A business’ customers are its lifeblood. It goes without saying that without customers, businesses would perish. In today’s day and age, it’s imperative to offer your customers strong customer service and quality products in order to ensure that they come back for more and that they spread the (positive) word about your brand to others.

Word-of-mouth marketing is one of the most essential ways to gain or lose trust from customers, as well as getting repeat business. This is why measuring customer satisfaction is crucial for any business. If you’re wondering why and how you should measure customer satisfaction, we have the answers for you below.

Why measure customer satisfaction?

Measuring customer satisfaction might not seem like a big deal. But it actually is. There are several reasons for this, which are discussed below. 

Dissatisfaction is costly

Not only do dissatisfied customers take their business away from you to competing brands, but this can also cause a build-up of complaints for your Customer Service department to deal with. To address such issues, and to reduce customer dissatisfaction, make sure you put into place the right mechanisms to ensure that your customers get the best experience possible from the get go. 

Acquiring new customers is costlier than retaining existing ones

According to some sources, acquiring a new customer costs between six and seven times more than retaining existing ones. Existing customers are likely to purchase from you again and again, and other research indicates that about 80% of a business sales come from 20% of its clientele.

This is why investing in strong customer service to retain your existing customers is a crucial aspect and is also one of the reasons why you will want to measure customer satisfaction.

It can have negative effects on your brand’s image

A brand’s image is crucial and it takes time to nurture and grow it. However, this can quickly become diminished with too many negative reviews on sites such as Trustpilot or on social media where negativity can spread like wildfire.

To avoid having to deal with such situations, brands should ensure that they have the right mechanisms and tools in place to ensure that they are able to effectively deal with customers’ complaints and any negative experiences they might have. 

Enhances the customer’s overall experience 

Measuring customer satisfaction can yield important results. In fact, it can yield a “panorama” of activities a business or brand may need to take into account to measure customer satisfaction and ensure that the negatives outweigh the positives.

By focusing on improving customer experience, negative trends are likely to go down and customer satisfaction is likely to increase. 

How to measure customer satisfaction

1. Feedback through surveys

One of the first methods of measuring customer satisfaction is by engaging in feedback through surveys. There are several types of surveys a business can implement to measure their customers’ levels of satisfaction. 

Post-call surveys

Post-call surveys usually deal with businesses that have clients who call in on a regular basis. At the end of the call, the customer can provide a ranking for the service received by simply pressing a button to express how they felt about the service. Collecting this data is timeous and immediate, and can offer insights into how the service could be improved in the future. 

In-app surveys

Another way of collecting data about your customers and their overall satisfaction levels is through in-app surveys.

These surveys should be done in such a way as not to inhibit the customer as they flow through the app, navigating to the desired menus. They should not be obstructive to the service, but should rather be a harmonious part of the in-app experience.

Here, you might consider asking your customers to rate the in-app experience, the levels of service provided, the ease of use of the app and other categories of questions. Just make sure you do not waste your customers’ time with irrelevant, ambiguous or other questions that are likely to frustrate them. 

Email surveys 

Email surveys are typically used for customers who are repeat buyers of your product or services. These constitute your loyal clientele and their honest opinions will be vital to how you address your customer service offering.

In your email, consider asking your clients to rate their service, and to also offer their opinions on how the service could be improved. This honest feedback can loop back into your customer service department, as you seek to improve on any negative comments and feedback. 

Voluntary feedback 

Finally, there is what is called voluntary feedback. This type of feedback is usually not requested directly by your company, but rather, is something the customer will do out of their own initiative. Such feedback can be either positive or negative, and will usually be expressed via social media (for more on social media, see the section below).

2. Asking for direct feedback

Apart from feedback through surveys, there are other ways to measure customer satisfaction. These industry benchmarks include the Net Promoter Score (NPS), the Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) and the Customer Effort Score (CES). We take a look at each of these in more detail below. 

Net Promoter Score (NPS)

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a type of measurement tool that asks a value-laden, emotionally charged question, namely, “to what extent are you likely to promote X brand?” with one being “not at all” and 10 being “very likely”.

You can gauge the responses received from the answers to these questions and collate them into a database that will help you determine the overall customer satisfaction with your brand. 

Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)

Used to determine the overall satisfaction of a customer with a company’s Customer Services department, the Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) usually works on a five-number range, with one being “highly dissatisfied” to five indicating “highly satisfied” with the service being offered. 

Customer Effort Score (CES)

This score – Customer Effort Score (CES) – asks the customer how much effort they put into purchasing a product or a service from you. Many efforts denote a higher number on the scale, while fewer efforts denote a lower number on the scale.

Ultimately, this data can be gathered and analysed, with an additional text box being added to the questionnaire or survey, to request more feedback on how the product or service could have been improved. 

3. Web analytics

Apart from surveys and various scores to find out if your customers are happy with your product or service, there are other methods of measuring customer satisfaction without having to involve the customer directly.

This relates to web analytics that track user behaviour on your website. Where did they click? How long did it take them to make a purchase? Which sections did they hover over? A

nd did they refer to your Frequently Asked Questions section? All these factors can be collated into a comprehensive data set that segments user behaviour and the ultimate result – whether their experience on your site was easy or difficult. 

4. Monitoring social media 

These days, social media is an important part of any brand. It is used to build brand loyalty, it helps customers get to know a brand better and it can help foster relationships.

However, social media may also be considered a double-edged sword as on the one hand, happy customers may leave positive reviews and interact positively with your brand, while on the other, unhappy ones can leave negative reviews, which have the potential to spark online conversations and damage your brand’s reputation.

This is why it’s crucial to monitor your company’s social media pages for all types of comments, and address both positive and negative ones as soon as they arise. Leaving a negative comment unaddressed is likely to make the issue fester and make the client feel unheard.

To rectify this situation, always reply to all comments, make sure that your customers feel understood and that their concerns are adequately addressed.  

5. Analysing customer support data

Most businesses these days have special departments dedicated to customer support. Whether through chat bots or call centres, it’s critical to analyse each interaction and collate the customers’ experience into a tangible data set that can be used to prevent negative customer experiences and to encourage positive interactions with your brand.

You can implement short post-chat surveys in your chat bot or ask the customer to rate their experience with your call centre at the end of the call by pressing a number to indicate the quality levels of your service.

This measurable data can then be utilised to identify loopholes, address challenges in your sales funnel or simply provide more personalised customer service to your clientele. 

In conclusion

As we wrap up, we don’t need to mention again how important customer satisfaction is for your business. You need your customers to keep your business going, and importantly, you need your customers to be happy so that they keep on coming back to you for more.

There are several tools for you to use in order to measure customer satisfaction. Ultimately, there is no one tool that trumps all others and it would be wise to combine the results of several survey types, collating them into a database from which you can draw conclusions about your customers’ levels of satisfaction with your product or service.

It’s also important to keep in mind that once you’ve obtained your database, you should consider taking concrete actions to address any problems that have arisen in order to address all and any complaints. This should result in the creation of a looping system where you continuously strive to improve your customers’ experience and not be a one-off endeavour.