How do you make a customer journey map?

28-10-2015 Bram Peulers

Take a customer perspective, not a sales perspective

Marketeers who develop a customer journey reason from a client’s perspective and not from a sales perspective. They asks themselves the question: how do customers orient themselves, who do they talk to, what are they doing, and how do they think? With a customer journey you map the process of customer experience from the customer’s point of view.

‘What is in it for me?’

All very well this customer journey, but why should one put time and effort in such? The answer is simple. By mapping shortcomings and the customer experience of your organization, you start to think more from the customer's point of view, and apprehend their specific needs. By responding to these needs you create a better customer experience, higher conversion and more customer focus within your organization.

Visualizing the customer’s journey

The journey of the customer can be mapped via a customer journey map. Through this method processes of the customer can be visualized and improved. There are several different formats of customer journey maps accessible, each one with their own advantages and disadvantages. But there are hardly any specific rules the map should meet. That is why we made our own roadmap. 

These are the components of our roadmap:
Step 1: Describe your brand & product
Step 2: Create a customer description and persona
Step 3: Describe goals and the phases of the purchasing process
Step 4: Identify the right touch-points
Step 5: Create ‘time-frames’
Step 6: Note the gaps in your customer journey map

The customer journey of the Ikea customer (source:

In 6 steps a customer journey map

Below we describe the 6 steps to create a customer journey map.

Step 1: Describe your brand and product

Provide a description of your brand and product that needs to be sold. As an organization you namely need to know what you want and are capable of.

Tip! Ask yourself: what makes your company and product unique? What are your unique selling points (USP’s)?

Step 2: Create a customer description and persona

Give a description of your customers and create several persona. These are visual descriptions of typical/characteristic, fictional persons from your target group, they include specific features, wishes and behaviors. By providing concrete descriptions these become typical customers of your company. Read more on creating a persona. 

Tip 1: Use the handy questionnaire below (this page) 

Tip 2: Analyze customer behavior through data (e.g. via Google Analytics) 

Tip 3: Conduct a survey among your employees and (potential) clients 

Tip 4: Interview ‘key customers’, your most important customers 

Tip 5: Search reviews and on social media for clients reactions

Step 3: Describe goals and the phases of the purchasing process 

Describe phases and goals your personas will follow when getting to know your product and purchasing it.

Tip! Ask yourself which questions, problems, emotion the personas will encounter during these phases? And how you would react to these.

Step 4: Identify the right touch-points 

Make transparent which ‘touchpoints’ are necessary to help the persona in achieving their goals. Think of communication channels such as website, social media or face-to-face-contact.

Describe the most important goals, phases and touch points during the buying process of your customer (source:

Step 5: Create ‘time-frames’ 

Create ‘time-frames’ according to data. How long does it take your persona to reach their end-goal?

Tip! Make use of usability-tests, in which users perform tests on your website. These can then be measured. 


Step 6: Note the gaps in your customer journey map 

Each system contains flaws, so does your customer journey map. Write them down.


After completing these 6 steps you can visualize the customer journey map. Put all your thoughts and ideas in one document. Carefully review the journey: what is going well and what could be improved. See the known customer journey of Ikea.

Questions to help you describe your target group

Answer the following questions:

  • What are the driving factors that lead to new purchases?
  • And what are the problem areas?
  • Who and what influence buying behaviour?
  • What is the role of your customer during the decision making?
  • What are the most frequent restraints from buying the product?
  • Where does your customer receive information?
  • Which content does the customer need during the buying process?
  • Who or what is influencing the customer during the buying process?

Use of the product or service:

  • Motivation, on which occasion
  • At which moment
  • How often
  • At what location
  • Use of orientation, purchase and consumption channels
  • Manner and/or extent of employment
  • Degree of loyality
  • Lifestyle
  • Media usage

Socio-demographic (who are your customers):

  • Residence (zip code)
  • Gender
  • Age and/or stage of life
  • Ethnicity
  • Income and/or social class
  • Education
  • Type and househould composition
  • Physical aspects: length, weight, health
  • Additional for B2B: revenue, number of employees, branche

Attitude (what do your customers think and feel?):

  • Convictions
  • Motivations
  • Wants and needs
  • Preferences
  • Buying motives
  • Attitude towards specific subjects