A successful end-to-end customer experience should serve the user's goals as effectively as possible. It starts with conducting research to understand users' needs and the obstacles they may come across in navigating a better experience. These obstacles are referred to as pain points or problems in the customer journey of using a product or service.
Pain points of the customer experience
Before defining the pain points, it is crucial to understand the complete phases of a customer experience. The customer experience encompasses three levels: the interaction level, the journey level, and the relationship level. A customer's pain point can appear in any of these three places. For example, during a specific interaction on the customer journey (which is usually called a usability issue), while attempting to reach a particular goal, or during their longitudinal relationship with the company.
How do you identify and prioritize which pain points to solve?
With the help of UX research methods, we can identify each type of customer pain point and then prioritize them accordingly. Let’s understand in detail how to identify and prioritize pain points during the specific phases of customer journey.
Interaction Level Pain Points
Identify: User research, such as heuristic analysis, usability testing, can identify usability difficulties that cause the interaction level pain points. The majority of UX activities focus on identifying these types of problems.
Prioritize: The next step involves classifying the identified usability issues as per their level of severity. The severity rating is based on the below:
- How bad the usability issue affects the user and the brand
- How frequently they occur, and
- How likely the users might encounter the problem more than once
Based on the severity level, we can prioritize which pain point to focus.
Identify: The customer journey map allows you to collect different data points through various channels and assess how well the interventions are working from a journey perspective. This approach allows you to collect various data points on different levels of the customer journey and determine how well they work.
Prioritize: Pain points at the journey level often require organizational restructuring and internal process changes; they may even require CX transformations. When preparing to prioritize pain points at the journey level, consider the factors below:
- How many phases of your journey are negatively affected by this pain point?
- Does it range over multiple phases of the journey?
- Does your organization have a realistic chance of resolving the pain point?
Identify: It usually takes a longer time to uncover relationship-level pain points. The organization's primary goal should be to determine the total amount of pain a customer has endured while transacting with an organization.
We can identify the pain points considering the below:
- Benchmarking through surveys (such as brand loyalty, likelihood to recommend, and overall customer satisfaction)
- Analytics data, and
- Technical infrastructure to manage and track the preferences of individuals
The technical infrastructure should have the ability to track customer behaviour data across the entire customer journey. With the help of the infrastructure, you can view a customer's relationship details with the organization and their behaviour over time.
Prioritize: It is hard to prioritize pain points during this phase since it requires collaboration of different business units - both internal and external - to enable a long-term change. Consider addressing the following criteria to prioritize these pain points:
- What is the impact of the pain point on various journeys?
- How many customer journeys are adversely affected by it? Does it impact a single customer journey or multiple?
- What is the churn rate caused by the pain point in the business?
- How many customers leave the company because of a specific pain point?
- Are customers likely to use your product less because of the pain point?
- Is it less likely that they will recommend you to others?
- Will they choose your competitor in the future?
To sum it up, it’s better to identify, fix, make the experience better, and prevent further pain points. This requires focusing the time and resources on the pain points which could affect the customers directly. The customer experiences should be driven more by pain points than random features or business goal perspectives.
At ACL Digital, our Customer Experience approach consists of user experience design and service design methods which help to create intuitive, engaging experiences to fit your business and delight your customers. Get in touch with our experts today!