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10 Ways to Improve CSAT, NPS, and Loyalty: Conquering CX KPIs for Repeat Business

Loyal Customers Are Critical To Your Brand's Success. Follow these 10 Steps To Increase Satisfied Customers & Build Brand Advocates

A Walker study found that customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. What’s more, while 86% of buyers will spend more to receive a better customer experience, research from PwC indicates that even among loyal customers, 32% will walk away from a brand they love after a singular negative experience. Customers are also twice as likely to tell people about a negative experience than a positive one, according to CCMC. And it adds up -- companies who invest in their CX programs can as much as double their revenue within 36 months. 

All of this to say: a focus on successful CX outcomes to build loyal, happy, repeat customers - and improve CSAT - is critical to your business.

Existing customers are 50% more likely to try a new product of yours and spend 31% more than a new one, HubSpot research found. And, new customers are up to 25x more expensive to acquire than retaining repeat customers. All in all, repeat customers cost less, and buy more. 

To achieve success and build out your much-needed loyal customer base, it’s vital to become genuinely customer-obsessed, take feedback seriously and work to get better with each interaction. These 10 proven strategies will boost satisfaction, loyalty, and business.

1. Data-Driven CX Decision-Making

CX leaders can’t have a conversation with every customer. So, let the data do the talking. Analyzing data across all channels can give you a clear picture of your customer’s satisfaction and pain points. There are multiple tools and KPIs that CX leaders can leverage to effectively measure satisfaction. Below are a few key examples. You can check out more important terms to consider in our CX Glossary.

  • Net Promoter Score (NPS): An NPS is typically a single survey sent to a customer. A question might be, “How likely are you to recommend our brand to someone else?” The person can answer using an 11-point scale, with 0 being “not likely” and 10 being “highly likely.” According to Bain & Company, the creators of NPS, when a customer deems themself a promoter with a high NPS score, their lifetime value is 600% – 1400% more than those with low NPS scores. In order to improve your NPS score, always be sure to ‘close the loop’ with your customers to get insight into the reasons behind their score -- and apply it to the bigger picture of what is and isn’t working within your CX program, and use this to train agents for better future outcomes.
  • Customer Loyalty Index (CLI): CX leaders usually use six-point surveys to measure CLI. You might ask, “How likely are you to buy from us in the future?” One would stand for “definitely would,” and six would represent “definitely would not.” You may want to look at where additional touchpoints can be added to the customer journey that encourage retention and customer engagement, as well as applying learnings from NPS scores.
  • Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT): These scores measure the satisfaction of customers in relation to products, services, or experiences. Brands will want to use CSAT scores to delve into customer satisfaction at different points on the customer journey, to pinpoint sentiment at specific points of engagement. To improve these scores, make sure you are integrating an accessible, omnichannel CX strategy and you analyze and act on CX data.
  • Customer Churn Rate (CCR): Knowing that more customers are churning than usual can be a red flag about their experience. To calculate the churn rate, divide the number of customers lost over a quarter by the number of customers you had at the beginning of the quarter. 

2. Make Sure You Are Tracking the Right KPIs

According to KPMG’s Global Customer Experience Excellence report, businesses know they have to measure customer satisfaction, but struggle with which KPIs to monitor to best understand their CX program ROI and success. So what KPIs should you focus on to measure the impact of your CX program? Many businesses measure NPS and CSAT without looking beyond these scores. Brands should look at other indicators that show their program’s customer satisfaction, sentiment, and engagement, as well as agent performance to get a clearer view of the whole picture.

Beyond CSAT and NPS, brands should consider tracking:

  • Repeat Customer Rates, which will show you directly how many customers are loyally coming back again and again, 
  • Customer Effort Score, which shows how much effort a customer has to put in to resolve issues -- and strong scores here can directly correlate to future customer loyalty. 

Both of these will reveal examples of what has gone well, and what may need to be addressed with your agents. The ‘right’ KPIs will change from brand to brand, but ultimately will reveal the impact of various initiatives. 

3. Understand Your Customer Journey and Points of Friction

​​In order to better understand your customers, you’ll have to understand exactly what their journey looks like with your brand, from end-to-end. By putting together a journey map, you’ll be able to visualize every touchpoint a customer may have -- whether they are a new customer just learning about your brand, or a repeat customer. 

Once you see the full journey, you must identify the points of friction to be able to improve upon your CX, and in turn, create more satisfied customers. Pair your journey mapping with real CX data to identify which types of customers are having a difficult time with your brand and where those pain points are along the journey. Examples of friction points could include:

  • a difficult to navigate website or checkout experience, 
  • having to click too many times to get to the desired destination, 
  • ignoring customer needs, or being too slow at getting back to consumers.

Improve CX KPIs


4. Focus On Customer Support Agent Training

According to HubSpot, more than 90% of people are likely to purchase again from a company that offered excellent customer service.  Bad customer service costs businesses of all sizes $75 billion per year. 

Holding scripting tutorials for customer support and service agents can keep everyone on the same page, providing a seamless, and consistent, customer support experience. Additionally, training simulators are an effective way to rapidly train agents on specific client call drivers and customer pain points. Making it easy for customers to request support is also critical. Ensure phone numbers and emails are easy to find on your website. 

Focusing your program around consistent and constant training is critical to keeping your agents trained, engaged, and able to shift gears based on CX data and outcomes in real-time. 

Here are some best practices:

  • Your data can get granular about each individual agent, which can help to provide more customized coaching to improve outcomes and build stronger agents.
  • Introducing gamified elements to the agent experience will keep your agents more attentive and motivated to keep improving. 
  • This includes target-setting with incentivisation, a point and reward system, or even an agent scoreboard in your contact center.

 5. Respond to Bad Reviews

McKinsey noted that customer reviews are more critical than ever -- the volume of online ratings and reviews surged between 40% to 80% in 2020. Seeing a negative review online may be troubling, but your brand’s response can mitigate damage and potentially improve customer loyalty. However -- you may be wondering how you can effectively manage turning poor reviews into actionable insights -- and positive experiences.

You’re not alone if that seems like an insurmountable task -- the stream of unsolicited and unstructured feedback happening online can be overwhelming -- but it can also be hurting your brand’s reputation. 

To keep on top of this, be sure to:

  • Monitor review platforms regularly. 
  • Proactively respond, ideally by personally reaching out to the reviewer to discuss the issue and solutions to improve customer satisfaction. By leveraging a Social Reputation Management technology you can integrate managing these interactions directly into your contact center. 

By harnessing powerful tools that use targeted artificial intelligence and analytics, you can not only identify sentiment in real-time to expedite issue resolution and turn a negative customer experience into a positive one -- but you can unlock the value in this social data to inform your CX strategy.


6. Follow-Up On Every Interaction

Do you have a strategy in place to consistently follow up on every interaction? If not, you may be missing out on prime customer data that will help inform how to improve outcomes going forward. The more customer interaction data you receive, the more valuable it can be to your CX program -- and your business as a whole. In fact, research shows that customers who had an issue that was followed-up with successful service recovery tend to be more loyal than if there wasn’t an issue in the first place. 

Close The Loop

To ensure you’re following-up on your customer interactions, put a closed-loop process in place -- or a practice of following up with all customers who have provided feedback to you. The goal is to turn feedback or issues into a conversation with the customer to yield benefits on both sides -- they get a positive, personalized experience, and you get insight into customer sentiment -- and a satisfied customer that feels heard.

It’s important to not just focus on the unhappy customers, but to also respond to praise, suggestions, or general customer questions in the same way.  


7. Build a CX Survey & VoC Program

To build on your closed-loop feedback strategy, you’ll need a robust survey and Voice of Customer (VoC) program to continually ensure you’re receiving, and acting on, all feedback and getting a consistent, up-to-date view on customer sentiment. For a business to create a successful VoC program, they need regular customer insights coming in through as many avenues as possible in order to capture the most data, from the most customer types, at different junctures of their journeys with your brand. One of the most popular types of data captures for VoC programs are through customer surveys. Your VoC program might include elements like:

  • SMS questionnaires  
  • Mobile app surveys (5-Star Surveys) 
  • On-site customer surveys  
  • Social media  
  • Live telephonic surveys  
  • Focus groups  
  • Email questionnaires  
  • Physical feedback forms  

Sending out regular customer surveys and asking for feedback is a way to gauge how your CX is performing, and how changes are working -- or not. A study by Aberdeen Group links VoC programs with greater retention, employee engagement, and lower customer service costs. Your program success depends on the right questions and technologies in place to gather your data, as well as resources to analyze customer data to discover insights and act on them to grow or pivot your CX. 


8. Gain Internal Buy-In

According to a Pega Systems study, 35% of businesses have a C-level sponsor for CX. However, C-level sponsorship can be critical to implement change and obtain the resources necessary to fully invest in a successful CX program that drives customer loyalty, and in turn, more profits. Getting buy-in from the C-suite will also help ensure that the company is aligned toward these goals and it becomes embedded in the brand and culture. In order to get C-level buy-in to upgrade your CX program, focus on the data and estimated ROI. Here are some facts to get you started:

  • Customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable than companies that don’t focus on customers
  • Brands with superior customer experience bring in 5.7 times more revenue than competitors that lag in customer experience
  • 84% of companies that work to improve their customer experience report an increase in their revenue
  • Successfully engaged customers represent an average 23% premium in share of wallet, profitability, revenue, and relationship growth compared to average customers
  • Improvements in CX performance correspond to a 34% increase in future purchase intentions

Additionally, once you have to get your employees on board in order to deliver against your CX KPIs. You can relay the importance of building a customer-obsessed culture to employees through routine engagement events, scripting tutorials, and continuous learning...but employees must feel empowered to follow through. In addition to implementing a robust and continuous training program and performance-based rewards and incentives as discussed previously, there are many ways to accomplish these goals, including:

  • Paying competitive rates 
  • Ensuring they have the tools necessary to do their jobs and investing in new tools
  • Giving them a certain amount of money each day to spend on satisfying customers


9. Connect Your Omnichannel and Always-On Engagement Touchpoints

One of the largest drivers for customers to feel connected to your brand is the ability to connect across multiple channels -- and that means being available where your customers are. 

Research by Genesys found that 83% of consumers prioritize the option to move from one CX channel to another, yet only half of businesses support this type of cross-channel consistency. This is why implementing omnichannel engagement is so crucial for your program success. For example, customers may work or want to engage with your brand off-hours -- ensure you have outsourced resources, or even leverage technology like ChatBots to be available 24/7 in today’s always-on digital economy. Statistics show that more than one-third of customers would prefer to interact with a ChatBot. An omnichannel approach that meets customers where they are will increase brand loyalty and trust, as well as your highest-value CX measurement scores. Bucking this trend can be a differentiator for your company. Encourage customers to share good experiences in follow-up messaging and reward them for referrals with added perks.


10. Take Feedback Seriously

Talk is cheap. You can send surveys, study data, respond to negative comments, and have agents follow up with customers over the phone consistently. But if you don’t follow through, make changes and keep your word to customers, they’ll eventually see through it and churn.

Connect with your customers on a human level -- and treat them how you’d like to be treated. It’s not the Golden Rule for nothing. In fact, McKinsey reports say that 70% of the customer’s journey is based on how the customer feels they are being treated. 

Conclusion

High customer satisfaction must be at the heart of any business. Repeat customers are less expensive to attract and may be willing to help you gain new business organically. Listen to your customers by seeking, and responding, to feedback regularly, and track data to see where aspects of the customer experience are falling short. Make improvements where needed and amplify programs that are working. 

CSAT, NPS, and other CX measurements are not just one-off metrics. You need to consistently have your finger on the pulse of these scores. To ensure customer loyalty, continue to listen to your customers, seek out feedback, and take action based on their responses. As you implement the suggestions above, you will have a clearer picture of your customer’s whole experience -- and you’ll witness a rapid improvement in customer retention.


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