Net Promoter Score, Customer Satisfaction, First Time Resolution, Average Handle Time, Average Resolution Time, Customer Effort Score… There are many different metrics companies use today to evaluate customer experience and the efficiency of their service.
If you think about it, most of them are meant to measure the service you provide to an existing customer. There is a problem with this approach and it comes up with the nature of the customer experience itself.
As discussed in my previous article about hiring hunters, Customer experience starts when the customer isn’t yet a customer. The first interactions you have as a company with the future customer, let’s call it Prospect, not matter if it is just because she is visiting your website, receiving an automatic email to download a whitepaper, or having a chat with your business development representative; those interactions are the first steps towards building your customer experience.
But almost nobody measures anything at that stage. Well, they do measure things like conversion rates from visitors to leads, from leads to opportunities, from opportunities to closed won deals… They measure how BDR’S qualify leads, how healthy is the sales pipeline, how much has the sales rep sold against her target. Companies measure a lot of things during the sales process, unfortunately, none of them are related to the customer experience.
Sorry, I forgot one some companies do ask. Remember when you visit a website for the first time and you immediately get a pop up window asking you about your experience on that same website? Really… how can I rate my experience on a website that I can’t even see because your unfortunate pop up window!
What about measuring Sales Process Satisfaction, Customer Perception Score, Prospect Promoter Score… Oh yes, those metrics don’t exist, I just invented them myself and maybe I get companies to use them in the future. You see? Nobody cares about how the sales process was, only about if we closed the deal or not.
Here there are some examples of questions you could ask. Did the customer feel good about the interactions with the company? Could she find the information on the website easily? Did she miss any important bit of info that would’ve made her life easier? How happy she was about the first contact with the BDR or Sales rep? How well she believes the whole process was taken care of? Would she recommend other companies to talk to the same sales rep? I can continue typing for hours… There are so many questions we could ask about how we sell that could help us to improve our process and people based on that feedback. But we never ask.
Customer experience isn’t just how good or bad you serve your customers. It has a much wider scope that involves many different departments in your organisation, from marketing to sales, from customer service to IT, from Product development to HR and Finance. Finance? Yes! You can have the best product, the best support, the best sales people; but if your customers aren’t happy about how you handle invoices or payments or if they believe it’s difficult to work with you because of your own process; that also creates an impact on the customer experience.
We should focus on delivering great experiences at every single point of interaction with customers. It is like dating someone first time, we should impress our prospects from the very beginning and not only if they become a customer right? If you do it that way, you will increase your customer acquisition while making the life of both your customer success managers and customers much easier.
What are your thoughts? Do you measure anything related to CX during the sales process? It would be great to hear how you do it.
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