Many companies measure success based on money earned and money saved by cutting costs, but financial metrics only tell part of the story. Financial progress is undeniably important, but it’s not the only indicator of company performance.
Customer experience is the top competitive differentiator between today’s businesses, above price and proximity. Happy customers cannot be taken for granted. They won’t return if they feel they aren’t valued. In fact, they might even spread negative word-of-mouth, deterring “would-be” customers away from your business. To build a strong business reputation that brings in new customers, companies need to learn to improve performance from the best source: their customers. This means rethinking success as more than sales and shifting the focus to long-term growth using customer experience metrics.
Putting money first might seem logical. The board of directors cares about shareholder value, stock prices, and financial performance, so naturally, the CEO prioritizes these same areas. However, customers can tell when a company’s sole interest is financial because the customer experience tends to decline as a result. Poor customer experiences lead to negative word-of-mouth and ultimately lower sales.
Change the mindset of your organization so that every employee in every department understands the important role they play in the customer service experience. Take a pizza delivery company, for example. The suppliers, the chefs, the employee who answers the phone — or, more likely, the engineers who created the online ordering portal — and the delivery man are all necessary to a seamless experience. Overlooking any of these steps could endanger customer satisfaction.
When all teams are motivated by customer happiness rather than just financial performance, employee experience improves drastically as well. Tools like BirdEye let you measure customer experience in several ways, giving you the information required to make improvements that drive sales.
So what are some useful customer experience metrics?
Net Promoter Score (NPS). This metric is based on the question “How likely are you to recommend us?” with a ranking of 0 to 10. Customers who answer 0-7 are considered Detractors and are likely to spread negative word-of-mouth. Those who rate 7-8 are Passives, and could easily become Detractors or Promoters depending on their next experience. Customers who left a 9-10 scores are Promoters and are valuable brand advocates. You calculate your NPS by subtracting the number of Detractors from the number of Promoters.
Average rating from online review sites. This refers to your cumulative rating from all sites customers have reviewed you on, from top sites like Google and Facebook to industry-specific sites like OpenTable and Vitals.
Social media engagement. All those posts, comments, likes, and shares on sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can tell you more than just how engaged your customers are with your brand. Tools are available that can dig deep into this feedback to reveal positive and negative themes emerging within your market.
Customer churn rate. This is the percentage of customers who don’t repeat business or who cancel their subscription. You should manage customer churn rate as early as possible. It is a great gauge of progress when tracked alongside your other metrics.
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Focusing only on profits is not the way to increase them. Customers don’t see those numbers, and they don’t care about them, either. They care about the experience they’ll have with your business. That’s what brings in new customers and keeps them coming back. To sum up, businesses must consider the moments before and after a sale if they want to make more of them.