How to Improve Experiences at Every CX Stage with Customer Journey Analytics
By Camila Martinez-Granata
Customer experience has overtaken price and product as the key brand differentiator, and organizations must evolve the methods in which they collect, analyze, and act on customer insights and interactions. Quick, seamless, and personalized interactions with brands are now the norm and expectation--and brands who hit the mark can enjoy increased equity. In fact, Accenture found that 91% of consumers are more likely to shop brands that offer recommendations and deals that are relevant to them.
In order to adapt to evolving customer expectations, snapshots into customer behavior via tactics like NPS surveys aren’t enough. Now, the newest expectation is gaining real-time, 360-visibility into how your customers interact with your brand and leveraging that information.
With a comprehensive view of how people move through the customer lifecycle, you can uncover valuable clues as to why through looking at the patterns and behaviors surrounding that moment.
Data and analytics-driven companies are 58% more likely to beat their revenue goals than non-analytics-driven businesses. And leaders in retail, SaaS, telecom and more are already using customer journey insights to make data-informed decisions that improve customer experiences and raise their bottom lines.
Read on to learn how you can use customer journey analytics to improve outcomes at every stage of the customer journey.
What are the stages of the customer journey?
The customer journey (not to be confused with the buyer journey) is about how a prospect becomes a customer--and about what you can do to keep them happy and coming back. Here are the three key stages in a customer’s journey.
In the acquisition stage, the customer is aware of their problem and searching for solutions. They might discover your brand through research, such as reading a blog. Or by clicking on an ad or through word-of-mouth recommendations from a friend or colleague. At this stage, a user may sign up for a free trial or subscribe to a basic service.
After acquisition comes activation. In this stage, the prospect becomes a user or customer as they go through the onboarding process (or for e-commerce, complete the first purchase). Don’t overlook the activation stage--this critical point is where customers begin to form strong opinions about your brand.
The adoption stage is where the product or service (hopefully) becomes ingrained in the user’s work life or daily habits. People who become regular users of the product are less likely to churn, and more likely to recommend your product to others.
Customer journey analytics software combines predictive analytics, real-time data pipelines, behavioral segmentation, and more to help companies see both the forest and the trees of the customer journey. With visualizations showing the high-level customer “flow” and query engines that drill down on a single detail, brands uncover insights they can use to provide value across the entire experience.
How to use customer journey analytics at every stage of the journey
Customer journey analytics provides a dynamic view of the customer as they move through the stages. It also presents an opportunity to quickly find and fix any points of frustration that may impede a prospect’s smooth flow through the acquisition, activation, and adoption stages.
Data from McKinsey showed that customer-analytics champions experienced:
- 23X higher success rate for customer acquisition
- 6.5X more customers retained
- 9X higher likelihood for above-average profitability
So, what are the critical touchpoints across all three stages of the customer journey? And how can you use insights from customer journey analytics at each stage along a user’s path?
Let’s take a closer look at each stage and identify some key performance indicators that you can monitor in each phase.
1. Acquisition or early stage
In this stage, it’s your job to offer the right nudges to investigate your offerings, know when to engage by phone or email, and provide the information your prospects need to make a decision. The themes of this stage are discovery, awareness, research, and comparison. This stage often ends in decisive action.
A person may interact with your brand in the following ways--also known as touchpoints--in the acquisition stage include:
- Reading online reviews
- Viewing website pages
- Reading blogs
- Clicking on or viewing PPC ads
- Downloading a white paper or case study
- Watching a video
- Engaging with any other sales content such as emails, calls, sales chat support, or webinars
What to track within these touchpoints:
- Open rates, views, clicks, and traffic
- Referral channels
- A/B testing performance for marketing materials
- Percentage of conversions based on entry point or other behaviors
2. Activation or mid-stage
The second stage of the customer journey, activation, often begins with the decision, including the purchase, delivery, and onboarding process. Brands have a huge opportunity to make a good impression with helpful guidance and a smooth checkout process.
Touchpoints in the activation stage may include:
- Completing the checkout process
- Registering for an account
- Verifying information
- Updating profile photo or information
- Downloading your company’s app
- Following onboarding steps received via emails
- Watching training videos
What to track:
- Time-to-launch (how long it took them to convert)
- Number of pages viewed (and which pages) leading up to the conversion
- Checkout abandonment rate
- Percentage of prospects who convert from a particular landing page or email CTA
- Trends in onboarding
- Trial sign-ups and subscription rates
- Contact support rate
- Retention by help feature usage in the first week
- Weekly and daily active users
3. Adoption or late-stage
The adoption stage includes everything that happens after a customer receives your product or service. At this stage, companies can help the customer maximize their experience by highlighting product features, helpful tips, and new offerings. It’s also an opportunity to measure customer satisfaction, identify brand ambassadors, and upsell.
Adoption-stage touchpoints include:
- Using your product & discovering favorite features
- Trying new features
- Talking about the product
- Inviting or recommending your product to others
- Using help desk or self-support features
- Using live support or chatbots
- Upgrading to premium tiers or services
What to track:
- The number of sessions per day, week, etc.
- Number of sessions now compared to acquisition and activation stages (to identify qualities of a future adopter)
- Upsell conversion rate
- Cross-sell conversion rate
- Net promoter score
- Customer support rate
Putting your customer journey insights to good use
The goal here is not to get lost in a sea of numbers. Rather, it’s prioritizing the ones that really matter at each stage. The KPIs we’ve listed are a great start for any business that wants to learn more about its customers. But, each business may have different metrics that best reflect their service quality and customer satisfaction in their own organization.
Once you’ve collected your data, the real work begins. Making changes based on your findings is the linchpin of a successful customer journey analysis. Luckily, there are customer analytics tools that can help you gain real-time insights into your customers’ journeys and effectively leverage that information.
Modern CX analytics tools, like Scuba, make it easier to put your data to work. You can easily measure, track, and optimize your efforts to:
- Continually update your view of the customer experience for the most relevant insights
- Create new queries against your data using natural language, not code snippets
- Query data across all channels and touchpoints
- Enable collaboration across teams by providing consistent information
Customer journey analytics is one of the most powerful ways to make use of customer data, and Scuba can help you effectively put that data to use.
Learn more about how Scuba enables you to ask critical questions about your consumers, act on your answers, and test the results. Request a demo today!
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