How to understand your Customer Experience Maturity level
Taking a look in the mirror
When was the last time you reviewed your brand’s customer experience?
Whether it’s a new focus area or an ongoing responsibility that you manage, a little self-reflection is an essential part of both measuring and improving on your team’s efforts. Knowing how to measure is knowing how to assess your brand experience’s strengths and weaknesses, define focus areas across teams, find new ideas as well as feed into longer-term strategy.
We understand that finding the time to review your CX work is a challenge that many can’t prioritize in today’s fast-paced business world. Sometimes, even deciding upon how to measure performance and progress can form part of that challenge. This is especially the case with CX, a relatively new discipline that requires varied inputs to judge its success.
How do I even know what I’m looking at?
Though assessments like the NetPromoter score (NPS) and Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) are useful starting points in this endeavor, they are not easily accessible for a business, and take time, external resource and patience to configure. They also only show part of the picture of customer experience work, as this involves many other factors that can’t be assessed by the end user alone – such as tooling, resourcing and sophistication of strategy.
But fear not – here at Salmon we have compiled the best customer experience models for your consideration, as well some tips about setting up quantitative CX metrics to judge success. We hope it will be useful.
Method 1: How sophisticated are you? The Customer Experience Maturity Curve
Maturity curves are often used in marketing, as yardsticks to show concepts and development cycles. They provide a simplified overview that is business-ready and easily shareable within the majority of organizations. They can be used to self-diagnose without a huge amount of time and resource and in this case, provide an indication of where a company’s CX efforts sit compared to the industry at large.
The Customer Experience Maturity Curve
Each stage on this graph provides a snapshot of some of the focus areas and activities your CX team may be working on, within its current activities. We have highlighted three measures of ‘maturity’, and your organization should be doing all of them to qualify as fitting on the corresponding level.
The first stage, business focus CX, is the idea that as an enterprise you are currently getting your CX up to speed for one business channel. You are working on tracking the right metrics, understanding your user, and combining these insights to get a deep clarity about the channel chosen.
Once this has been done to best practice standard, Omnichannel CX focuses on rolling those processes and mindset out to other channels. You are creating a framework of mutual understanding and measurement for your channels and starting to see a clear, bigger picture of your user journey.
Continuous CX takes the foundation and framework of the previous two stages and lays consultancy and optimization on top of them. Here, real specialists in UX, A/B testing and tracking can examine and create strategy from the information we have about our digital works. This strategy encompasses multiple teams within the business and keeps the dual goals of improved customer satisfaction and improved performance in mind.
In the event that your company doesn’t fit on any of these curve levels, don’t worry! The curve’s job is equally to get conversations starting within your team about the kinds of CX improvements you can start to make.
Method 2: What’s the prognosis? The Customer Experience Maturity Scan
Having looked into the above maturity curve for guidance, you may want to produce a tangible plan to create improvements upon the CX level your company sits at. This following method helps to break down and identify the areas of CX improvement that your business could focus on, using a framework of industry-wide trends and key CX performance factors.
An example of a Customer Experience Maturity Scan
With the help of Salmon, you can conduct a thorough analysis of strengths and weaknesses within CX, with each factor scored on a scale of 1 – 5. This is then aggregated into an overall rating for your maturity level - providing the groundwork for tangible future improvements whose progress can be measured.
Building on this scan and turning it into a plan of action is something that Salmon is happy to help with – as CX becomes a bigger priority and moves beyond traditional B2C companies and into the future of all e-businesses.
Method 3 : the hard data: Measuring your Customer Experience score with digital metrics
There are many, many ways to start measuring customer experience with metrics. From the narrow focus (customer satisfaction, customer effort score) to the generic such as the CSAT, companies tend to define their CX score in the ways that make most sense to them, using the data and insights they already have in place.
Whilst this is a helpful part of understanding CX, there are a number of additional metrics that require less effort to gather and can really improve your grasp of how your CX is doing. Let’s take a look at some of this low-hanging measurement fruit.
An often overlooked metric that arguably says more about your CX than any other measure, churn rate lets you measure key customer actions such as repeat purchase (whether users have returned to buy with you more than once) or subscription rates (how your customer numbers have changed between two points in time).
Churn rate is a quantitative rather than qualitative metric, which therefore needs further research to understand the whys behind the what. But as pure metrics go, it gives a clear snapshot to the business about continued user confidence to interact and spend money with the brand – and when you attach revenue or lifetime value to these figures, it can become very easy to convince members of a business team to invest more in improving your CX.
Checkout Completion Rate
Here we can measure the ultimate success of our website against its primary purpose – to sell. Checkout completion rate can be broken down into stages, with each step’s drop-off revealing potential UX issues about that page of the site. The drop-off rate can also indicate further facets of customer experience that might need investigating – from pricing to delivery times. As a benchmark for customer satisfaction, this can be very revealing and is relatively easy to setup on GA.
By setting up events which show interaction with key elements of your user interface, you can get a gauge of satisfaction and willingness to continue spending time with your brand. Generally, more is more when it comes to engagement, but as always, context is key. In terms of pure interactions, things like comments left on site content can be viewed positively, whereas pageviews and time per session can be interpreted in terms of whether your goal is for a short user journey with low browsing and consideration time, or if your product requires a more drawn-out purchase over several sessions.
Taking the time to look at yourself and establish how your company’s CX is doing is a necessary – if revealing – exercise. But take a deep breath – short or long term, you only stand to gain from starting to evaluate and gauge a development plan for your brand’s CX activities.
Salmon is currently running a free customer experience maturity scan for companies interested to learn more about their level of work in this area.