In the rapidly evolving world of online education, understanding and optimizing students’ experiences has become a top priority for educational institutions.
As online schools expand their offers and compete for students’ attention, a well-crafted customer journey map can provide invaluable insights to ensure a seamless, engaging, and satisfying experience.
Besides, a detailed customer journey map helps online schools to differentiate themselves, improve retention rates, and foster long-term relationships with their students.
This article explores the process of customer journey mapping for online schools: its importance, examples, best practices, and a short guide on how to create it.
Customer journey mapping visually represents students’ various touchpoints and interactions with an online school, from initial discovery and enrollment to course completion and beyond.
By examining the customer journey in detail, online schools can identify opportunities to:
Creating an online student customer journey map involves understanding the various stages a student goes through when interacting with an online school.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to creating an online student customer journey map:
Determine the primary goals you want to achieve with your customer journey map. Objectives include improving the student experience, increasing course enrollment or completion rates, or identifying growth opportunities.
Create detailed profiles of your target students, including demographics, preferences, motivations, and pain points. These personas will help you tailor the customer journey map to their specific needs and expectations.
We’ve send the template link to your email address
Break down the student journey into key stages: awareness, consideration, enrollment, engagement, completion, and advocacy. These stages represent a student’s main phases when interacting with your online school.
For each stage, identify students’ specific touchpoints or interactions with your online school. These can include visiting your website, browsing course offerings, attending webinars, or receiving email communications.
Also, identify the channels these interactions occur, such as a website, social media, email, or mobile app.
At each touchpoint, consider the emotions that students might experience, such as excitement, frustration, or satisfaction. Try to aim at the positive ones, though 😉
Identify any potential pain points or areas of dissatisfaction that could negatively impact their experience.
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Recognize the critical interactions or touchpoints that significantly impact students’ perceptions of your online school and their decision to continue or stop their relationship with you.
These moments of truth are crucial to the overall student experience and should be prioritized for improvement.
Based on your analysis of touchpoints, emotions, and pain points, identify opportunities to improve and enhance the student experience.
Consider addressing pain points, optimizing touchpoints, or introducing new features or services that could benefit your students.
Determine the metrics or KPIs you’ll use to measure the success of your customer journey map and track progress toward your objectives. KPIs include course enrollment or completion rates, student satisfaction scores, or referral rates.
Create a visual representation of the customer journey map, incorporating all the above-mentioned elements. This visual can be a simple flowchart, a more detailed infographic, or an interactive online tool.
Continuously review and update your customer journey map based on student feedback, data analysis, and ongoing changes within your online school. Regularly revisit your map to ensure it remains relevant and aligned with your objectives.
By following these steps, you can create a comprehensive online student customer journey map that helps you:
Here’s how you may plan your questions to design each stage of your customer journey map:
Now, let’s map out four main ways students enroll in an online school 👇
This model suits you if most students enroll in online school without your assistance.
Creating a customer journey map here involves identifying the key stages, touchpoints, channels, and emotions experienced by the students as they interact with the school.
Here’s an example of a customer journey map with a self-service approach:
Throughout this customer journey, it’s essential to identify pain points and opportunities for improvement. Potential enhancements might include:
Read also: The secret weapon of your competitors or Why you should focus on customer service first
If a prospect goes on a trial period before becoming your student, consider the demo-based model of CJM.
Potential improvements of the demo-based model might include:
Use Dashly automation tools to improve your students’ experience and boost your revenue.
Read also: 15 best lead generation services to grow your base in 2023
Here’s an example of a customer journey map for an online school that uses free webinars to attract prospects:
Potential improvements for this model might include:
Read also: 10 conversion rate optimization tools to enhance your funnel and boost revenue
If you invest in paid traffic, let’s consider this CJM model:
Potential improvements for the paid traffic model:
With a paid traffic model, a seamless smooth customer journey is essential. Consider a chatbot for this task:
Creating an online customer journey map is essential for understanding and improving the student experience. However, there are several typical challenges that you may encounter during this process:
Limited data and insights
You need access to relevant data and insights about your students to create an accurate and comprehensive customer journey map. This can include demographic information, behavioral data, and feedback from students.
Gathering and analyzing this information can be time-consuming and resource-intensive.
Track website visitors’ behavior, their interactions with your company, and always have it at your hands in the Lead Card.
In Dashly, data from the fields, button clicks, and page visits are tracked automatically in real time.
So you can see potential students’ emails, phone numbers, location, interests, etc.
Identifying the right touchpoints
With numerous interactions and channels in the online student journey, pinpointing the most relevant and impactful touchpoints can be challenging.
Focusing on the touchpoints that significantly impact the student experience and their decision-making process is essential.
Accounting for individual differences
Students can have widely varied preferences, motivations, and learning styles. It can be challenging to create a customer journey map that adequately captures this diversity and addresses the needs of all your students.
Siloed teams and lack of collaboration
Creating a customer journey map often requires input from multiple teams within your organization, such as marketing, course development, and student support.
Breaking down silos and fostering collaboration between these teams can be challenging, but is essential for creating a cohesive and accurate map.
Read also: Customer engagement strategy template to create omnichannel campaigns
Keeping the map updated
Online learning constantly evolves, and students’ needs and expectations change. Regularly updating your customer journey map to reflect these changes can be challenging.
But is crucial to maintaining its relevance and effectiveness.
Identifying opportunities for improvement is just the first step in enhancing the student experience. The real challenge lies in implementing these changes and measuring their impact on your students’ satisfaction and success.
Balancing priorities and resources
It takes significant time and resources to address all the identified pain points and improvement opportunities. Prioritizing the most critical issues and balancing the available resources can be challenging.
Establishing the right key performance indicators (KPIs) and measuring the success of your customer journey map can be challenging.
Choosing metrics that align with your objectives and accurately reflect the impact of your improvements on the student experience is essential.
To overcome these challenges, it’s crucial to approach the customer journey mapping process with a clear plan, open communication, and a commitment to continuous improvement.
By doing so, you can create a comprehensive and actionable map that helps enhance the online student experience and drive success for your online school.
Creating an online student customer journey map is essential for understanding and enhancing the student experience in online schools. It’s a challenging and quite time-consuming process. But eventually, you have a clear understanding of your student’s experience and get a chance to enhance it.
CJM creation requires a devoted team, communication (among your teammates and with students), and the right toolset.
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