The CX Index measures customer experience among brands in 13 industries. To-date, no industry has reached the “Good” or “Excellent” category; most are in the “OK” category and a few are in the “Poor” category.1 Accordingly, the CX Index teaches us a lot about what is ineffective in popular CX practices. To pierce the “Excellent” glass ceiling, your customer experience strategy must shift gears.

Interestingly, the CX Index is simple:

CX Quality

Customer Loyalty

Effectiveness: How effective was the brand at meeting customer needs? Retention: How likely is the customer to stay with the brand?
Ease: How easy was it to work with the brand? Enrichment: How likely is the customer to buy additional products and services?
Emotion: How did interacting with the brand make the customer feel? Advocacy: How likely is the customer to recommend the brand?

Some experts advocate more emotion or empathy as the key to customer experience success. Others insist that technology will make the needed difference. All of these approaches are insufficient.

For greater success in the CX Index and in your growth, here’s my advice:

The first step to shifting gears for CX Index success is to broaden your customer experience strategy beyond touchpoints. Customer Service is an important, yet reactive and remedial component of your customers’ experience. Expansion of your Customer Success group often signals sloppiness among all other groups.

CX Quality Factors

  1. Likely to recommendlikely to buy more, and likely to stay with the brand revolve around the 3 CX quality factors. When a brand is hard to work with, weak at meeting customer needs, or poor in generating positive interactions, it’s unnatural to expect opposite performance in the 3 customer loyalty factors.
  2. Effectiveness in meeting customer needs refers to your products, convenience, responsiveness, legal policies, proactiveness, and customers’ costs (money, time, stress, etc.). Do not fall into the trap of using survey scores for CX performance targets. Instead, monitor behaviors and deliverables that are prerequisites to great customer experience.
  3. Ease of business is dictated by policies, processes, handoffs, and attitudes among your headquarters groups. These are shaped by organization-wide customer-centricity. To guide them, balance your Expectations VoC and Realities VoC. This generates stronger positive emotions, internally and externally.

Customer Loyalty Factors

  1. Over-emphasis on emotion, enrichment, and advocacy are damaging trust and relationship strength. The path toward recommendations is CX quality excellence before something goes wrong. If your loyalty ratings are higher than your quality ratings, you are over-spending on short-term loyalty.
  2. The first step to higher retention is Sales’ focus on your ideal customer profile. By doing this, you’ll minimize cost to serve, employee burnout, and churn of all types. Do your Sales reps’ incentives include retention?
  3. Recommend, buy more, and stay with the brand are earned by smoothing silos, identifying high impact CX improvement areas, generating actionable insights quickly, and establishing a customer-first culture.
  4. Recommendations depend upon cumulative experiences. They are stronger when your brand is  doing the right things right consistently. Likewise, large portions of the customer journey occurs outside of a brand’s touch-points. Are you providing crystal clear customer expectations to guide all groups in your company? Extensive value is created or jeopardized “behind the scenes” in organizations.

Will your company be the first to achieve Excellent performance in the CX Index? To learn more about how to do this, see these recent articles:

CX Annuities Solve CX ROI & Tenure Dilemmas

5 Best Experience Management Metrics

Assessment for Almost-Automatic CX Excellence


1Forrester’s US 2022 Customer Experience Index: Nearly 20% of Brands See Drop in Customer Experience Quality.
2Rethinking Customer Experience Strategy.