6 Key Call Center Metrics Underestimated by eCommerce Business


The importance of call center support is well-established. It still holds a top spot in providing eCommerce support despite the introduction of new mediums. So much so that 42% of customers still use landline phones to contact customer service.

And it’s just not the older generation. Studies show that even millennials are more likely to resolve their issues over the phone than on other platforms like email, social media, or chat. It’s because eCommerce call centers allow brands to set a single point of contact for customers who immediately require human support.

However, you would also know that call centers are an expensive affair and also a core link to customer satisfaction. To ensure that they have a high level of service and are fulfilling the demands of your customers, you need to measure its performance and calculate the ROI.

So the question is, “How can you measure the success of your call centers in eCommerce?”

Short answer: Call center metrics.

Let’s have a look at the key metrics.

1. First Call Resolution Rate

Most customers expect their queries to be resolved within the first call itself. The industry benchmark for First call resolution is between 70% and 75%. This means at least three-quarters of the customer queries need to be solved within the first call itself.

The first Call Resolution (FCR) rate is the percentage of completed transactions within a single contact call from the total number of calls. This number reflects the efficiency of an agent’s skill to give all of the required information and make a purchase in a single call. It will help you identify the performance of the agents as well as gauge customer experience.

2. Average Handle Time

Customers want quick responses. And you need to ensure you give it to them. Average handle time is the time that an agent spends on the call and addresses the issue—right from the moment they pick up the call until it’s disconnected.

Once you calculate the average handle time, you can compare it to the forecasted average handle time. If the difference between them is very high, you would have to re-train the agents on solving common customer issues and how to simplify the support provided on the phone so that they don’t consume more time.

If the average handle time is reduced, the agents can handle more calls and attend to more customer queries. It will improve the overall service level and cost per contact.

3. Average Order Value

eCommerce businesses pay a lot of heed to the Average Order Value (AOV). It tracks the average monetary amount spent each time a customer places an order. You calculate this by dividing the total revenue by the number of orders. The ultimate goal of eCommerce industries is to increase the AOV since it has a strong correlation to the increase in profit.

How does this help the call center agents? It helps them upsell and cross-sell the product to increase the AOV. Your agents can communicate with customers about the minimum order for free international parcel post and other gifts like special packages that the customers would be prompted to order via call.

Since there is a transaction cost associated with each order, your call center agents help you increase AOV to direct revenue and increase your profits. In the end, you can check if the AOV has increased because of the call center. If not, you can train agents on upselling and cross-selling techniques.

4. Customer Satisfaction

It might seem quite obvious but measuring customer satisfaction gives you an insight into how satisfied the customers are with the basics of contact center support: quick resolution, real-time support, and a patient and friendly agent.

To collect customer satisfaction from calls, send follow-up emails after each call that asks a few questions regarding the customer service on calls. It will help you understand what’s working well with the call service and help you compare and improve CSAT ratings across other support channels as well.

You can also send customized CSAT surveys that can measure customer satisfaction on a sliding numerical scale. It quantifies the satisfaction rate and makes it easy for you to gauge how happy the customers are with the service.

5. Cost Per Call

Since you’re significantly investing in an eCommerce call center, you need to measure the ROI it brings. The Cost per Call is how much you are allocating in a call center versus how much contact is made through the center. It shows how effectively your operations are running and how you can make resource allocation decisions.

For example, if there’s a big difference between the number of customers that are using the website and the number of customers that are calling, then you can consider downscaling to optimize the costs. If there is a very small difference, you can hire more agents to handle the load of inbound calls. You can calculate the cost per call by taking the total cost of all calls divided by the total number of calls.

6. Service Quality

The service quality is measured by the percentage of calls answered within a specific period. It is calculated daily or weekly as it holds immense importance in the overall customer experience. To meet the service quality, you first need to set a target. For example, most businesses set the benchmark of 80% service quality. That is, if more than 80% of calls are addressed in 20 seconds, then the service quality is at par with the expectations.

A lot of eCommerce call centers and call centers in general follow an SLA (Standard Level Agreement) timer while outsourcing support. The agreement outlines the minimum expected service requirements, including quality, availability, and timeliness. This agreement also helps agents follow the quality standards while providing support.

Wrapping up

Since there’s little to no physical contact between the buyer and seller in eCommerce, your call center becomes an essential touch point and a medium of real-time communication that your customers have with your company.

Hence, you need to establish a comprehensive overview of the metrics that are commonly used to measure call center effectiveness. It ultimately helps you understand how to best use training and resources to help agents perform to their fullest potential, reduce agent attrition, and increase customer satisfaction.

Picture of Nicholas Woodward

Nicholas Woodward

Country Manager at PACK & SEND a leading and respected brand in eCommerce, logistics, and freight delivery solutions. With over 15 years of experience in the logistics, eCommerce, retail, and franchise industries. Nicholas has thought leadership and expertise across strategic planning, leadership, eCommerce, B2C logistics, and organizational performance & growth. Connect with Nicholas on LinkedIn.

Share this post with your network:
Subscribe to our newsletter
Actionable tips and tactics to skyrocket your cloud communications

Get a Free Growth Session and Demo

Experience a live demo customized around your unique business goals, workflows, pain points and challenges, and find out why Squaretalk is the perfect call center solution for organizations like yours.