How satisfied are your customers with your products and services? Which factors play a role in being unsatisfied? What can you do better? These measurement methods and tips can help.
Why satisfied customers are so important
Measuring and increasing customer satisfaction can pay off – literally. After all, when customers are satisfied, the chances are high that they will buy one of your products again in future or take advantage of a service of yours. And there are further positive effects that could pay off in hard cash.
Satisfied customers are more likely to pay higher prices. They also purchase other products or services offered by your company more frequently (cross-buying willingness). Finally, they recommend your company more often.
Measuring customer satisfaction: 3 methods
There are three main ways to capture data:
- Personal survey, either during an in-person talk or via telephone
- Written survey, whereby the customer receives a questionnaire to fill in and send back
- Online survey via email or within an app
More important than the how is the measurement methods used to capture figures that are as objective as possible.
1. Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
This method is applied best immediately after the purchase of a product or take-up of a service. The customer can communicate how satisfied he is with the service by using a scale. Especially popular is the range from 1 (excellent) to 5 (bad), or you can use a more detailed range from 1 to 10. In Germany and other countries, the school grades of 1 to 6 are possible; however, this is not recommended for an international survey, as grades in some other countries are based on letters.
Using the answers, companies can either gather that their customers are generally satisfied (from the average value of all answers) or gather how many of their customers are satisfied (from the percentage of positive answers).
2. Net Promoter Score (NPS)
This method measures customer loyalty. In this case, the customer is asked how likely they are to recommend the company or its products. Usually, a scale of 1 (not at all) to 10 (definitely / have already done so) is applied.
Based on their answers, the customers are categorised into “critics” (answers 1 to 6), “passives” (answers 7 to 8) and “promoters” (answers 9 to 10). For the NPS, you calculate the percentage of promoters minus the percentage of critics. The passives are left out of the equation.
3. Customer Effort Score (CES)
This method puts the focus on customer service. Generally speaking, a scale of 1 (completely) to 5 (not at all) is used. The questions centre round the effort which the customer has made during the interaction with the company. For instance: “Do you agree with the statement that customer service reacted quickly to your request?” or “The ordering process was easy.”
Ideally, you combine the data capture questions with additional questions from which you can determine recommendations for action. Such questions could read: “What would you have liked to have at this point?”, “What can we do better?” and “What was particularly bothersome/enjoyable for you?”
Is it not enough to simply meet the expectations of the customer in order to satisfy him or her? Not always.
How to increase customer satisfaction
Is it not enough to simply meet the expectations of the customer in order to satisfy him or her? Not always. Because expectations are not always clear. Are you sure that you have provided the best service in all areas of the customer journey? What if a competitor offers a lower price or a better service? You achieve a special loyalty with a customer by not only meeting expectations but also exceeding them.
Play close attention to:
- not making promises that you cannot keep;
- making sure your customer service is fast and easy to reach;
- offering a fast, customer-centric solution when it comes to questions, problems and returns;
- radiating a good working climate and satisfied employees in communication with the customer; and
- ensuring your website, online shop and all digital communication paths are continually reachable and easy to use, as well as providing all the information your customer needs.