You might wonder, what’s the big deal about ‘the customer journey’? Isn’t it a simple process? Companies offer a product or service, customers buy it. In fact, it’s a lot more complex than that.
Also, keep in mind that consumer trends keep changing. In the last two years of the global pandemic with its intermittent lockdowns, many people reduced their impulse purchases and took to online shopping. Now as the world opens up again, many people say they prefer to shop in-store while others prefer online shopping.
However, one thing is for certain: more and more ‘shopping’ is done online. The journey starts digitally, with potential customers reading reviews on social media or doing initial research on google, etc. So, the digital customer journey is a very real, very important aspect of marketing.
What is the digital customer journey?
It is the path followed by an internet user from the awareness stage right through to the purchase stage. It covers every single online interaction between the customer and the brand. Businesses need to map this journey, then tailor content and communication accordingly.
Understanding this concept is crucial to developing a seamless experience that ensures that your customers are not only being found but retained long-term. Brands need to identify the pain points their customers face and pro-actively provide customer support. It is vital to deliver an exceptional online customer experience consistently.
Stages of the customer journey
A customer is bombarded with countless advertisements, newsletters, and competitive content on a daily basis. This makes their journey with your brand complicated. Broadly, every customer journey goes through four stages:
1. Awareness: The customer becomes aware of your company or brand via advertising, cold calls, email blasts or other marketing media. At this stage, you should make sure your brand and offerings are clear and make a strong impression. Share pertinent information such as company values, legacy – reasons ‘why’ the customer should be interested in your brand.
2. Engagement: By now, the customer knows what your company has to offer. At this stage, the customer engages with your brand in one way or another. The customer could conduct research on the products available to fulfil their need, he/she could stop by your brick-and-mortar location, sign up for a newsletter or sample your product; or simply engage by ‘liking’ or ‘following’ your social media pages.
3. Conversion/Transaction: At this stage, the customer is almost sure he wants to buy your product/service. This is where they need that final nudge so the customer transitions from having a casual interest to becoming a paying customer.
4. Retention: The prospect has become a customer, which means you have gained their trust. Now you need to work at maintaining it through post-sales surveys, product newsletters, product support or even freebies.
Customer journey mapping
Want to build a solid marketing strategy? A customer journey map is essential. A customer journey map is a visual representation of a customer’s experience with a company. It can be a simple spreadsheet, infographic or drawing. A customer journey map will help digital marketers understand exactly where customers are interacting with your brand, and what are the needs and concerns that motivate or inhibit their actions.
A customer journey map connects the customer’s expectations and feelings with key interactions with your brand. This information enables companies to enhance customer experience, thereby affecting higher conversion rates and better customer retention.
How to create a customer journey map
Prospects want their journey to be simple, so too many touchpoints in the process might make them lose interest along the way. Always make sure the journey is easy and logical while providing personalised and relevant content to keep them engaged and on track.
Some key steps towards creating an effective customer journey map are:
- Set clear objectives for the map.
- Profile your personas and define their goals.
- Highlight your target customer personas.
- List out all the touchpoints.
- Identify the elements you want your map to show.
- Determine the resources you have and the ones you’ll need.
- Implement your map
- Regularly optimise your customer journey map
Types of customer journey maps
- Current state-These illustrate what customers do, think, and feel as they interact with your business currently.
- Future state-These illustrate what customers will do, think, and feel as they interact with your business in the future.
- Day in the life-These examine everything that customers or prospects do, think, and feel (within a specific area), whether that involves your product or not. This gives a wider lens into the lives of your customers and what their pain points are in real life.
- Service blueprint-This is a diagram that usually starts with a basic version of an existing or future state journey map.
- Circular-These are used for subscription-based models to visualize the customer journey as a circle or loop. This helps reinforce the importance of customer retention and lifetime value.
- Empathy-These are used to create a shared understanding around the wants, needs, thoughts, and actions of a customer.
How Interics IN-DIGITAL can help
Interics IN-DIGITAL is a full-services digital marketing agency in India, that uses the most popular and effective online techniques utilized by industrial marketers today to increase leads and generate revenue. IN-DIGITAL is a digital branding agency and lead generation agency well known for developing cutting-edge content strategy for digital marketing.
Interics IN-DIGITAL uses predictive marketing tools and strategies like Account Based Marketing (ABM) for a more targeted approach to lead generation by honing in on your ideal customer profile.
Through research and by working in close collaboration with businesses, IN-DIGITAL helps to create a journey that offers prospects a streamlined and enjoyable online experience to keep them engaged while you drive sales forward. IN-DIGITAL helps to create consistent customer experiences that align digital marketing strategies with the high-quality digital content that your customers have come to expect from your best-in-class organization.
To build brand awareness through digital marketing, Interics IN-DIGITAL – a reputed SMO Agency India – creates customised social media content, display ads, landing pages, optimised websites, email campaigns, webinars, blog posts, videos, and the gamut of marketing collateral such as company profiles, case studies, product catalogues, product videos, etc. Interics IN-DIGITAL develops all the necessary content as per the customer journey map. As one of the leading digital marketing agency in India, Interics IN-DIGITAL also identifies key performance indicators for every stage of the customer journey so it can evaluate and adapt to evolving needs. Their team of strategists, digital marketing specialists, designers and content writers is experienced and creative, partnering with businesses to ensure the best results and profitable outcomes.