Overcoming the Weaknesses of Traditional Customer Journey Mapping

Within the next two years, customer experience will be the single most important factor that buyers consider in their decision-making process, ahead of both price and product. With brand loyalty at an all-time low, businesses need to understand their customers’ experiences in order to retain their current clients and attract new ones.

Businesses have turned to Customer Journey Maps (CJMs) to drive growth and keep ahead of the competition. CJMs are a visualization of a buyer’s experience over time, from first contact and through purchase and support to repurchase. The goal of the CJM is to gain insight into how these paths can be optimized by analyzing customer metrics at each step of the process. Traditional CJMs are internally-focused and organized in a linear fashion. Typically the goal is to improve the organization's operations, not the customer's overall experience.

Today’s customer journeys are exponentially more complex. Traditional CJMs are no longer sufficient as they fail to reflect customers' most desired experiences. Over the last decade, the number of touchpoints has multiplied tenfold. The widening variety of customers' values, attitudes, and influence points means that there is no longer a one-size-fits-all map that can capture the true customer experience.

To create the most effective and actionable maps, businesses must turn to a segmented Experience-Driven© approach. Customer Experience-Driven© Maps (CXMs) have three key advantages over traditional CJMs: they are segment-specific, market-facing, and executionally directive. A pain point for one segment may be a non-issue for other segments, rendering it invisible during traditional journey mapping analyses. By segmenting shoppers first and then charting the pathway for each segment, businesses gain a more granular understanding of the differing factors at play in their customers’ decision-making.

Traditional journey maps typically lead to inward-facing reports of what the customer is doing at each step of the buying process. CXMs offer business an opportunity to understand and optimize the customer experience by identifying emotionally meaningful opportunities that turn shoppers into customers, and customers into adorers. These deep insights are then used to provide organizations with effective, actionable guidance that heighten engagement and create a brand that customers truly love.

CXMs value the emotional meaning that individuals glean from interacting with the organization and overcome the weaknesses of traditional journey maps. With 5 out of 6 today’s buyers willing to pay a premium for a better customer experience, now is the ideal time for businesses to reevaluate their mapping methods.


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