4 Pitfalls to Avoid When Measuring Customer Experience

When it comes to creating and improving customer experience, there’s much to measure. You have heaps of scores to use, tons of metrics to quantify, and many reports to run. Despite best intentions, it’s easy to run into some all-too-common pitfalls.

According to Gartner’s recent report on “How to Manage Customer Experience Metrics,” organizations of all sizes are neglecting to use the metrics they’re collecting to create compelling change. And, if you’re not able to create change, you can’t make a positive impact on the overall customer experience.

Today, we’re sharing 4 pitfalls to avoid when measuring customer experience.

1. Using one metric meant for executives.

Gartner reports that 70% of all organizations measure customer satisfaction, using it as a metric to report to executives.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) is another common measurement, as it's used by 17% of all companies and by over 70% of the largest global companies. Although these metrics are helpful for giving a birds’ eye view to executives, they’re not particularly helpful in focusing efforts to create meaningful change.

Gartner recommends that  organizations shouldn’t focus on one top-level customer experience metric. Instead, they should collect lower-level customer experience metrics (such customer support call volume or purchase experience feedback scores) that are directly applicable to teams that are creating and managing the product and customers.

2. Only focusing on metrics tracked by marketing and customer service teams.

An organization is made up of many teams, but often the marketing and customer service team metrics take center stage. However, these are not the only teams that are collecting helpful data. Gartner shows that large organizations (those making $1 billion or more) track between 50 and 200 metrics—that’s a lot to manage.

Even so, you should have a handle on customer experience metrics across the entire company. To do this:

  • Audit all metrics to find out what’s being tracked.
  • Identify how metrics are calculated.
  • Learn who tracks the method.
  • Learn who is accountable/responsible for improving the metric.

3. Underestimating product-related customer experience metrics

When organizations talk about improving customer experience, they often forget about the core product and services they offer. Basically, if your product is flawed or doesn’t give the value you promised, customers are obviously going to report a negative experience.

The most underestimated set of customer experience metrics relates to product or core service quality, according to Gartner. If the ‘product’  does not meet a customer’s minimum requirements, fixing the problem is beyond the scope of what your customer service team can do.

In order to improve customer experience, organizations must measure churn rates, inventory, delivery timeliness, and end-to-end transaction rates.

4. Neglecting to measure employee engagement as part of customer experience

According to Gartner, only 10% of customer experience initiatives measure employee engagement. Many organizations do measure employee engagement, but they do so separately, as part of the HR department.

However, these metrics should not be separated from other customer experience metrics. Improved employee engagement directly correlates to higher customer satisfaction. In fact, this is more than a correlation—it’s a causality.

A study in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology showed that an organization’s commitment to something like employee engagement would result in improved business performance within a three year timeframe.

Let’s sum it up.

As you measure customer experience, it’s essential to avoid common stumbling blocks. Falling into these traps will give you an inaccurate view of how your business is doing.

Ultimately, you’ll be well on your way to measurement success if you use many different metrics, go beyond marketing and customer service, include product-related consideration, and measure employee engagement.

Want to improve your overall customer experience and avoid pitfalls? Make sure you’re communicating with customers. Download our ebook, How Retailers Should Communicate with Customers.

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