Gaining customer loyalty isn’t a straight road. The journey from the customer’s perspective is a holiday; they explore, stop, discuss and compare and at each one of these stages, your marketing should be present. These are the moments that your company needs to take advantage to convince people to choose you and no other.
When you stop to think about your customer and their decision making process/journey, it can become very overwhelming and challenging to navigate. This is why you should create a customer journey map which will make it easier for you and your team to see the end goal. The aim is to understand how your customer interacts with your brand, what are their pain points and how do your products and services fit into their life and help them?
Hogg (2018), illustrates five steps that introduce your customer journey mapping.
- Aligning your customer’s goals with your own
This first step sounds very whimsical, we know, however, this is arguably the most crucial first step in mapping your customer journey; a very important first step that needs to be understood and should not be taken lightly.
When customer goals do not align with your business goals there will be low conversion and high churn. Example, a SaaS business building the ‘best in market’ enterprise solutions would not set their marketing channels on Facebook or Instagram with inspirational quotes or click bait articles such as ‘top 5 tips’. They would be working through more qualified and focused channels such as email marketing and LinkedIn, providing long-form articles, whitelabel products, and high-intensity case studies.
Stop and think about your business goals in relation to your marketing; are you trying to solve the same problems, towards the same goal as your customer and by default the correct vernacular?
2. Identify touchpoints within your customer’s journey.
Create a list of moments that you engage with your customers and group them based on when they happen through the customer’s journey. The three includes pre-purchase, purchase and post-purchase.
Find the touchpoints that you’ve missed and track the interactions that take place before and after these touchpoints. An example could be when a customer adds a product to their cart, you can suggest other products to sell. Through each touchpoint, there may be an opportunity to sell even more products. Online retailers have been selling through post-purchase since inception, a traditional marketing example is adding vouchers inside your package to entice you to purchase more and create loyalty.
3. Pain points and delight moments
How does your customer feel during each touchpoint, are there points that could be improved?
Figure out which points your customers have negative experiences and collaborate with your team to improve your processes. Identifying each pain points that a customer experiences within the sales process will surely increase your customer satisfaction and by default conversion.
The most common examples we find could be that your shipping takes too long, your website does not filter products properly, the checkout process is not optimised for mobile, etc.
4. Experience the journey yourself
Often when talking to clients we ask them when was the last time you bought something from your own business?
Sometimes to do something right, you’ve got to do it yourself and this applies here. Map out your own experience and take yourself through the whole journey. Note down the pain points, the opportunities and surprises; it doesn’t need to be fancy, grab a pen and paper.
5. Visualisation of the journey map
Create a visualisation of your customer journey map, this can simply be sticky notes on a wall. This exercise may be simple but will help you see the entire journey, leading to new ideas and changes. Simplifying or guiding the customer journey map may help your business generate more revenue. By mapping out the steps that a customer taps from beginning to end, you will be able to cut out any non-essential processes or even add features that will assist the customer with their journey. For example, having shopping cart suggestions based on what your customer is ordering is a good way for customers to view products that they may want and for your business to increase sales.
Being able to understand how your customer interacts with your business will allow you to make positive changes to your business. Ultimately increasing customer loyalty and again, therefore conversion.