Customer service is vital, and in today’s environment even more so. Companies strive to provide the best customer service, and the competition is cutthroat. It has become the top differentiator of products and services, and customer service strategies are evolving rapidly. How do you know that your customer service is going in the right direction and providing you with the benefit that you are aiming for?
Measuring customer service is important to grade the quality of your customer service and ensure that it is consistent with your efforts and providing the results intended. Here are some ways you can effectively gauge customer service quality:
Evaluate Supply and Demand
If you have proper metrics in place, you can easily examine the change in your supply and demand, before and after customer service initiatives that you might have taken. Supply and demand may not work well as a standalone measure, but if coupled with other things, it can give you useful insights.
Remember that an increase in demand might be the result of your improved customer service. Happy customers spread the word and tend to buy more, but on the other hand, it may also be cyclical, seasonal or an economical factor which may have caused the shift.
Ask your Customers
One direct way, which most companies use, is to ask customers directly by obtaining customer feedback. You can either provide a customer feedback form, conduct a proper survey or place a call to get your customer’s opinion. You can also make a follow up phone call to enquire about their last visit or opinion of the product purchased. These are all effective methods, and when a customer is approached directly, they are more likely to respond.
Number of Customer Complaints
Another widely used tool to gauge the effectiveness of customer service is to evaluate the number of complaints received. The lesser the complaints or a decrease in number of complaints, the more likely it is that you are on the right track with your customer service. Remember, that if you choose to ignore the number of complaints, and do not improve your customer service, you might be benefiting your competitor.
Identify Your Weaknesses and Improve Them
If you use the right metrics to evaluate the quality of your customer service, you will be able to identify specific weak areas within your operation. Improving on those areas will help you to improve your customer service. For example, issues may be resolved but untimely resolution might have been causing frustration to customers, or they may have become disgruntled because certain products are always on backorder. Whichever metric you use, always ensure to identify the weak areas and improve them to provide the best customer service.
Assess the Competition
It is important to know your competition and how they are handling customer service. It will help you to evaluate your own quality of service. You may perhaps, find out how they make customers happy and incorporate strategies to upgrade your customer service levels and quality to match those standards. Consequently, it may also help you to decide whether you are doing better than the competition.