Service design and journey mapping software
Experience Research Journey Mapping

Service design basics

2. January 2015

Service design basics

Often service design beginners ask us how to use basic service design tools like Personas, Customer Journey Maps, and Stakeholder Maps. So, we decided to write a “How to” guide that helps people to get startet. 

Rather simple and hands-on instructions. A manual everybody can use to get started. As a beginner you won’t become an expert through this, but at least this will lead you to an improved knowledge about your customers and their customer experience and first ideas on how to improve this.

In our experience, a first little project proving that service design work in your organization might be just what you need to get the buy-in for a larger (more-professional) project, buy-in for some training, or buy-in for working with a service design agency. And it seems like a hands-on guide to get your first project started is yet currently missing. So, we started Service Design Basics. Click here to read more about it.

We invite all service design experts to participate in this project. Help us to write and review and we’ll name you alongside your text. But remember, we want a simple guide to quickly start a first service design project.


Our first post was a foreword by Marc and Jakob. Read it below (or on

A foreword by Marc and Jakob.

Over the past months more and more people asked us how to “do” service design. What are the most crucial methods? How to use these in real projects to improve customer experience without changing the whole organization? How do I create a persona and how many personas do I need for my project? Which research methods should I use to collect data for my journey map?

We realized that there’s no simple hands-on guide how to create simple service design tools and what to do with these. So, we started “Service Design Basics” as a simple hands-on guide on how to “do” service design. After all, service design is no rocket science. There are simple tools and methods any business from start-ups to blue-chips and any organization from small NGOs to governments could use immediately to iteratively improve the customer experience they provide.

This is an ongoing project curated by Marc Stickdorn and Jakob Schneider (read below who we are). Over the next months, we’ll write this guide step by step and spread new posts trough our smaply blog and social media channels. Follow us to keep up to date. Also, we’d like to encourage you to give us feedback on the stuff we write here. Let us know if you do it a similar way or if you have a different approach. Also, we’re always looking for examples or cases. So, get in touch!

We believe in co-creation and the power of a “shitty first draft”. Like we started our book project “This is Service Design Thinking” in 2009, we’ll start “Service Design Basics” with a few posts on this website on certain tools we often use and we think are most important for beginners. This is what we call the shitty first draft. We hope to get support by our service design community. We’ll use your feedback to learn and improve and to make it less shitty over time. This is service design thinking.

Marc and Jakob, co-founders of Smaply

Katharina takes care of marketing and communications at More than Metrics. With her background in business and psychology she loves both logical as well as empathic thinking.
Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *