Customer Journey Maps: Understanding the UK Consumer's Path to Purchase.



Do you ever wonder what your brand looks like to customers? There’s no business without consumers, after all. But it can be difficult to understand a customer’s experience at each stage of their buyer journey. That’s where a customer journey map comes in.

Consumer journey maps are a great way to visualise a customer’s interactions with your brand. This can help to identify pain points, avoid potential issues, predict consumer behaviour and make informed decisions to improve your business strategy.

Create your own customer journey map with our infographic templates below and chart your customer’s path to purchase effectively with Adobe Express.

Understanding UK customer behaviour.

Every customer is different. But there are some patterns and trends in UK customer behaviour that can help us predict how customers might begin their buying journey.

Understanding current trends in buyer behaviour can help you work out what your customer journey map might look like. Let’s take a closer look below.

What is a customer journey map?

A customer journey map is what it says on the tin: a visual map of a customer’s engagement with a brand, service or product. This can be in the form of a chart, infographic or timeline.

Customer experience journey maps lay out all the touchpoints and actions a customer is likely to take. For example, the first time they visit your website and the steps towards them buying a product or using your service.

Some of the most common types of customer journey maps include:

Each of these customer journey maps can help to set the groundwork for any necessary changes to your service, marketing and brand strategy.

Key phases of the customer journey map.

Customer journey maps are most useful for mapping out consumer interactions. This helps to track how and why they become paying customers.

This complex path can be broken down into five stages:

  1. Awareness. The consumer comes across your brand through various channels, such as social media, ads, or word of mouth.
  2. Consideration. The consumer weighs your offering against competitors in the market, considering factors such as price, features, reviews and limitations.
  3. Purchase. The consumer narrows their search down and makes a decision to purchase your product or service.
  4. Retention. The consumer uses the product and engages with your business through various channels, encouraging brand loyalty.
  5. Advocacy. The consumer spreads the word about your product, helping to bring in more prospective customers.

6 editable examples of customer journey maps.

What to include in a customer journey map.

Customer journey maps are designed to put the consumer front and centre. But you need to know your customer first!

Here are some key elements to include in your customer journey map template:

How to map your customer’s journey.

There’s no right or wrong way to create a customer journey map. But before you begin jotting down ideas, your map will need to match your customer persona, key stages and much more.

Map your customer’s path-to-purchase journey for your business with the following steps.

1. Use a customer journey map template.

Save yourself time with professional customer journey map templates that suit your brand and design needs. Build an infographic to make your customer journey map more engaging or make a chart to turn your raw customer data into digestible information. Alternatively, you can include them both in a compelling presentation.

2. Decide on your customer persona.

Think about your target audience. What are their motivations, questions, needs and challenges? Use analytics, surveys and market research to gather information on your customer base, then build a persona based on them to create more customer-focused experiences. You might want to design it like a CV of your target customer.

3. Identify touchpoints for your customers.

Map out the key stages of the customer journey and the potential touchpoints at each stage with a handy timeline. For example, the ‘awareness’ stage may include marketing channels where consumers interact with you, such as advertising, social media and word of mouth. Work your way through each key stage and leave no stone unturned.

4. Map out the customer experience.

List the customer experience you need to create according to each touchpoint. Every touchpoint should consider the customer’s actions, motivations, questions and pain points. Make a note on your customer journey map where you intend to respond to specific touchpoints with your brand’s solution.

5. Analyse your findings.

Lastly, analyse your results to determine where customer needs aren’t being met. How many people viewed your website but then exited before making a purchase? Are you bombarding the customer with too much information? Asking yourself these insightful questions can help to find solutions and improve the customer experience.

Free customer journey map templates.

Why are customer journey maps important for your business?

Customer expectations are constantly evolving, and consumer journey maps can help to establish exactly what is needed and when. That’s what makes them such a powerful tool – especially for small businesses.

Here are some benefits to using a customer journey map in your business strategy:

Spot gaps in your path-to-purchase journey.

Customer journey maps can identify loopholes in processes and break down isolated departments that consumers may find frustrating. They can also detect holes in the customer experience, including gaps between devices, departments and channels. For example, where the journey from a paid social ad to the brand’s website could be smoother.

Predict how your customers will behave in the future.

Your customer journey map can allow you to assess the current and future state of the customer’s path to purchase. As they progress through the key phase of their journey, your map can predict the likelihood of them reaching the purchasing stage. This can help to improve your processes based on customer behaviour.

Gain insightful information on how your brand performs.

Information is key, and you can gain insight into all levels of your business with a consumer journey map. Your map may provide insight for the customer services team on how to better interact with consumers or assist managers looking for which devices consumers use most. It could also show you which resources or tools are needed for a better customer experience.

Understand the customer’s experience with your business.

We’ve all been a customer before, but it’s different when it comes to your own business. Understanding what your customer experiences in real-time allows you to walk in their shoes during their journey. Customer journey maps can allow you to outline their path, identify obstacles, and uncover any positive interactions with your service or product.

Useful things to know.

Who should create a customer journey map?

Marketers, customer success teams, sales and product managers are probably best places to make and use a customer journey map. However, for everyone to understand their customer’s needs, it’s worth all team members getting involved in customer journey mapping.

Is a customer journey the same as customer experience?

The customer journey is a specific path that users take across touchpoints when interacting with a brand. In comparison, customer experience is how well the overall process matches customer expectations. Consider both when creating your customer journey experience map with Adobe Express.

What are the key components of a customer journey map?

What you include in your customer journey map depends on your business goals. The main elements include:

These components will help to determine how well your brand is received and, in turn, improve the customer experience.