Customer Experience | 11 MIN READ

How to Measure Customer Experience: Top CX Metrics

Are you just starting to put a customer experience program in place for your organization? If yes, how do you intend to measure its success? Let’s look at the key things to track and top CX metrics to measure them.

Vivek Asrani
Sep 17, 2021

How to Measure Customer Experience: Top CX Metrics

How to Measure Customer Experience: Top CX Metrics

Measuring customer experience is, perhaps, one of the most vital aspects of any business. And, it is even more important if you are a SaaS-based business.

So the very first question that I would like to ask you is:

Are you doing pretty well with your customer experience? Is there any scope for improvement?

Do you use the right CX metrics to measure your customer experience?

If your answer to these questions is negative, it is a great time to take a head start.

In this blog, I will walk you through some of the top customer experience metrics for 2021 that are essential for any company if you want to stay relevant in this digital-first era. These include:

  1. Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  2. Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
  3. Customer Effort Score (CES)
  4. Customer Churn Rate
  5. Customer Referral Rate

But before we go in-depth on this topic, it is important to define customer experience metrics which I will discuss in the next section.

What is Customer Experience Metrics?

In layman’s terms, the customer experience metric is a metric that enables you to keep track of and measure the customer’s experience when they use your product. Now, this can be a normal product or a SaaS-based product.

The ultimate objective of customer experience metrics is to ensure that your customers get the ultimate satisfaction after using your product. It also aids in creating an unbreakable bond with the product. The result of that is your customers recommending your product to their peers and relatives.

Customer relationships are a critical aspect of ensuring that your business progresses at the right pace. For that to happen, you need to keep a tap at how well you are doing in terms of customer relationships.

Now you might have a question, “But, Vivek, how do I quantify the customer relationship matrix and stand out from my competitor?” Let me tell you that it is very easy. The only thing that you need is to identify top CX metrics.

In the forthcoming sections of this write-up, I will take you through these CX metrics in complete detail to ensure that you have a definite edge while maintaining relationships with your customers.

Top CX Metrics to Measure Customer Experience

1. Net Promoter Score (NPS)

Net Promoter Score - CX Metric
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What is it all about?

Net Promoter Score (NPS) is considered one of the most used CX metrics by customer success managers in recent times. The reason for that being, it helps you to measure the customers’ readiness to refer your company to others. It gives a broad perspective into the level of satisfaction derived by your customers while using your products or services.

To measure your NPS score, start by enquiring customers about their likelihood to recommend your company or product to their peers and relatives on a scale between 0 to 10. Here, 10 is regarded as “very likely”, and 0 being “not at all.”

There are also different criteria that you need to take into consideration while using NPS surveys:

  • Customers scoring between 0 to 6 are termed, detractors.
  • Customers scoring between 7 to 8 are termed passive.
  • Customers scoring between 9 to 10 are termed promoters.

How can you utilize it to improve your customer experience?

You should not consider NPS to be the parameter to measure product success. The reason for that being, it provides only a broad perspective. Rather, you can contemplate utilizing it as a tool to understand your customers in a better way. The level of satisfaction your customers derive from your products or services and how this impression can change with time.

Instead of asking closed-ended survey questions using NPS, I recommend you ask open-ended questions to get further insights from your customers. These insights can further be used to enhance their satisfaction levels.

Formula to calculate it

NPS can be calculated by subtracting the total number of detractors from the promoters.

NPS = % of Promoters – % of Detractors

2. Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)

Customer Satisfaction Score - CX Metrics
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What is it all about?

This CX metric helps in getting the average satisfaction score of the customer. Typically, an automated survey is used to rate a specific experience like a product purchase or a service call.

Customers are then asked questions frequently to rate their satisfaction levels on a scale of “very satisfied” to “not satisfied at all.”

With the help of this metric, you can get the latest feedback as it can be calculated quickly. It usually takes hours or even less once a customer has used your product or service.

CSAT is influenced by brand and product promises made through digital promises even prior to customer interaction. Therefore, I would suggest you under promise and over deliver to ensure a higher customer satisfaction score.

How can you utilize it to improve your customer experience?

With the help of the CSAT score, you learn the percentage of customers who are pleased with your services and those who are not. This way, you can plan for their next visit. The survey also helps you get valuable insights into the areas where you can exceed customer expectations and enhance customer retention rates.

Once you use the CSAT score effectively, it will help you to reduce the customer churn rate. And, since the customers will keep coming back to your site, it will increase the chances of making repeat purchases from your business. This will ultimately help increase your customer lifetime value (CLV).

The best way to enhance your customer satisfaction scores is by working on your products and services. I would even suggest you let your unhappy customers become aware that you are doing something about it. Once you are able to create an amazing customer experience across multiple touchpoints, it will help you exceed your customer expectations at all times.

Formula to calculate it

You can calculate the customer satisfaction scores by dividing the total of positive responses received by the total number of responses received and then multiplying by 100.

This way, you end up getting your CSAT score in percentage. Here, 100% is considered a great score, while 0% being the lowest score.

CSAT = (Total number of positive responses / Total number of responses) X 100

3. Customer Effort Score (CES)

Customer Effort Score - CX Metrics
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What is it all about?

Customer Effort Score (CES) is a customer experience metric that aids you measure customer experience concerning the ease with which you conduct business for your brand. This metric enquires from customers about the ease with which they could use your product or service.

The rating of the metric can range from “very difficult” to “very easy” when it comes to rating the ease with which your customers could search for your products or complete the transaction from your online store.

A prime example of using CES where customer effort can be ranked can be the number of departments a customer is transferred to while resolving their complaint. If the customer has to move to a different department multiple times to get his problem solved, chances are they will give you a low CES score.

How can you utilize it to improve your customer experience?

The more you provide an excellent customer experience, the more likely the customers will purchase your products or services again.

Once you better understand your CES, it will help you understand whether the customer experience you provide is smooth or has certain friction points. Once you have taken a good hard look at the data, it will help you to provide an effortless customer experience with absolutely zero pain area.

Formula to calculate it

You can calculate CES by dividing all customer effort scores by the number of customers who participated in the survey. The higher your CES, the better the customer experience.

CES = Total of all individual customer effort scores / Total number of customers

4. Customer Churn Rate

Customer Churn Rate - CX Metrics
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What is it all about?

Customer churn rate is a vital CX metric, especially if you sell a SaaS-based product that charges monthly fees from customers. It calculates how frequently the customers cancel their subscriptions or opt-out of purchasing products from your brand.

How can you utilize it to improve your customer experience?

Once you keep an eye on the churn rate metrics with other operational data, it helps you ascertain churn patterns, which can help you decipher where your customer experience issues lie.

The lower the number, the better it is for the business as it is very expensive to find new customers than to maintain the existing ones.

The lower the churn rate, the more loyal your customers will be.

Formula to calculate it

Customer churn rate can be calculated by subtracting % of lost customers at the end of the month with % of lost customers beginning of the month and then dividing it by the percentage of customers at the beginning of the month.

Customer churn rate = (% of lost customers at the beginning of the month – % of lost customers at the end of the month) / % of lost customers at the beginning of the month

5. Customer Referral Rate

Customer Referral Rate - CX Metrics
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What is it all about?

I have already provided you with valuable insights about NPS, which tells you the number of customers that will refer your products or services to their peers and relatives. Taking things forward, customer referral rate is a CX metric that provides how many customers are referring to your products or services from the ones we discussed in the NPS survey.

How can you utilize it to improve your customer experience?

If you learn that your customers are referring your products or services to their peers and relatives, it signals that they perceive your product to be of high quality and worth purchasing. However, for that to occur, you need to have positive customer experiences with them. This will encompass every interaction that they have with your business, from signing up at the very beginning, receiving invoices to the checkout process. The smoother these processes, the more likely are they to refer you to their peers and relatives.

Formula to calculate it

Customer Referral Rate can be calculated by dividing the total purchases with the total number of referred purchases multiplied by 100.

Customer Referral Rate = (Total number of referred purchases / Total purchases) X 100

Should I Measure All the CX Metrics?

The answer is a strict “NO”. It is important to shortlist a select few that are relevant to your business. At most times, selecting a single customer experience metric and one related behavioral metric can work best for most businesses. If you try and increase the complexity, it will hardly bring you the right results.

Whereas a basic survey design and precise set of targets and metrics can do wonders for a company. It can help you solve problems and improve results for your business.

Also, keep this in mind, not all customer experience metrics are created equal. To get the maximum leverage for your content and website, you need to find the right ones for your company and represent the most up-to-date technology.

Final Thoughts

Every company must devote its time and money to measure customer experience metrics. With the help of the CX metrics mentioned in this write-up, you will ascertain how frictionless your customers perceive your product.

It will also provide you with actionable insights into the best ways to enhance your SaaS-based product. This can prove to be a blessing for your organization as a whole, including decreased churn rates or driving up your retention and trial-to-customer scores.

It will also encourage your teams to perform more efficiently and ascertain if there is any room for improvement. The same can be said about your SaaS-based product and its functionality.

The more you learn how your customers are using it, the more positive changes you can deliver. And the more positive changes you deliver, the more delightful you make your customers’ experiences.

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Originally Published September 17th, 2021, Updated September 17th, 2021

Vivek Asrani

Vivek Asrani is a prolific writer by passion. Currently, he is working as a Senior Content Writer & Strategist at SmartKarrot. He has an overall experience of more than 9 years as a content writer. He loves writing on customer experience, customer service, and customer success.

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