Customers can come in contact with your small business in all sorts of ways. Most of the time you won't even know that they're there, as touchpoints can be as simple as sitting behind your branded van at the traffic lights or two friends chatting about their experience with your business.
While some of these touchpoints may seem out of your control, they are all part of the customer experience and where possible you need to get control of them. It could be as simple as keeping your van in pristine condition to give potential customers a great first impression (and driving sensibly!) Or going above and beyond when delivering your services or selling your products so that customers give glowing recommendations.
Touchpoint definition: A touchpoint is any time a potential customer or customer comes in contact with your small business before, during, or after a sale.
Touchpoints also include contact that you've initiated, such as via your marketing, your website, social media, the events you attend or when a customer calls or emails. Every contact is an opportunity to give customers a great experience and guide them on the customer journey. By mapping out your customer journey and all the various touchpoints along the way, you can take control of their experience and build a great customer relationship.
If you want to learn more about customer journey mapping, come along to the SiGNAL BiZHUB on Friday 6th March where business mentor Adrian Brown will share how to map your customer journey. Click here for more details and booking >>>
The benefits of customer journey mapping
By standing in your customers' shoes and experiencing your business from their perspective you can:
- Identify the touchpoints where customers come in contact with your business so you can make them a good experience
- Understand what they need at each stage of the customer journey to help them progress through your sales funnel
- Point them in the right direction to keep them progressing through your customer journey
- Identify any gaps between what customers want and what you currently deliver
- Spot opportunities to accelerate the customer journey to close a sale, get existing customers to buy again or recommend you to their friends, family and associates
- Make informed decisions about where to invest time and money in acquiring new customers and retaining your existing ones
Get started with customer journey mapping
Ahead of Adrian's talk on customer journey mapping, it's helpful to start thinking about the touchpoints your customers have with you and your business. With a list of these you can then identify at which point of the customer journey they might occur (some may happen multiple times) and whether they are optimised to help customers continue this journey. For example, if you sell a product your packaging is a touchpoint both before and after a sale. Packaging is not just for labelling and securing your products! It also needs to close the sale and be part of building customer loyalty so new customers return for more. It can also be an opportunity to turn customers into brand advocates; you could include an incentive on your packaging for customers to share their experience on social media.
Your value proposition and customer journey mapping
Each touchpoint also needs to be aligned with your value proposition, which we've been exploring this month (February) at the SiGNAL BiZHUB. Your value proposition includes your customer promise, so if touchpoints don't deliver on this promise the customer experience will be inconsistent. Customer journey mapping will help you to identify where these inconsistencies lie so the experience you deliver really engages your customers.
For example, if you're an event organiser and your value proposition promises to take the hassle and stress out of organising an event, don't make customers jump through hoops to get a quote from you! If it's a hassle to get the information they need from you, their experience of your business is already the opposite of what you're promising.
Here's a list of common touchpoints to get your started:
To learn more about customer journey mapping and how to optimise your touchpoints to close sales and build customer loyalty, come along to the SiGNAL BiZHUB on Friday 6th March. If you haven't been before, your first visit is free! Click here to learn more >>>