Successful software companies understand that their customers provide them ample opportunity to improve many aspects of the customer experience – from marketing to the checkout process to product support.
Keeping Customers Loyal
It is easy to understand that when customers have positive interactions with your brand they are more likely to remain loyal. And if you don’t listen for opportunities to improve your brand, there is a good chance your customers will leave you for a business that does. Indeed, according to a Help Scout infographic, 86 percent of customers will discontinue business with a company because of something as common and as simple as a poor customer service interaction.
So, one area to focus on when setting out to improve your customers’ experiences with your brand is how well your customer service representatives (CSRs) interact with customers. Customer satisfaction surveys aligned with SMART KPIs give you the information and context needed to improve. Provide your customers with a system for rating their interactions and use those ratings for insight and context into making improvements and changes in how you service customers.
Key Performance Indicators
Setting a high standard for your customer service team begins with establishing SMART KPIs. These measurements must lead to world-class customer service. Some examples of KPIs can be found below:
How long did it take for a CSR to answer the customer’s inquiry? This indicator can be measured across phone support, emails, live chat and contact forms.
Find out if the customer service representative answered the customer’s inquiry the first time. Did the customer have to reach out to your customer service team again, and was the issue wholly addressed or only partially?
Was the CSR knowledgeable about the issue and did they provide accurate information? This information is especially useful for training CSRs.
Customer Satisfaction Survey
In order to consistently focus on improving your customer experience, it’s important to periodically send surveys to customers for their feedback. Your questions should be clearly worded with your service goals and KPIs in mind. While there are many elements of the customer experience, we’ve found that the following elements of a customer service interaction are very important to customers:
- How quickly their phone call or email was answered
- How professionally the CSR acted
- How well the CSR understood the customer’s inquiry
- Whether the CSR was able to resolve the customer’s issue
Field for Open Ended Comments
A field for open ended comments (which is basically a box with instructions like, “Please feel free to add any comments of your own regarding your interaction with the customer service representative”) provides verbatim customer responses. Though it is unlikely you will be able to satisfy every customer, this field lets customers elaborate fully on a topic you have presented, such as answer speed, or alternatively, can make you aware of a rising issue.
The comments section will not be limited to negative feedback from customers. You will be amazed at the positive comments about your customer service team and the compliments for your representatives.
If you receive negative feedback from customers, make sure to follow up with a quick email stating how you are working to resolve their issue. This resolution can range from opening a new support ticket to product feedback, but listening to customer criticisms can protect your online reputation. Unhappy customers tend to share their poor customer service experiences online through social media. Being proactive with customer frustration might make the customer less likely to air their frustrations publicly and can potentially turn into a positive review.
It is important to remember that surveys are not limited to phone interactions. If possible, include other support channels such as live chat, email or an FAQ section. For example, if a customer can vote that a certain FAQ article was unhelpful, then you can add additional content to the page.
Using Surveys to Measure KPIs
Basing your customer satisfaction surveys on your KPIs lets you gauge if you’re reaching your goals, and if your customers are satisfied with these standards. For example, if the KPI for a phone call’s response time is set at one minute or less, then you can measure if your team has reached this goal by looking at average answer speed. You can also see if your customers feel this is an acceptable goal; if you receive negative feedback that hold times were too long, you know that one minute as a KPI needs to be shortened.
Combining KPIs and customer satisfaction surveys facilitates a more holistic view of your customer service team’s performance.
Tell us what your customer satisfaction surveys measure for in the comment section below!
Emily Oney is an Email Marketing Coordinator and former CSR at cleverbridge