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Understanding the Customer Journey

What is the Customer Journey?

First things first we need to understand what we mean by ‘The Customer Journey’ so here is the definition;

“The Customer Journey is the complete sum of experiences that customers go through when interacting with your company and brand.”

Instead of looking at just a part of a transaction or experience, the Customer Journey documents the full experience of being a customer. The crucial element of this methodology is looking at the customers purchasing cycle from the customer’s perspective and not from your organisations viewpoint.

Why is this important?

At this point you may be asking, “why would I do this?”. Well it’s simple, satisfied customers are likely to tell between 4 and 6 friends about their experience whereas unsatisfied customers are likely to tell between 9 and 15 acquaintances about their negative experience. Also, keep in mind that for every dissatisfied customer that you are aware of there are on average 26 more dissatisfied customers that you are unaware of. Essentially, if organisations don’t take the Customer Journey into consideration and you get it wrong, your business will suffer as a direct result. In case you still aren’t convinced of the importance of getting this right, remember that your existing customers are between 5 and 10 times more likely to buy again from you if you get this right whereas if you get this wrong, customers are 4 times more likely to move to a competitor as a result of poor service than they are due to the price or product itself. Customer Service is important but making the whole purchasing process as enjoyable and seamless as possible for the customer can make the difference between a one-time customer and a brand ambassador.

How do you do it?

Primarily the key to successfully understanding your Customer Journey is remembering that the whole organisation must be involved. It is no use in only looking at this from a Sales or a Marketing perspective as these are not the only touchpoints that your customer will interact with. Everyone from IT to Customer Services must be involved in analysing the current process and reviewing where improvements could be made.
It’s important to know that rarely do customers buy on a whim, there is always a research process. With this in mind, we need to consider how customers research products? Let’s take a key touchpoint as an example – your website. Is your website up-to-date with FAQs, product information and is this information easy to find? Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and look at your website from their perspective. Is the website easy to navigate, are the contact details easy to find and are there a variety of ways to reach out to you? Not everyone wants to call a company to find out information, so do you have social media or an online chat platform where customers can ask you a quick question and receive a quick response?
Your organisation needs to go through this process with every possible touchpoint that a customer may use to interact with you and ensure that these are designed with the customer in mind. Yes, this isn’t a quick process but as already explained, it is crucial for your success in an ever more competitive marketplace.

What are the challenges involved?

One of the main challenges that any organisation will face when becoming more Customer centric is integrating your systems so that you can gain a 360° view of the customer. There are often challenges with optimising efficiencies, addressing gaps in your processes and also having data silos. However, that’s where we can help. At Provident CRM we have been providing these services for 15 years. Contact us today to see how we can help you become more Customer centric.

What are the benefits?

Well apart from the obvious increase in sales there are many other benefits from adopting this approach. An increase in productivity, an improvement in data quality, streamlined communication and consistent brand messaging are all achievable with becoming more Customer Centric. Perhaps the most beneficial outcome from analysing the Customer Journey is departmental alignment and cohesion. As every department will be involved in the analysis and redesign, every department can take ownership of the process and will work together towards the same goal, and that in itself can drive your organisation to greater things!

ABOUT SUGARCRM

SugarCRM enables businesses to create extraordinary customer relationships with the most innovative, flexible and affordable CRM solution on the market. Unlike traditional CRM solutions that focus primarily on management and reporting, Sugar empowers the individual, coordinating the actions of customer-facing employees and equipping them with the right information at the right time to transform the customer experience. Sugar pricing is simple and affordable, so it can deploy it to all customer-facing employees, and know what it’s going to cost. Recognized by leading industry analysts as a CRM visionary and innovator, Sugar is used by more than 1.5 million individuals in over 120 countries. To learn more visit SugarCRM or follow @SugarCRM.

A LITTLE BIT ABOUT PROVIDENT CRM

Provident CRM is a global CRM consultancy specialising in Sugar, business process improvement tools and systems integrations. We are among the top SugarCRM Partners worldwide holding the coveted Elite Partner status. With offices across the UK and Ireland we have shared our experience and knowledge with organisations in both the public and private sectors. Partnering with our Customers, we focus on delivering value, sustainability, efficiencies and productivity.

We have already helped hundreds of organisations to deploy Sugar, assisting in change management and user adoption. We are looking forward to partnering with you, discussing your implementation and helping to realise your vision for unparalleled customer experience.

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