With your business now up and running and fully functional, there is one last element to long-term success: tracking return on investment — or ROI — through back-end analysis. If you neglect this final step, nothing you’ve done up to this point matters. Without a reliable, predictable means to analyze your progress, hold your people and systems accountable and identify weak points, your business is a rudderless ship that will be unable to adapt to a constantly changing environment.

 

It is not unnatural for business owners to obsess over every aspect of their operation, and that’s fine. But even if you’re not the type that sweats every detail, the following categories must be meticulously tracked and measured.

 

Contact Representative Performance

When serving international customers without actually having a physical presence established in your market countries, the human beings manning your telephone network are still the first and most important line of defense against failure. They are your business’s liaisons and the gatekeepers of the first impression given off by your business. Measuring their success is paramount to your success. There are many ways to measure CRP — and don’t be afraid to get creative — but here are the big three:

  • Customer Satisfaction: The most critical aspect of any analysis, customer satisfaction is directly linked to customer loyalty, revenue and employee morale. Although there is no standard method of measuring this all-important metric, a contemporary trend is to survey callers immediately after the call, while the experience and emotions are still fresh.
  • First-Call Resolution: Directly linked to customer satisfaction, first-call resolution is the most important quantifiable element of CRP. In fact, for every 1 percent increase in first-call resolution, there is a 1 percent bump in customer satisfaction. For those with elite customer service, FCR can be as high as 86 percent. The high 60s is considered satisfactory.
  • Response Time: A classic detriment to otherwise strong call centers, hold times can make or break a customer’s experience. Measure response time on a scale, starting with the worst (longest) hold time. Let’s say that one, single customer waited 16 minutes before getting a response. The scale would start with: 100 percent of calls were answered within 16 minutes, 80 percent were answered in 11 minutes, 50 percent in X minutes, 30 percent in X minutes and so on.

 

Tracking ROI: Social Media

It’s been reported that fewer than 10 percent of businesses can actually tell if their social-media campaign is working. Although followers and friends aren’t the only — or even most important — element of a successful social-media presence, the size of your network is a good barometer of early success. Start by making and maintaining a spreadsheet charting the growth (or lack thereof) of your Twitter followers, Facebook friends and LinkedIn connections.

 

To delve even deeper, consider one of the many social media analytical tools that exist to provide insight into your ROI in each platform. Which posts got the most likes? What was retweeted most frequently? Which hashtag topics drew the most responses? Analytical software can break each network down into individual successes and failures.

 

Tracking ROI with Offline Ads

Unlike social media, which leaves a permanent fingerprint and can be categorized with specialty software, tracking the effectiveness of offline ads is more difficult. One of the most efficient and most-common methods of measuring these ads is to embed markers directly into them. Consider forcing a direct action by customers in each specific ad.

 

The most modern incarnation of this tactic is to ask them to scan a QR code. But the old-fashioned yardstick of obtaining different phone numbers, which all lead to the same line, and then placing each number on a different ad (or the same ad in different regions) to measure the difference is still a core analytic strategy. Another tried-and-true method is to attach different coupons or enter-this-word-when-ordering codes to individual ad campaigns that change — and can be tracked from campaign to campaign.

 

Is Your Global SEO Strategy Paying Off?

Initiating a global SEO strategy is one of the most difficult and technical parts of doing international business. Tracking its results can be equally trying. Measuring the results of SEO requires the context of previous performance. The requires establishing a baseline consisting of historic website traffic, historic revenue and historic conversions. Google Analytics is probably still the best, most comprehensive and easy-to-use tool for establishing not only how many people are coming in as a result of organic SEO, but also how many are converting.

 

Congratulations! It’s been a long road, but by now you are officially global. Establishing a true international business with its own international phone system, international address, international social-media strategy and the tools to measure it all on an ongoing basis is no small feat — but you’ve done it!

 

The foundation has been laid, but the hard work is just beginning. Staying true to your mission statement and your business principles will be the torch that guides you in the crucial first few months and years. One of the biggest keys — as your ROI tracking will prove — is elasticity and the ability to change and adapt when circumstances change, which they’re sure to do.

 

Good luck, you’ve earned it!