The power of NPS® is not in the feature itself but in how you use it. We’ve created a three-part series to walk you through best practices on how to best utilize NPS:
This third and final article in the series walks you through probably the most important aspect of your NPS surveys—understanding the meaning of the results and creating an action plan to improve.
What do your NPS results mean?
As discussed previously, NPS is a measure of your customer’s overall loyalty to your company. The score is calculated by taking the percentage of respondents who are promoters and subtracting the percentage of respondents that are detractors. This will generate a score ranging from -100 to 100, which is your Net Promoter Score℠. But how do you know whether your NPS is good or not?
After you send out your first NPS survey campaign, you’ll want to treat your first set of NPS results as a baseline for improvement. Just because you have a negative or 0 score does not mean you’re doing poorly. In some industries, a score of 0 could be much higher than your competitors!
Instead, focus on your customer’s feedback and improving your NPS over time.
Creating custom reports to analyze your NPS results
The NPS dashboard automatically calculates and graphs your NPS responses for each NPS survey you’ve sent—providing you with a quick snapshot of your NPS results.
However, you can dive deeper into your results and perform more meaningful analysis with a third-party reporting tool of your choice (Explore does not measure NPS data). You can build your own custom reports that slice and dice your NPS results against any data point you track in Zendesk Support.
Here are few sample reports to inspire the data geek living inside you.
NPS responses by rating
Here's an example of a custom report you can build to showcase your NPS responses by rating so you can visualize the spread of customer responses.
If you want to drill in on a specific score, you can export all your NPS responses into a CSV file, then filter for the specific responses you’re looking for. For example, you might want to perform further analysis on customers who gave you a score of 8 and learn what you can do to boost their score to a 9.
With your exported CSV file, you can either read through all the customer comments or use a text analysis tool, such as Clarabridge, to sort through feedback. Some companies use text analysis, but also share the CSV file with the whole company to read through every line of feedback.
NPS trends over customer tenure
You could create another custom report to understand how your NPS trends change over a customer’s tenure.
A healthy trend would be to see more promoters among your customers who are more tenured. If you’re not seeing that, then perhaps some of your long-term customers may be at risk of churning—calling for you to look into what’s going wrong in their customer experience.
Understand how different types of customers feel about your company
If your reporting tool captures any custom user or organization data you create as an attribute that you can report on, you can capture relevant customer information, such as type of customer (e.g. prospect, partner, freemium customer, paying customer).
You can then create a custom report that analyzes NPS ratings by customer type so you can better understand different types of customer sentiment and improve the experience based on the type of customer.
What: # NPS Promoter Ratings, # NPS Passive Ratings, # NPS Detractor Ratings
How: Select your custom user/org field (e.g. customer type) as the attribute
Filter: Optional filter for customer type or time dimension
Measure the impact of great customer service on overall customer loyalty (NPS vs. CSAT)
We all know anecdotally that great customer service can impact your business’ bottom line. But how do you measure the value of customer satisfaction?
You can measure how and whether higher customer satisfaction influences your Net Promoter Score. As you drive higher and higher customer satisfaction ratings, you may see a simultaneous increase in your NPS results which is great news for your support team.
What: % Satisfaction Score, NPS Score
How: Select an event time dimension (e.g. Month/Year (Event))
Filter: Define your event time dimension (e.g. Month/Year (Event) is last 6 months)
Chart customization: Plot your Satisfaction Score on the primary y-axis and your NPS Score on the secondary y-axis
Retain your high-value customers (NPS vs. total spend/MRR)
Another valuable way to look at your NPS results is based on the various product offerings your customers purchase from you, as well as how much they’re spending. If your high-value customers are not submitting NPS ratings of 9 or 10, perhaps you might want to perform deeper analysis on why.
Dropdown field for product line
- Decimal field for total spend or MRR (if you’re a subscription business)
Your drop-down field will need to be brought into your third-party reporting tool as an attribute that you can insert in the “HOW” section of your report.
Next, you’ll want to build some custom metrics to group your detractors, passives, and promoters.
What: Detractors, Passives, Promoters
How: Product Line
Chart customization: Choose a bar chart
How can you improve your NPS?
No matter how great your NPS reports are, the customer experience does not improve with knowledge alone. Armed with meaningful reports and relevant insights, it’s time to take action and improve the customer experience (and your Net Promoter Score).
Dare to share your NPS results
Sharing honest customer feedback can be a scary step. But it’s the first step towards improvement.
Export your NPS results into a CSV file and share it with your entire company. Chances are the gripes your customers have with your business stem from every department within your organization. Sharing this feedback enables your whole organization to develop more customer empathy and reflect on how they can individually improve the customer experience.
Form a cross-departmental task force
Improving the customer experience is a team effort—from product to support to sales to marketing. After you’ve shared customer feedback from your NPS surveys with your entire organization, you might want to set up a cross-departmental task force to create an action plan to resolve current customer pain points.
This is something Zendesk’s own team has been doing over the last year. Our customer service team does not own the customer experience alone; the overall customer experience is influenced by how we build our product, the conversations our sales team has, and how we communicate on our website.
Create an action plan
Based on the analysis you’ve done on your NPS results, you should have a better understanding on why your detractors are churn risks, what’s keeping your passives from recommending you, and why your promoters love your business.
Find the common denominators among your passives and begin to work towards resolving those pain points, so you can turn the passives to promoters. As for your detractors, focus on your “high” detractors (e.g. rating 4-6) and work on moving them up at least to the passive group. With your cross-departmental task force, you can work to improve your product, uplevel the customer care, or whatever issues that impede the customer experience.
Lastly, do not forget about your promoters. Understand why they love your business and make sure they, and others, continue to receive that same experience.
Perform preventative maintenance
Sometimes it might be impossible to turn a customer who rates you a 0 into a promoter. Instead of losing hope and giving up on these customers, you can perform what we call preventative maintenance. While there might not be anything you can do to turn a 0 rating around, you can prevent other customers from becoming a 0 from the start.
You definitely want to understand why your detractors give you a poor rating and prevent future occurrences and raise your Net Promoter Score over time.
Keep at it!
Investing in the measurement of NPS is a long-term investment. Improvements do not happen overnight. But if you and your team keep surveying customers on a regular basis, do your due diligence in analyzing their feedback, bring it back to your organization, and actively work as a team to improve, your business will reap the benefits of long-term customer retention and loyalty.
This wraps up our 3-part NPS best practices series. For help getting started with NPS, check out this getting started guide.
**Net Promoter, NPS, and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks, and Net Promoter Score and Net Promoter System are service marks, of Bain & Company, Inc., Satmetrix Systems, Inc. and Fred Reichheld.