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10 Support Metrics That Will Open Your Eyes To More Than Just Support Issues


MetricsIf your business is using support desk software like Zendesk or, you’re likely accumulating tons of great data about your customers and products that can help you grow. The data we’re talking about goes beyond customer experience ratings and surveys and can help you provide insight into different areas of your company.

Metrics that show support efficiency

Efficiency is important when it comes to customer support. While you don’t want to harp on the amount of time a customer support agent spends with a customer (because personal attention is important), you also want to make sure your support staff is working efficiently. Here are some metrics to look at that will show you how efficient your team is.

First response times

This is an important metric because it’s the first impression you leave with a customer. First response time refers to how long it takes a support person to reply to an initial request for support. When a customer writes in to support, they are having trouble solving a problem and likely have to put whatever it is they’re doing on hold to wait for an answer. This means that the time it takes for the first response is crucial.

Time between responses

In addition to responding in a timely manner the first time, you also want to make sure your team is keeping up a response cadence so that the problem is ultimately solved in a timely manner. Even if they don’t have the final answer, it’s important to give the customer updates and not leave them hanging.

Problem resolution time

It’s also important to look at the overall time it takes to solve each ticket. Companies that can provide faster resolution times experience higher customer satisfaction ratings so it’s important to keep an eye on your overall time. In the long run, your customers will be more likely to stay (or become) loyal customers when they trust that if there is a problem, it will be solved in a timely manner.

Replies per ticket

Another way to ensure your customer service agents are working efficiently is to look at replies per ticket. Ultimately you are looking for a minimum amount of replies back and forth in order to resolve the issue.  Accuracy matters!

Metrics that point out timing problems or staffing solutions

“Timing is everything,” they say. How do you gauge your staffing levels throughout the week? How do you know who to assign to a specific channel? Metrics! Here are some timing and staffing issues that can be spotted with metrics.

Abandonment rates

Abandonment metrics show at what point customers drop their conversations with support. If you find a high number of customer support conversations drop off after the initial contact, it might indicate that it’s taking too long for customer support to respond to the first ticket.

Contact volume by channel

Here’s where metrics can really help with staffing. If you have multiple support channels (email, online chat, help section, etc) check for volume spikes on each one and also patterns on the types of support questions asked on each channel. Maybe you notice that online chat questions tend to be more technical in nature than emails. This can highlight the right person to solve an issue.

Metrics that help you take a more proactive approach

Customer support metrics can also help you improve the information on your website and product pages so that you can take a proactive approach and try to reduce the amount of support queries. Here are some metrics that can inform you.

Help Center Surveys

Have you ever looked through a help section and been presented with the simple, “Was this article helpful” question? These surveys are important because… well… they indicate whether or not your help section is helpful. You should always look to improve the articles in your help section because that’s the first place your customers are going to look for answers.                       

Time on Site and Bounce Rates

While these are usually marketing metrics, they can also inform the relevance of information on your product pages and in your help section. If you notice that the bounce rate is high on a particular product page it could indicate that customers are not finding the information they need. If you find the time on site to be particularly high, it may be because the information is too hard to understand.

Product Feedback

Your support metrics can be a gold mine for product development. If your support team is properly tagging conversations, you can easily spot trends in feature requests, common complaints, and other issues. Here are some metrics to check out.

Your Backlog

Your backlog can inform you on which product areas need the most work or improvement.  You can find this metric by taking the number of cases submitted and comparing it to the number of cases resolved, broken down by reason.

Common tags

Take a look at your most frequent tags to help you determine areas of improvement or to inform you of new articles to add to your help section.

Metrics can tell you a lot about your customers, the efficiency of your support team, and product development. These are just some of the many kinds of support metrics that you can focus on. The best approach is to define what success looks like across the board and then determine the appropriate metrics to follow.


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