Illustration of hands holding a tablet that depicts a rating score

Six ways to take your CSAT from good to great

How satisfied are your customers?

Your success and profitability as a brand hinges on making sure your customers get what they want, and more. But it doesn't have to be guesswork. Measuring the effectiveness of your customer service takes strategic use of key performance indicators (KPIs). Average response time, average handle time and first contact resolution are all important measurements that help you optimize the customer experience. However, when it comes to the overall experience with your brand, customer satisfaction score (CSAT) is perhaps the most telling metric at your disposal.

What is CSAT?

CSAT is a post-interaction measure of how your company's performing when it comes to keeping customers happy. Conveyed as a scale of one to one hundred, your CSAT is calculated by dividing the number of positive responses you receive by the number of responses overall, and multiplying that number by 100 to get a percentage.

The resulting number tells you how satisfied your customers are with your product or service and the support they received from your brand. Through the use of surveys and a ratings system, you can also determine how to make improvements that could ultimately turn your "somewhat satisfied" responses into "very satisfied" ones.

To increase satisfaction throughout the customer journey, innovative brands are looking at all of their touchpoints to find ways to improve the customer experience (CX) overall.

The top ways to improve CSAT scores include:

  • Automated self-service tools
  • Voice of the Customer programs
  • Reduction of wait times
  • An omnichannel support strategy
  • High agent engagement
  • Personalization

Read on to learn more about how these tactics can help brands to deliver a top-level CX and boost their CSAT scores in the process.

1. Implement automated self-service tools

Automated customer self-service can take a variety of forms, including chatbots and FAQs. The convenience of these tools, accessible around the clock via a desktop computer or mobile device, makes them very appealing to customers and brands alike. TELUS International research, in partnership with Pulse, revealed that nearly three-quarters (74%) of IT leaders surveyed saw an improvement in customer satisfaction scores after implementing a chatbot.

It isn't just the quality of your service that consumers gauge when considering their level of satisfaction, but the convenience. Automated self-service tools, like chatbots, empower consumers to find a solution quickly and easily, at all hours of the day or night. This means less time on hold or waiting for an email response and more time enjoying your product or service.

chatbots displayed across different channels including mobile and desktop

Executive survey results: Chatbots are leveling up digital customer experience

TELUS International surveyed technology leaders who have implemented chatbots as part of their customer experience strategy. Discover the most common challenges, benefits and opportunities in this one-minute white paper.

2. Tap into Voice of the Customer programs

It may seem obvious, but measuring customer sentiment requires listening to your customers. That's where a Voice of the Customer (VoC) program comes into play. This encompasses everything from surveys and questionnaires to social listening, all of which can help you analyze your customers' experiences and attitudes, and discover problems they may be having that could impact their opinion of your brand.

Microsoft-owned video gaming system Xbox is one brand that does this well, especially with regard to investigating and resolving product issues. The company regularly posts notices on Twitter when other users are experiencing service or connectivity issues, and points customers to their support site that provides real-time updates. "Players should no longer have issues with Brawlhalla," one recent tweet said. "We appreciate your reports. As always, we are here & listening!"

xbox support Original tweet found here.

3. Reduce wait times

Long wait times have always been detested. But perhaps even more so now that digital technology is instantaneously putting entertainment, services and products at customers' fingertips. According to research from HubSpot, two-thirds of consumers say the most frustrating part of customer service is having to wait on hold.

Self-service options, like chatbots, can help remedy this by adding more bench strength to your support team. They are particularly valuable for brands that are growing quickly and need to deliver customer support at scale — as is partnering with a digital customer experience provider. Outsourcing contact center operations can help companies ramp up their service if, for example, they're not resourced to handle an increased flow of customer queries. Partnering with customer service experts who specialize in providing top-level support can go a long way toward improving CSAT scores.

4. Utilize an omnichannel support strategy

It's not enough to offer customer support on multiple channels. Those channels also have to be interconnected to ensure the customer journey isn't interrupted. No one wants to repeat themselves over and over again; in fact, HubSpot's research shows that a significant portion of consumers get extremely frustrated when having to repeat their problem to numerous support representatives.

Cloud contact center platforms are useful in this respect, as they can streamline CX management and make accessing key customer information easy for the whole support team. By eliminating silos and sharing customer data internally, organizations can provide a faster and more satisfying customer support experience.

5. Prioritize agent engagement

Of course, the people behind the delivery of those customer support experiences are crucial to improving your CSAT, too. Your internal team can have a significant impact on your CSAT results, with committed and inspired team members owning the customer experience from end-to-end.

A team of engaged employees can build a strong and lasting human connection with your customers. Because their behavior reflects on your brand, your support representatives should embody your corporate culture, know how to take ownership of the customer experience and never lose sight of their goal to improve customer satisfaction.

The more a company prioritizes team member engagement, the lower it pushes attrition. And with happy, tenured team members serving as expert brand ambassadors for your company, better customer care is almost certain to follow.

6. Personalize the customer experience

According to research conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of TELUS International, 42% of Americans say they'll switch brands if a company doesn't provide them with a personalized experience. What's more, if a product or service disappoints them but they receive a hyper-personal customer experience, 72% of consumers will give the company a second chance. Evidently, personalization isn't only critical to improving your CSAT, but to enhancing customer loyalty, too.

With more than half of American consumers willing to sign up for emails and complete customer surveys in order to personalize their brand experience, it's easier than ever to make interactions with your company more customized and personally relevant. Keep in mind that personalization is particularly important to younger generations that expect brands to consider their past purchases and deliver product information specific to their wants and needs.

With these six strategies at hand, organizations can enhance virtually every aspect of the customer experience, and in turn, improve their CSAT.

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