A customer’s journey is the process they go through to interact with your business. Think of it as a roadmap — the steps they will take to reach a goal, such as buying your product or service. The last thing we want is your customer getting lost or falling off the roadmap altogether. So, let’s talk about how you can curate your customer’s journey to ensure your customer has a positive experience.
Think like a buyer
Making the buying process easy for the customer is essential for business. By understanding the buyer’s journey, companies can create a seamless and enjoyable experience that leads to a sale.
Whether you run a sign, print, or screen-printing business, it is important to anticipate your customer’s needs and understand what they are looking for at each stage of their journey. Doing so can provide them with the information and resources they need to make a decision, ultimately leading to sales for you and customer satisfaction. Before a potential customer even considers your business, you need to start thinking about the different stages a buyer goes through and how you can customize this process to fit your customer’s needs for your specific business.
To think like a buyer, you will need to consider these three stages of the buyer’s journey:
Make sure your target audience is aware of your product or service. You can do this through marketing campaigns, social media, websites, and search engine optimization (SEO). Get your business active in your community by sponsoring events, partnering with other companies, donating to local charities, etc.
Once your target audience is aware of your product or service, they will begin to consider it as an option. Provide the customer with additional information, such as pricing, features, and benefits. Case studies and testimonials can also be helpful at this stage.
Finally, your target audience will decide to purchase your product or service. It is crucial to provide a smooth and easy buying process at this stage.
The buying process roadmap
Giving your customers opportunities to experience your business positively will help them with their journey and can lead to repeat business. Your goal is to anticipate your customers’ needs and plan for any possible roadblocks. Start by mapping out the steps your customer will take at every stage of their buying journey and find spots where you can think ahead and jump in to help.
Here’s an example of a customer’s buying process roadmap:
- Your customer needs your product or service.
- How do they find you?
- How do they know about your product or service?
- The customer sees your storefront sign and decides to walk into your shop.
- Is your sign easy to see? Does your display showcase your products and offerings?
- Is your shop easy to find?
- What is the best way to improve your building’s appearance?
- They look around your showroom/lobby and see your displays and samples.
- Is this an inviting space?
- Are product samples the best work you want your customer to see?
- How can this step be improved?
- The customer is greeted by a friendly employee who asks if the customer needs help.
- Is the employee knowledgeable about the products and services you offer?
- Can the employee help the customer learn about your business?
- In what ways can you make this interaction positive?
- The employee might offer your customer a beverage, a tour of your shop, or introduce them to the owner/salesperson/project manager who can dazzle them with more helpful information.
- Remember, you are the expert in this field, so now’s your time to shine!
- Customers will appreciate the extra time you take with them.
- Ask your customers questions about their needs, listen, and offer your input and feedback.
- Does the employee understand the customer’s needs?
- Are they able to provide accurate information to the customer?
- What essential information must the customer know about your shop/process at this point?
- You collect the customer’s information for follow-up and future promotions.
- Always, always, always get the customer’s contact information.
- If they don’t order from you right now, they might decide they need your services down the road. Don’t miss an opportunity to capture a potential lead.
- Tell them you’ll be in touch with a quote (aim for same-day if possible).
- The sooner you send the quote, the better your chances of closing the sale.
- Follow up with a phone call or email within 24 hours.
- Don’t let them slip through the cracks. If this potential customer falls off your radar, then you will fall off the customer’s radar.
- Once the quote is approved, help your customer understand what to expect moving forward.
- What happens in the production process, deposit, art approval, and timeline?
- What can they expect regarding deadline dates, shipping, or installation?
- Give your customer a status update during production, and see if they have any questions.
- This is an opportunity for you to check in with the customer and ensures all is good. Or even take this opportunity to ask if they need any additional products.
- If the customer contacts you with questions or concerns, aim to provide a fast response so that they are not left waiting.
- Make the customer feel like a priority by responding quickly.
- Aim to under-promise and over-deliver.
- Your customer will always be happy if their needs are met earlier than expected.
- You have completed the order, and the customer has paid the invoice.
- Follow up with your customer to check if they are satisfied with your product or service.
- Ask if they are willing to leave you a review.
- The customer is happy and leaves a positive review on Google.
- A few weeks later, you send the customer a promotional email offering a discount on additional products they might need.
- This reminds the customer of your brand and core values.
You can apply this type of roadmap to all stages where your customer might interact with your business. For now, you might start with one roadmap for the buyer’s journey. Later, you might create several maps for different customer interaction opportunities; one for your website and marketing journey, social media interaction, the order-taking process, art approval, and maybe fulfillment and follow-up.
It’s a team effort
Creating a roadmap to improve your customer’s journey is an excellent opportunity to get your team involved. Together with your team, map it out on a giant whiteboard, or bring out the markers and create a poster that everyone at your shop can see. Brainstorm ways each team member can enhance the process and cover all potential roadblocks or bottlenecks.
By ensuring that everyone on your team is aware of the steps and follows through with each customer who comes through your door, your roadmap will stay consistent, and each customer will receive the same excellent service.