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You’ve probably heard the phrase “information is power.” One of the most unrealized benefits of a customer support solution is that you have an incredible amount of data about your business right at your fingertips. Data that can drive virtually every aspect of your business, and help your business grow. Not sure where to start? No problem. Here are three ways you can use customer service data to help your business grow.

1.Identify critical issues (and related opportunities).

Your support solution is like a canary in a coalmine. If you track the right data you can discover new opportunities (like potential features and upgrades) or identify problems — sometimes even before your customers. Labeling every incoming case helps you more easily spot new and trending issues (and which customers are reporting them) so you can address emerging issues before they become big ones. You can also track which issues are driving the most support inquiries and which questions “cost” the most time from agents, so you can develop faster, more proactive ways to help. Your support system can also help you figure out which issues are most likely to get escalated; then you can give your agents better tools to solve them. You can even monitor which tickets are most likely to get reopened and determine strategies to prevent reopening in the future.

2. Keep your finger on the pulse of customer satisfaction.

Measuring customer satisfaction (CSAT) is another very important thing you can do with your customer support tool. Not only can you track how customers rate their interactions with your team and collect valuable feedback, you can also see how customers feel about your products and your company overall. Your support tool can even measure the “health” of individual relationships, helping you identify customers who need a little extra assistance and attention. (Some support tools will color-code customers green, yellow, or red so you can easily see where they stand with your company.) Knowing this will enable you to support customers proactively and potentially save the ones that are at risk for attrition.

3. Measure support team productivity and adjust for seasonality.

Offering an amazing customer experience is key in today’s marketplace and your support tool can help you continuously measure and improve. Start by looking at your average “first response” times. Even if you don’t have the complete answer ready, customers want to know you’re listening, so it’s important for you to understand how long it takes for them to get a response. For more complicated issues with longer resolution cycles, customers need to know their requests aren’t dropped. It’s also important measure the number of replies per ticket. Obviously you’ll want to try to have as few as possible, but knowing which issues take multiple interactions to solve lets you know where you need to invest in training or developing additional support information. Overall resolution time is also very important. Another major benefit of your support system is that it can help you figure out activity patterns over time so you can staff your team effectively. For example, if you typically see a large spike in inquiries after a new product release or around the holidays, you’ll want to staff up in order to offer a seamless service experience during those busy times.

Your support system gives you truckloads of helpful information, but it isn’t any good unless people get to see it. Most customer support tools include preconfigured reporting templates that make it easy for you to generate reports and share them across your company. Be sure to share regular reports with your support, product management, and marketing teams so they are always in the know, and highlight key metrics for management on a regular basis. It’s an easy way to make sure your company stays on the fast path to growth.

Want more great tips for building out your customer service program? Download our newest ebook, The 6 Questions You Need to Ask When Scaling Your Customer Service.

 

Salesforce can help you find customers, win their businesses, and keep them happy so you can grow your business faster than ever. Learn more about our small business CRM solutions or join the conversation with #SalesforceGROW.