Customer Journey Mapping – all your touchpoints open for business?

Customer Journey Mapping is a tool that many organisations are turning to when they are looking to align their business with the customers’ experience. But perhaps some companies are not totally committed to ensuring all touchpoints are open for business in order to deliver a positive customer experience.

Running a customer journey mapping workshop to launch your customer journey mapping work should be seen as the very start of your journey of customer alignment, not an end in itself. Careful consideration needs to be given to every channel your customer has with you, and every tool they choose to use within that channel. How do you as an organisation ensure that you can make it easy for the customer to do business with you?

My own recent personal experience was with Monarch Airlines who, up until this experience, I was an advocate of. I recently booked return flights to Rome, using my iPad – or at least I tried to. I entered all of the flight details, chose my baggage options, entered the passenger details, chose my seats, considered their inflight meal options, reviewed their onward travel arrangement offers, examined their currency card option, weighed up the additional cost of credit card against debit card payments, and finally put in my card details. Then sat back and awaited the ‘confirmation of booking’ screen, but instead was returned to their home page! We’ve all been there now wondering: ‘have they taken my money?’ so daren’t start the booking again! I quickly called their call centre only to be told they were experiencing extremely high volumes of calls, which I naturally thought was because their website had crashed. I settled down expecting a long wait.

Delivering in all touchpoints

When I got through to the call handler I explained the situation and he quickly checked and confirmed that I was not booked on the flight, he then asked me what device I had used to attempt the booking. He then told me that their website didn’t work with iPads and that customers would always be dropped out at the payment page. I expressed my amazement that their website didn’t work with iPads and that they should at the very least put up a large warning notice on their home page. His response was to say that it wasn’t a fault with their website and was to do with Apple’s operating system. Seems a strange point of view to me that they think their website has greater impact than Apple, and that its inadequacies are more important than their customers’ experience.

Lessons to learn for customer journey mapping

So from a customer journey mapping point of view, what are the key lessons to learn:

1. Running a customer journey mapping workshop is the start of the process, it’s the tip of the iceberg when considering customer experience

2. You have to have customer feedback to help you develop the journey. This doesn’t necessarily involve commissioning surveys – in this case Monarch must be receiving regular calls into their call centre from people trying to book whilst using an iPad, they will be getting this direct customer feedback, but the real question is what is happening to it?

3. When identifying key customer touchpoints of a journey, in this case online, consideration has to be given to all of the options that customers have at their fingertips, such as the use of the world’s leading tablet!

4. When you don’t consider all the detail of the journey it can cost your business. How many of their customers have gone on to book with another airline, and how much call centre time is wasted handling calls on this issue, what’s the impact on Monarch’s brand and customer loyalty through this negative experience, and how many people will hear about this via social media or word of mouth?

5. Aspects of a customer’s journey are impacted by third party influencers, in this case an Apple iPad, which can result in a collision of journeys, and you need to help the customer avoid the resulting negative impact on your own business

6. When looking at possible solutions to issues about the customer journey, consider what is the minimum effort/expense for your organisation vs the maximum impact it will have on your customers e.g. put a warning sign at the front of the booking system saying that it can’t be done using an iPad? If you don’t, the customer will find out the hard way and have a much more negative experience.

Next steps

If you’d like to talk about successful deployment of customer journey mapping and delivering a world class customer experience we’d love to hear from you.

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