Good customer service is more important to today’s consumer than anything else. In fact, in 2011, 86 percent of customers quit doing business with companies over poor customer service, according to a Customer Experience Impact Report by Harris Interactive/RightNow.
That has led to a lot of concern for businesses: How can you improve your customer service? The first step is to measure the service you are already providing. These four metrics can help you discover how to provide even better service.
4. Net Promoter Scores
Businesses that have high NPS tend to fare better than those with low scores, so there is some validity to the measure. One of the advantages: The question asks customers for a non-emotional response. The biggest drawback, of course, is that it does not tell you why a customer would or would not promote your business. While NPS gives you a vague idea of how happy your customers are, it cannot tell you much about what you could do differently to make your customers even happier.
For that reason, NPS is best when paired with other customer service metrics.
3. Customer Effort Scores
How difficult is it for your customers to get in touch? Do they find it easy to talk to your reps and resolve problems, or are they frustrated at every turn? Customer effort scores try to measure the ease of doing business with you—a major factor in how your customers perceive the service you provide.
Organizations that are rated as easy to do business with tend to have better customer service. Customers feel they are treated well by the company, and they find their interactions lead to useful conversations. Problems are resolved quickly and in a way that satisfies the customer.
By contrast, businesses that do not rank well on the customer effort scale are perceived as being difficult to work with—they do not resolve issues, and their customers are often dissatisfied.
2. Customer Experience
This is more than just a satisfaction rating. Using this metric, you can ask your customers to rate their overall experience. In most cases, you should actually provide a short survey that asks several questions about different aspects of the customer experience. You can deliver this online or via telephone.
Customer experience surveys are useful in getting insight after the customer has had an interaction with your brand—whether it was a call to the call center, a visit to your website, or a trip to a physical location where you do business.
More than “customer satisfaction,” the experience survey provides insight into what the customer liked and did not like about their experiences—as well as information about how you could improve.
1. Resolution Rate
The resolution rate is a bit of a tricky entry in the realm of customer service metrics. On the surface, it seems simple: How many requests did you resolve? The problem hinges on how you define “resolved.” You can easily say an issue was resolved if the rep answered a question and the customer said, “Okay,” then hung up. That does not mean the customer was happy about the resolution. The customer may still decide to leave the company for another.
Pair resolution rate with other customer service metrics on this list to get more insight into how your customer service is performing and where you can improve.