Want to learn how to quickly build customer journey maps? Watch UXPressia's tutorial!

Yuri Vedenin
Founder and Boss of UXPressia

Moments of Truth in Customer Journey Mapping


If you have already been into customer journey mapping for some time, you’ve probably heard of Moments of Truth. Let’s take a look at what these moments are and why you should look for them in your customer journey.

What are Moments of Truth?

Moments of truth (MoTs) represent the points in a customer journey when a key event occurs and an opinion about the brand is formed. In simple words, these are the touchpoints when your customers either fall in love with your product or turn away and leave.

Let's say you order a pizza in a pizza cafe. The service is flawless, the menu on the website was great and the delivery was lightning speed. But the moment of truth comes once you taste the pizza itself. At this point, you either enjoy the moment and fall in love with the brand or decide that the pizza doesn’t worth it and leave forever.

Why are Moments of Truth important?

The moments of truth are the moments that have the most influence on the overall customer journey and shape the impression about the brand. That is why it’s a good idea to visualize them in your CJM. Here is what you can achieve by doing so:

  • Find the weakest part of the customer journey and fix it.
  • Find the moments where your service really shines and either reinforce them or reuse across other stages. For example, we introduced an encouraging popup that shows up in our customer journey mapping tool once you complete 60% of your map. Since then, we’ve seen quite a few tweets and posts from people who were really excited to see this popup. This is one of such moments and it can be reused further.
moment of truth in uxpressia
  • Develop instructions on handling moments of truth for the front-line staff members.

All Moments of Truth fall into 2 major categories:

  • Negative moments (Moments of Pain)
  • Positive moments (Moments of Glory)

Moments of Glory

Moments of Glory happen when we exceed the expectations of our customers during a certain interaction, where they may experience difficulties and need help. The moments of glory can occur at any stage of your journey, although their intensity will vary. Let’s take a look at a couple of moments of glory from online and offline business domains.

Say you are buying stuff on an e-commerce website. At the “First visit” stage, receiving a discount coupon can be considered to be a moment of glory. At the “Post-purchase” stage this would be calling up customers and asking if they need any help with the setup or use.

For offline business such as a cafe this could be when customers are offered a free drink while waiting for their order.

Moments of Pain

Moments of Pain happen when the experience is so bad that the customer goes on Twitter and tells the whole world about it. This could happen when the sales rep ignores them or when the support rep acts inappropriately and being rude to the calling customer.

The good news is you can transform negative moments into a positive customer experience. It happens when customers tell us about the issue they face and we don't just help, but do something on top of that. This leaves the customer speechless and boosts their loyalty. We all make mistakes, so it’s better to learn how to handle them properly.

Here is an example of such a transformation. Let’s say you had to wait too long for your order in a food cafe, and along with apologies from the waiter, you receive a ‘Sorry card’ with a discount for your next order.

The classification of Moments of Truth

If you want to dig deeper, here is a more detailed classification. It's based on the chronological place of MoTs in a customer journey:

  • Zero Moment of Truth: occurs when people search for information online and make decisions about brands in that instance.
  • Actual moment of truth: describes the new post-purchase experience gap created by the advent of online shopping, after a consumer has made a purchase but before they've received the product.
  • First Moment of Truth: The point when a consumer sees a product/ service for the first time (on- or offline) and formulates an opinion about it.
  • Second Moment of Truth: The subsequent “collection of moments” that incorporate your customers’ senses.
  • Ultimate Moment of Truth: When the experience with your brand leads customers to publish some form of content expressing their use and enjoyment of your product or service, which becomes a form of advocacy for other people to find and share.

You can take this classification into account when looking for moments of truth at each stage of your customer journey map.

How to identify Moments of Truth

Now, how do you identify these moments? There might be a few ways depending on the state of your project.

If you are trying to find the moments of truth for your existing product or service, then one way would be to use all your (and your team's) knowledge. If you've been working on this product for some time, you definitely have some ideas that will nudge you in the right direction.

Another way would be to identify the most problematic stage. Analyze customer support and contact center logs. Chances are, your customers have already indicated the moments of major pain and glory in their requests.

You can also send out a survey asking customers to describe the points of major excitement/disappointment. Customer interviews and other qualitative research methods will do the job.

And if your project is still in the drawing board stage, it's a good idea to look at your competitors. You can even try their service as a customer. This will help you identify their moments of truth and provide some insights on how to handle them in your service in the future.

uxpressia academy banner

How to create Moments of Truth in UXPressia

At this point, you’re probably wondering how you add moments of truth to your journey map at UXPressia. Right now, you can use any text section to mark a moment of truth. This can be plain text that says “MoT”. Or you can make things a little more interesting and use the channel section.


Since it lets you add icons to the background, you can mark a moment of truth by adding the star icon to the background. And then just delete all the other boxes of the row that do not contain MOTs.


Identifying moments of truth takes time and effort, but the results are worth it. And instead of capturing them in spreadsheets or PowerPoint, use our customer journey tool. It lets you create, update, share, present, and export all your journeys (and personas) at lightning speed.

Rate this post

More posts by Yuri Vedenin

Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
4 years ago

Used this info for a workshop on moments of truth in customer journeys. We have been getting low ratings, but only have resources to improve one stage at a time. Now we have goals set to fix our worst moment of pain.