In a perfect world, there would be a single metric that would measure the success of online customer service. Instead, eBusiness leaders must sift through huge amounts of data to get the right information to the right people at the right time.

There are metrics that will provide insight into customer satisfaction, efficiency, effectiveness, and — in some industries — compliance. At the same time, managing cost is an important goal to eBusiness leaders: In Forrester’s November 2010 Global eBusiness And Channel Strategy Professional Online Survey, 54% say that a reduction in the cost to serve customers is an important or extremely important goal to the success of their web channel.

Kate Leggett recently published a document called “How To Implement Effective Customer Service Metrics” that defines nearly 30 operational metrics for tracking contact center and self-service customer service activities and describes how to link these metrics to business KPIs to focus on the ones that will move the needle.

Getting to the right customer service metric means identifying why it is needed and by whom, understanding the differences between efficiency and effectiveness metrics, and recognizing where metrics are connected. If this is a challenge in your eBusiness organization, I encourage you to read “Meeting The eBusiness Challenge Of Online Customer Service Measurement.”