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The 3 types of customer service metrics that matter

Last updated July 28, 2021

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customer service metrics that matter
What’s the best way to track how well we perform in customer service? All the metrics for measuring customer service are valuable, but which ones do we rely on to effectively measure our success and guarantee that we’re making smart business decisions? What metrics make the difference when it comes to ensuring customer satisfaction?

There are three main types of customer service metrics to track:

  1. Customer relationship metrics
  2. Agent performance and efficiency metrics
  3. Team performance and efficiency metrics

You can learn all about them in Customer Service Metrics that Matter, our guide to getting the most out of your customer service metrics.

How to measure customer relationship metrics?

A quick, no-hassle way for customers to provide feedback is with a customer satisfaction survey. Zendesk takes a simple and effective approach for measuring customer support: ask if the interaction was good or bad. They also have the option to add a comment if they wish to give you more feedback.

After you’ve gathered satisfaction (CSAT) ratings, there’s a lot you can do with this data. In fact, it’s a metric you can look at from many angles. For example, you can track the following:

  • A customer’s CSAT rating over time
  • CSAT ratings, by customer types
  • CSAT ratings, by channel
  • CSAT ratings, by product or service
  • Average CSAT ratings for agents and teams

Other companies might use metrics called “Customer Effort Score” (CES). Companies that use the CES generally use it instead of CSAT ratings. Some companies move to CES after having used CSAT, feeling that they gathered all the useful customer service feedback they could from that survey.

Whether you use CES or CSAT, the message is clear: focusing on effort reduction should be one of your primary goals to improve the customer experience and overall customer satisfaction.

To get the larger customer relationship story, beyond single support interactions, there’s also NET PROMOTER SCORE℠ (NPS). The NPS survey helps companies understand if the customer is likely to return, stay loyal, and advocate for the brand to others. The NET PROMOTER SCORE asks how likely customers are to recommend our business to someone else.

Social Media Metrics
Using social media-monitoring tools, companies can easily collect and analyse feedback for their customer service. Using these kind of metrics help to determine the following:

  • How many comments appear to be written in a time of frustration, perhaps after a poor customer support experience in person or online?
  • How many are technical or account-specific questions?
  • How many comments provide feedback, positive or negative?
  • How many questions can be answered using links to existing help content?
  • How many times would a brand mention benefit from a response?
  • What time of day are your customers most active on social media?

Churn Metrics
Another excellent way to collect feedback (especially for subscription-based business) is to prompt customers to say why they’re cancelling their account. From this metric, you can create a report of your churn activity. Response rate will be much higher if this survey is embedded in the user interface.

How to improve customer service metrics

To gauge the success of each metric and note areas for improvement, measure both short and long-term customer satisfaction and happiness in the following areas:

  • Look at satisfaction scores for support interactions. Use your metrics to measure both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of delivering customer service, but always stay focused on improving your customer relationships.
  • Measure the effort customers invest when contacting your team. Use a robust set of reporting tools to continuously monitor your organisation’s performance against the baselines you’ve set for managing your ticket queue and the health of your customer relationships.
  • Survey customers about their overall experience with your company. Setting operational baselines helps you establish realistic performance goals for your teams and company.
  • Monitor all your metric channels. These include social media and the valuable metrics you get when your customers decide to stop doing business with you.

Remember your ticket backlog as well. A ticket backlog is the total number of unsolved tickets. This is important to follow because it provides insight into incoming ticket volume and how well a company can keep up with their given resources. Sometimes, support issues take a longer time to solve than the customer expects or the performance targets you’ve set for your team. The longer it takes to solve a customer’s issue, the more likely customer satisfaction will suffer.

Download the full guide to learn how to track customer service metrics

The how-to’s for tracking customer metrics related to customer support can be found in our Customer Service Metrics that Matter guide. You can explore the various metrics that indicate success in your customer service, including resolution effort, first-reply time, next-issue avoidance and many more.

Fill in the form below for the full guide: Customer Service Metrics that Matter

NET PROMOTER and NPS are registered U.S. trademarks, and NET PROMOTER SCORE and NET PROMOTER SYSTEM are service marks, of Bain & Company, Inc., Satmetrix Systems, Inc. and Fred Reichheld.