How to measure self-service rate in the community?


Hi All,

I would like to know how can I measure self-service rate in the community? is there a industry standard on how this should be done? And is there any benchmark for this measure?

Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.


  • John Ragsdale
    John Ragsdale Member | Guru ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi Bhavin, thanks for attending the webinar today and sorry we didn't have time to answer this question live. When I did research on this topic, I found most companies weren't measuring success/deflection for the community, which is too bad. My only advice, which I know isn't that good, is to follow up with visitors to the community with the usual survey asking if they found what they needed (success), and if so, did this avoid a call/email/case with support (deflection).

    It is tricky, because you can assume someone who posts a question and gets it answered is successful, but then how many hundreds or thousands of people read that post afterwards? Did they have the same question and this thread answered it? Or did they just have 15 minutes at the end of their shift and they spent it browsing your community?

    Hopefully some other members will chime in with their approach to success/deflection from community. It certainly would help build budgets for new community platforms if companies better understood the ROI from a support standpoint.

  • StevenForth
    StevenForth Founding Partner | Expert ✭✭✭

    @John Ragsdale " ROI from a support standpoint." I am not sure that support is the main reason to have a community. This conversation is taking place in a community. Perhaps we can ask the TSIA what there success metrics for this community are!

  • PatrickMartin
    PatrickMartin Founding Analyst | Expert ✭✭✭

    Hi Bahvin,

    It is a very good question. I believe that it all starts with how you are measuring community activity. As John mentioned, if a customer asks a question in the community and it is answered by someone outside of your organization (or else it just becomes another support channel), those are easy to identify as deflected cases. For the content consumption, I would turn to your knowledge management practices. What I mean by that is that if your community tools captures the customer session, you should be able to identify which content is being consumed and whether or not they end up logging a case or not. We kind of do this to measure our Technical Support's team contribution to self-success by measuring the percentage of customers logging cases after consulting a knowledge article submitted by Support. It is a measure for us that allows us to determine whether or not our knowledge articles are useful to customers. True, they could consult it, find it useless and find their answer elsewhere, but it gives us an idea. I assume that you could do the same for your community. By being able to identify the community content being consumed in a customer session, and determining if this same customer ended up logging a case, you could then measure the self-service efficiency of your community beyond just the answered questions. I hope this helps. Let me know if you would like to discuss further.

  • Heather Ausmus

    @Bhavin Patel, there is a self-service score and industry benchmarks that are available from Zendesk. I use it and I know other communities that use it as well. I have also seen (in a recent TSIA webinar recently) of a specific formula to measure self-service that unique to that organization, so it sometimes is developing the formula that is best for your community purpose. Here is the Zendesk research should you be interested in checking it out:

    Looking at ROI, The Community Roundtable has a formula and in their yearly research share data on what communities report and provide insights on best in class, etc. Here are two links that you may find helpful related to this:

    1. ROI calculator:
    2. 2020 State of Community Management: