Mapping Customer Journeys

Nigel Greenwood from Simply Customer - a real expert at customer experience and customer journey mappingEditors Note: Expert content needs an expert content writer and Yorkshire Powerhouse is pleased to publish this business advice article on customer journey mapping, kindly written by a real expert in his field – Nigel Greenwood from Simply Customer.

Please consider contacting Nigel to improve your customer experience – just click on the advert links above or below – and please mention Yorkshire Powerhouse if you do make contact.

You have probably heard or read about the need to create a sales funnel – a series of touchpoints for potential customers to become aware of your business and eventually buy from you.

However, if you just create a sales funnel you have only done half a job – and missed the most important part!

Acquiring new customers is important – especially when you have a new business. But to grow a strong, sustainable business you need those customers to stay, buy from you again and refer others to you.

On average it costs as much to acquire 1 new customer as it does to keep 12 existing ones – plus it is easier to sell to existing customers and, on average, they spend more than 50% more than a first-time customer would each time they buy from you again.

A customer journey map doesn’t just map out your sales funnel, it maps out all the touchpoints throughout the whole time a customer is with you. By mapping the full customer journey, you will not only make sure you maximise sales from enquiries, you will also make sure you have lots of repeat sales and happy customers who refer others to you.

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Mapping customer journeys – the layout

If you search online for customer journey maps, you will find thousands of different formats. You will also find experts, tools, templates and books that can help you. Don’t get confused – just find a format that works for you, try it yourself first and use a tool or expert if you find you need help.

Whichever format you use, you need to list all the touchpoints a customer could see during 4 stages of their relationship with you.

The 4 stages are:

  1. Awareness
  2. Consideration
  3. Purchase
  4. Ongoing relationship

For every touchpoint, think about what information the customer would want and what you want them to do, and measure them against these:

  • Make it easy – how obvious is it for the customer to understand your message? How many steps are there to go to the next stage of the relationship?
  • Keep your promises – check what you promise at each stage – do future touchpoints match up to them?

The format described below is a simple version of one that has been used successfully with SMEs for the last 4 years:

How to map a customer journey (click on the images to zoom in):

1. Awareness – on the left-hand side of a large page, list all the different ways you promote your business:

2. Consideration – next add the touchpoints that give the customer the information they need to decide whether or not to buy (and start to add the possible routes a customer could take):

3. Buying Touchpoints – Then add the touchpoints during the buying process:

4. Post Sales Touchpoints – Finally, add all the touchpoints during the post sales relationship:

As you complete the map, you should start to see where there are gaps or issues that you need to address:

Then all you need to do is to make the changes, improve processed, amend blockages, etc!

Mapping customer journeys is a powerful process that helps you reduce customer churn and improve customer experience – find an expert who can help you through the process.

Blunt thinking on mapping customer journeys

Now you’ve read our article on customer journeys – have you any more questions?

Here at Yorkshire Powerhouse, we’re happy to help as much as possible – is there anything else we can do to help you or do you have any further questions – please let us know:

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