Happy customers form the bedrock of every successful business. They grow your revenues, bring repeat business and spread the word about your brand. An amazing customer experience goes a long way in making your customers happy. To do that, it’s necessary to know what your customers want and understand their pain points.
However, it’s not always possible to ask them about it. Tracking relevant customer service metrics can give you a clear idea about customer satisfaction and enable you to improve it quickly.
Here are 5 Customer Service metrics you must monitor regularly:
1. Incident Volume
Incident volume is the number of support calls and inquiries you get daily. Monitoring it over the course of a day will tell you when there is a rush in support traffic during the day. This will help you effectively allocate resources & employees to handle peak hours.
Customers will try to contact you as soon as they face a problem. Many times, they may try to reach you outside your business hours. You can identify the most frequently called times (early morning, late evening, etc) and prepare for it, even if they’re outside your working hours.
You can also break out Incident Volume by channel of contact such as emails, telephone & social media. Each channel requires different types of resources and support staff. Breaking out Incident Volume by channels will allow you to identify the channels that need more attention, and adapt your support processes quickly.
2. First Response Time
As a customer, do you like waiting for a response when you’re facing an issue? First Response Time is the amount of time taken by your business to respond to a customer issue. It’s one of the most important metrics to affect customer satisfaction. If your customers have to wait for long, it will lower the customer satisfaction considerably. Studies show that 53% of customers feel that 3 minutes is a reasonably long time to wait for customer support over phone. They also believe that businesses should respond to emails withing 24 hours.
Once you get the overall average first response time, you can dig deeper and measure first response times for each channel. This will help you identify the weak link in your customer support processes and quickly attend to it. Even within a single channel such as email, you can group the responses based on response times – within 1 hour, 2-6 hours, 6-12 hours and more than 12 hours. This will give a clear distribution of responses over time, and allow you to spot trends and outliers.
You can even monitor first response times for each agent and identify which agents could use additional help and resources.
3. Resolution Time
Resolution Time is the total amount of time taken to completely resolve a customer issue. Average Resolution Time shows the overall effectiveness of your customer service process. Shorter resolution times indicate streamlined support processes, and a clear understanding of customer issues.
There are many factors that can increase the resolution time. It can be due to the communication skills or technical expertise of either/both, customer and support agent. Sometimes, the agent may not have ready access to required information or resources, in order to assist your customer.
You can monitor resolution times for each type of customer issue to find out which ones take the longest to be resolved. Accordingly, you can tailor your support workflows to resolve these issues faster. For example, some issues may need screen sharing or video assistance. Email or phone may not be enough. So you can create video tutorials for such issues, or train the agents to resolve issues over screen sharing.
Just like First Response Time, you can also track Resolution time for each agent to measure their performance, find out the root cause of delay and address it immediately.
4. Abandonment Rate
Abandonment Rate is the percent of customers who hang up the phone or leave the queue before reaching a customer support agent. Long waiting times & a confusing IVR navigation are the most common reasons why customers drop off.
You can measure daily abandonment rate to find out which days of the week it increases (Weekends, Mondays, Wednesdays?). You can also track hourly abandonment rate to identify which times of the day your agents are flooded with support calls. Accordingly, you can increase the capacity, or re-allocate resources more effectively.
You can also measure abandonment rate at each stage of customer service process – welcome message, IVR navigation, wait message – to identify the step with the highest abandonment rate and fix it as soon as possible.
5. First Contact Resolution
First Contact Resolution is the percent of issues that are resolved when a customer contacts you for the first time. Higher this metric, the better it is. To improve First Contact Resolution, you need to find which type of issues remain unresolved beyond the first contact, on which communication channel and why. So you’ll need to break out this metric for each channel (email, phone, social media, etc.) by the type of customer issues. This will help you identify the reasons for escalation and address them quickly.
You can create a simple customer service dashboard to keep an eye on the key customer support metrics about your business. This will help you measure the performance of your support team against its goals and achieve operational excellence. It will also allow you to quickly spot areas of improvement and take actions to refine your processes. Over time, as you capture more information, you can add more metrics to get a detailed understanding of customer support performance.
Regularly monitoring the performance of your customer service enables you to rapidly improve it. You can easily identify the key pain points of your customers, common problems faced by them while using your product, support topics that need additional resources and agents that might need additional training. You can even make your support processes more self-service by automating frequent responses and building knowledge bases or FAQs, creating video tutorials and walk-throughs. This will enable you to improve your product or service quickly, boost customer satisfaction and grow your business.