Conversational support is an emerging messaging strategy, and businesses are still trying to understand its results. Customers seem to love it, and it seems to help you resolve tickets faster. But how do you know for sure? You need to track conversational support key performance indicators (KPIs).
What Is Conversational Support?
Conversational support is the strategy of using person-to-person chats to help answer customers’ questions and educate them about your products and services, with the ultimate goal of building long-term relationships. You can use the strategy in any and all customer support situations. It’s a powerful tool for supporting the onboarding, upgrading, and maintenance processes.
Why Track and Measure Conversational Support KPIs?
It’s a well known fact that KPIs are critical to measuring the success of digital channels and your business as a whole. Conversational support is no exception.
If you know where your conversational support strategy is succeeding—and where it’s not—you can make improvements. KPIs are important because qualitative data gives you an unbiased view of performance.
Once you’ve established your conversational support KPIs and tracked them for a set period of time, you’ll have a baseline that will help you measure future performance. You can even compare them with similar KPIs for other channels, like email.
Top Seven Conversational Support KPIs
Your omnichannel messaging platform should automatically track plenty of messaging metrics and distill them into digestible reports. Some are more useful than others for tracking conversational support performance. We recommend you keep an especially close eye on the following seven:
Inbound Message Volume
Inbound message volume gives you insight into how well you’re promoting your conversational support channel. You can expect low numbers at first. If they remain the same after months of using conversational support, you need to promote the channel more. Don’t forget to publish your messaging entry points on all of your websites and social media channels.
Messaging Volume By Channel
Volume by channel is a similar metric to inbound message volume. Measuring which channels (e.g., Facebook Messenger, Instagram Messaging, and WhatsApp) most messages arrive through helps you better understand how customers want to communicate. If one channel has a very low messaging volume, you may consider publicizing it more.
First Response Time
First response time is the average amount of time it takes your team members to send initial responses to customers. Ideally, this amount of time will be no more than 10 minutes. You can adjust your ideal time frame based on response times from similar channels you use, like web chat. A high first response time can indicate that you need more staff or more training for your current staff.
Average Response Time
Average response time is the average amount of time it takes for your team members to respond to all messages. Conversational support encourages messaging exchanges that mirror in-person conversations. That means your team has to reply quickly to customers, even if it’s just to let them know that they need more time to respond to the question. Record a baseline average response time, then measure it against future performance to ensure you’re staying on par or getting better.
Longest Wait Time
Long wait times can deter customers from reaching out again. This metric helps you identify which types of queries result in long wait times. You can also identify which days of the week or times of the day have the longest wait times. Use this information to determine future training topics or increase team resources during moments when you now know to expect more incoming queries.
Resolution time is simply the amount of time a chat is in your inbox until it is closed. This is an especially helpful KPI for support staff. Similarly to average response time, resolution time should be relatively short. Unlike a channel like email, where exchanges can last for days, messaging chats should last no more than thirty minutes, depending on the problem. It’s possible to troubleshoot for longer, but at that point, you may want to consider escalating the conversation to a phone call.
Your ultimate goal with conversational support is to give customers a great experience. Afterwards, they should feel like they have a rapport with your brand, and can reach out anytime for more help. They should also feel like any texts you send in the future will probably be valuable. Track unsubscribed contacts to identify what percentage of your customers don’t feel that way, and continually strive to make that number smaller.
Want to learn more ways to hone your conversational support strategy? Check out our free guide.