What is a customer journey?
Think of the “customer journey” as the full range of experiences your customer or client has with your company—from the first time they learn about you to the point of purchase and beyond. The customer journey may never end if you retain your customers for repeat business.
What are customer touchpoints?
Touchpoints are the different interactions between your business and your client throughout each client’s customer journey. Many touchpoints in the customer journey may occur well before a sale is completed. For example, customers may see social media posts, blog posts, or other marketing efforts. The actual browsing experience and checkout process on your website are touchpoints, as well as post-purchase interactions such as surveys, billing, or thank-yous. There are also industry-specific touchpoints. In the real estate industry, for instance, certain milestones along the way to purchasing or selling a house offer opportunities for interaction, such as completing a house inspection or at closing. The below graphic provides examples of frequent touchpoints.
How can customer touchpoints be leveraged?
Understanding touchpoints is critical to designing a customer journey that maximizes sales, retention, and referrals. To better leverage customer touchpoints, ask yourself the following three questions:
- Which touchpoints already exist in your business process? The above examples are just a starting point. Different industries and types of businesses will have specific points in the customer journey where interaction is essential.
- How can you improve the customer experience at each touchpoint? Consider the action or communication that is being used at each touchpoint and how it can be improved. For example, perhaps your customers receive a thank-you email after a purchase. This action could be improved by sending a hand-written thank you note instead or in addition to the email. The higher-touch your approach, the better you will be able to retain loyal customers.
- Beyond the essential interactions with your customers, are there additional touchpoints you can introduce into the customer journey? Determine if there are good opportunities for interaction with customers that are not being used. Add these interactions where appropriate. For example, does it make sense for you to survey your customers and ask your satisfied customers for Google reviews or referrals?
Asking yourself the above questions can help you increase sales, retention, and referrals. What are the unique touchpoints in your business? How can you expand or improve these interactions?
For additional information on leveraging touchpoints, check out: https://blog.hubspot.com/service/customer-touchpoints