Evaluation of its consumer service
Long underused, consumer service is now a real pillar of customer relations. Indeed, individuals attach more and more importance to the answers provided by these services. It is therefore necessary for any company to have a quality consumer service. But what are its specific missions? How important is it? And how to evaluate it?
What is a consumer service?
Consumer service is the branch of a business that is in charge of direct relations with individuals before, during and after the sale of a product or service. While the influence of this branch was still underestimated a few years ago, today it is essential for any company to develop this department which plays an essential role in customer experience and satisfaction.
Customer service and consumer service:
what’s the difference?
We sometimes hear about customer service or consumer service. It should be noted that there is no real difference between the functions of these two departments. The discrepancy mainly concerns the sector of activity of the company concerned. The use of “customer service” is mainly done in the banking, insurance or telecom sectors (information on guarantees, rights, products offered, their contract, etc.). On the contrary, it is more common to hear “consumer service” in the field of mass distribution and the food sector (nutritional information, product composition, expiry date, etc.). After- sales service or after-sales service concerns only post-purchase complaints and refers more to technical assistance than to a need for advice.
In all cases, the role of the agents is the same: to respond to customers and provide them with a satisfactory response. Regardless of the name of the department, the main thing is to maintain a good relationship with the customers in order to satisfy them and increase their loyalty.
Evaluate your customer service
Many methods exist to assess the effectiveness and quality of customer service. Some information is available by simply studying the data internally, while some analysis methods require the implementation of external means.
Internal evaluation: study the data coming directly from the department
First of all, it is essential to take an interest in easily accessible data, that is to say that which is available by simply studying the consumer service. One of the many advantages of this data is the fact that it is totally objective. Among the multitude of observable data, the most relevant to study are detailed below.
FCR rate (First Contact Resolution)
It is one of the most popular indicators in marketing. This RPC rate translates into the proportion of requests resolved on the buyer’s first contact. The higher this rate, the more effective customer service is in responding to expectations and providing advice, the more satisfied individuals looking for information and/or solutions are. To calculate it, it suffices to produce the following product:
volume per channel
Calculating the proportion of requests by channel is interesting insofar as it makes it possible to know which channels are favored by buyers (telephone, email, live chat) and which are underused to adapt their commercial strategy. It is obviously necessary to relate the volume per channel to the type of people who come into contact with the customer relations center.
The average waiting time
This indicator makes it possible to assess the accessibility of the consumer service. The average wait time corresponds to the length of time an individual waits when they come into contact with the consumer service (number of people on the waiting list on an Internet chat, estimated waiting time on the phone, etc.). This time must be as short as possible, consumers hate wasting time.
If this delay is too long, it is likely that the company will see a high drop-out rate in the queue, i.e., in the case of a telephone exchange, a proportion of callers who hang up before having been able to express their request because they consider that the waiting time is too long. This dropout rate is indicative of dissatisfaction and a bad experience.
Several other indicators can be observed in order to evaluate the performance of a consumer service: the average first response time, the average processing time (AMT), the referral rate to “selfcare” (increasingly used with the rise of the Internet), the pick-up rate (for a call center) or the complaint rate.