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The CSAT Survey: Breaking Down the CSAT Metric to Improve Customer Satisfaction

The CSAT Survey: Breaking Down the CSAT Metric to Improve Customer Satisfaction

What do you want? You want your business to thrive and grow. Customers are at the heart of it all. More new customers, old customers that come back to do business with you and tell other people good things about you lead to better business growth. The better your customers’ experiences with your organization, the more satisfied and happy they will be. The more loyal they will be. The more willing they will be to talk about you. You get the idea. Customer satisfaction is a cornerstone to building better customer experiences and making your customers happy. One of the most important metrics for measuring customer satisfaction is the Customer Satisfaction survey or the CSAT survey.

What is the CSAT Survey?

The CSAT survey asks a customer how satisfied they are with a transaction or interaction.

A typical example is, “Please rate your satisfaction with the service”.

The answers usually range on a five-point scale from Extremely Satisfied to Extremely Dissatisfied.

The CSAT score can be calculated as a weighted average of the ratings divided by the total responses to the survey.

You can choose the weight to assign to each rating and what weighting scale to use. If you use weighted percentages, individual weights should add up to a hundred.

When Should You Use the CSAT Survey?

The CSAT is a transactional metric, so you can use it immediately after a specific interaction. The CSAT will capture a customer’s immediate level of satisfaction with an interaction. The customer satisfaction survey is great for finding out what customers think of your product or service, or changes to a product or service. The CSAT survey is great for:

  • Assessing customer satisfaction with product updates
  • Customer support interactions
  • Sales interactions
  • Key customer touchpoints and customer journey moments

Customer Satisfaction Surveys Across the Customer Journey

The customer experience depends upon your understanding of the customer journey – all the actions, relevant touchpoints and experiences the customer goes through when interacting with your brand. You can use CSAT to track satisfaction across customer touchpoints and throughout the customer journey. You’ll be able to see whether customer satisfaction increased or decreased across the customer’s journey.

You must also link the customer experience to business outcomes. You need to identify key touchpoints that contribute to the positive customer experiences that impact business outcomes. The CSAT survey can help you monitor customer satisfaction across those touchpoints.

CSAT Surveys for Multiple Touchpoints

When you use CSAT across multiple touchpoints, you can find out how customer satisfaction differs across touchpoints. You’ll also be able to identify which touchpoints contribute to higher customer satisfaction.

You should assess whether key customer touchpoints that contribute to a better customer experience are generating customer satisfaction. If they are not, the customer satisfaction survey can help you understand what the problem is. You can use multiple CSAT questions to go deeper into identifying customer satisfaction contributors across a touchpoint.

Next, you can measure satisfaction across those contributors.

CSAT Surveys for a Specific Touchpoint

For a specific customer touchpoint, the CSAT can help you identify specific pain-points that have led to reduced satisfaction. You can break down customer satisfaction across a touchpoint into its individual parts.

Then, use a CSAT survey to measure satisfaction across various attributes in a customer interaction (wait time, navigation, etc.) to pinpoint how they are contributing to the customer’s overall satisfaction. By asking multiple, specific questions in your CSAT surveys, you can get satisfaction data on individual factors that contribute to satisfaction over a specific touchpoint.

However, since the CSAT survey measures satisfaction right after an interaction, you get a short-term view of the customer’s experience. The CSAT alone isn’t enough to translate customer experience into long-term business outcomes.

The Pros and Cons of the CSAT Survey

The CSAT survey has its advantages. As we’ve seen, it can:

  • Get useful data on the customer experience which is easy to analyze.
  • Help measure satisfaction across specific interactions and touchpoints.
  • Be intuitive, simple and flexible – allowing you to give your customers context.
  • Be short and to-the-point – thus increasing response rates.

However, the CSAT survey does have some disadvantages.

  • It reflects sentiment in the short term, instead of overall customer opinion of the brand.
  • The word “satisfaction” is subjective and means different things to different people.
  • Satisfaction doesn’t necessarily convert into business outcomes like loyalty, repeat purchases or positive referrals.
  • Responses in the neutral category, Neither Satisfied nor Dissatisfied, do not give you any workable data.

CSAT as a Part of Customer Experience Management

Does this mean the CSAT survey isn’t useful? Far from it. The CSAT survey can help create highly satisfactory experiences for your customers. This is important, as highly-satisfied customers can be converted into emotionally-connected customers. Brands that fully engage customers emotionally, tap into “emotional motivators” that drive profitable consumer behaviors.

When you use the CSAT survey with broad organizational metrics like Net Promoter Score® (NPS®), which measures customer loyalty, you can measure and improve the overall customer experience and improve business performance.  You can use NPS to create a customer-centric business.

Survey Software to Create a Continuous Feedback Loop

Use the CSAT survey across key touchpoints on a regular basis to capture continuous feedback. When you use this CSAT data with broader NPS and other customer data, you’ll develop a detailed view of the customer experience.

And thanks to feedback management software, you can collect, manage and analyze feedback data easily. A response management system will help you analyze individual feedback and close the loop on specific customer issues. You’ll also be able to create reports to identify levels of satisfaction and create trends to track satisfaction over time.

As a result, you’ll be able to create a closed-loop feedback system that measures and improves customer satisfaction continuously. You’ll be able to manage feedback to create improvements that optimize the customer experience across key customer touchpoints and throughout the customer journey.

Improve your customers’ experience today. Request a demo of Zonka’s feedback management software, or set up a free trial.

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