey map will allow you to put yourself in your customers’ shoes, thereby helping you figure out why they do what they do – and when, how and where they do it.
Here are other reasons why mapping out your customer’s journey is important:
1. Helps to enhance the customer experience
With a customer journey map, startups can have a deeper understanding of their customer’s interactions, needs and pain points at each stage of the customer journey.
Knowing this, work can be done to optimize processes, products, and services to provide a more personalized customer experience for customers.
2. Helps you Identify your customer’s pain points
By mapping your customer journey, you are able to see your customers’ pain points or areas of friction that customers may encounter when interacting with your brand or product.
3. Helps you align and meet customer expectations
Customer journey mapping enables startups to align their processes and products with customer expectations because it helps to identify gaps between customer expectations and the actual experience provided.
4. Helps in making informed decisions
Mapping out the customer journey helps with getting valuable insights that can be helpful in identifying opportunities for innovation, improvement and better resource allocation.
By understanding and mapping out the customer journey, startups can make informed decisions that align with customer needs and contribute to the long-term success of the business.
Steps To Creating a Customer Journey Map
1. Start with your customer persona
First, you need to clearly identify and understand your target customer.
Ensure you have detailed and accurate information about their demographics, needs, goals, motivations, and pain points. With this information, you will be able to create a more accurate and effective customer journey map.
2. Identify the key stages of the customer journey for your brand
Next, you will need to identify and determine the key stages/steps that your customer goes through when interacting with your business. These stages most often than not include; awareness, interest, consideration, purchase and post-purchase.
Please note that stages may differ depending on your product, industry and customer journey.
3. Map out key customer actions
The next step is to Identify the key action(s) that customers would typically take at each stage of the journey. For example, in the awareness stage, customers might conduct a simple online search or view your social media post. Ensure you list all these actions accordingly.
4. Identify your touchpoints
Be it online or offline, your office, customer service, or emails, it is important for you to Identify the various points of interaction that customers have with your business at each stage of their journey.
5. Understand customer emotions.
You should know that your customers are human, so they have emotions. Identify their emotional state at each stage of the journey.
Do they feel excited, frustrated, or satisfied?
Understanding the emotional state of your customers will help you address their needs and pain points efficiently.
6. Create a visual representation
After carefully going through the first five steps, it is now time to create a visual design of the customer journey map. This visualization can be in the form of a flowchart, or a diagram that illustrates the stages, actions, touchpoints, emotions, pain points, etc.
7. Validate Your Customer Journey
Most times, creating a customer journey map is usually based on internal research and assumptions, so it is important to validate your customer journey map.
To do this, you have to bring your customer into the process.
You can adopt surveys and direct customer interactions to determine and validate customers’ thoughts, actions and emotions.
As a startup, it is important to deliver the best customer experience to your customers. You can’t do that if you don’t know where, when and how these customers connect with your company.
Getting started can be very confusing, so schedule a discovery session with our growth specialist to help iron out and get through the huddle of creating your customer journey map.
You can also build a community around your product, you can read about community-led growth here