How to improve your customer journey?

Published on December 20, 2022  - Updated on January 16, 2024

How to improve your customer journey?

How to define a customer journey?

The customer journey is the set of steps that the customer follows from the moment he or she becomes aware of your company until the purchase of your product or service. It is a key element of a company's marketing strategy because it allows you to understand the needs and expectations of your customers and to adapt your offer accordingly. There is no such thing as a universal customer journey, each company often has its own, or even several. However, for this article, let's see how a typical customer journey could be composed.

What is the importance of understanding the customer journey?

Brands utilize the customer buying journey to identify challenges faced by their target audience. Understanding these gaps enables them to adjust their sales strategy accordingly. To achieve this, it's essential to ask the right questions:

  • What motivates the customer, and what are their expectations?
  • Where are the breakpoints in the process?
  • Which channels have they used?

The answers to these questions serve as the foundation for developing a digital marketing strategy. This strategically positions the company to meet customer expectations. Additionally, this analysis facilitates the implementation of an inbound marketing strategy aimed at generating high-quality leads.

Customer journey mapping

Customer journey mapping is a visual representation of the path a customer takes to complete a task. This visual mapping aims to identify all possible interactions between a consumer and a company to accomplish a specific action.

Mapping the customer journey allows a company to uncover its strengths and weaknesses across each contact channel, identify key moments in the journey, and assess the overall quality of its customer relationship. This insight enables the company to pursue marketing strategies and improvements to optimize the overall customer experience, satisfaction, and relationship.

Q°emotion - customer journey - improve customer journey

It is important to note that the customer journey is not linear and that each customer is unique. Some customers may go straight from discovery to purchase, while others may need more information before committing. That's why it's important to follow each customer's journey and adapt to their needs and expectations.

Customer retail

The 7 stages of the customer journey

Information search

Every purchase process begins with the customer's recognition of a need.

They explore cross-channel solutions to address their issue. In fact, 95% of French consumers research on search engines before buying a product or service (IFOP). An online presence appears essential to create touchpoints at the beginning of the customer journey. At this stage, you must understand your prospect's problem and provide valuable content to address their needs.

In pursuit of satisfaction and problem resolution, the customer explores suitable solutions and gathers information through blog articles, whitepapers, and other relevant sources.

Comparison

Once this initial stage is completed, the consumer delves deeper into their inquiry. After gathering the necessary information to make a choice, they compare the collected data to derive the product or service that truly suits them.

Several factors come into play, such as prices, features, user experience, and customer reviews. According to FEVAD, 38% of customers compare prices and check online reviews before making a purchase decision. Nowadays, especially in the service sector, prospects are not hesitant to request online quotes from multiple organizations.

For all these reasons, online e-reputation plays a crucial role from the beginning of the customer journey. It is also essential for the company to demonstrate attentive listening and a thorough market analysis. This enables the identification of aspects that set it apart from the competition and capitalizes on its own strengths.

Purchase decision

The consumer's contemplative phase is coming to an end. The customer selects the product/services that meet their needs and proceeds with the purchase.

At this crucial point in the conversion tunnel, everything is still at play for your company. Overcoming the final obstacles is crucial to prevent any setbacks. The prospect now enters the customer relationship phase.

The customer's journey is not just a transactional process; it is also an emotional and experiential journey not to be underestimated. Transparency, attentive listening, speed, and smooth communication are the key elements of building a strong trust between a company and its clientele.

Product reception/usage

Once the customer has placed an order and awaits delivery, it is crucial to ensure an exceptional experience upon its arrival. The brand can enhance this experience by providing a product usage guide.

Some companies go even further by adding a personal touch, such as a thank-you card in the package. Others go as far as including a promo code, encouraging the customer to make a repeat purchase.

After-sales service

At each stage in B2B or B2C, consumers may need assistance. After-sales service comes into play after the purchase when the customer encounters an issue with the product or service. This issue can take various forms: delivery problems, complaints, refunds, or malfunctions.

Well-managed after-sales service can enhance customer trust. After-sales service can intervene at every stage of the customer journey, making it essential for businesses to offer accessible and effective service to avoid any obstacles or mismanagement of customer relations.

The key is to focus the customer relationship on empathy and personalization. Personalized assistance, SAV helpline, human contact, or 24/7 support are arguments synonymous with customer engagement and trust.

Customer loyalty

Fostering customer loyalty is about establishing a relationship and creating opportunities for repeat purchases. Loyalty is partly achieved through after-sales service and various communication channels to strengthen brand affiliation. Satisfied customers renew their purchases from the brand. To foster loyalty, companies can act on several fronts:

  • Offer personalized deals, for example, on their birthdays.
  • Introduce complementary products to create new needs.
  • Gather customer feedback to enhance their experience.

Recommendation

The final phase of the customer journey stems from a successful journey and a fully satisfied customer. You have transformed a simple prospect into a future ambassador for your brand!

A customer's testimonial can have a significant and direct impact on your company's reputation, brand image, and, ultimately, its conversion rate. To further enhance engagement, it is essential to cultivate a sense of belonging. Exclusive invitations, referral programs, customer benefits, an active community – each personalized experience contributes to this goal.

Q°emotion - Customer Journey - Ambassador - Stages - Customer Journey

7 tips to improve your customer journey

There are many strategies to improve your customer journey and therefore your customer experience. In this article, we will discuss 7 different tips:

  1. Pay attention to your online presence: in order for customers to discover your business and your products or services, it is important to have a visible and attractive website. Think about optimizing your website for SEO, publishing quality content on your blog or social networks, using online ads, etc. This is your main hook to introduce your brand to new potential customers.

  2. Create a quality experience on your website and/or store: it is the meeting place between your company and your customers. It is therefore important to make it attractive and easy to use. For your website, think about setting up an intuitive navigation, using images and videos to highlight your products or services, offering quality content, etc. For a store, think about the reception, identify the needs of your customers, the layout of products, etc.

  3. Use customer reviews to reassure future buyers: nowadays, it is very rare not to consult customer reviews before making a purchase. They are therefore very useful to reassure future buyers and encourage them to make the move. So don't hesitate to put forward positive reviews on your website or on social networks. If you receive negative reviews, try to use them as an opportunity to improve your offer and your service. If the volume of your reviews is very high, you can use a semantic analysis solution like Q°emotion to help you with this task. This will allow you to identify your irritants in just a few clicks.

  4. Personalize your communication: for the customer journey to be effective, it is important to personalize your communication according to the needs and expectations of each customer. For example, you can use marketing automation tools to send targeted emails or push notifications based on customers' actions on your website. Thanks to Q°emotion's emotional analysis, it is also possible to target your customers according to their emotions and thus increase your conversion or re-purchase rate.

  5. Be transparent: to create a relationship of trust with your company, it is important to be transparent about the products or services you offer. Don't hesitate to highlight the benefits of your offer and answer any questions or concerns consumers may have.

  6. Offer quality customer service: this is a key element of the customer journey. If they are satisfied with the service they received, they will be more likely to buy again and recommend your company. So remember to set up an efficient and accessible customer service to make the experience as optimal as possible.

  7. Measure and analyze results: To know if your customer journey is effective, it is important to measure and analyze results. For example, you can use conversion tracking tools to find out how many people bought your product as a result of a marketing campaign or use satisfaction questionnaires to find out what customers think of your offer.

    In conclusion, the customer journey is a key element of a company's marketing strategy. It allows you to understand the needs and expectations of your customers and to adapt accordingly. To optimize your company's customer journey, don't hesitate to personalize your communication, to be transparent, to offer a quality customer service and to measure and analyze the results. By implementing these different actions, you can improve the customer experience and increase your company's sales.

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