Key Customer Experience Metrics and How to Track Them
There are thousands of articles out there telling you how to improve your customer service and companies trying to sell you products that will perfect your customer experience. However, they won’t do you much good if you don’t have a reliable way to measure customer experience.
Before going down the rabbit hole of CX tips and tricks, we recommend you start here.
A strong CX strategy is built on SMART goals and metrics designed to accurately show your progress towards those goals. Once you’ve nailed down your goals, determine the metrics that are most relevant to your goals and create a system to track them.
What are the most important customer experience metrics?
We’ll cover a lot of metrics in this post, but if you don’t have time to read through them all, these three are the most essential. They apply no matter what industry or business you’re in.
Net Promoter Score (NPS)
NPS is a measurement of how loyal a customer is to a company. It’s typically calculated through a survey that asks, “On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to recommend this company to a friend.” The combination of all responses gives you a good idea of how your customers feel about their experiences with you.
Your customer retention rate demonstrates how loyal your customers are. If they keep coming back, you’re doing something right. Boosting customer retention isn’t simple, but dedicating time and brainpower to creating a positive customer experience will, in time, increase retention.
Customer satisfaction (CSAT)
CSAT is calculated through questionnaires that ask “On a scale of 1 to 5, how satisfied are you with this [product/service/experience]. While it’s similar to NPS, CSAT captures customer feelings in the short-term.
Other key metrics
The following metrics are a little more niche. Many of them are only applicable when you have a contact center operation up and running.
First contact resolution (FCR)
This is the percentage of inquiries that are solved during the first interaction with a customer. The more times a customer has to call or email, the more frustrated they will be. To keep FCR high, prepare for frequently asked questions and be sure that your agents are well-trained.
Many companies use AI to determine the emotions expressed by customers in communications. This process, called sentiment analysis, allows organizations to track generally how customers are feeling. It’s good to keep tabs on whether they’re sending angry emails or if they seem content when talking to you.
Average handle time
Average handle time is exactly what it sounds like. It’s the mean length of time that it takes for customer service interactions to take place. Usually, live chat will have a slightly longer handle time than phone calls, since customers may step away from their computers or type slower than they talk.
Call abandonment rate
Call abandonment rate shows the number of people who hang up before the call center has a chance to answer it. You can learn how to calculate it here. Companies should strive to keep this rate as low as possible by adjusting their IVR if necessary to make the process quick and simple.
Don’t recognize the term “IVR”? Learn all about contact center acronyms here.
This one is obvious. No one wants to be stuck on hold for hours listening to cringey hold music! Keep track of hold times to ensure you’re adequately staffed and not angering your customers. If you notice hold times starting to creep up, it might be time to start hiring or outsourcing your customer support.
It’s important to keep response time quick. When customers are reaching out with a question or problem, it’s best not to keep them waiting. Additionally, sales usually go to whichever vendor responds first, so make sure it’s you.
Call volume is a good benchmark for staffing purposes. It’s also helpful to track call volume by time. If you know more customers tend to call in the morning, then you will be able to add more staff appropriately. In addition to tracking volume, tracking content and topics covered can help you prepare for future calls and create resources that customers can refer to without having to call in.
Qualified lead percentage
What counts as a qualified lead may vary depending on your organization. Typically, a qualified lead is one where the potential customer has shown interest in buying and you have gathered key information from them, such as their phone number and email address. Tracking this is important so you can determine if you’re getting a lot of spam inquiries or if you need to adjust your messaging to capture your target audience better.
Read our case study on after-hours qualified lead volume
How do I track these metrics?
If you outsource your customer experience management in any capacity, then your outsourcing partner will probably already have a system in place for measuring a lot of these. Even if your partner is on top of it, it can’t hurt to keep an eye on them yourself.
If you’re managing CX internally, appoint someone on your team to own the metrics process. Make sure you’re keeping track of data in an organized fashion (hello, Excel). And, don’t forget to regularly check in on your progress. Have all-hands meetings to discuss where you are in relation to your goals and what you need to be doing to reach them.
While it may seem daunting, tracking customer experience metrics will positively impact your strategy and allow you to better serve your customers.