For every new business, customer acquisition and retention is a prior goal. However, without putting yourself in the customers’ shoes, you will not be able to create a delightful experience for them. Customer Journey Mapping is a smart approach that gives you complete understanding of your customers’ experiences at various touch points. It is a helpful tool for determining what the customer is experiencing at different points of interaction with a company.
Here are a few useful tips for startups on Customer Journey Mapping that can help in creating a better service experience for customers.
The most important step in mapping the customer journey is to identify and evaluate all major and minor touch points of customer interaction. For instance, while buying or renting a property, a customer would check out the property after talking to the real estate agent. This is a major touch point. Another touch point would be a customer sending an email to ask for rent/purchase options for property according to his/her budget etc. Based on the identification and evaluation of these touch points, a plan can be devised to improve service and raise the customer satisfaction level.
Actively involve your team to get their feedback and opinions regarding the process. Discuss every scenario with them and ask for their feedback and suggestions. For example, if a customer comes to you looking for a product, how the sales rep should be helping him/her out, what should be the tone of the sales person, would a customer like to buy from a person who is marketing products or from one who acts like a friend and offers a comfort zone? You would get multiple opinions and creative solutions to various customer scenarios; you can pick out the most appealing ones and use them to improve your service. Customer Journey Mapping is not a one man show if you want it to be a success, engage your team members in the activity and see how well it goes for your new business.
Your customer journey mapping would not turn out to be a prolific endeavor, unless you bring in perspectives of actual customers. Without talking to real customers and knowing what they expect and want, this whole activity would not be credible. Startup businesses can use live Chat to communicate with their potential customers and see how they perceive the brand and their service experience; a short “service expectations” survey can be given to the customers online through live chat which is a touch point itself. This is a cost efficient method to conduct a survey with your actual customers. It will help you in understanding their needs and expectations.
After you get the useful data like customer pain points, perceptions about your brand, individual preferences, various touch points, come up with a focused and efficient plan to improve the customer journey and make it delightful. According to a research conducted by Forrester, 90 percent of North American companies with annual revenues of $500 million or more considered Customer Experience important for their business strategy.
After collection of important data, you can come up with strategies for improving service experience. You can think of approaches like empowering employees to creatively solve a customer service issue or be flexible with the refund/exchange policies or how to woo your customers every time they walk in to your store.
It is important to define your objectives or goals for mapping out the Customer Journey. Being a new business, you should also be careful about spending money and resources. So be clear on what you want to accomplish through this activity and then utilize your resources in a cost efficient manner to meet your goals.
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