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When you are going to design a new service or re-redesigning an existing one, creating an in-depth understanding of your users and organization is essential.

This understanding is often built with visualizations.

Mappings make sense of and describe various aspects and processes associated with a product or service.

Four tools will help you to achieve this goal; they are empathy maps, customer journey maps, experience maps, and service blueprints.

Using them, you not only have a better understanding of how the service will be, but you better understand the user’s mindset and, how a customer interacts with a product or service.

Last but not the least you have the chance to break down silos and create one shared, organization-wide understanding of how the service is provided. Shared artifacts resulting from the mapping can be used amongst your team, in the organization, or with several stakeholders to communicate the knowledge of your user and service. This artifact can also become the basis for decision making as the team moves forward.

If you want to discover more about using this valuable tools I suggest you this reading:

UX Mapping Methods Compared: A Cheat Sheet