Measuring customer satisfaction: Power of CSAT + NPS

by Andrew Wallace
4 min read

We’re in an age where customers have more voice and influence than ever before. Are you prepared?

Gathering your customers’ experiences and feelings into a measurable form can be challenging—but it’s vital for your business prosperity. The one truly durable competitive advantage in a market where businesses of all types are highly ambitious and combative is Customer Experience or “CX”. It not only drives customer behavior but also generates new leads and sales of your amazing service.

But in order to benefit the most from CX and gain insight into where your business stands, you first need to be able to measure it. And here is where two very important tracking metrics—CSAT and NPS—come into play. While CSAT directly measures customers’ satisfaction with a product or service, NPS measures customers’ loyalty. Together, these factors are essential for your business’s long-term success.


The Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) and the Net Promoter Score (NPS) are two ways to measure client satisfaction with different scopes and applications.

CSAT is typically based on a number of statements that customers rate their agreement or disagreement with e.g. Overall I was satisfied with <product/service>.

Here is an example:

SmileBack CSAT survey email
SmileBack CSAT survey email

You can also get a full description around how to calculate CSAT here.

NPS is a system for finding out how your customers feel about your overall business relationship. It’s particularly useful for identifying which customers are likely to champion your company and which are at risk of leaving.

The question wording and scale should always be the same: “How likely are you to recommend [company name] to a friend or colleague?” with a scale of 0 to 10, from “not likely” to “very likely.

SmileBack NPS survey email
SmileBack NPS survey email

A “good” NPS score can vary a lot by industry, customer type and location, but you should be aiming to get into the positive half of the scale, at least. As a rough guide, 10-30 is a good score, 30-50 is very good and 50+ is getting into best-in-class territory. When a very high proportion of your respondents are “promoters” it will start to manifest in real-world benefits, such as word-of-mouth referrals and higher retention rates. You can get more insight into how NPS is calculated here.

So, while CSAT directly measures customers’ satisfaction with a product or service, NPS measures customers’ loyalty. Both these factors are essential for making your customers resist the onslaught of your competitors’ offers.

Book a NPS walk-through call now : )

Leveraging performance feedback with CSAT + NPS

You may still raise the question: Why use both?

While many MSPs and other Helpdesks are already using CSAT, as your business matures and evolves, you should also be considering using NPS. The best part: it’s very simple and highly effective, especially when used in conjunction with CSAT. Combined, they form a power arsenal to both increase customer retention and loyalty and supercharge your marketing efforts—it’s like putting the key pieces together to solve your business prosperity puzzle.

Here are three key benefits you will get by combining these two metrics:

1. Identify both your highest-risk and highest-value customers

An easy way to get to know your customers better is to divide them into different groups (i.e. segments). As a starting point with NPS and CSAT, there are some natural groupings that you can apply to your existing segments or your business more broadly to get immediate insights and positive results:

• Group 1: Customers who are not satisfied with your service (CSAT: negative or neutral) and are not loyal (NPS: passive or detractor). These customers need some tender love and care immediately, as they could be likely to take their business elsewhere.

• Group 2: Customers who are satisfied with your service (CSAT: positive) but are not necessarily loyal (NPS: passive or detractor). These customers may like the service you do provide, but also think there are other areas where you could provide additional value. Customers in this segment are particularly susceptible to churning to a competitor.

• Group 3: Customers who are dissatisfied with your service (CSAT: negative) but are loyal to your company (NPS: promoter). These customers recognize the value of your company but have recently had a bad customer experience. These are customers with whom you can usually course correct with a timely and effective response.

• Group 4: The last group represents customers who are both highly satisfied (CSAT: positive) and highly loyal (NPS: promoter). Huzzah! These customers both value your company as a whole and the individual interactions they have with you—they are candidates to provide referrals and testimonials that will help fuel your future growth.

2. A view of a bigger picture

Knowing your individual customers’ satisfaction level will help you manage individual accounts and keep relationships healthy. Taking a step back and seeing your CSAT and NPS metrics in the aggregate will give you additional, very powerful insights into the health of your business itself. With your overall CSAT score, you can assess if your entire CX operation is working; with your overall NPS score, you can assess how the quality of your business and/or service itself.

3. Consistent growth

Implementing NPS along with CSAT will make a real difference in your business’ growth trajectory. By conducting NPS surveys at regular intervals, collecting scores and taking action you can both manage the bottom line and identify new opportunities. By making constant improvement through actioning regular feedback, you will increase the quality of your service naturally, thereby increasing the value of your company, and with it, customer loyalty.

Making CSAT + NPS a reality for your business

Now that you’ve bought into the theory, the key is to put it into practice. At SmileBack, we use our own products to collect feedback, analyze customer sentiment and take action every single day. As such, we not only can provide you with the tools to leverage the power your CSAT and NPS, but also can share some of our best practices and learnings from our own journey with customer feedback.

Recommendations can be as simple as automating an immediate response anytime you receive a “negative” or “neutral” CSAT score or prompting a NPS “promoter” to add a review to your Google My Business listing after they’ve left a glowing comment on your survey. They can also be much more sophisticated, helping you do more in-depth data mining and analysis on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis in order to understand underlying trends in your customer experience satisfaction and overall business health.

As experts in customer feedback surveys and satisfaction metrics, SmileBack can help you get the most out of your customer satisfaction data. If you want to know what your customers are really thinking and add more value at every step in your customer’s journey with every customer interaction and touchpoint, using both CSAT and NPS is the best solution.

For more on this topic, check out:

You can start your first NPS campaign and learn how to assess the health of your brand now!

Book a NPS walk-through call now : )

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