The best businesses in the world recognize how critical building an optimal customer experience is to their overall sales and brand reputation. Research conducted by Zendesk in 2020 found that “half of customers say that customer experience is more important to them now compared to a year ago.”
To build an optimal user experience, you need clearly defined customer journey touchpoints that move prospects through the purchase process. These touchpoints can be defined as platforms or interactions a prospect encounters throughout their overall customer journey.
Generally speaking, these points of contact happen in one of five customer journey stages: awareness, engagement, evaluation, purchase, and post-purchase. Each of these stages addresses a different part of the customer journey, and the touchpoints you create should reflect them.
But how do you know what customer journey touchpoints you should actually be focusing on as a business? To help get you started, we’ve put together a list of six key customer journey touchpoints you should consider.
Customer journey stage: Awareness
Your homepage serves as the digital heartbeat of your business. It’s the very first touchpoint many prospects will encounter on their customer journey. The primary goal of almost any homepage is to pique your visitors’ interest and motivate them to explore your website further.
Looking at the example above from video marketing software company Wistia, we see the nuanced simplicity behind this customer journey touchpoint. With a colorful and inviting homepage, Wistia uses actionable copy designed to immediately grab the visitor’s attention. To cap things off, there’s also a clearly highlighted CTA for users to either sign up to try Wistia’s product—for those who are further along in the customer journey—or watch a video about it for more information for those that are in the awareness stage.
As one of the primary customer journey touchpoints prospects will run into, the homepage of your site should be centered around offering a straightforward introduction to your product. When someone interacts with your site for the very first time, they should be able to understand how your product will help them just from your homepage text and visuals.
Customer journey stage: Any stage
There’s a lot more to social media than posting Instagram beach pics and going on angry Twitter rants. In fact, it’s one of the very best customer journey touchpoints your business can utilize.
Why? Because social media channels have massive audiences. In 2020, there were over 3.6 billion active social media users worldwide. As a result, these channels can help your business connect with new customers and boost your overall brand awareness.
There are multiple touchpoints to consider within social media.
- Company pages are great for offering users general information about your business and what it does.
- Company posts are ideal for sharing your beliefs and showing off your collective brand personality. People can also respond via comments to connect further with your brand.
- Social media chatbots help users directly communicate with your business when it’s convenient for them.
To successfully utilize social media for your company, consider different touchpoints under the social media umbrella. If prospective customers who are interested in what your business has to offer commonly interact with your company through various touchpoints, you’ll want to make sure you’re providing those touchpoints to them.
Interactions with Sales Representatives
Customer journey stage: Evaluation
Now that your prospect is aware of your business and has engaged with it in some capacity, it’s time to show them what makes your product so great. One of the best ways to do that is to have a sales representative communicate with them directly.
The interaction with your customer can take on a couple of different forms. Sales reps can do it the old-fashioned way with a phone call by setting up a time to chat with a prospect to elaborate on the value of your product. Make sure you give customers the choice of when they want to talk. This is especially critical for B2B stakeholders as their day-to-day schedules are quite busy and their time is often limited.
Live chat is another way to talk to prospects and show them why your product rocks. The advantage of this type of approach is that you can also send prospects visual assets over chat to show them how great your product is versus simply telling them. Showing prospects the value of your product in real time will likely motivate them to learn about your brand further.
Educational and Product Content
Customer journey stage: Awareness, Evaluation
Educational content about your product can actually help your business address different parts of the customer journey, but it’s especially useful as a touchpoint in the evaluation stage.
For example, you can also educate potential customers about your product and industry in a similar way using blog posts. Consider writing a post that highlights the competitive advantage of your product in the industry. Work management platform Fibery has done something unique in that regard with their “Fibery vs. X” blog series.
This blog series shows Fibery’s capabilities against a number of other work management platforms. The posts offer side-by-side comparisons, so readers can see what areas Fibery and competing products excel in. This type of openness is great at the evaluation stage because it builds trust. Fibery is transparent about their product flaws and strengths.
Blog posts with competitor analysis are especially good if you’re a B2B brand. B2B stakeholders generally look at a number of different options before they decide on a product, and this customer journey touchpoint can help them reach that decision with more confidence and speed.
Customer journey stage: Evaluation/Purchase
When you’re ready to drive home the value of your product, show customers how successful it’s been for their industry peers. The best way to do that is by gathering feedback and sharing customer reviews and testimonials.
These customer journey touchpoints are critical at the evaluation stage, especially for B2B businesses. B2B products are often a significant investment, so it’s in the best interest of businesses to see how much success others have had with the product.
To collect reviews, send a follow-up email requesting a review after a customer has made a purchase. Sending this message within a couple of days of the sale, or after their free trial period of your product has ended, gives customers enough time to digest your product’s main features and also not forget about it. Offer close-ended questions with a rating scale, so they’re as easy to answer as possible. Add an optional text box for customers to elaborate if they want to.
If you’re looking for detailed testimonials, consider hopping on a call with a customer who has had a positive experience. Share their quotes on the homepage or a testimonials page of your website, as long as the customer gives you permission.
Alternatively, interview customers over video if they’re willing and have the time. The testimonial video can include a satisfied customer talking about what they like about your product in greater detail. Lightly direct these testimonials to get customers to touch on specific features and pain points that your product helps solve.
A feedback survey is another great way to collect customer input on your product. Compile a list of specific questions to find out where your product is thriving and where it may be falling a little short. This input will help your business address problem areas that customers run into with greater efficiency.
Customer journey stage: Post-Purchase
Once your prospect has finally made a purchase and become a customer—the customer journey isn’t quite over yet. To motivate customers to come back to your business, you need to offer additional support or services, so they’re ready to buy again at some point.
There are a number of different follow-up messages you can send to customers to maintain and grow their interest in your business. One of the most common follow-ups is an email newsletter or discount on future purchases. A newsletter that gives customers insight into new content and product information from your business could be a good option for B2B businesses that want to help customers keep up with industry information and news that can be shared on a regular basis.
Follow-up communication also works effectively. Get a support rep to check in on a customer via email or text to see how things are going with the product. It will help your customer feel like they’re getting special attention and that they have someone to reach out to should any issues come up.
Ready to Map Out Your Customer Journey Touchpoints?
You now know some of the most critical customer journey touchpoints to focus on as a business. From here, create your own customer journey map to keep the customer lifecycle going strong. A customer journey map is comprised of all the individual touchpoints you choose to include. It helps strengthen your customer experience and bring more prospects to your business.
To make your customer journey map a success, take a look at our customer journey map template that will give you all the information you need to get started.