How to Build a Story Map

Story Maps are visual tools that help companies understand the user’s perspective more effectively. It helps project managers understand what customers feel and expect from a product and allows teams to prioritize these requirements accordingly. In order to effectively manage the customer’s experience, you mich learn how to build a story map. In this article, we will outline some of the crucial steps in learning how to build a story map and will highlight the most effective ways to do so.

Steps To Include When Building a Story Map

We have unfolded the main steps of how to build a story map for our readers. Make sure to add each of these to have an efficient and engaging story map.

Select the Right Tool

One of the first things that needs to be done before you start building a user story is you need to figure out where you will build this template. The easiest way to learn how to build a user story is by using an online whiteboard to create your diagram.

Online whiteboards easily allow you to create custom maps and elements in order to effectively diagram your user’s journey. You can collaborate on the creation and usage of these boards with unlimited members and easily access them in the future for potential updates.

If you are looking for a tool to facilitate your story mapping, look no further than Fresco.

Visualize the User Story

If you want to learn how to build a story map, you need to start with a story and visualize its sequences. You must have a clear image of what your story map should look like, what theme you will be going with, and what your aim is that you want to achieve through story mapping.

When you visualize this, think about how your user perceives their journey. This will be different than the ideal journey you present, and in this gap, you will be able to add every essential detail to your map. Visualizing the story does not only mean the main idea, but it also means the steps involved in that particular story. Make sure to carefully add each of your story’s steps to create a holistic view of your user’s journey.

Ideate Detailed Story Components

To create a good story map, make sure you include gaps in the story like texts, images, and reviews. You can expand these narratives to interviews of your clients to give your map more authentic details.

You can even create areas that are not yet steps in the journey where you would like your team to focus. This will allow you to optimize the current user journey and create a new and improved flow on the same map.


The refinement step details how your team collaborates to analyze the story map and highlights what they want to portray to their users.

This step is about refining your idea and picking up all the things you might have forgotten to add to your stories. Integrating collaboration here is important because you want as many perspectives as possible on your story map. This will help point out flaws in the journey and places to optimize that you might not have seen previously.

In this way, you will learn about the areas you unintentionally missed and those that need your attention for improvements and better analysis. However, you should not rush this process. Refining the user journey is incredibly important and will be one of the places where your team can create a massive impact on your user’s journey.

Review Your Story Map

After the refinement step, make sure you have documented all of the essential pieces to your story and review your map to identify any other flaws and shortcomings. If your map includes sequences, stories, and customer narratives from the very beginning to the end, you have successfully built a story map that can come into your team’s usage and make your product reach new heights.

Test on Different Mediums

The last step requires showcasing your map on different mediums to identify any glitches or shortcomings. This step is important because even though you’ve created a dynamic, thorough customer experience map, there may be some real-world scenarios where the user’s experience is different from the one you presented. In this case, it’s important to loop back around and edit your story map to reflect the most accurate scenario. 


Learning how to build a story map is all about understanding the steps that go into making one and how they all relate to your overall goals. If this guide was helpful, check out some of the advantages of building a story map here.

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