How to improve customer service through metrics?
Making smart business decisions without metrics is like driving the car with eyes closed. While taking care of the metrics is primarily the job of the marketing department, as a business owner it is incredibly important to view the quality of your customer service through the metrics lens.
Why has customer metrics become so important?
It’s common knowledge that bad customer service acts as the biggest leak in the bottom line.So what you do about it? Like most traditional companies – wait for the customer to reach out to you with a complaint. And if you do not receive any grievance, hurray! You assume that your customer service is going fine.
Breaking down this myth of customer service, a recent research has concluded that only 4% of unsatisfied customers actually speak up; which clearly implies that a lack of customer complaints doesn’t necessarily prove you are providing outstanding customer service.
How can you track the effectiveness of your customer support?
Time and again, experts have suggested of investing in customer support analytics tool. According to their opinion metrics play an important role in every aspect of a business, and customer support is no different. Since that’s the case, it’s important for every business entrepreneur to focus on the customer service metrics that will have the biggest impact on the bottom line.
Below enlisted are the following metrics you should focus on:
1. Fast customer service
We live in a world of immediate solutions and smart objects. And so, customers too expect fast resolutions across all transactions. Forrester has conducted a research of 7,000 US customers and found that 71% of respondents said that they preferred companies that valued their time.
FAST customer service has several layers to it. It’s important that you and your team understand these to provide your version of fast customer service.
a.Average Time to First Responses
Let’s be honest: when it comes to contacting a company, we do not want to wait more than a few hours to hear back. This is precisely why that experts have emphasized upon the speed of a first touch. In simple words, the rate at which the support team first responds to the customer query is the most important. 52% of customers believe the speed of first responses is their main measurement of a good/bad customer service.
As a customer professional puts it – It’s not that customers do not have quite a bit of patience – 50 percent of consumers give a brand one week to respond to a question. However, they want, at least, an acknowledgement (within a few hours) that someone has started the help process.
Note:Companies using customer relationship managementsolutions have been found to have a low average time to first response. Considering this fact, most customer experts have recommended companies to invest in a CRM application for a quick 24 hour response rate.
In fact, this is exactly what the best companies share in common, cloud CRM software to improve their hourly response rates.
Time to resolution
Track the overall time it takes for a case to be closed. If the time is low, it means that your team is fast and effective with their responses. A growing gap in the numbers implies that your team revisits the same customer problem multiple times. Provide additional training to your team to make them thorough with your products/services.
2. First Contact Resolution Rates
While fast initial response rates are essential, it won’t bring any value to your company if your response quality suffers. Lee Resources shows that up to 95% of customers are only willing to give a second chance if the initial interaction is done in a successful and timely manner.
Also, according to Forrester Research, 67% of customers say that having able to resolve a problem on the first contact influence the customer satisfaction score.
Since that’s the case, it becomes imperative for you to track how many problems your team resolves on the initial engagement. Remember by doing this, you will improve the overall customer experience that your business offers.
3. Replies per inquiry
4. Inquiry abandonment
Track how many customers leave/abandon your website live chat.
Recent consumer data has stated that 71% of customers expect assistance within 5 minutes, while 40% want help immediately.
With this is mind, you cannot choose to lose potential prospects and upset otherwise happy customers if you don’t keep a close eye on these numbers.
Note: your aim should be to start the conversation quickly. Once you do this, you can slow things down and solve their problem with competent service.
5. Agent Performance
Identify which agents are top performers and which require additional training. Doing this will help you rout customer cases to the right agents. For instance, you can direct difficult cases to support agents that are knowledgeable of your product or service and easier ones to those that typically take longer to answer a case.
6. WOW Moments
WOW-factors build a favorable word-of-mouth presence among customers to keep them coming back.
Find answers to -
Do agents try to make a personal emotional connection?
Do agents continue the rapport with the customers after the case has been resolved?
Do agents address unstated needs?
Unlike the others, this is qualitative data which most often do not make way to the spreadsheets. As a result, it is difficult to evaluate this metric for every interaction. You need to pick and choose the exclusive ones and point it out when reviewing performance or training new team members.
All of the above-mentioned metrics will help you measure your customer service efforts. Experts recommend investing in a customer analytics tool for proper understanding of your customers’ plan, lifetime value and lifecycle activity.
By applying the data-driven insights, you will know exactly -
When to hire customer support employee
Average cost to support the customer
Number of support inquiries from free and paying customers
Undoubtedly, you will make smart decisions and build your business on the foundation of loyal customers.
Patricia is a full time CRM consultant at ConvergeHub and part-time blogger. She has earned herself quite a fame as a specialist and market expert in CRM software. In the last five year she has worked with various companies as CRM consultant to help them move their businesses to cloud. Her expertise lies in offering cloud CRM consultation, CRM customization and integration solutions to small enterprises. For last one she is engaged in building ConvergeHub, cloud-based CRM solution for SMBs, as a consultant.Follow her at Twitter: @jones_converge