Reading9 Key customer service metrics: How to track, use, and improve them

9 Key customer service metrics: How to track, use, and improve them


To keep your customers happy in this digital world, you as a team and business, must step into customer service metrics.

And after that, it is all about -

  • Collating customer data and turning them into insights (customer service metrics)
  • Using these insights to optimize customer experience and service performance
  • Lastly, working on improvement consistently

What are customer service metrics?

Customer service metrics are quantitative measures that are used to evaluate and assess various aspects of a company’s service interactions with its customers.

The purpose of these metrics help tech companies determine the effectiveness, efficiency, and overall quality of customer service provided.

A few important metrics include response time, resolution time, customer satisfaction score, self-service resolution rate, churn rate, net promoter score, customer effort score, etc.

The result is that organizations gain insights into customer satisfaction, identify areas for improvement, and make data-driven decisions — all the things required to enhance overall customer experience.

Why are customer service metrics important for businesses?

“What gets measured, gets done” - Peter Drucker

The message is clear: measuring something gives you the information you need to ensure you achieve your goals, and it’s no different when it comes to your customer support function as well.

When you track, use and improve your customer service metrics -

Your customer service team gains valuable insights into their performance, allowing them to identify areas of strengths and improvements. It helps them set and meet SMART goals, enhancing efficiency and effectiveness in addressing customer requests.

In addition, customer service agents become empowered because metrics can help identify trends, address issues preemptively, and optimize workflows.

Leading to - your customers experiencing better service, faster resolution, and increased satisfaction. With great product performance and excellent customer service experience, your customers are more likely to stay/return and bring others with them.

Ultimately - your business achieves a competitive edge as positive customer service experiences contribute to customer loyalty, higher retention rates, positive online reviews, and increased customer lifetime value.

Also, satisfied customers are more likely to become loyal customers, recommend your product to others, and contribute to the growth of your customer base, which leads to sustained success and improved financial performance.

9 Top customer service metrics: How to track, use, and improve them?

Though there are 20+ metrics, there are nine important customer service metrics that have the maximum impact on service performance.

Customer satisfaction score

Shows how happy your customers are with your product and customer service. And happy customers are most likely to make repeat purchases, leading you to sustainable business growth.

Therefore, Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) is a crucial customer service metric, especially for tech companies.

  • How to track -

Surveys and feedback forms: Implement engaging customer satisfaction surveys and feedback forms after every customer interaction, transaction, or specific touchpoint to collect quantitative data on customer satisfaction.

Net Promoter Score (NPS): Ask NPS questions to understand your customers’ sentiments and the likelihood of them recommending your business. It will provide an additional layer of insight into overall satisfaction.

Social media and review platforms: Monitor online platforms to capture other feedback and sentiments, contributing to a holistic understanding of customer satisfaction.

  • How to use -

Identify pain points: Analyze customer satisfaction scores to learn about the areas of dissatisfaction, whether related to products, services, or specific aspects of the customer experience.

Segmentation: Break down CSAT scores by different customer segments, products, or service channels to tailor improvements and strategies to specific areas of your business.

Benchmarking: Compare CSAT scores over time and against industry benchmarks to assess your business’s performance and set realistic improvement targets.

  • How to improve -

Feedback integration: Actively listen to customer feedback from CSAT surveys and reviews, incorporating valuable insights into operational changes and improvements.

Proactive issue resolution: Implement systems to identify potential issues before they escalate, allowing your team to address concerns and prevent negative experiences.

Transparency: Be transparent with your customers about product or service information, pricing, and policies, fostering trust and reducing the likelihood of dissatisfaction due to misunderstandings.

Net promoter score

Gives you the likelihood of customers recommending your product to others. And proves overall customer loyalty as well as the potential for organic growth.

  • How to track -

Survey distribution: Use various channels such as email, website, or in-app surveys to gather customer feedback.

Pro tip: Ensure the survey is brief and easy to understand to encourage higher response rates.

Regular monitoring: Collect NPS data regularly to identify trends and track changes over time. You can set a frequency that aligns with your business cycle but avoid survey fatigue.

The complete process to calculate NPS (Net Promoter Score)Ask the question: On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our product/service to a friend or colleague?

Categorize respondents:

  • Promoters (Score 9-10): These are loyal enthusiasts who are likely to recommend your product/service.
  • Passives (Score 7-8): Satisfied customers but not enthusiastic.
  • Detractors (Score 0-6): Unhappy customers.
  • Calculate NPS: Subtract the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters.

Formula: NPS= %Promoters − %Detractors

Example: If 10% of respondents are detractors, and 40% are promoters, the NPS would be 40%−10%=30%


  • NPS can range from -100 to +100.
  • A positive score is generally considered good, and a higher score indicates a healthier customer sentiment.
  • How to use -

Identify areas of improvement: Focus on feedback from detectors to identify specific pain points and areas for improvement.

Align with business goals: Connect NPS metrics with broader business goals to ensure they align with the overall strategy.

  • How to improve -

Address detractors’ feedback: Prioritize and address the concerns raised by detractors to improve customer satisfaction.

Innovate based on feedback: Use customer feedback to drive innovation and make product/service improvements that align with customer needs.

Communicate changes: Keep customers informed about the changes you’ve made based on their feedback, showing them that their opinions matter.

Customer retention rate

Shows you the percentage of customers that continue to do business with your company over a specified period. It provides a key metric for evaluating the effectiveness of your efforts in keeping existing customers engaged and satisfied.

  • How to track -

Define your period: Decide the time frame for calculating retention (e.g., monthly, quarterly, annually).

Identify key metrics: Determine the key metrics that contribute to customer retention rate (e.g., repeat purchases, subscription renewals, customer loyalty).

Calculate retention rate: Use the following formula and process.

The calculation process for customer retention rate

  • Decide the period: Decide the specific time duration you want to measure, such as a month, quarter, or year.
  • Identify the variables.
  • Customers at the end of the period.
  • New customers acquired during that period.
  • Start of that period.
  • Apply the formula.

Customer retention rate = [(Customers at the end of a period — New customers acquired during a period)/Customers at the start of the period] x 100

  • How to use -

Customer journey mapping: Map the customer journey and analyze retention rates at each touchpoint.

Referral program optimization: Assess how customer retention affects referral programs. Optimize these programs based on the segments with the highest retention rates.

Cross-selling and upselling: Use retention data to identify opportunities for cross-selling and upselling to existing customers, maximizing their value.

  • How to improve -

Customer engagement: Enhance communication and engagement with customers through personalized interactions, targeted marketing, and relevant content.

Loyalty programs: Implement loyalty programs to reward repeat customers. It can incentivize continued business.

AI-powered solution: Integrate a smart solution that helps you streamline customer conversations and engagement processes for a better experience. One of the best examples is DevRev, which has improved net retention by 130% for its customers.

Customer churn rate

Gives you insight into the rate at which customers stop using your product or service within a given period. It indicates the extent of customer disengagement and potential challenges in maintaining long-term relationships.

  • How to track -

Define churn metrics: Clearly define what constitutes churn for your business. It could be the cancellation of a subscription, non-renewal, or a certain period of inactivity.

Collect the data: Collect relevant data on customer activity, subscriptions, and interactions.

Pro tip: You can use customer relationship management (CRM) tools such as DevRev to track customer behavior.

Calculate churn rate: Use the following formula and process.

The calculation process for customer churn rate

Decide the period: Decide the specific time duration you want to measure, such as a month, quarter, or year.

Identify churned customers: Count the number of customers who stopped using your product or service during the chosen time period. It could include cancellations, non-renewals, or any other criteria specific to your business.

Determine the total number of customers: Count the total number of customers you had at the beginning of the same time period.

Apply the formula

Lost customers ÷ total customers at the start of time period) x 100

  • How to use -

Identify patterns: Analyze churn data to identify patterns or common characteristics among customers who are more likely to churn. It can help in creating targeted retention strategies.

  • How to improve -

Customer engagement: Increase customer engagement through personalized communication, promotions, and feedback requests because engaged customers are less likely to churn.

Retention programs: Implement customer retention programs like loyalty initiatives, discounts for long-term commitments, or exclusive access to new features.

Customer support: Provide excellent customer support to address issues promptly. A positive support experience significantly contributes to customer loyalty.

First contact resolution rate

Tells you how often customer problems are solved on their first contact with your customer support. It helps you measure the performance of your product as well as the efficiency of your customer support team.

  • How to track -

Ticketing system: Utilize a robust ticketing system that categorizes and tracks customer issues. Ensure that each ticket is tagged with the number of interactions needed for resolution.

Monitoring communication channels: Keep a close eye on communication channels like emails, live chat, phone calls, and social media. Record instances where customers report resolution or require follow-up.

Performance Metrics: Regularly review key performance metrics, such as average handle time, to gauge the efficiency of customer support interactions.

  • How to use -

Evaluate customer satisfaction: A high first contact resolution rate often correlates with higher customer satisfaction. Use it metric to know overall customer happiness.

Employee performance: Use the metric to assess the effectiveness of individual customer support agents. Identify training needs for those who consistently have lower resolution rates.

Product improvement: If certain issues recur, it may indicate product deficiencies. Collaborate with product teams to address and fix recurring problems.

Resource planning: Optimize resource allocation based on the demand for customer support. High-resolution rates may indicate efficient use of resources, while low rates may prompt adjustments.

  • How to improve -

Knowledge base: Develop and maintain a comprehensive knowledge base that agents can reference to provide accurate and timely solutions.

AI platform: You can integrate an AI-powered chatbot using AI-native platforms such as DevRev which has enabled customers to lower ticket resolution time by 90%.

Cross-functional collaboration: Foster collaboration between customer service teams, product teams, and other relevant departments to address recurring issues and implement long-term solutions.

First response time

Tells you how quickly your customer service agent addresses and responds to customer inquiries or issues. It reflects the speed at which your business acknowledges and begins addressing customer concerns.

  • How to track -

Ticketing system metrics: Utilize a ticketing system that records the time when a customer inquiry is received and when the first response is sent.

Real-time monitoring: Implement real-time monitoring tools such as DevRev to track response times across various communication channels such as email, chat, social media, and phone.


Automation analytics: If automated responses are part of your strategy, track the time it takes for automated replies to be sent and differentiate them from personalized responses.

  • How to use -

Customer satisfaction: Fast response times are often correlated with higher customer satisfaction. Use this metric to understand how well your business is meeting customer expectations in terms of timeliness.

Identify bottlenecks: If response times are consistently high, investigate potential bottlenecks in the support process. Identify areas for improvement, such as additional training or streamlined workflows.

Proactive communication: Use first response time data to improve operations and implement proactive communication strategies, such as notifying customers of potential delays or setting expectations for issue resolution.

  • How to improve -

Use response templates: Develop response templates for common inquiries to expedite the initial response without sacrificing quality.

Prioritize channels: Identify the most frequently used communication channels by customers and prioritize responses on those channels.

Service Level Agreements (SLAs): Ensure that response times align with any SLAs in place. You can create, monitor and enforce SLA agreements to maintain a consistent level of service.


Agent workload management: Ensure that agents have manageable workloads to prevent burnout and maintain quick response times. You can use an intelligent ticket routing system and adjust staffing levels during peak times.

Customer Effort Score (CES)

Shows you how easy or difficult it is for customers to interact with your product, service, or support. It provides insights into the overall user experience and identifies areas where improvements can be made to streamline processes and enhance customer satisfaction.

  • How to track -

Real-time sentiment analysis: Utilize advanced analytics tools that incorporate real-time sentiment analysis into your feedback collection process. It gives insights into customers’ experiences and effort levels.

In-app effort rating: Incorporate an in-app effort rating system where customers can provide feedback directly within the application. It ensures feedback is contextual and immediate with an understanding of user effort.


Customer effort heatmaps: Visualize customer effort scores through heatmaps that highlight areas of your product or service where users consistently encounter challenges. It essentially helps you validate your product and identify modes of failures.

  • How to use -

Integrate with Net Promoter Score (NPS): Combine customer effort score analysis with net promoter score data to uncover correlations between ease of use and customer loyalty. Identify areas where reducing effort could positively impact your NPS.

Responsive product iterations: Develop an agile product iteration cycle that responds directly to effort score feedback. Use customer suggestions to prioritize feature updates, ensuring your product evolves in direct response to user needs.

Customer effort trend analysis: Instead of just looking at individual scores, track the trends in effort scores over time. Identify if improvements or deteriorations in certain areas have a cumulative impact on the overall user experience.

  • How to improve -

Comprehensive platform: Use an all-in-one platform such as OneCRM by DevRev that bridges the gap between the support team and product team by bringing them on the same platform to improve customer experience.

You can use its support solutions such as chatbots or AI-driven systems to handle routine queries, providing quick resolutions without requiring extensive customer effort.

Enhance self-service options: Invest in self-service options to empower customers to find solutions independently. It includes comprehensive FAQs, knowledge bases, and user-friendly guides.

Monitor competitor practices: Stay informed about industry best practices and monitor competitors’ approaches to customer experience. Adopt successful strategies and tailor them to your specific business needs.

Self-service resolution rate

Tells you how often customers can resolve issues on their own without requiring human assistance. It shows the effectiveness of your self-service options and the level of customer empowerment in finding solutions independently.

  • How to track -

Utilize analytics tools: Implement analytics tools to track user interactions with self-service options: FAQs, documentation, tutorials, etc.

Pro tip: You can monitor the number of customers using self-help resources and their success in resolving issues without human intervention.

Integrate customer journey analytics: Combine self-service metrics with customer journey analytics. Identify specific touchpoints where customers engage with self-help resources and assess the resolution outcomes at each stage.

Analyze support tickets: Examine support ticket data to identify trends in the types of issues customers seek help with. Compare this against the availability and effectiveness of self-service resources for those particular topics.

  • How to use -

Identify successful user paths: Analyze data to identify successful user paths within your self-service resources. Understand the steps customers take when they successfully resolve issues on their own to optimize these pathways.

Segmentation by issue complexity: Segment self-service resolution rates based on the complexity of the issues. It allows for a more nuanced understanding of which types of problems are more easily resolved through self-help and which may require additional support.

Customer empowerment metrics: Use self-service resolution rates as a key metric for customer empowerment. Evaluate the correlation between high self-service success and increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.

  • How to improve -

Promote awareness: Actively promote and raise awareness about self-service options through various channels. Ensure customers know about the availability of resources and understand the benefits of resolving issues independently.

Enhance knowledge base content: Regularly update and enrich your knowledge base content. Ensure that it covers a wide range of topics and provides clear, step-by-step instructions for issue resolution.

User-friendly interface: Optimize the user interface of your self-service platform. A user-friendly design can significantly impact the ease with which customers can find and utilize self-help resources.

Average response time

Shows you the average amount of time it takes for your team to respond to customer support requests. It is a key metric for assessing the promptness and efficiency of your customer support or service processes.

  • How to track -

Implement AI-powered helpdesk software: Utilize helpdesk software that tracks and timestamps customer support requests. AI software can provide automated metrics, including average response time.

Use ticketing systems: Implement a ticketing system that assigns unique identifiers to customer requests. It allows for easy tracking and calculation of response times for individual tickets.

Set clear metrics: Define what constitutes a “response.” Whether it’s an acknowledgment, an initial reply, or a comprehensive solution, establish clear metrics for response time to maintain consistency in tracking.

Regularly monitor data: Regularly review and monitor the data generated by your helpdesk or ticketing system. Keep a close eye on response times for different types of inquiries or across various support channels.

  • How to use -

Performance benchmarking: Use average response time as a benchmark to assess the efficiency of your customer support team. Compare the current response times to industry standards or set internal targets for continuous improvement.

Identify high-priority issues: Analyze response times for different types of issues. Identify and prioritize high-priority or critical issues that may require faster response times to enhance customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Customer expectation alignment: Align your response time goals with customer expectations. Ensure that your team’s performance meets or exceeds the response times that customers anticipate for timely and effective support.

  • How to improve -

Implement automated responses: Integrate automated response systems to acknowledge customer inquiries immediately. While not a final solution, it definitely sets an expectation and provides reassurance that their request has been received.

Categorize and prioritize tickets: Categorize and prioritize tickets based on urgency and complexity. It allows your team to address critical issues promptly while managing less urgent requests efficiently.

Utilize chatbots for initial responses: Integrate chatbots to handle initial customer queries or provide instant responses. Chatbots can gather preliminary information, allowing human agents to respond more quickly and effectively.

Establish Service Level Agreements (SLAs): Define clear SLAs for response times based on the nature and urgency of requests. Ensure that your team is aware of and consistently meets these agreements to maintain customer satisfaction.

Invest in the three T’s: Training, team management, and tools

Customer service requires focused, consistent, and strategic efforts. While metrics are a way to direct your performance, it’s essential to couple them with a deep understanding of customer needs and adaptable strategies for sustained success.

  • Training: Empower your team with regular, comprehensive training programs to enhance their skills, product knowledge, and customer interaction, ensuring they deliver exceptional service consistently.
  • Team management: Cultivate a positive and collaborative team culture by fostering effective communication, recognizing achievements, and addressing challenges promptly. A well-managed team is essential for sustained high-quality customer service.
  • Tools: Equip your team with cutting-edge tools and technology that streamline processes, enhance efficiency, and provide valuable insights. Utilizing the right tools empowers your team to deliver prompt and effective solutions, elevating the overall customer experience.
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