How to self-assess your customer experience (CX) in 2024

Meet rising expectations and build loyalty when you understand your customers

Competing on price or product alone is no longer enough to stay competitive. To get ahead, it pays to listen to your consumers and deliver a seamless experience to build ongoing loyalty.

Why CX matters in 2024

Advanced technology and innovative services are now the norm rather than the exception, making it harder to stand out on product or price alone.

A recent report from Qualtrics reveals customer service is now more important to consumers than a lower price. This backs up a PWC survey where 32% of customers said they’d walk away from a brand they loved after just one bad experience.

Customers are well-informed, vocal and quick to switch loyalties if their experience needs to be improved. To secure customer loyalty, build brand advocacy and safeguard growth, you can't afford to ignore the customer experience.

Start by understanding the customer journey

Mapping the customer journey is the first step in assessing and improving your CX.

Following customers on their journey identifies pain points, highlights opportunities for personalisation and reveals their experience – from initial awareness to post-purchase support.

When mapping the customer journey, it pays to identify:

  • Customer touchpoints: These are the specific interactions or points of contact between your brand and the customer. For instance, website visits, social media interactions, customer service calls and in-store experiences.
  • Communication channels: How customers engage with your brand - not necessarily the channels you prefer to use. Do customers make contact via your website, mobile app, email, social media or by visiting your store?
  • Each audience: Different customer segments (e.g. new clients, returning customers, businesses Vs individuals) will have distinct journeys and expectations. You need to understand the needs of each to create targeted experiences.

Mapping the customer journey also highlights the various internal stakeholders who own CX metrics across the business. To successfully assess and improve your end-to-end CX, you’ll need to engage each of these stakeholders along the way.

Common KPIs for CX

  • Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
  • Customer Effort Score (CES)
  • Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
  • Customer Churn Rate
  • Customer Retention Rate
  • Employee Engagement Rate

Key CX metrics to measure your customer experience

Customer metrics are not the only measure of good CX. Brand perception and employee engagement also play a vital role. If your brand has a poor reputation or your team is not fully engaged, you'll face an uphill battle to attract and retain customers. This will undermine your entire CX strategy, regardless of your metric.

Surveys: Asking customers directly about their experience provides valuable insights into customer satisfaction and identifies areas for improvement.

  • Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)
  • Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  •  Customer Effort Score (CES).

Customer Trends: Analysing customer behaviour over time offers insights into evolving preferences and expectations.

  • Customer Churn Rate
  • Customer Retention Rate
  • Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
  • Average Order Size
  • Return Data
  • Purchase Frequency.

Brand and Advocacy: Tracking metrics related to brand perception and customer advocacy offer a deeper understanding of your brand's influence.

  • Social Media (tags and comments)
  • Online Reviews
  • Product Recommendations
  • Trust Ratings
  • Brand Sentiment.

Employee Engagement: Monitoring employee engagement and satisfaction is vital - unsatisfied employees may negatively impact the customer experience.

  • Internal Satisfaction Surveys
  • Employee Feedback
  • Company Communication Channels.

Develop a CX assessment checklist

Incorporating metrics from every angle - customer, brand and employee sentiment - offers a comprehensive view of current CX performance and how you can improve to get ahead of your competitors.

If you need help figuring out where to start, reverse engineer your CX assessment to match your CX goals. Work backwards to identify the metrics and data sources you require to develop a comprehensive CX dashboard.

Step 1: Collect feedback: Implement surveys and feedback mechanisms (e.g. CSAT, NPS) to gather customer opinions and suggestions. Use this as a base for future CX improvements and a way to keep your finger on the pulse of consumers.

Step 2: Monitor customer behaviour: Keep a close eye on customer retention rates and identify factors contributing to churn. Harness loyalty program participation, customer sentiment and CLV data to identify real-time positive and negative trends.

Step 3: Keep tabs on your products/services: Customers won't always tell you directly if your product or service is not up to scratch. Track returns and review your quality, delivery and customer service capabilities to identify improvement opportunities. 

Step 4: Assess brand perception: Track how many customers would recommend your business to others. Gauge brand perception through customer surveys, online reviews, social media posts, and customer sentiment analysis.

Step 5: Prioritise employee engagement: A Gartner survey revealed that 86% of organisations ranked employee engagement as vital to CX. Invest in surveys and wellbeing initiatives to maintain engagement and improve customer experiences.

Customer experience trends to watch in 2024

  • Customers will need more human connection in the age of AI
  • Good service will trump low prices for more consumers
  • Digital channels are set to make or break the customer experience
  • Consumers will be less inclined to provide direct feedback to businesses.

The fast track to customer retention and loyalty

Businesses that invest in understanding their customers, measuring their experiences and making data-driven improvements will thrive. Self-assess your CX and get on the fast track to creating a strategic advantage that sets you apart from the competition.

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