What is completion rate – and what should you expect?

Completion rate in our context is the number of people who complete the Credit Sense customer journey, divided by the number of people who were presented with it. For example, if 100 people are presented with our customer journey, and 10 of them don’t complete it (for any reason), that’s a 90% completion rate.


Why is completion rate important?

In the age of technology, competition is only a click away. Customers are key, and their experience is make or break, so it’s more important than ever that your customers can conveniently complete, dare we say even enjoy, your onboarding journey.

A lot of companies will talk about the completion rates of their process, but in reality, that number is what they define it as (as we have above!). It is important to know that it can vary, because how the completion rate is calculated won’t always align with your own perspective and needs.

The focus needs to be on your customer’s experience, and it needs to be good. All of the issues we discuss below will affect your completion rate, make the customer’s experience worse, and directly affect your revenue.

The good news is that these issues are addressable, and you can avoid them affecting your customer’s experience!

What can affect the completion rate?

Several things can affect the completion rate in our space, and they all need to be actively managed to keep customers happy and maintain a consistent stream of new business. Below is a general overview of the most common things that can affect your completion rate and what you should expect from your providers.

Technical failures

All tech businesses experience incidents that cause downtime, but it shouldn’t be a common occurrence.

Uptime is critical in this day and age, and there are many things that can be done to ensure that it stays steady. Providers should be using clustered, highly available infrastructure to ensure that your service stays up and running. This should also be combined with constant monitoring and alerting so that if something goes down, the team know about it and can start fixing it as soon as possible. These measures are all must-haves and should make technical downtime uncommon and manageable.

What should you expect? In our space, you should be getting close to 99.999% uptime. If you’re wondering what that looks like, that means only 6 minutes of downtime per year! When we are talking about uptime, 0.001% can make a huge difference – 0.001% is 6 minutes, so while 99.9% uptime sounds good, it means that you are down for a whole day (8 hours). Pay close attention to the percentages!

Maintenance and downtime at websites

Consented digital data capture makes sharing information safer, faster and more convenient – but it comes with a catch. Because we don’t control the websites we gather data from, if they are down due to an outage or scheduled maintenance during a customer’s application, it will affect the completion rate.

What should you expect? Even though we can’t fix someone else’s website when it’s down, we can let you know it’s happening. You should expect your provider to know when websites are down and provide active downtime tracking and real-time updates. Additionally, the provider should be able to handle these situations gracefully and complete the process once the website is back online so that the customer doesn’t have to come back and complete it later. The effect on your customers’ experience during these events can, and should, be minimised.

Changes at websites we capture data from

Websites change constantly. An updated layout or different navigation can cause digital data capture to fail and lower your completion rate. The most effective strategy to manage website changes is continuous outcome monitoring and reliable alerting. This ensures we know about website changes as soon as they happen, can get them resolved quickly, and of course, keep our clients updated!

What should you expect? Your provider should know (and let you know) as soon as possible when websites change and your completion rates are affected. When this happens, you want to know that your provider is aware of the issue and actively working to resolve it quickly.

Incorrect customer access credentials

Sometimes, we all need a minute to remember our login details. Customers using incorrect access credentials affects our ability to gather their information and complete their instructions. Incorrect credentials are the biggest reason for non-completion and should be counted in any completion rate metric.

What should you expect? The user experience in the customer journey should be designed to mitigate this. Easy-to-understand error content and effective resume functionality are critical. Your customer should be able to leave the journey to check their credentials or take some other action, and then securely and easily resume right where they left off.

How do you know if your provider has a good completion rate?

Firstly, it is important to make sure you understand what their definition of completion rate is. How it is calculated can vary widely between providers.

We recommend having a conversation with your provider (or potential provider) about:

  • How they calculate completion rate,
  • What systems they have in place to monitor their journey,
  • How often they go down (make sure you see a status page or some form of documentation about this),
  • What are the most common types of downtime they have
  • What their process is when their system goes down (specifically around notifying you), and
  • An example of when they had downtime recently and how it was handled

If you have any questions…

If you have questions about whether you are getting the best outcomes in your application process, or about how we ensure high completion rates, send us a message.

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