Customer journey analytics may not seem like the most exciting part of your role as a marketing manager, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s vital to collect data on user behavior across touchpoints over time and use it to create valuable and actionable insights to improve the user experience (UX) .
Despite its importance, many industries - including banking, telecom and health insurance organizations - find tracking customer journeys challenging. This is in part down to the vast amounts of data produced by millions of customers completing multiple actions. Harnessing this asset correctly unlocks its value and can put you ahead of your competitors.
How to analyze the customer journey
Keeping up with the evolving marketing funnel means considering all of the variables in the digital marketing space. That means analyzing data across multiple devices, channels and platforms to offer a seamless UX to your customers. While all of this may appear overwhelming, it can be easily broken down by keeping best practice principles in mind.
1. Collect relevant data
Every touchpoint in your marketing funnel represents an opportunity to collect a new dataset, so it’s vital you set up a process for this. Start out by ensuring you’re gathering information on the basics, like the channel type, device being used and geographical location of your customer. Go further to obtain even more useful insights, such as the time it takes to navigate the funnel and which interactions result in the most conversions.
2. Implement customer feedback
Finding out what customers think doesn’t have to be done entirely through data collection. Asking for direct feedback remains an essential part of modern day marketing and shouldn’t be overlooked. Implement solutions to the problems users say they have with your UX and build on the positive interactions they’ve had at certain touchpoints to ensure your journey is optimized to suit their needs.
3. Segment your audience
While it would be nice to think we can create a perfect universal customer journey, this simply isn’t true. The UX will be different for each person coming to your channels, with gender, generation and location among the most common factors affecting the way they interact with your business. That makes customer segmentation a key part of your marketing plan, so you can use this information to tailor the options to address the pain points of differing groups.
4. Analyze your touchpoints
With so many touchpoints available it only makes sense that some perform better than others. This will depend on a number of factors, including your aforementioned audience segment, as some groups will simply gravitate towards certain channels over others. Conducting a proper analysis of each of these touchpoints will show which ones perform well and where customers are leaving the funnel. Sometimes, weak points can be overcome, but there are other occasions when it’s worth refocusing your efforts elsewhere to get a better return on investment (ROI).
5. Remove unnecessary touchpoints
Eliminating a touchpoint that isn’t working for you may seem drastic, but it can help streamline the UX. It can cut down on customer frustration and reduce interaction cost, making it a win-win scenario. After all, an efficient funnel is beneficial to both your business and your clients, so don’t feel beholden to a method of interaction that no longer serves its purpose.
6. Identify moments of truth
Even though the customer journey is a sum of all its interactions, not all touchpoints have the same value. It’s important to remove friction at every stage, but there will be points in the journey that are more critical than others. These moments of truth can see users take divergent paths and may even pivot on a certain amount of emotion, so getting them right for each persona is vital for the entire success of the UX.
7. Test your UX
The goal of conducting customer journey analysis is to gather valuable and actionable insights. You’ll only know if this has worked by testing your UX. Fortunately, modern marketing tools make it simple to do so. Small tweaks can make a huge difference to conversions, so test copy with varying imagery, alternative calls to action (CTAs) or adjusted headlines to see how each segment reacts.
Mapping the customer journey
The next step after conducting a full analysis is mapping the customer journey, which means creating a visual representation of how users move across your business’ touchpoints. It usually consists of five stages:
Customer journey mapping is vital to accelerate the sales cycle, ensuring potential purchasers don’t drop off unnecessarily along the way. That means providing relevant information at the right time and minimizing the clutter to ensure nothing detracts from making a buying decision. Your map will help you to visualize the options and interactions available to your customer at every stage.
To learn more about the importance of understanding the customer journey, listen to our interview with Becky Simms on The Strategic Marketing Show:
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