Your customers interact with your brand more than just during the business transaction, and their impressions of your employees extend beyond the sale. Along their journey, they will encounter any number of customer touchpoints when they come in contact with your brand.
Some businesses are oblivious to the majority of these moments. But if you can tailor each of your customer touchpoints to reflect the mission of your company and maximize user friendliness, you could design an ideal customer journey.
To truly understand how your clients see your business, you may want to analyze it from their perspective. Businesses can go wrong when they fail to understand and empathize with the customer experience.
Mapping Customer Touchpoints
The first step is to create a customer journey map. This diagram will show you either the entire timeline or a section of customers' interaction with your brand, including their intentions, emotions and questions at each stage.
Customer touchpoints in the journey map can include:
- your advertisements
- catalogs and manuals
- points of sale
- customer service department
- word of mouth
- follow ups and more.
By identifying exactly where your customers come in contact with your business, you can locate the gaps in your system.
Addressing the Gaps
Gaps can reveal themselves in any number of places.
When customers must switch departments, devices or channels in order to continue their journey, the process becomes less streamlined. Having to download apps to chat with customer service or struggling to locate your website from your social media pages can also be sources of frustration.
There are two ways to uncover these gaps or inefficiencies in your touchpoints. The first would be traveling through the customer journey yourself, putting yourself in the customer's shoes.
Alternatively, this is also an opportunity to conduct feedback surveys to get your customers' input. Gaps can be caused by factors that you may not consider, like disabilities. If your main access to customer service is by phone, how will your deaf clients be assisted? By reaching directly out to your client base, you can receive actionable advice for improving your customer touchpoints.
Reflecting Your Brand
Consistency is key in your touchpoints. Ideally, your customers should be able to define your brand at every stage of their journey. One way to do this is by refining your brand. Many businesses center it around one word or phrase. Let's say yours is efficiency. There are a number of ways to convey this message in your customer touchpoints.
Packaging can be helpful in establishing your brand's message. With a minimalist style and recyclable materials, your business can communicate that not only is your product or service efficient, but so is its presentation. An easy-to-navigate and cleanly designed website can evoke a sense of simplicity.
As you orchestrate your customer's journey, consider the indirect customer touchpoints as well as direct ones. It's easy to overlook details like the checkout process, instruction manuals and return processes. Try staying on brand by training your employees to project the corresponding values, customizing your design and typography and offering the channels of communication that best appeal to your customer base.
Some companies may shy away from fully examining their customer journey and individual touchpoints because of the work involved. However, those that do may create lifetime customers. Consider taking the time to analyze your business from the customer's perspective. By simplifying and streamlining every interaction with your company, you can build a base of loyal customers who return for your product again and again.
Read more articles on customer feedback.