Michael Jones

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You’ve built your customer success team. Now you need a strategy for keeping your churn numbers down where they belong. Parature found it takes only one bad customer service experience to chase away 65 percent of customers to a competitor. Don’t let this happen to you.

Customer loyalty is hard to come by if customers can’t get their problems fixed, especially when market competition is stiff and a new solution is just a Google search or phone call away. Thankfully, there are proven metrics to help you track the success of your customer success and support teams and their ability to build customer retention and loyalty.

Here are three ways to measure the success of your customer success and support teams.

1. Average Resolution Time—Just How Good are Your Problem Solvers?

“I’m happy to listen to an hour of hold music,” said no customer ever. Your average resolution time tracks how long it takes to solve a customer’s issue from start to finish, which begins the second they call in.

Time magazine found 53 percent of callers spent an average of 13 hours on hold per year. Instead of spending time using your products or services, they’re wasting it trying to get you on the phone.

The average resolution time varies depends on three factors:

  • The complexity of the request
  • The method by which the customer contacts the customer support team
  • How successful the team is at handling incoming requests

When looking at your average resolution time, separate the time from your tier one and higher-level support tiers to get an accurate view. If your customer success team uses a multichannel approach, then your phone, chat, email, and social media channels should each have their own, sometimes vastly different, statistics.

If the customer success team takes too long to handle requests, or requires multiple customer support touches for a resolution, the problem may go beyond poorly performing team members. Consider factors such as:

  • Effectiveness of contact center solutions
  • Training and knowledge base resources
  • Quality of email, phone, and chat scripts
  • Workflow with information-gathering redundancies
  • Understaffing

2. Are Your Customers Happier for Having Contacted Support?

What if your average resolution time is great, but customers are still leaving?

The problem may have its roots in whether the customer success team actually handled the customer concerns, or if they simply wanted to get the customer off the phone as soon as possible. HelpScout found that 50 percent of customers did not get a helpful answer from customer support.

Customer feedback surveys and follow-up calls gauge customer happiness with your success and support teams. For some channels, such as email and chat supports, the feedback request can be integrated into the software. For other channels, such as phone support, use the customer’s phone number or email address to request feedback. 

3. Sticking Around or Jumping Ship—What Your Customer Retention Numbers Really Mean

Customer retention goes hand in hand with good customer support. A poor customer support experience not only affects that customer; a disgruntled customer can spoil a prospective customer’s view of your company, too.

Disgruntled customers are more likely to take to blogs, forums, and social media to share their negative experience. (Think of the many Comcast customers who hate Comcast.) Sentiment analysis tools will help you gauge whether mentions of your company on social media are positive or negative. 

While customer retention is impacted in part by factors outside of customer success’ control, low retention can often be addressed by improving what’s at the root of your customer success and support issues.

Customer Success Factors

Your customer success team is the foundation for customer retention. Tracking these three metrics reveals what customer support is doing right, whether you need to make major changes to keep customers happy, and how to boost your customer retention numbers.

READ THIS NEXT: How Jazz Built a Winning Customer Success Team

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