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A Cheat Sheet for Mapping Out Your Brand’s Customer Journey

One of the most important elements of a customer experience (CX) program is a customer journey map. These maps serve as visual guides to the interactions customers have with your brand, including product purchases, talking to employees, and more. Customer journey maps can help brands hammer out the steps customers take on the road to a better experience and, just as importantly, do so from the customer’s perspective.

Today, we’re going to walk you through how to quickly create an effective customer journey map that touches on elements like key evaluation points, positive and negative experience components, and more. Let’s jump in.

A Certain Point of View

Though a customer journey map focuses heavily on seeing your brand’s experience through customers’ eyes, it actually starts with a different perspective: yours. The first step to building an effective customer journey map is considering that journey as your organization sees it. 

First, identify the key interactions that customers have with your brand. Are these interactions limited to one-step transactions, or are they a bit more involved? The answer to this question varies from company to company—it’ll even vary between the different stakeholders that you bring in to help just at your brand. This can make creating a shared framework a more involved process, but brands can’t build a truthful, effective customer journey map without it!

The Next Level

Once you, your team, and stakeholders from other departments have agreed upon your customers’ steps, it’s time to expand on every step by identifying some key elements. These elements include: the customer’s desired outcome; time or duration; attitudes and thoughts; emotional responses and needs; customer pain points; strong and weak areas; and the importance of and satisfaction with the step.

At first glance, hammering these details out for every step in your customer journey map may seem a bit overkill. However, similarly to getting everyone’s opinion on what those steps actually are, doing this legwork enables a more educated approach to your customer journey map. This, in turn, will give your brand a greater understanding of its experience, the strengths and weaknesses of that experience, and what you can do to meaningfully improve it.

Bridging The Divide

Now that we’ve talked about building out the customer journey and the elements of its every step from your brand’s point of view, it’s time to circle back to what we talked about up top: understanding the journey as your customer sees it. Starting with your brand’s perspective on the customer journey is important because it gives you a perspective to compare and contrast to your customers’.

The Value of Understanding the Customer Journey

In short, a customer journey map encourages brands to consider what makes their experience great while also giving them a means of seeing why customers may (or may not) agree. Brands then have a better chance of knowing how to bridge potential divides and work toward a more connective, meaningfully improved experience for customers, employees, and the organization itself.

Want to read more about uncovering the real customer journey? Check out our eBook on the subject here, where we break down the process in five simple steps!

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