Key dimensions of aftersales support to monitor
Number of customers needing aftersales support
One key dimension to monitor with your aftersales support is the number (or percentage) of customers that need to contact support. Contacting support is never a pleasant experience – it likely means there was some issue with the product that you could not resolve yourself. If you have a high percentage of customers that need to reach out to support, then this is often indicative of an underlying problem with your service. As well as improving your aftersales support, look to address the underlying issues that are causing support requests.
Another aspect to monitor is the response time between receiving a customer request for support and being able to address their problems. Having to wait a long time for a response can greatly increase customer dissatisfaction, potentially resulting in them returning the item instead of waiting for the issue to be resolved. If you take several days to respond to emails, and multiple emails are required to get a response, then the time taken to solve customer issues quickly mounts.
Customer satisfaction with aftersales support
Another component of aftersales support to monitor is customer satisfaction with how the support queries are dealt with. Capturing satisfaction at the end of support calls or queries can help identify sources of customer dissatisfaction, helping you address such concerns as part of an effort to improve your support offerings.
The issues that customers are querying about
Another aspect of customer support requests to monitor is the issues that customers are contacting about. If there is a significant number of calls on a particular issue, this may imply that there is some underlying problem that is better to solve. Rather than trying to solve the issue at the final stage – when customers are reaching out to complain about the issue – it is typically much better to address significant problems at a much earlier stage in the overall process.
The proportion of calls that could have been avoided
Another related issue is the proportion of support requests that could have been solved – potentially by improved advanced training or online documentation. Dealing with customer support requests is often not cheap. The greater number of opportunities that you can identify to allow customers to solve their own issues – potentially through better online documentation – the fewer support queries that you are likely to receive.
Final thought: Using monitoring to improve performance
While monitoring the performance of aftersales support may be an important component of improving your support service, the monitoring activity should not become an end in itself. Rather, actively use the data that you collect to improve your support activities – considering ways that the collected information can help reduce requests or more promptly solve customer issues.