Customer service benchmark reportNews ·
"To give real service, you must add something which cannot be bought or measured with money, and that is sincerity and integrity."
-Don Alden Adams.
Do you want to stand out from the crowd and be recognized by your target market?
In today's world, customer service excellence is the defining metric to help you achieve that. Companies must provide top-notch customer service to create loyal and happy customers. In fact, research shows that 60% of customers are willing to pay extra for superior customer service.
According to a Bain & Company research titled "Closing the delivery gap," 80% of businesses reported they are providing a higher-quality service. However, just 8% of customers agreed they are getting exceptional service, indicating that many brands believe they are providing better service than their customers realize.
Keeping this in mind, closing the customer service gap is essential. Here is where the customer service benchmark report comes in.
A customer service benchmark report outlines a brand's customer service strategy's efficacy, efficiency, and success rate. Benchmarking also refers to the industry-wide data demonstrating the standard of customer service across different industries. Let's talk more about this in detail!
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The importance of customer service
Customer service is the direct line of communication between your customers and your brand. It helps to retain clients and gets more value out of them. Businesses can recover their costs related to customer acquisition by offering excellent customer service. It helps to build a loyal customer base that brings in more revenue, serves as case studies, and provides recommendations and testimonials.
In short, investing in customer service helps to activate your flywheel because loyal customers persuade potential customers to buy from your brand. Their recommendations will be more fruitful and less expensive than your current marketing initiatives.
Therefore, providing excellent customer service can create real profit for a brand. Let's see how!
Customer retention is cheaper than customer acquisition.
A brand's customer acquisition cost (CAC) is higher for a brand that only allocates a small portion of its budget to providing customer support. Spending money on customer service can lower your attrition rate.
Businesses should invest more profitably in long-term consumer retention. Existing customers can account for a whopping 65% of revenues, whereas just 20% of these customers will provide 80% of the revenue for your business.
Customer service generates more revenue.
Company executives know that the bottom line plays a role in budgeting and other business decisions. However, providing good customer service also generates income and boosts profits.
According to a study, 89% of businesses that provide "above average" client experiences outperform their rivals financially.
It is estimated that avoidable customer switching costs American businesses $136.8 billion annually. Therefore, a good or poor client experience directly influences the sales and expansion of your business.
Customers pay more to companies with improved customer service.
A significant number of customers are willing to pay more for excellent service, although it is difficult to place a price on it. Positive customer service interactions will immediately benefit businesses since customers value how a customer care staff treats them. More than 80% of customers said they would be ready to pay more for a superior experience.
Any business that doesn't value customer service will fail in an era where customers hold power and are the kingmaker. A positive first impression may persuade them to stay with a company, whereas a negative encounter may persuade them to choose a competitor.
What is customer service benchmarking?
Brands can use customer service benchmark reports to see how their support team compares to other businesses in their industry.
By regularly assessing your performance and processes, your support staff can better identify areas where they thrive and areas where they need to grow. It assists in the development of more relevant objectives that may inspire your team to strive for excellence.
Benchmarking customer service puts teams on the right track to do their best work in the following ways.
1. Identify opportunities for improvement
When you compare your metrics and business procedures to those of other businesses in your industry, you may discover flaws you should be aware of. For example, your time-to-close rate may be improving month after month, but it may also be the area where you lag the most behind your competitors.
You may also discover that your company is the only one of its size that doesn't provide chatbots and social media outreach programs and whether this impacts customer happiness.
It is simpler to decide where to concentrate your time and effort if it is clear where your team has the most significant room for improvement.
2. Assess performance effectively
It's possible to learn a lot about the state of your customer service from operational indicators and customer surveys, but it's not enough. Benchmarking forces you to evaluate your performance compared to similar businesses rather than past results. Holding your company to industry standards emphasizes being the best among many rather than the best representation of the company.
3. Gain insight into market trends and best practices
Although you will define success differently from businesses in other industries and your rivals, it is useful to be aware of what other businesses are doing to maintain client satisfaction. Other businesses' experiences offer chances for growth or learning and might introduce employees to different working methods.
4. Identify opportunities to cut expenses
Each year, poor customer service costs businesses billions of dollars globally. Not to mention that you will have more time for customers as your operations become more efficient.
Benchmark indicators for revenue may show you if your team spends more, less, or around average compared to other businesses of your size. You can better allocate the team's resources with these insights.
5. Analyze the results of your improvement initiatives
Benchmarking assesses the current situation and establishes a baseline against which all attempts for improvement can be evaluated. By doing this, you may determine whether newly adopted procedures or practices bring the team closer to its objective.
What are some examples of customer service benchmarks?
As we discussed, you can evaluate your customer service and effectively align your efforts with the help of customer service benchmark reports.
But what criteria should you use to evaluate your company's performance? Benchmarking for customer service depends on understanding the key performance indicators (KPIs).
Let’s look at some of the top five customer service benchmark metrics:
CSAT, or customer satisfaction score, is typically represented as a percentage. It is expressed on a customer survey as a question. For instance, "On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy were you with your most recent support interaction?"
While CSAT scores differ by industry, a decent score is usually between 75% and 85%. A score of 75% indicates that three out of every four consumers gave you a positive rather than a negative or neutral rating.
Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a popular statistic for gauging client loyalty. By asking a question like, "Based on X experience, how likely are you to suggest Brand Y?" it separates your consumers into those who promote, are neutral, and detractors of your brand.
NPS is always expressed as a number ranging from -100 to 100; the score is negative when a company has more detractors than promoters and positive when the reverse is true.
Customer Effort Score (CES) measures how difficult it was for the customer to resolve their problem through any customer care channel.
A high CES score indicates that your brand provides a seamless experience for clients. In contrast, a low CES means that individuals find your processes difficult or your customer service ineffective—and you must improve or risk losing customers and maintaining a high churn rate.
The First Contact Resolution rate tracks your support representative's success rate in answering the customer's question during the first conversation.
It is an important aspect that determines customer satisfaction. High FCR rates are usually associated with high levels of customer satisfaction. FCRs can be measured along with other metrics like Average Talk Time.
First reply time
First Response Time (FRT) is the time between a customer initiating a query and a company's initial response. Many firms include a baseline FRT in their SLAs, requiring them to reply to consumers within a certain duration.
According to industry standards, customers who contact you via email can normally expect a response within 24 hours, and for social media, it is within an hour.
These were just some of the important customer service benchmark KPIs, and it varies across industries.
Customer service forecast for 2023: Where should you invest time and resources to make the most significant impact?
E-commerce is a dynamic and constantly evolving industry. You should keep up with the most recent changes in customer experience if you want to maintain or create your competitive edge, encourage growth, and deliver superior customer experiences.
73% of customers report that a key element they consider when making an online purchase is the client experience. Thus, you are losing a lot of potential revenue if you offer a bad experience or don't satisfy customer expectations.
To improve your customer service benchmarks, let's look at some trends for 2023. These will help you decide where to invest time and resources to make an impact and set yourself apart.
Self-service and automation
Modern customers seek speedy solutions to their problems. They expect that you will respond to their needs right away. Additionally, the longer you delay replying, the more likely they will leave your business and go to a rival. Thus, having a quick reaction time is crucial. But how can you react more quickly?
The answer is customer self-service! The process of providing your customers with the information and tools they need to find answers to their inquiries and resolve their issues rapidly is known as customer self-service. 70% of customers expect to find self-service options on your website.
Online discussion boards, a support center, and frequently asked questions on your website make up the most popular client self-service. According to research, 67% of customers prefer self-service options over human interaction when seeking help. Before contacting a live operator, 81% of customers try to solve their problems independently.
According to Accenture Interactive's Pulse Check survey, 91% of customers are more inclined to make purchases from businesses that recognize them, recall previous transactions, and give relevant goods and suggestions.
While curated commerce and tailored content were previously considered "nice to haves," they are now a necessary and anticipated component of a top-notch consumer experience. Additionally, it affects brand loyalty.
It's not enough to just enter a customer's name or send them a birthday greeting via a date-triggered email. Customers demand more, such as individualized product recommendations like sneakers to go with the new skirt they just purchased.
Additionally, they expect businesses to foresee their needs and nudge them to purchase. Your most devoted customers want you to get to know them; they expect you to anticipate their needs, look out for their best interests, and deliver a memorable brand experience.
In 2023, the California Privacy Act and the GDPR will be in force, changing how you handle customer data. Brands should keep up-to-date with evolving data privacy laws and regulations to follow the relevant guidelines.
Data is absolutely essential for giving clients a better-tailored experience with your brand. Due to this, you must gain your customer's trust by being open with them, providing clear security guidelines, and implementing effective security precautions to safeguard their data.
According to 76% of customers, it is okay for businesses to utilize their personal information to create more relevant content and customized offers.
You don't want to scare away customers by using excessive personal information in your tailored communications (that's creepy).
Brand transparency about price, products, and procedures builds customer trust and creates a more memorable and alluring digital customer experience. Complete transparency demonstrates to clients that you have nothing to hide and are confident in what you provide.
Going forward, brands must disclose all pricing, shipping costs, recurring charges, and other financial and transactional information about a product or service.
To make your customer feel like they are making an informed purchase, provide honest and accurate delivery dates, product availability, and user-generated reviews. Customers will become frustrated and distant from you if you force them to navigate through your website's pages or read your reviews on a different website.
An excellent example of brand transparency is the growth of the apparel shop Everlane, which went from having no revenue to having $100 million in just six years. Its pages provide useful information, including size, fit, and materials. Further, they go a step further and describe every step of their supply chain, including the considerations for animal welfare in sourcing their cashmere and alpaca, the sustainability of their silk, and third-party certifications for their recycled materials.
Most importantly, being open and honest about how you utilize customer data is the most effective method to be transparent with your clients and potential clients. According to the PingIdentity 2021 Consumer Survey of 3,400 consumers worldwide, 85% of customers worldwide want to know how online services share their personal information, but 72% say it's challenging to find out how it's shared. 63% of survey participants stated that knowing how their information was utilized would make them feel better about a brand.
Fostering a community
Create a community to actively and genuinely engage customers. You can achieve this by starting a group on social media, including a live chat feature in your website design, participating in online forums, or conducting in-person events.
Brand awareness, loyalty, and retention can be increased by having a network of supporters and devoted customers. Because your clientele is eager to help one another with their problems, it may reduce the need for customer service.
How can Layerise assist better your customer service benchmarks?
Brands that partner with Layerise provides exceptional customer service and experience. A simple scan and onboard system help save time, making the process seamless and hassle-free.
Brands can provide state-of-the-art self-service options with Layerise solutions; this is an excellent opportunity to take your brand ahead and meet the customer's demands.
Personalization has never been so easy; speak to your customers in 40+ native languages while building a comprehensive customer persona that allows you to cross-sell and upsell products easily. Our platform informs end-users about renewals, warranties, and other maintenance issues.
As customer expectations rise, brands must step up their efforts to keep up. It is simple to provide excellent service to your customers. It does, however, necessitate research, evaluation, and effort. A customer service benchmark report can help here.
It is straightforward to implement customer service initiatives based on what you have learned from the customer service benchmark metrics. Read your report thoroughly to discover more about the techniques you need to employ to raise the caliber of your services.
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