How to get the full story behind your CX metrics

Posted by Maria Gray

November 2, 2015

It’s all very well knowing the numbers when it comes to customer satisfaction, but what’s happening to drive those numbers? Here’s an example.

Let’s say that 75% of your customers leave positive feedback. That might sound great, but does it tell you the full story?  

Can you really be comfortable with that number when the situation is perhaps more complex?

To really understand the story behind your customer experience metrics, you need to understand the scenarios that are happening behind the scenes.  Let’s take a closer look at each situation and unpick what you can do if you find it’s happening to you.

Here are some common scenarios that could be hiding behind the numbers:

1 – It’s only 75% of the people who actually bothered to leave feedback.

If you’re getting a 10% response rate and 75% of those are positive, what does that mean in terms of real people? Well, say you have 100,000 customers and 10% leave feedback, that’s 10,000 people responding and 75% of them are happy – so 7,500 happy customers. That’s only 7.5% of your customers that you know are happy. Suddenly this metric is not looking so great. Potentially, it means that you’ve got 92.5% unhappy customers. Clearly, if they’re not responding to your feedback requests, you can’t assume that they’re dissatisfied, but you can’t assume that they’re satisfied either.

So, enough of the numbers. This point is all around response rates. You need to make sure you’re doing everything you can to make sure your customers want to leave feedback – regardless of if they’re happy or not.

Firstly, think about your approach – are you making it difficult for your customers by sending them a 16 page survey that will “only take a couple of minutes”, and in actual fact, it takes them closer to an hour to complete? If this is the case, you need to scrap it. Your customers don’t work for you so they don’t want (or need) to spend their time completing boring surveys.

Top tip: Shorten your survey. Allow your customers to talk freely about their experience in their own words and allow them to give you a score. By doing this, it really only takes a couple of minutes and they can say what they really want, rather than answering your pre-defined questions.

Secondly, do your customers believe you’re actually going to do anything with the feedback they leave? If your feedback lacks purpose, why would they bother?

#2  – Are you just asking for feedback right at the end of an experience?

How about readdressing this and asking questions at numerous points throughout the customer’s journey with you?

If you don’t actually know what they’re happy about, changing you’re approach to ask will help you to see what areas of your customer journey people like, and which areas they don’t. This insight is very valuable, as it allows you to tweak these areas and improve them in the moment – rather than waiting until the very end of a journey when it might be too late to fix something.

#3 – 25% of your customers are leaving negative feedback.

Let’s go back to the numbers. If 25% of 100,000 people are unhappy... that’s 25,000 unhappy customers. Imagine them all in a room, and it seems like quite a lot. Plus if you’re happy to say that 75% of people are happy, based on a 10% response rate, you have to assume that the full 25% are unhappy with their experience with you.

So, what are you doing to address this? This goes back to purpose. When someone leaves negative feedback – do you respond? Do you try and fix it in anyway? Or do you wait for three months before deciding that it’s too much work to fix the things they didn’t like?

According to Bain & Company, just by addressing an issue that a customer has with you, their repurchase probability goes from 32% to 89%. And that’s not even by fixing it, just addressing it. That’s a massive increase and all it takes is an email, or text or phone call.

So all in all, if you’re looking for a clearer way to manage and measure the customer experience, you need to make it easy, and make it purposeful. Don’t sit on a nice number of positive responses if you can’t honestly admit that you believe it to be representative of your full customer base.

Have a look at our recent eBook which talks about how manage and measure your customer experience in full:

Get your copy!

Topics: Customer Satisfaction, Measuring Customer Experience

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