Ten B2B KPIs to Track Starting Now (none are NPS) – Employee-Rated and Survey Items


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Yesterday, we talked about Business KPIs that you need to track to truly understand the value and cost of different clients. Unfortunately, not every important metric can be captured in your systems. Some require employee judgment to rate, for example client risk, number of contacts at the client, and potential. Others require clients to tell you about themselves, such as share of wallet, likelihood to remain a customer, and trust. We’ll discuss these items today.

First, let’s look at Employee-Rated Items:

Client Risk. While some clients will tell you they’re at risk, that’s not the norm. Many companies capture this in their CRM system, asking account management or customer success teams to evaluate the current state of the relationship, often through a red/yellow/green system. When paired with the KPIs from yesterday, this gives you a very powerful 2×2 matrix. For example, analyzing profitability by risk shows you where to focus your leadership efforts.

Number of Contacts at the Client. I’ve never actually seen this scorecarded, but it’s critical. Who hasn’t seen a situation where there was a strong relationship with a company until the central contact left and suddenly put the relationship at risk? The best B2B relationships have multiple deep connections to ensure the relationship stays close. Alternately, incorporate this into the client risk measurement.

Potential. Lori Laflin of Cargill and I had a good exchange on LinkedIn after my post from two weeks ago about the importance of segmenting your customers. She called out the importance of factoring in potential when assessing the strategic nature of a client, and I agree. It requires a salesperson’s judgment but is certainly something important to consider in relationships. Combine this with existing revenue and number of products to highlight how strategic each customer is.

Some items can be approximated by employees, but are best when clients tell you themselves, typically through surveys:

Share of Wallet. This is a traditional B2B measurement, combining revenue with potential into one nifty measurement. It’s calculated by taking the client’s revenue with you and dividing by their (typically self-reported) revenue. We’ve found that clients are typically inaccurate when reporting the actual dollar amount they purchase through you, so we use self-reported data for both their overall orders and their orders through you. If you have data on true share of wallet, then by all means, use it. Assuming you don’t, know that getting the exact dollar amounts is less important than a client’s self-assessment of share of wallet.

This is my favorite B2B measurement. Showcasing unfulfilled (by you) demand drives decision-making: are you losing share because of delivery challenges, because you don’t have the right product mix, or something else? NPS fans can also create a compelling analysis by comparing share of wallet with NPS. They hopefully match up well – if not, perhaps NPS isn’t the right metric. Dominant players in their markets find that they rarely lose customers – but problems can lead to them losing substantial wallet share. Few measurements will get an executive as excited as share of wallet. We all know the research that it’s easier to sell to an existing client than to a new one. Share of wallet shows how well you’re doing at that.

Likelihood to Remain a Customer. Some businesses use likelihood to renew, depending on the nature of their relationships. This is a good complement to NPS or customer satisfaction and showcases risk in a client from their perspective. It’s always interesting to compare this to the sales team’s perceptions of client risk.

Trust. This is the ultimate measurement of a customer experience. The wording varies – “[Company] is a supplier that I trust” is common. While the actual score is interesting, changes over time are the most compelling. Some of our clients have found that this is the most predictive measurement of share of wallet.

Measuring the customer experience is hard. It’s even harder when you’re limiting your reporting to just a survey score or two. By bringing in business KPIs, employee-rated items and additional survey scores, you can get a much better picture of your current B2B CX.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Jim Tincher
Jim sees the world in a special way: through the eyes of customers. This lifelong passion for CX, and a thirst for knowledge, led him to found his customer experience consulting firm, Heart of the Customer (HoC). HoC sets the bar for best practices and are emulated throughout the industry. He is the author of Do B2B Better and co-author of How Hard Is It to Be Your Customer?, and he also writes Heart of the Customer’s popular CX blog.


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