Making great customer journeys

Follow the leader paper plane.

A customer journey is a great tool to capture the total experience of a business / organization from the customer’s point of view.

As implied by the name, a customer journey describes a story of how customers move through and interact with a business. It typically includes customer activities that happens before, during and after using the service, touchpoints with the service organization, but also feelings and attitudes — revealing how and where your business is doing great, and where there is room for improvements. Simply put, it teaches companies and organizations about their customers.

So how do you make great customer journeys? The service and business designers at Transformator Design share their best tips and customer journey ingredients here.


Define the purpose

Why are you making the customer journey, and how will you use it? These are questions that are good to think about at the beginning of and throughout a project. Do you want to map the current customer journey or the ideal customer journey? Do you want to use it to communicate something, or co-create? From our experience, there are two ways of doing it. First you start by mapping out today, and identify opportunities, problems and what’s just running smoothly. This gives you a great overview of what to adress and what to enhance. The other way of doing it is to go for the vision, map it out and backtrack what needs to be done in order to achieve the vision. Just remember to create the vision based on customer needs, and not on internal or sales goals.

(And naturally you can change purpose throughout the project. Often we find that companies use the two approaches interchangeably.)

Talking to customers

Think about where the customer start his/her journey? Usually, long before you have them inside your doors(!). Who do they talk to? What information do they search for? Where do they (try to) find it?

Create the customer journey from real insights. Talk with customers! Listen, and ask “why do you….?”, “how does that make you feel….?” and “why?”.

If you have the opportunity, do a service safari, or observe customers in real life. Some activities happens without us really noticing them.

Talk to customers both in recent and more past contact with your service. The experience can feel differently depending on time past.

Creating the customer journey

Include real customer quotes for most impact. The more specific the customer journey is, the more customer empathy you will build within your organization. Pictures? Great, add them too.

Add their experiences and feelings — (joy, excitement, frustration, relief…) This further builds customer empathy and understanding in your organisation.

Separate activities that occurs before, during and after using a service. Be specific. Making an online purchase for instance consists of multiple steps.

Keep it alive and make it happen

A customer journey is a living asset to help the organization offer the best service. Map out what needs to be done in order to create customer excellence. What is the vision, the current customer journey, obstacles to overcome? Remember to update it with your improvements and new customer experiences.

All of these tips are circling around one theme — talk to real customers, do real-life observations. Customer excellence happens together with your customers.

If you want to read more about different types of customer journeys, we recommend this article by Kerry Bodine.

Custellence is a dynamic customer journey tool that enables organizations to unite around customer needs. Try our beta.