7 simple strategies to improve your customer satisfaction (CSAT)
If you’re refreshing your strategies to improve customer satisfaction, this is the right place for you.
You already know customer satisfaction is the most important customer service metric. In fact, excellent customer service is ranked number one when asking consumers what impacts their level of trust with a company. Trust is a critical part of any business relationship, but finding the right strategies to improve it — along with your customer satisfaction — can be challenging.
In this article, we’ll focus on methods of improving customer satisfaction and ways to understand your customers as well as how your agents are performing so you can improve your CSAT scores.
- What is customer satisfaction (CSAT)?
- The benefits of improving customer satisfaction
- 7 strategies to improve customer satisfaction
- There are two sides to improving customer satisfaction
What is customer satisfaction (CSAT)?
Customer satisfaction is a way to determine if your customers are happy with your products or services and the level of service they’ve received. Your customer satisfaction score, or CSAT, is the number one way to measure that happiness.
Your CSAT score shows real numbers that reflect your customer’s satisfaction rates. You’ll also want to look at additional customer service metrics to get the most complete picture of your customers’ satisfaction.
The benefits of improving customer satisfaction
Customer satisfaction means more than a customer saying they’re happy. It means having them tell you as well their friends and family that they’re satisfied with your product or service.
Taking steps to increase customer satisfaction provides a number of benefits. For starters, your customers’ happiness can produce an incredible amount of positive results for your team and company. This includes increased employee engagement, customer loyalty, recurring revenue, and competitive advantage.
Let’s take a look at how you can improve your CSAT in a call center where it will make a real impact.
7 strategies to improve customer satisfaction
There are many methods to improve customer satisfaction. From internal culture to understanding everything about your customers, you can monitor data to evaluate and improve your numbers.
Here, we’re breaking down seven of the top ways you can implement customer satisfaction strategies to improve CSAT scores in your business. These techniques are split into two categories: improving performance and understanding your customers.
Start internally before you look externally. Increasing your customer service team’s performance can be a very effective way to also increase customer satisfaction. When your employees are productive, they’re more likely to be happy with their job, work with their colleagues efficiently, and provide customers with a great experience.
A great way to achieve this is to be transparent with agents about their performance numbers and help them constantly improve by setting SMART customer service goals. You can also give consistent and constructive feedback in their employee reviews.
Here are three ways you can directly impact your CSAT by improving agent performance:
1. Create an engaging company culture
Building a productive, supportive, and team-oriented culture allows employees to feel confident in their abilities. Enabling employees to constantly improve via strategies like gamification and rewards will motivate them as well.
Training your agents to answer customers’ questions quickly and sufficiently will make both the customer and your employee happy.
2. Setting measurable goals
Improving your customer satisfaction score (CSAT) and other metrics require the identification of key performance indicators (KPIs) and the tracking of them. For example, you and your team can identify CSAT, average resolution time, and agent reply time as your primary metrics to improve.
Use SMART goals to determine the right objectives for your agents to work toward. Make them measurable, use tools like Scorecards to track them, and be transparent. Allow your agents to know their numbers and what they can do to achieve their goals.
Once you’ve identified and tracked your metrics, you’ll be able to identify problem areas. Find and analyze patterns, anomalies, and opportunities to improve your KPIs. These results can help you discover areas you can improve agent training.
3. Quality assurance and feedback
Providing quality assurance (QA) and helpful feedback to your agents will give them insight into how they’re performing. You’ll want to develop a solid QA framework that helps you create an automatic feedback loop.
When creating a framework, consider questions like:
- How can I monitor agents’ communications?
- What scoring system will I use to evaluate interactions?
- What criteria can I use to analyze the data?
Once you’ve determined these answers, provide the data and results to your agents so they can work on the specific areas needed to improve their CSAT scores and other KPIs.
Understand your customers
Now that your team is aligned and motivated, you can focus on CSAT improvements from the customer’s perspective. Use tools like active listening, direct feedback, and reviews. Then measure your customer service performance regularly.
Monitor your KPIs intently and determine where changes can be made or processes can be improved based on your results.
Here, we’ll discuss techniques you can use to understand your customers better, provide great customer service, and improve customer satisfaction:
4. Act on both positive and negative customer feedback
All the feedback you receive is extremely valuable to you and your agents — from both sides of the spectrum of positive and negative. While positive feedback helps boost confidence and motivate your agents, negative feedback provides ways to improve. You can learn a lot from this valuable feedback so thank every customer regardless of the tone.
Listen to your customers and what their needs truly are. If their complaint is that they were on hold waiting to speak with someone for 20 minutes, work to find ways to decrease that time.
Whether it’s hiring more people, offering an option to call customers back, or distributing the workload amongst current agents, helping customers faster will increase their satisfaction levels (and CSAT scores).
Another way to improve customer satisfaction is to look through reviews for trends. If you notice common issues, tag reviews to categorize them. By identifying the root of the problem, you can improve proactively before it becomes a bigger problem.
5. Provide support through the right channels
Supporting your customers in the best way for them means knowing through which channel they prefer to contact you. Depending on the number of resources and customers you have, you can position your agents to cover all the channels needed.
Consider the following questions:
- What is your customer demographic?
- What channels do your customers prefer to use: WhatsApp, live chat?
- Would your customers prefer self-service or talking to an agent?
Find out these answers and everything else about your customers that you can. This way, you’ll be able to help them in the best and most efficient ways.
6. Take a human-centered approach
Understanding your customers means truly knowing what’s important to them. One of the best ways to find out is to ask them. Whether it’s on the phone, in a survey, or via live chat, you can learn a lot about a customer from what they say if you’re truly listening.
Active listening is a great way to let the customer know you’re understanding what they want and will be able to help them. This gives the customer confidence in your company and a much higher level of satisfaction.
You can also use tools on your website such as a community forum to add a peer-to-peer human element to your customer satisfaction strategy. This way, customers can look up questions other people have already asked and answered and you can also get a pulse on the types of questions customers ask. Frequently asked questions can get added as articles to your support center, and letting customers answer each other’s questions can also reduce the creation of customer service tickets.
7. Proactively measure your customers’ satisfaction
An important aspect of customer satisfaction is to know exactly how happy your customers are. The best (only true) way to know this is to measure it regularly. There are a number of customer satisfaction metrics to measure, but your CSAT score is the most important one.
You’ll decide what other KPIs to measure proactively, but CSAT improvement should be your top priority. To improve your CSAT, you’ll first need to identify how you’ll measure customer satisfaction.
For example, ask your customers to scale their happiness with your product or service from 1-7, seven being the highest. If your customer scores your service over five, these can be (and usually are) your most satisfied customers.
You can also look at the scores below three and identify what challenges those customers faced so you can improve in the future. Be aware, unsatisfied or neutral customers are far less likely to respond to surveys which may skew the results.
Your agents can also be proactive by contacting your customers before they need to contact your support team. Train your agents to send text reminders or emails to customers about the product or service they purchased.
Encouraging agents to call customers about issues (before they call you) is another way to actively boost customer satisfaction. Allocate resources appropriately, of course, but finding time to make this extra effort will skyrocket your CSAT.
There are two sides to improving customer satisfaction
There is more than one side to the customer satisfaction equation. The key to improving customer satisfaction is a healthy balance between understanding and improving performance internally while doing the same with customers externally.
With Kaizo, a workforce engagement management platform, you can calculate these measurements easily and automatically to save you time and stress. Before you improve your customer satisfaction, you need to know the best way to measure it, along with other essential metrics.