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Survey Says C

:

Get it Right with Net Promoter Score

ustomer feedback is imperative for the growth of your business. Whether it’s product or

service related, you need to understand how

customers feel about their interaction with your organization.

But that doesn’t mean you should stop asking your cus-

tomers for feedback. It just means that you have to find a better way.

Marketers understand the value, which is why they spend

One minute, two questions

and through scheduled e-mails deployed at regular intervals;

to solve this problem. The concept is simple. A single ques-

posts throughout the day to monitor both positive and nega-

or friend?” — lets you know how your customers feel about

time surveying customers online after purchases are made

not to mention meticulously searching Twitter and Facebook

tive comments. Receiving feedback is timely and costly, and

results are typically so skewed that it’s unwise to take decisive action based on the data.

The biggest flaws with e-mail and online surveys are the

number and type of questions asked. Most customers would be happy to provide feedback if it:

• Didn’t take up too much of their time; and

• Gave them the opportunity to express themselves openly and honestly.

Questions such as “How did you hear about us?,” “How

easy was our website to navigate?,” and other marketingrelated questions do not belong in surveys. First of all, that

information is available through web analytics — and it will be more accurate from this source as well. Also, these questions are meaningless to customers, so few of them will take the time to answer.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) was developed several years ago

tion — “How likely are you to recommend us to a colleague your organization. Based on a scale

of 0 (not likely at

all)

10

through

(extremely

likely), responses are broken down into

three

cat-

egories. Customers who 0-6

are

answer

While it might be tempting to survey your customers on everything from product selection to customer service knowledge to the size and color of your shopping cart icon, doing so is a mistake.

called

detractors, as they are clearly unsatisfied. Customers who

answer 7-8 are passive, as they don’t have strong feelings either way. And customers who answer 9-10 are your pro-

moters. They’re the customers who love your brand and sing your praises.

To calculate your NPS, simply subtract your percent-

And, while it might be tempting to survey your custom-

age of detractors from your percentage of promoters. For

knowledge to the size and color of your shopping cart icon,

percent) are promoters and 10 (20 percent) are detractors,

ers on everything from product selection to customer service

doing so is a mistake. The more questions you ask, the fewer responses you’ll get.

example, if you receive 50 responses one month and 32 (64

your NPS is +44. The number isn’t a percentage as your NPS is either positive or negative.

The higher the score, the better. But it’s important to

measure your score against your industry results to help you

gain an understanding of how you are doing compared to

your competitors, since some industries, such as health care,

Fall 2011

have relatively low scores across the board.

This question alone doesn’t provide actionable informa-

tion, nor does it tell you how likely customers are to buy

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Customer Care News


from you again. So we recommend using a simple follow-up question: Why?

Using open-ended questions in surveys is generally

frowned upon as the responses are difficult to track and measure. However, asking customers why they answered the

first question gives them the opportunity to express how they

feel about anything and everything related to your organiza-

tion. You can learn more from this one question than from

100 other standard survey questions; and, more importantly, customers will take the time to tell you their thoughts. You can see how valuable this information is. Imagine responses such as:

How likely are you to recommend us to a colleague or friend? 9

Why? I was on a tight deadline and accidentally exited

your program without saving my work. I called support, and in less than five minutes was shown where the auto-saved version of my report was located. What a lifesaver!

How likely are you to recommend us to a colleague or friend? 7

Why? I was locked out of my account. It was after hours

and your online chat feature wasn’t available, and I had to

wait several minutes on hold to speak to a rep. The issue was resolved right away, but you should have other support issues available after hours.

Ross Kramer

How likely are you to recommend us to a colleague or friend? 2

Why? Your online help manual didn’t answer my ques-

response must be read and carefully considered. It’s a good

help me, so I called and waited on hold for five minutes

ers know that you value their feedback and the time they

tions, so I tried your online chat feature. That person couldn’t before speaking to someone for less than a minute. He

transferred me to someone else, and again I waited on hold for several minutes. The next person couldn’t help, either. I was finally transferred to someone who could help, but the

rep, John Smith, was extremely rude. I hope I don’t have to call again.

These responses provide real feedback you can use to

improve your customer service department and online support materials.

Unlike other surveys, you can’t simply dump these

results into a spreadsheet to crunch the numbers. Each

www.customercarenews.com

took to respond.

Over time, you’ll discover what your customers love about

your organization and what you can do to improve. No other survey provides that kind of actionable input. CCN

Ross Kramer is a co-founder and CEO of Listrak. He has

nearly 15 years of executive leadership, successfully launching and directing three technology start-ups. Kramer is a thought-leader within the online marketing community, lending his expertise

to conferences, seminars, articles, blogs and webcasts. Listrak provides engaging e-mail solutions, services and software to

help online retailers maximize revenue and customer

Fall 2011

Closely Monitor Responses

idea to respond, personally, where appropriate, to let custom-

interaction. Find Listrak online at www.listrak.com or call at 877-362-4556 to learn more.

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Survey Says: Get it Right with Net Promoter Score  

Customer feedback is imperative for the growth of your business. Whether it’s product or service related, you need to understand how custome...

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