What is it?

Journey maps consider different stages and what the users are thinking, feeling and experiencing. It tracks users’ satisfaction (on the vertical axis) at specific periods (horizontal axis) before, during and after the service is provided. It can outline a specific users experience, or the experience created based off a persona. It can also be used to map a user’s first time experience or their reoccurring experiences based on the main service and issue.

Purpose of journey mapping

The purpose of the journey map is to understand the user’s experience and thoughts as they go through a service, and to understand the pain points of the experience. These points highlight areas of the service that could be improved and how the user feels about those touchpoints. Journey maps are created early in the design process to help run different scenarios and understand where the issue in the service is being experienced by users.

Mapping the user’s journey

A journey map is created based on the user research sessions, personas that have been created, empathy maps and other tools. This can be done roughly using sticky notes, markers, mural paper or other basic equipment before a cleaner map is created on a computer.

  • Service: Determine the main service or path the customer is going to take.
  • User: Identify the main user, this is usually based on the persona that has been created.
  • Timeline: Establish a finite amount of time or specific phases of the service to structure the journey map around. At the top along the x-axis write down these phases, or segment the timeline.
  • Outline touchpoints: The points where users interact with the service across all channels. Write out each touchpoint on a sticky and place touchpoints in a chronological order of when they would occur, and which actions come before others and make a path of bubbles.
  • Understand emotions: Understand the feeling and thoughts of the user at each touchpoint, based on qualitative user research collected previously. Place these quotes or feelings along the journey map at the touchpoints that correspond to them. Put negative points towards the bottom and positive ones toward the top. This will show the changes in emotions as time progresses.
  • Layout: The layout of each customer journey map is different and could be determined by a team’s personal style or thought process. The important part is incorporating all the pieces, the touchpoints, emotions, quotes and timeline. This can then be refined or digitized into a layout that you find more desirable.
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