How Voice Technology is Improving and Advancing Customer Experience Metrics

This article explains how voice technology is improving and advancing customer experience metrics such as Net Promoter Scores and Customer Satisfaction Scores.

How Voice Technology is Improving and Advancing Customer Experience Metrics
How Voice Technology is Improving and Advancing Customer Experience Metrics. Photo by Blake Wisz on Unsplash

Table of contents

Business success: Growth is a key measure
Brand customer loyalty
How is customer loyalty tracked?
How to improve NPS and CSAT
Extract customer data from communication channels
Contact centres are an important touchpoint in the buyer journey
Limitations with NPS
NPS and CSAT collection methods are flawed
Voice is king in the contact centre
Voice technology helps to understand NPS
Leverage voice technology and unlock customer insights
Eliminate poor experiences in real-time
Voice technology empowers analytics and improves customer interactions
Conclusion

Business success: Growth is a key measure

Growth is a key measure of success for many organizations. Whether it’s revenue, profit, share price, workforce, market share or geography – growth is on the minds of C-Level Executives across the world. Organizations invest a huge amount of time, money, effort and expertise into business growth.

The benefits of rapid growth stretch far beyond profitability and share price and into brand exposure and customer loyalty. With growth a primary focus for many businesses, it’s important to understand what the key driver for growth is. The customer.

Brand customer loyalty

Customer loyalty is a key avenue for growth and profitability. According to MyCustomer, it costs businesses five times as much to attract a new customer as it does to keep an existing one. Customer loyalty is born out of satisfaction with a product, service or brand. For this reason, Net Promoter Scores (NPS) and Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT) are vital metrics for organizations to understand the loyalty of their customer relationships.

NPS and CSAT metrics enable organizations to benchmark against themselves and other companies over time. They help businesses understand more about customer feelings and perceptions based on direct and instant feedback.

How is customer loyalty tracked?

An overview: Net Promoter Scores and Customer Satisfaction Scores

According to HotJar, a Net Promoter Score (NPS) is:

“Customer loyalty and satisfaction measurement is taken from asking customers how likely they are to recommend a product or service to others on a scale of 0-10.”

According to HubSpot, a Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) is:

“A metric used to quantify the degree to which a customer is happy with a product, service, or experience. This metric is usually calculated by deploying a customer satisfaction survey that asks on a five or seven-point scale how a customer feels about a support interaction, purchase, or overall customer experience, with answers between “highly unsatisfied” and “highly satisfied” to choose from.”

NPS and CSAT both uncover information on customer satisfaction, each exposing different amounts of information for organizations. NPS focuses on understanding customer loyalty while CSAT focuses on the satisfaction of a product, service or experience.

In recent times, customer experience (CX) has become a priority for businesses and championed over other initiatives. Better customer understanding enables brands to provide personalized and better experiences while creating customer loyalty.

Customer experience has a direct impact on a brand’s reputation and revenues. A brand’s ability to understand their customer enables them to create exceptional customer experiences. From purchase decision and payment method to delivery and after-sales support – the ability to streamline these touchpoints builds customer loyalty through frictionless experiences.

How to improve NPS and CSAT

Organizations can improve their CSAT and NPS by enhancing customer experiences across all customer journey touchpoints.

Extract customer data from communication channels

Communication channels are crucial to influencing NPS. Obtaining a true reflection of customer loyalty can deliver insights for organizations to make significant changes. From organizational restructuring to integrating new tools and offering seamless and joined-up customer experiences.

Contact centre managers should constantly ask questions to improve their communication channels and deliver better experiences. For instance:

  • Are we using the right communication channels for our customers?
  • How do our customers want to interact with us?
  • How long are the wait times? How can we reduce them?
  • What do we do with customer calls?
  • Are we extracting data from customer calls?
  • How can we combine our call data with other text-based data?
  • Are we using automation effectively to deliver positive customer experiences?
  • Do our agents have sufficient information?
  • Can agents resolve issues immediately?
  • How do our agents speak to our customers?
  • Do we know how our customers are feeling?
  • How can we influence our customer’s emotions and give them great experiences?

There are many more considerations – all of which will impact NPS. By asking the right questions, contact centres can make the necessary changes to deliver exceptional customer experiences and ensure brand loyalty.

Contact centres are an important touchpoint in the buyer journey

The contact centre is a vital communication touchpoint for most brands. It represents the front line in terms of customer experience. It offers insights into customers across their buying journey. Even for elements considered outside of the contact centre such as delivery or purchase, it’s the contact centre that delivers insights into how customers feel about these experiences. A brand’s NPS is heavily reliant on the way the contact centre communicates with customers.

The contact centre is one of the best places to gather CSAT and NPS data. It’s the point at which the customer is most engaged and can provide feedback on their experiences.

NPS and CSAT have the opportunity to deliver significant insights for brands. For organizations focused on delivering enhanced customer experience, benchmarking is important for them to understand their position and implement data-driven initiatives to improve their scores. However, while a single data point offers a great representation of an overall attitude at a fixed moment in time, it does not provide sufficient context over why customers feel the way they do. To that end, CSAT and NPS have limitations.

Limitations with NPS

For organizations focused on customer experience, it’s crucial to be able to benchmark their performance and use data to improve processes and achieve customer loyalty.

For a long time, brands have focused on NPS as a key measure of success. The goal? To move the needle and improve their score. However, doubts have been cast over the validity of NPS as a success criterion.

The Wall Street Journal commented that CEOs have become obsessed with the metric. Vital business decisions are being made to throw away inputs from a small percentage of customers. Too much reliance is placed on a single number to measure the success of a brand or product.

NPS gathering boils down to a simplistic, single-question survey. While this encourages more responses, it only answers the ‘what?’ question – what do people feel? It ignores important questions like ‘why do customers feel like this?’ and ‘how can we improve their experiences?’. These questions are essential to provide context and impose positive change. Customer experience is complex and so representing its success as a single value is misleading.

NPS and CSAT collection methods are flawed

NPS data is often gathered using a survey at the end of a call. However, people don’t always have the time to answer these questions. Incentivizing customers is a challenge. What can you offer other than the promise that their feedback will make their experience better in the future?

Organizations are reliant on CSAT and NPS as a metric of loyalty. Research published by Call Centre Helper showed that customer satisfaction is the most important metric for contact centres with 89% saying it was very important.

Feedback is vital for organizations to improve their product, service and overall brand experience. CSAT and NPS are key metrics that organizations monitor, but they are limited to a single value. This might be enough for some organizations, but for most, it’s important to understand why customer’s feel the way they do – beyond a single dataset.

Voice is king in the contact centre

According to Call Centre Helper, the hype seen in 2018 around chatbots has started to dwindle. While chatbots offer customers convenience through another communication channel, voice remains the preference for customers.

A Microsoft study revealed that 44% of customers in the US prefer to interact over the phone as their primary source of the customer service channel. This is significantly higher than live chat which was the second most preferred channel with 23%.

Voice provides a unique opportunity for CSAT and NPS. Traditional NPS gathering methods are flawed due to response and abandonment rates. However, organizations get direct and instant feedback from customers all the time when interacting over the phone. Call recording and transcription provides the opportunity for brands to derive new insight into NPS and CSAT data without having to engage the customer and add friction to their experience.

Voice technology helps to understand NPS

Zendesk found that brands receive a 21% response rate for CSAT surveys. What if contact centres could obtain CSAT data and understand feelings and behaviours from 100% of customers without the need for a survey?

Leverage voice technology and unlock customer insights

CSAT and NPS are important metrics for brands to be aware of. However, only so much information can be determined from the results. Brands must look beyond the numbers to gain deeper insights into customer feelings and emotions to affect positive change. By recording customer calls and using voice technology to transform them into text, organizations can extract meaning and understanding from customer interactions. This provides context to NPS and CSAT data.

Compliance legislation has forced organizations to record calls to ensure they meet legal standards. If organizations are already recording customer calls – why not also extract value from them?

Organizations are sat on a wealth of data from customer and agent interactions. However, research from Call Centre Helper suggests that contact centres analyze less than 3% of interactions. This leaves 97% of call data untouched as it is difficult to evaluate in audio format. By transforming calls into text, call data can be combined with data extracted from other communication channels to get an accurate picture of the customer.

With all call data available as text, contact centres can identify products or services with low CSAT and NPS and investigate why scores were given. For example, a product can be searched for by keyword to analyze the customer’s interaction with that product. With this knowledge, contact centres can adapt and improve future customer experiences.

Brands are no longer constrained to a single number to determine how they are performing. By utilizing voice technology, companies can unlock a deeper level of customer understanding beyond CSAT and NPS.

Eliminate poor experiences in real-time

According to Magnetic North, poor customer experiences cost UK brands £234 billion a year in lost sales. It’s never been more important to eliminate these experiences. Using real-time transcription capabilities, contact centre agents can positively impact calls as they happen. Contact centres are using speech recognition technology in realtime to trigger workflows that assist agents during the call.

As well as learning from previously failed interactions, real-time workflows are helping contact centre agents positively steer conversations before they go off track. The advantage of this is that customers aren’t required to have a bad experience before agents offer personalized and exceptional experiences.

Non-compliant behaviour can be mitigated by alerting a supervisor when certain words or phrases are mentioned on a call. Moreover, if certain questions are raised by customers, knowledgebase articles can be prepopulated and surfaced to the agent’s dashboard to help guide the conversation.

Real-time transcription empowers tools like sentiment analysis to help agents deal with a variety of customer emotions. This is a proactive approach to CSAT and NPS which enables organizations to roll out next-generation tools to meet the demands of customer experience.

Voice technology empowers analytics and improves customer interactions

To improve customer experiences, you must first evaluate customer interactions. Data obtained from email, SMS, IVR and customer calls can be combined to provide a rich data set for contact centres. Voice technology gives contact centres access to unfiltered data on the voice of the customer to ascertain why they feel the way they do.

Contact centres are using voice technology to transform customer calls into a valuable text asset. This can be fed into natural language processing (NLP) tools to provide meaningful and actionable insights from voice data.

Transforming audio to text significantly reduces the storage cost of call recording. It can be easily indexed and searched for by keyword or phrase making calls accessible for analytics purposes.

Analytics provide considerable efficiencies for contact centres. From gaining a 360-degree view of the customer and improving agent performance to enhancing understanding of customer satisfaction and eliminating bad experiences. Analytics help to understand the internal workforce, identify knowledge or training gaps and to roll out data-driven programs and campaigns.

Data taken from unfiltered customer interactions provides a wealth of information about the customer. This data can be used to improve engagement across all customer touchpoints. Are customers happy during the buying stage but then unhappy with the way the product works? Analytics enable brands to transform bad experiences into good ones to improve the overall experience and ensure satisfaction.

Conclusion

The role of transcription in advancing CSAT and NPS

Growth is a key measure of success for many brands. To achieve growth, organizations focus on customer loyalty. CSAT and NPS are metrics that brands use to understand how customers feel about certain products or experiences. However, there are limitations to these metrics.

CSAT and NPS response rates are low and customer perceptions of brands are influenced by many activities such as media portrayal. Focusing on a single number as a measurement for success isn’t appropriate when contact centres are sitting on a wealth of customer data stored in call recordings.

By transforming call recordings into text, organizations can combine voice data with data collected from other communication channels to get a holistic view of the customer. Brands can use CSAT scores and NPS to see how customers feel, and then use insights collected from customer calls to identify why they feel the way they do. Call recording and transforming call data into text is the first step in improving customer experiences.

Transcription empowers automated tools and systems like analytics to help deliver better customer experiences and uplift other key metrics in the contact centre like first call resolution and customer satisfaction. Real-time capabilities help agents steer conversations as they happen by providing relevant information direct to their dashboards.

A PwC study found that 32% of customers would consider leaving a brand they loved after just one poor experience. With voice technology, contact centres can use CSAT and NPS data to truly understand customer loyalty and feelings to avoid negative experiences. Organizations can adapt to grow their consumer base with more loyal customers than ever before.

Machine learning-powered technologies like voice technology are making it easier and more efficient to understand the voice of the customer and deliver products, services and experiences that customer truly cares about.

Source: Speechmatics: Innovate with voice

Silvia Emma Published by Silvia Emma

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