Customer journey or buyer journey is the path that a user goes through until the purchasing process is materialized and the user turns into a real customer.
It’s the mental process and experience that the user lives before buying. This route can be visualized in the so-called customer journey maps.
Customer Journey Map: Definition
This definition comes from Marketing. This model lets you measure and learn about the problems, needs and experiences that a customer or buyer persona must to go through before making a purchase.
A user doesn’t normally see a product and buys it straightaway. Probably, that person has seen a Facebook ad or has visited a website several times before making up their mind to buy that product. This is known as “touchpoint”, that is any interaction or a number of them that leads a user to buy a specific product.
To build and identify this journey will help you to optimize it and apply it to the rest of your customers to become successful, solve problems and create an effective sales funnel.
Do I have to define a customer journey for every product or service offered from my website?
In theory, the answer is yes. However, you can simplify it by defining a customer journey for each ecommerce category or online store. You should define this route based on your ideal customers.
Example: Let’s think about Metricool’s ideal customers
➡️ Agencies, bloggers, communities and social media managers
Our costumer journey would be based on our product “Metricool”, although the needs, emotions and experiences will vary depending on the different user’s profiles. Therefore, we should understand the customer journey for each profile.
All online business should follow this process?
This is essential for any online business. A customer journey mapping is the best way to understand your online customer and improve the conversation, boost sales and increase revenues.
Creating a customer journey online is easy as you obtain all the data from users at any time. Doing it for an offline business is more challenging as the gathering of information from them is not as straightforward.
The question would be:
“Do you want to sell and earn more through your business?”
If the answer is a categorical “yes”… Keep reading!
How to create a customer journey Map
Let’s start to create your customer journey. These are the steps to create one:
How to create a Customer Journey Map
- Define your ideal customer
- Identify their motivations
- Define the stages to create a Customer Journey Map
- Identify the touchpoints
- Solve pain points from your customer journey
First steps: Motivation and users
Define your ideal customer
Define who your ideal customer is. This way you can identify their interests, fears or preferences to solve any challenge and provide all the information that your customer might need.
Identify their motivations
Motivations differ from one customer to another, and one customer might have more than one motivation.
Why would you buy a Rolex? Because you need a watch or because you want to show your social status with an expensive watch on your wrist?
Stages to create a Customer Journey
A Customer Journey is based on the assumption that a potential customer will reconsider buying something before effectively doing it. These are the phases that the customer will go through:
1️⃣ AWARENESS → How you impact your future customer, when exactly they discover you.
2️⃣ CONSIDERATION → In this phase, you contact your customer through different means with the objective of encouraging them to buy your product or services: email marketing, promoted content, social media, etc.
3️⃣ PURCHASE→ This is the moment when the customer decides to materialize a purchase, through a website, app, physical store, etc.
Many people define customer journey until the third phase forgetting about the customer service and loyalty phases
4️⃣ SERVICE → This phase refers to the customer service offered to the customer during the purchasing process. That is, pay attention to the client’s needs during and before their order. In short, to monitor the satisfaction of the customer even when the product or service has been already paid.
4️⃣ LOYALTY → It’s easier to sell something to a former customer than to someone who doesn’t know your product yet. In this phase, you have to keep taking care of your customer journey. Send them promotion, develop a loyalty program, create content of their interest, etc.
The image below shows all the points that are part of each phase of the customer journey very clearly.
Identify the touchpoints
Knowing the most important touchpoints to contact customers is crucial if you want to create a customer journey for your company. Let’s see an example:
An agency attends an event and see on a multimedia screen Metricool’s hashtag tracker. Then, the agency visits Metricool’s website but doesn’t buy its product.
On a different day, they search opinions on the Internet and read several articles talking about how good the tool is. Later, they go to OMEXpo and visit Metricool’s stand and pick up some information. The next Monday, the agency accesses Metricool’s website and makes a purchase.
✅ Multimedia screen on an event
✅ Metricool’s website
✅ Hashtag Tracker
✅ Pages of influencers
These are the points that you must define on your customer journey.
Finding your customer’s pain points during the purchasing process
At this stage, it’s time to gather qualitative and quantitative data to get an overview of your customer’s journey and find the weak points or areas of improvement.
The best way to detect them is by interviewing your customers or by collecting the information from the customer service department if you have one.
It’s also the moment to consider the following:
➡️ Do my users meet their expectations and motivations with the product/service?
➡️ At what point do they abandon the buying process or get frustrated?
Once you have located the weak points you must include them in your customer journey map. Look at the following image with Metricool’s example:
Solving pain points from your customer journey
The next step is to decide the best way to remove the negative areas that generate doubts and insecurities in your customer’s mind during the buying process.
If during the consideration phase, prospective customers compare other tools and opinions before buying, we should get ahead of them and create our own or promoted content where they can find answers to all their doubts.
The last step is to keep your customer journey alive. This document shouldn’t be created and abandoned in a drawer. You should keep it updated and measure if any change made to improve your customer journey works well.
Our recommendation is to update it every 6 months and keep records of any change and its conclusions.
Customer journey map: example
Now, it’s time to create the customer journey map with all the information and previous work.
You can find a basic example of how you can create a customer journey map below.
Tools to design your customer journey
There are several tools in the market to help you to obtain information, design your customer journey or even do it for you.
- Metricool: It provides you with interesting data about the traffic that goes to your website (e.g. where the traffic comes from) and your social media users, Facebook and Google ad campaigns. A great tool to collect crucial information.
- Crazy Eggs: Website heat maps where you can check where users spend more time, what the areas of more transit are and where the information that goes unnoticed is located.
- Convert Flow: Tool to capture more leads through your landings or websites.
- Wickedreports: A complete tool that helps you to create your customer journey. It analyzes the touchpoints of your online campaigns, helps you to optimize them and provides you with the information to keep improving.
Investing time or money in tools that help you to create a customer journey is worth it. The profitability that you will receive in exchange will exceed your investment in the medium term.
So, are you ready to create your customer journey map yet?
If you want to know more digital marketing definitions you can take a look to our marketing dictionary…