The customer journey is complex and understanding it is key to successful marketing. Customer journey mapping tools help visualize the customer's path and optimize interactions. Journey mapping tools help marketers identify pain points, tailor interfaces, and cultivate efficient, enjoyable experiences for customers. This guide explores the best tools, their pros and cons, and pricing.
What is customer journey mapping?
Customer journey mapping is a visualization technique that tracks a customer's experience with a product or service. It helps businesses understand customer behaviors, preferences, needs, and customer pain points. The core components are personas, touchpoints, and emotions. This allows businesses to walk a mile in their customers' shoes, fostering an empathetic understanding that helps businesses align their objectives with customer needs and expectations.
Customer journey mapping is a process of tracking customer interactions
Customer journey mapping is a strategic exercise in empathy that tracks customer interactions across all touchpoints to improve UX, refine products and services, identify pain points, and exceed customer expectations. It's vital for team collaboration and optimizing CX across the business. As customer interactions become increasingly omnichannel, a journey mapping tool can help businesses keep track of all touchpoints.
Journey mapping and visualization tools
Journey mapping and visualization tools help you capture, organize, and present customer data in a visual way. This can reveal patterns and gaps in the customer journey, which can be used to improve the customer experience. These tools facilitate collaboration and data collection, improving team performance. A clear customer journey map helps businesses make better decisions, craft better experiences, and align stakeholders.
Two different types of journey map prototyping tools
When it comes to journey mapping tools, there are essentially two distinct categories – prototyping tools and journey map analysis tools.
Although they both share the ultimate goal of improving the customer experience, they differ in their approach and functionality.
Prototyping tools help you visualize your intended journey
Prototyping tools assist businesses in planning, designing, and constructing websites or apps based on an imagined customer journey. They are commonly used at the early stages of product development to outline how users will interact with the product. These tools help visualize the desired customer path, highlighting important interactions and touchpoints.
They often involve diagrams, flowcharts, and wireframes as visual blueprints. Customer journey tools are crucial for creating a coherent, user-friendly, and engaging experience from the start. They also foster collaboration among stakeholders, allowing input and adjustments throughout the design process.
Journey map analysis tools show you how users are moving through your site or app
Journey map analysis tools monitor user behavior on a site or app, gathering real-time data to create detailed maps that reflect different user behaviors. These insights are crucial for optimizing the customer experience by identifying what's effective, what's not, and finding opportunities for improvement.
These tools cover the planning and understanding stages of the user experience design process, both of which are essential for delivering a superior customer experience and obtaining valuable customer feedback.
Top journey map prototyping tools
There are numerous tools available to assist in designing and prototyping customer journeys. Here are some of the most popular options.
Sketch is a long-established industry standard for designing websites and interfaces. It offers a robust platform for creating detailed user journey prototypes, utilizing its extensive library of templates and components. This vector-based tool has a user-friendly interface, making it easy to create visually appealing diagrams and journey maps.
Pros of Sketch
A professional-grade tool with a comprehensive feature set
Large library of templates and resources
Intuitive interface, even for beginners
Collaboration features allow multiple team members to work on the same project simultaneously
Cons of Sketch
Only available on Mac, which can be a limitation for teams using different operating systems
Can be overwhelming for beginners due to its extensive features
Sketch offers a free version with limited functionality. The full-featured version is available through a subscription plan, which starts at $10 per contributor per month.
Adobe XD is a newer entrant to the prototyping space, but it comes from a brand with a long history in design software. XD is a powerful tool for creating journey map prototypes, with features that allow for dynamic, interactive prototypes. The software is easy to use, with a clean interface and integrative features with other Adobe products.
Pros of Adobe XD
Seamless integration with other Adobe products
Collaboration features built-in for team design work
Supports interactive prototyping
Cons of Adobe XD
The template library isn't as extensive as competitors
The learning curve can be steep if not familiar with Adobe products
Adobe XD offers a free starter plan. For more extensive features, their paid plans start at $9.99 per user per month.
Figma's popularity has soared recently thanks to its effective freemium model and superior collaboration features. It provides real-time collaboration, allowing multiple team members to work on the same prototype simultaneously. However, its template library is not as robust as Sketch's.
Pros of Figma
Real-time collaboration features make team design work easy
Web-based platform means it can be used on any operating system
High-quality prototyping capabilities
Cons of Figma
Smaller template library compared to Sketch
Advanced features can be challenging for beginners
Figma offers a free starter plan, and paid plans start at $25 per seat per month at the Organization level, and $35 at the Enterprise level.
Mural is a digital workspace for visual collaboration. It's a flexible tool that supports a variety of diagram types, including customer journey maps. Mural leans heavily into design thinking, facilitating brainstorming, and collaboration.
Pros of Mural
A versatile tool that supports many diagram types
Collaboration features make it easy to work as a team
Cons of Mural
The feature set may be too broad for those looking for a tool specifically for customer journey mapping
May lack the advanced features that specialized tools offer
Mural offers a free trial, with plans starting at $12 per user per month
Miro is an all-in-one diagramming tool suitable for a wide range of use cases, including customer journey mapping. It offers an infinite canvas, an array of diagramming tools, and plenty of virtual sticky notes, making it a flexible and user-friendly option.
Pros of Miro
Infinite Canvas offers unlimited space for mapping complex journeys
Robust set of diagramming tools
Clean, intuitive interface
Cons of Miro
Its extensive features can be overwhelming for beginners
Not as specialized in customer journey mapping as some other tools
Miro offers a free plan that allows users to create up to three boards for free. If you require more than three boards or additional features, they offer paid plans starting at $10 per user per month.
Smaply is a specialized tool designed specifically for creating customer journey maps, personas, and stakeholder maps. It offers a clean, intuitive interface, and features specifically designed to support these tasks.
Pros of Smaply
A specialized tool with features tailored to journey mapping
Intuitive, user-friendly interface
Supports collaboration and sharing
Cons of Smaply
Less suitable for other types of diagramming or prototyping
The feature set may be too narrow for teams looking for a more versatile tool
Smaply offers a 14-day free trial, with plans starting at ~$20 per user per month.
Top journey map analysis tools
Once you've prototyped and built your site or app, understanding how your users are interacting with it is crucial. Journey map analysis tools enable you to collect and analyze user behavior data. We’ll explore some of the top tools in this category.
What is a journey map analysis tool?
A journey map analysis tool is a software solution that collects and analyzes data about how users interact with your site or app. These tools can capture a wide range of data, from click paths and scroll behavior to session duration and user drop-off points. They provide visual representations of this data in the form of user journey maps, enabling you to understand how users are navigating your site and where there might be opportunities for improvement.
What do you need out of a journey map analysis tool?
Selecting the right journey map analysis tool depends on your business needs. Key factors to consider include:
Integration: The software should have smooth data integration with CRM systems, project management platforms, marketing automation tools, and analytics software. This allows you to collect real-time data and automate the mapping process.
Collaboration: Collaboration features enable your team to work together, leave comments, and track changes. This can enhance team communication and facilitate more effective strategy development.
Metrics tracking: The tool should have built-in analytics and metrics-tracking capabilities. This can help you measure the effectiveness of your customer experience strategy and identify areas for improvement.
FullStory is a powerful digital experience intelligence platform that offers robust journey map analysis. Its unique selling proposition is the level of detail and precision it offers in its user behavior data.
Pros of FullStory
High-quality, detailed user behavior data
Robust analytics capabilities
Integrates with a wide range of other software
Provides replay sessions for a comprehensive understanding of user experience
Cons of FullStory
May require a learning curve to fully utilize its comprehensive key features
FullStory offers custom pricing based on your business's specific needs and scale.
Heap.io is another popular journey map analysis tool. It offers a variety of features for tracking user behavior, including event tracking, funnel and retention analysis, and segmentation.
Pros of Heap
Good segmentation capabilities
Cons of Heap
The interface can be complex for beginners
Custom events can be challenging to set up
Heap.io offers custom pricing, ensuring that you only pay for the features you need.
Glassbox is a customer experience analytics platform that provides tools for journey mapping, session replay, and performance analytics.
Pros of Glassbox
Provides a user behavior data.
Real-time data capture
Cons of Glassbox
Can be expensive for small businesses or startups
The interface may be less intuitive than some other tools
Glassbox offers custom pricing, depending on the scale of your business and your specific needs.