What is Customer Journey Mapping?
Customer journey mapping is the process of producing a visual tale of your brand’s customer experience. This activity aids companies in putting themselves in the shoes of their existing customers and seeing their business from the customers’ point of view. It helps identify gaps and gives you a better understanding of where your customers are having problems and what you can do to alleviate them.
First and foremost, every possible point of contact between a consumer and the buying process is identified, including websites, social media outlets, physical locations, and any interactions with marketing and sales staff.
Next, the user journeys for each buyer persona are then established across these numerous touchpoints. For example, a millennial buyer persona may first become aware of a product on social media, investigate it on the mobile version of your site, and eventually make a purchase on a desktop computer.
It’s all about increasing customer satisfaction to help achieve business success. A customer journey map should include information about customers’ interactions throughout their journey. This can consist of what the customer has to do and how your brand responds to each action on their journey.
Customer Journey Mapping - B2C vs B2B
B2C Customer Journey Mapping
Customer journey maps for business-to-consumer (B2C) products typically focus on a single issue that customers are facing, the solution they are seeking for that issue, and the value they gain as a result of solving that issue.
It’s unusual in B2C buyer journey mapping to include separate personas for the buyer, implementer, and end-user. As a result, the product should follow a single, logical path from introduction to engagement and finally to the purchase point for customers.
The general flow of a B2C journey map can be summarised as follows:
- Problem experienced
- Solution search
- Discovery of new products
- Expertise in the product
- Problem alleviated
- Positive result
When developing a B2C journey map for customer success, keep in mind that a single user must complete each step before going on to the next. At each step of the journey, you will lose a certain percentage of your users if you have a challenging UI or a confusing UX. By following the six stages outlined above and designing trip maps for every conceivable user decision, you can ensure that your conversion rate is as high as possible.
B2B Customer Journey Mapping
For a B2B product, it is critical to understand that your users and purchasers may not be the same people and therefore may have very different priorities when evaluating your product.
Keep track of the many relevant B2B journey map players. For example, a manager with purchasing power is generally looking for ways to increase their team’s performance. Productivity and team performance are essential concerns for senior management. Therefore, they research to find the best solutions and the product is subsequently passed on to an implementation team member.
Types of B2B Customer Journey Maps
According to the needs of a particular firm and the extent to which business activities are included, B2B user journey maps can take many forms.
1. The Typical B2B Customer Journey Map
A typical B2B customer journey map provides an overview of the many stages of each customer’s journey, including touchpoints where the customer can interact or engage with the organisation.
2. The Tactical B2B Customer Journey Map
Customer journey maps that focus on specific touchpoints (or clusters) are called tactical B2B customer journey maps and are designed to illustrate the journey customers go through at each stage.
This is a great tool to have if you’re looking at a critical (or uncomfortable) touchpoint. It’s also possible to utilise tactical maps to teach teams in charge of specific stages of the customer journey.
Why is B2B Customer Journey Mapping Important?
Customer journey mapping is vital as a strategic technique to better understand consumer expectations, which has a significant impact on customer satisfaction.
If you look at the broader picture, companies of all sizes are facing shifting customer demands. Client support, marketing, and sales need to use an omnichannel approach to meet customer expectations. Therefore, everyone from small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to large corporations stand to benefit from customer path mapping.
Personalisation is also an essential part of the customer experience. It’s been found that 66% of customers expect brands to understand their unique needs. To meet these expectations, companies can use customer journey mapping to develop tailored experiences for each and every customer across all channels.
There are several advantages to creating a customer journey map as they enable companies to:
- Organise the buyer’s journey in a logical fashion
- Compare the actual customer experience with client expectations
- Understand the variations between the different types of customers as they progress from the prospect stage all the way to the conversion stage
- Identify opportunities to optimise the customer experience to meet customer expectations
There is no question that customer expectations are increasing. But what can brands do to live up to these high standards and ensure that every interaction with their brand is a positive one?
In this case, customer journey mapping is an effective method for analysing and improving the customer experience. After all, over 80% of consumers would leave a brand they’re loyal to after three or fewer instances of poor CX, so it’s worth getting this right.
The Benefits of B2B Customer Journey Mapping
Improving the customer journey can help companies reduce their cost-to-serve by 15-20%. One of the most authoritative ways to increase income and conversion is to guarantee that you don’t miss, underestimate, or overestimate any crucial encounters.
When it comes to B2B customer journey mapping, these are some of the main benefits.
1. Identify Touchpoints with High Conversion Rates
Using customer journey mapping, you can compare conversion rates across different touchpoints. The term touchpoint refers to any type of customer encounter with your brand, whether it’s a personal recommendation, an online blog post review, or a sponsored advertisement.
A better understanding of customer engagement with different touchpoints in the sales process can help determine if additional touchpoints are required or if existing touchpoints can be eliminated or need to be optimised to improve conversion rates. Nurture emails and pay-per-click adverts are two options to consider for increasing client interactions.
2. Improve Customer Experience
If your customers have had a bad encounter with your brand, you may use a path map to figure out what went wrong. For example, they may have been hesitant to make a purchase since they were unable to speak with a salesperson beforehand.
A better customer experience can lead to a higher level of positive customer engagement in the future. Consider using a customer journey map to uncover methods to improve interactions with your organisation.
3. Increase Customer Loyalty
If you can optimise the customer journey map, you may see an increase in sales over time. Customer loyalty can grow organically as a result of exceeding the expectations of your existing and new clients.
After completing a consumer sales process, you may continue to build customer loyalty by delivering rewards or incentives to keep them involved with your brand and its products and services.
4. Reduce Costs
Companies often adopt cross-functional cooperation, which is when employees from various departments work together to attain a common goal. Using this method may result in lower costs and improved employee satisfaction.
Moreover, a sales funnel can depict all active marketing and sales engagements between a prospect and a company. Consider it a hypothesis that depicts a customer’s purchase journey. This allows each department to have clear visibility across all engagements and be able to focus on their strengths and optimise their engagements with customers. Plus, having visibility of the entire purchase journey across different teams avoids overlapping tasks and duplicate efforts which would otherwise lead to wasted resources.
5. Improve Brand Reputation
Having a good reputation is imperative for every organisation, especially in today’s world where everything that happens to your firm is quickly public knowledge. There are many ways to develop your company’s reputation as a reputable, serious, and value-oriented business. Still, one of the most effective ways is simply doing your job well and continuing to provide value to your customers by understanding their journeys across different channels.
Creating a positive online reputation for your business is all about taking action and being proactive. Waiting for changes to take effect is a waste of time. Therefore, it’s important that businesses genuinely strive to help customers, engage with them, and be seen by them right where they are by using customer journey mapping.
6. Identify Key Issues
Personalisation is critical in marketing because every customer’s experience is unique. This is predominantly accurate when it comes to their interests, values, and motivations. By tracking each customer's journey, you may discover which marketing methods resonated with some customers and which didn’t. It is possible to adapt your efforts to fit the needs of different target audiences based on this data.
For example, a data-driven visual commerce platform which allows you to add shopping tags to photographs on various social media networks may be preferred by prospective customers who like using social media during their customer journey.
Consider what data can you leverage from earlier interactions in the customer journey to personalise future touchpoints. For instance, if someone is browsing a website, you’ll have an idea of what they’re interested in or actively interacting with, so you can personalise future engagements, making it more relevant to what they’re looking for.
The Process for Creating A B2B Customer Journey Map Template
When it comes to the B2B buyer’s journey, there are numerous points of contact that have an impact on the overall experience. In order to plan your customer service and marketing strategies, you need to be aware of the complexities involved.
So, how do you go about examining and improving your journey? Let’s find out!
1. Conduct Persona Research
Consider your contact’s position in the organisation, their business needs, and their role in the decision-making process when deciding how to approach them. Millennials now account for 60% of all B2B tech buyers, so this is an important demographic to keep in mind. You can further drill down by understanding their key challenges, priorities, and motivations in order to create an optimal customer experience for all of your different target personas.
2. Identify Touchpoints & Problems
The majority of B2B touchpoints, like websites, blog content, and organic search, are also available to B2C customers in some form. B2B-focused touchpoints do tend to be more specific and therefore demos, sales meetings, and customer onboarding must all be mapped as well.
Furthermore, while digital customer journeys have become more common, it is still important not to neglect traditional media, such as print and phone calls, where relevant.
3. Set Goals and Measure Performance
When working on a task, keep your goal in mind at all times. In the end, you’ll be looking for outcomes such as improved customer satisfaction and retention. Analyse your business data and customer feedback to see if you’re on track to meet these objectives.
Ask questions like - when was the last time you interacted with a business in a way that felt personal? When it comes to your B2B customer journey touchpoints, remember that behind every brand identity are real people.
Customer retention and a positive buying journey are critical today if you want to improve business outcomes. Are you keen to master B2B customer journey mapping? See how Liferay’s digital experience platform (Liferay DXP) can help by requesting a demo today.