Weekly Roundup #77 – North Star Metrics, Ask Analytics & Customer Satisfaction


Last week we told you all about how AI and Augmented Intelligence are going to change the shopping experience for users, and how we run online businesses. Read about that here. This week we look at:


Double or Single Opt-in for Email Subscribers?

Double opt in email

In the quest to increase your email subscribers, one is faced with the decision between a double opt-in process or a single opt-in process. The double requires the user to put in their email address, and then to confirm their address by clicking on a link in an email sent by the company. A single opt-in only requires the customer to enter their email address.

There are pros and cons for each type, so it is worth considering which suits your company’s need and objectives. The main argument for a double opt-in process is that those who are willing to go through with the longer sign up process are more keen to receive emails from your company, and are therefore likely to make a purchase or response.

These high quality subscribers are the type that most companies are looking to attract, however, generally a double opt-in will also tend to decrease the number of subscribers that you receive. The higher number of subscribers that you will achieve through a single opt-in come with their own issues – as these subscribers are less likely to be a ‘quality’ user (i.e. low engagement and response rates) and they are more likely to cost your company more money, as sending email to a larger email list comes with higher costs.

Over the years, most companies have chosen to use a single opt-in, so by using a double opt-in process it is likely that sign up rates fall because consumers do not realise that any further action is required. Analysing the open and click rates for your email send outs may show the best option for your company – as a 25% open rate on a single opt-in list may in fact produce less sales than a 12% open rate on a double opt-in list.

It is important therefore to weigh up whether it is more important for your company to reach more people who have varied interest in your brand, or to reach a smaller but more engaged audience.


Google Intelligence: Ask Google Analytics a Question

Google has launched a new service within Google Analytics in order to help users more quickly gain the information that they need. The new function will mean that it will be far more efficient and easy for people throughout an organisation to access the information that they need without relying on data analysts, or needing a deep familiarity with the Google Analytics interface.

The function of Analytics Intelligence will mean that analysts will have more time to focus on strategy, whilst the rest of the organisation can use natural language and a search function to understand how the business is performing online. Working in a similar way to Google Now, the Analytics Intelligence function uses AI to show each individual user information that is tailored to their role, based on the kind of data and insights that the user has previously engaged with.

Analytics Intelligence is available now through the app and on desktop, and is accessed from the circle icon with dots in the upper right corner. Desktop users will be able to type queries into a search bar that appears after clicking the icon. Mobile app users will be able to use voice search to find the data that they need from Google Analytics.


Understanding Customer Satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is a near guarantee for return business, and will encourage leads and prospects when they see that customer satisfaction is one of your company’s top priorities. But how do you know that your customers are satisfied?

Customer satisfaction can be broken down into two component parts – your service, which is the product and whether it does what you claim it will, and secondly, whether the customer liked it. Customer satisfaction is subjective, and therefore a little hard to measure – but customer success is a little easier to measure, so when combined it is possible to get an accurate picture of your users and your services.

It is possible to gather hard and soft data relating to customer satisfaction in many different ways. The Net Promoter Score will simply ask each customer ‘On a scale from 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend our product/service to a friend, family member or colleague?’ From this, three categories of customer emerge: promoters, passives and detractors. NPS is an effective indicator of whether or not your customers are satisfied.

Another way to understand your customer service is to use a Customer Effort Score survey (CES). The CES determines your customers view by asking either ‘How much effort did you have to put forth to handle your request?’ or ‘(Company) made it easy for me to handle my issue.’ The customers score from 1 to 5, and the overall CES score can help you to determine where your services need updating or streamlining to improve the ease with which consumers can use your site.

The complaint-to-resolution ratio is another way to understand how your company deals with customers. It is essentially an impossibility to not have some customers contact you with complaints, so understanding how effectively your company resolves these issues will give a good indication of the customer satisfaction in general. If you are able to satisfy previously unhappy customers it most certainly says something about your ability to please the rest of your audience.

Many companies assume that a high retention rate means that you have a high percentage of satisfied customers – but this is not necessarily the case – they may stick with your brand for a variety of reasons, but satisfaction may not be one of them. It is important to understand that there is always room for improvement, despite a high retention rate.

The same goes for a high churn rate – customers may have been satisfied with the service, but may have moved on for a variety of reasons. However, if your churn rate starts to increase, then it is important to analyse your customer satisfaction, as there may be some simple fixes to reverse the trend.

Another misleading data point is the complaint-to-customer ratio. Although a high complaint-to-customer ratio is a good indicator that your customers aren’t satisfied, a low ratio does not necessarily mean that they are. 96% of dissatisfied customers do not make a complaint, however they do recommend to their peers that they stay away from a company. Use the complaint-to-customer ratio as a metric to help pinpoint specific shortcomings in your service rather than as a means of understanding your customer.

It is well advised to check for unsolicited, unfiltered information about your company and products that is provided voluntarily by customers in online reviews. This information is incredibly valuable in understanding your service, and the customer’s response to it. This sort of information can be collected through customer satisfaction surveys, or can be found in the comments section of your blog. It is also worth checking the comments and reviews left on other blogs that have mentioned your products, as well as the sites of the other companies that may sell your products.

It is clear that customer satisfaction is a complex topic to measure, however, by combining all of the data that is available on the subject it is possible to build a clear image of your services and your products.


Help Google Become a Movie Critic

movie critic

Google has launched a new search test that will allow users to vote for the best tags and keywords for each movie. Describing the feature as a way to, “help others decide by choosing the best tags, like ‘strong acting’, ‘unconvincing’ or ‘gripping’.”

You can launch this feature by clicking on the ‘Vote for Tags’ button, which will open a variety of options to choose from in order to rate the film in question. This survey will give Google more data about each movie, so that they may help direct people who are searching for more detail about the movie.


How to Define Your North Star Metric

north star metric

Running a company is a complex task, where it is vital to make all of the individual parts work together in unison. Finding useful insights and creating an efficient structure are the key factors to building a successful business. The many facets of a business often make it difficult to pin success to a single data point that would define the company’s direction or influence executive decisions.

The North Star metric is a way of simplifying what your business is about. The North Star metric points your company in the right direction, ensuring that you are always focused on the value that you offer to your customers, as that is the single largest driver of sustainable long-term growth.

Emerging from Silicon Valley, the North Star metric works as a reminder to keep your company on the right track, and when selected correctly will be the core of your strategic growth tactics. To define your North Star metric, you need to understand how your product delivers value to your customers. You should be able to gain this understanding by looking at user engagement and activity level. For example, Medium – the reader and writer network – the metric is ‘total time reading’. For Facebook their North Star metric would be ‘daily active users’, and for Airbnb the metric is ‘nights booked’.

The metric you select for your company should hold inherent value and should be able to tell you how to optimise your product and create more value for your users. Gathering plentiful amounts of data and conducting in-depth analysis will be a great help in defining your North Star metric, and once found it will point your company in the right direction for long-term healthy growth across the board.


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Sebastian Paszek

Marketing manager

Controlling the chaos of the digital landscape, Sebastian is a multiplatform executive, project manager and photographer.