Can’t work out why your prospects are dropping out of your sales cycle and your churn rates are sky-high?

It might be time to analyze your customer journey. Understanding the experience your customers are having along the way to purchase can help you spot the problems hidden in the cross-functional gaps of your revenue organization.

So get your detective hat on and build yourself a revenue operations strategy based on your customer journey.

This article covers:

  • Mapping your customer journey
  • Identifying the characteristics of effective journeys
  • Taking action
  • Measuring your CX
  • Iterating and updating

Map your customer journey

Your customer journey is the path your customers take to purchase and beyond. The stages of the buyer journey include:

  • Awareness,
  • Consideration,
  • Decision,
  • Purchase,
  • And post-purchase. 

If you want to improve your customer experience, you need to understand your customers. What are their goals? Their pain-points? Their aspirations?

Another key aspect of their experience? The customer journey.

Mapping your customer journey involves listing touchpoints, holding cross-functional meetings, and building a blueprint so you can easily see how your customers move through your sales funnel.

If this seems complicated, don’t panic. We have an entire article dedicated to this process. So go read that and come back here once you’ve mapped out your organization’s customer journey. 👇 

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Identify characteristics of effective journeys

Okay, so now that you understand how your customers are moving from the awareness stage to making a purchase and beyond, it’s time for you to analyze which routes lead to purchase and advocacy, and which lead to pre-sales dropouts or fast churn.

Use as much customer data from your CRM as possible to find these patterns within your sales funnel. It may be more helpful to utilize a data analysis tool, or an AI software to help you pull out these insights. This allows you more time to understand what the findings mean for your organization.

Hopefully, after analyzing your customer data, you’ll spot patterns amongst your customer journey paths to help you build a strategy. 

For example, a high dropoff rate if the time between a demo call and follow-up email is over a week, or a high churn rate if customers don’t download your brochure. Or your most satisfied customers were introduced to their account manager or customer success (CS) rep before purchase.

Your organization is always going to lose customers, but by identifying strong and weak points within your customer journey, you can make improvements to your customer experience and win and retain more customers.

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Take action

Now that you understand the problems your organization faces, you can start to take action towards a smoother customer journey and better customer experience. 

There are three common ways of resolving issues along the customer journey depending on the problems you discover: headcount, alignment, and technology. Let’s dive into each of them.

Resolution 1: Headcount

You may realize one of your teams is short-staffed, and that this is causing issues for your customer journey. The easiest way to resolve this is to advocate for more headcount in this department.

For example, your customer success reps might take too long to respond to customer questions because there are only two reps serving thousands of your customers. This would help to justify hiring more CS reps.

Or you may discover a data maintenance problem leads to sales reps calling the wrong prospects and losing deals. This may require you to consider increasing your RevOps headcount if your team is already stretched thin.

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Resolution 2: Alignment

You may also discover your revenue organization’s weakness is a lack of cross-functional alignment. For example, your marketing team isn’t passing marketing qualified leads (MQLs) over to sales quickly enough to result in a sale.

There are lots of ways to increase alignment across your revenue teams, like having shared revenue goals, regular meetings, and shared strategies. Aligning your sales, marketing, and CS leaders around the customer journey should be fairly straightforward, since they should’ve all agreed on the framework.

Resolution 3: Tech stack and tools

Another common problem is not having the right tools to automate your workflows. Setting up proper automation can save your teams time, allowing them to focus on delighting your customers.

Also, if you have a duplicated data issue, a tool can fix this more quickly and  effectively than manual data cleansing.

Measuring customer experience

Once you’ve implemented these changes, it’s important to track their impact on your customer experience and satisfaction. To do this, you should use interaction-based metrics such as net promoter score (NPS) and customer satisfaction score (CSAT).

NPS measures customer satisfaction and loyalty, with higher scores indicating greater satisfaction and loyalty. 

CSAT is a measurement of how satisfied your customers are with their experience using your product or service. This indicates when customers are likely to churn or become advocates.

If your NPS and CSAT scores are improving after implementing your process changes, then you know your initiatives are working, but if there’s no improvement or these metrics decrease, you should dive deeper into the issue.

You can also track your customer retention rate and customer churn rate to understand how many customers are staying with you long-term, as this is another indicator of satisfaction. Ideally, your customer retention rate should increase after your initiatives.

Iterate and update

Just like how your customer journey may change over time, your strategy must also continuously change. Iteration is crucial to staying ahead of any problems within your customer journey.

Using data-driven insights, you should seek to understand your customers’ pain points, and tweak your customer journey to resolve these potential drop-off points. Likewise, if your alignment efforts are unsuccessful, you may want to take another approach to solve the problem.

Gradual updates to your customer journey’s approach can help keep your customer’s experience smooth and enjoyable. Happy customers = increased sales and retention.

Final thoughts

Your customer journey might be the key your organization is missing to unlock revenue growth.

Analyzing it can be an excellent way to gain insights into your customer experience and help you understand their pain points along your sales cycle.

By implementing customer journey information into your revenue operations strategy, you can use data to understand where your customers are dropping off and how to resolve this problem to increase customer satisfaction and number of won deals.

Want to discuss your ideas with your peers? Join our community of 2000+ revenue leaders on Slack. 👇