Your Customer Journey



Your customer journey is the step-by-step process customers go through whilst buying and using your products or service. It’s the sequence of interactions they have with you, but it will also include things they may do on their own.

When designing or improving a service, start by plotting out your customer journey. It’s likely you’ll have several of them, because not every customer takes the same route, so start with a simple one and then repeat to add in more complex examples and parallel journeys.

Start by asking yourself how customers first find you, perhaps through advertising, world or mouth or a referral. What’s the next step they take? And the next? Include all the times that a customer comes into contact with your product or service, all face-to-face conversations, online interactions and transactions. Include every appointment, every phone call, all correspondence and communications and all follow-up support.

Is your product or service virtual, face-to-face, involve groups, just for individuals? Do customers have to deal with different people in different departments at different times? Does it require special tools or products? Can customers only take the next step at a particular time? Are there delays or waiting times they have to endure? At the end, do you direct customers somewhere else? And do you have different levels of experience for different customers?

[PDF] This PDF is a tool you can use to map out the end-to-end customer journey for your service or product, each page representing a different channel or touchpoint. Cut them up into small cards and use them as movable pieces. There are 14 different kinds in total. (Click here or on the icon to download - size 568kB)

It’s easy to assume that because you know your product and you designed and deliver your service that you know how it feels for a customer to go through it, but those assumptions can be costly. Gather additional valuable insights from customers by asking them about their experience. This activity will identify any steps you hadn’t thought of, especially the ones customers have to do on their own. You could organize a focus group, or spend time one-to-one with individuals, in return for a payment or gift voucher (or even a cup of tea!). Spending time talking with customers will enable you to collect specific examples of steps they found confusing or frustrating as well as the part that are effortless and easy.

[PDF] Here is a simple form you can use when you are interviewing customers, to record the detailed step-by-step journey they have experienced and which channel they used. Use multiple pages for more complex journeys. (Click here or on the icon to download - size 96kB)

Using the tools above, or your own method, map out your customer journeys and in the next blog I’ll share a process you can use to examine it.

Note: The above tools have been added to the tools page.