Customers often become (and remain) loyal to a brand as a result of the experiences they have throughout their entire customer journey.
It isn’t just about that one great call they had, or one great email response, it’s about each of these parts connected into one, optimised customer journey.
And how do you do that? Read on to find out how...
#1 Identify your key customer journeys
Before you can optimise a customer journey, you’ll need to understand where your priorities lie. This can be done as a top-down exercise, with senior management selecting the most important customer journeys to the business. If possible, including frontline employees in this process can help illuminate areas of importance that might not otherwise be considered. Their experience of engaging with customers on a day-to-day basis can shed a different light on what your priorities should be.
#2 Understand where you’re starting from
After identifying your key customer journeys, you’ll need to benchmark each one to understand your starting point. At this stage, it makes sense to draw from both employee and customer feedback, to get a well-rounded understanding of your customer journeys.
This exercise will help you to uncover parts of the journey that are working well and also parts that are not. It should also help you to separate out what your ideal customer experience would be and what the reality is today.
#3 Reframing the journey to improve the overall customer experience
The temptation at this stage is for leaders to ‘helicopter’ in with a solution. But what works much better is when all the separate teams involved throughout the customer journey come together, connect the dots and break down any silos that have traditionally been in place. This will then start to make the customer journey smoother, turning disconnected touchpoints into a continuous path.
#4 Implement the identified changes
This is probably the hardest stage - how do you turn your optimised customer journey plan into actions? It’s not going to be easy. It’s not only going to involve refreshing current processes but potentially redefining the way you measure and incentivise the teams in charge of each touchpoint.
One approach is to roll out a pilot scheme. Test the theory. Then, when it’s proven and you have all the necessary buy-in, it’ll be easier to roll it out across the organisation.
#5 Analyse and repeat
Ideally, this should be a continual process of improvement, where you’re always looking for ways to make your customer journey even smoother for your customers. Adopting this approach, even if you don’t have any glaring customer service problems, can become a real differentiator from your competitors.
It’s not quick or straightforward. But making a commitment to improve and optimise the journey you provide your customers will not only help you stand out from your competitors, but it’ll help you stand out (for the right reasons) to your customers.
Interested in finding out how else you can provide a great customer experience for your customers? Take a look at our On Demand Webinar in partnership with Engage Customer: