The Importance of Customer Performance Indicators (CPIs)

Figure 1:Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
Figure 1Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

What are Customer Performance Indicators?

Customer Performance Indicators are the customer’s measurements of success as they work with you. You can most easily determine these by evaluating the customer journey and the buyer journey that your customers and prospects take with you as they seek to partner with you on solutions to their business pain points.

We’ll dive into these more as we go through this article.

But first.

It is common to set a goal for improving the productivity of your salespeople. Sales success is, after all, critical for business growth.

How do you get a better understanding of your progress towards increased productivity?

What are the best practices available for Enablement teams in this area?

Traditionally, measurement of internally focused areas came first and was treated as mandatory for reaching your strategic goals. As you measure these key performance indicators (KPIs), remember to:

  • Define the right KPIs based upon these key business objectives
  • Set goals based upon these KPIs and objectives
  • Comparing progress against existing baselines


As you incorporate enablement, keep the customer’s perspective in mind. This perspective is where the CPIs come into play, and these are just as important to your success as the internally focused KPIs traditionally used to measure success.

For example, assessing your sales force’s productivity is vital in orchestrating enablement initiatives. To manage your efforts, you categorize activities into measurements of effectiveness and efficiency. By achieving sales effectiveness, we aim to improve sales skills, deal sizes, and profitability. On the other hand, activities that target sales efficiency will include building a standardized sales process or a repository of sales content. Altogether, these elements build an enablement-supported plan for CPIs that will help you better achieve your KPIs. 

Examples of CPIs are:

–    First contact resolution rate: how well a customer believes that their service requests were addressed during the initial contact. This is valuable information that can be a good indicator of overall customer service satisfaction.

–    Number of calls with value-added messages: this measures how often your salespeople are communicating with your customers, but also the effectiveness of each encounter. The goal is to deliver value on an ongoing basis which will increase overall satisfaction for all involved.

–    Quote turnaround time: the time required for a customer to receive a finalized quote indicates both the speed of execution and the amount of time a customer is waiting on your company. The sooner and more efficiently we can supply a quote, the higher the chance that the deal is successful. 

Successful sales organizations strive to balance better results and use the ideal amount of resources in the process. The essence is about doing the right things in the best way possible. Sales enablement gives you the upper hand to ensure that this is achievable and sustainable.

Take collaboration and processes as an example. When talking about your sales force, the ideal situation is to act as one entity that functions like a Swiss watch. Frequent feedback loops and efficient communication about customer meetings directly to fellow salespeople and other customer-facing teams are needed to optimize your internal processes so they run smoothly.

As you focus on delivering a great customer experience across your customer base, ask yourself:

  • Does the content serve its purpose and add value to the customers?
  • What are the customers’ perceptions/thoughts towards content we share with them?
  • Does the content help in making the buying decision clearer to the customer?
  • Is there a repository or central location for the salesperson to easily locate the material or waste time searching?

Training and coaching have a significant impact on the sales effectiveness of your team. These tactics give enablement a great way to improve sales skills and competencies. When conducting an extensive analysis of your sales force’s knowledge gaps, refer back to customer feedback. This will ensure that your initiatives will directly improve your impression and progress in customer conversations. However, bear in mind that realizing the benefits from these methods requires commitment. Treat every conversation with your salespeople as an opportunity to coach and further develop their sales-readiness.

Tools and technology are an additional outlet of sales enablement to target sales effectiveness and efficiency. This is not a signal to invest a vast amount into the latest technologies. Some solutions can be relatively simple. You can boost sales efficiency by producing email templates for specific stages in the sales process or storing content in categorized archives that are readily available during meetings. Start looking for gaps in your sales operations that need support or could be improved by implementing a specific tool. Examine what tools are already in use and their compatibility with your defined sales process. All factors should be acting as facilitators throughout.

When building a framework of CPIs and KPIs, try to strike a balance between efficiency and effectiveness. Adapt your performance indicators and sales processes to your customer’s and buyer’s journey. Train for sustainable growth and analyze how tools can target sales productivity. The goal is to build an infrastructure of tools, skills, and content to make salespeople’s lives easier to deliver the best experience to customers and prospective buyers. In turn, this will increase your profitability.

And lastly, don’t disregard the importance of being honest, ethical, and open during your conversations with customers. People are the ones that make a difference at the end of the day.

The German version of this article is now available.

Note: You can review our full set of business metrics here.

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