Avoid These 8 Pitfalls with Net Promoter Score

5 minute read

Avoid These 8 Pitfalls with Net Promoter Score

Simplicity is one reason the Net Promoter Score, or NPS, has become such an exceedingly popular customer service tracking method. Easy for buyers and businesses alike, there’s a reason why so many Fortune 500 companies have latched onto the system including GE, Virgin Media, and the Home Depot.

But don’t be fooled into thinking the NPS system means you get to set it and forget it. Tools like integrated NPS tracking software can streamline the process, but it’s still common for businesses to think customer satisfaction analytics involves follow only a single number. Cue their annoyance when they fail to see any real improvement.

If you notice your NPS score failing to budge. you might be making these common NPS mistakes. But with just a few easy tweaks, discover how simple achieving higher customer happiness becomes with an enhanced Net Promoter Score strategy.

  1. Never Establishing a Specific Goal or Objective

    What exactly are your customer satisfaction goals or objectives? Of course you want to make every buyer happy. But without specific goals it’s impossible to gauge progress or achievements properly. And no—just getting any higher score isn’t enough.

    One way to set a benchmark is by comparing your current score with other brands in your industry. For example, hotels currently average an NPS of 44. If your small boutique inn scores a 38, creating a goal to hit that 44 mark is a great step. Do ensure goals are realistic as biting off too much off can lead to disappointment and low morale.

  2. Not Segmenting Your Clientele

    One size does not fit all when it comes to customers, so why follow them all under one Net Promoter Score? Instead, break apart important groups and track each one separately. This allows you to tailor strategies specifically targeting each group.

    Though they vary depending on the brand, product or industry, popular NPS segments include:

    • Age
    • Location
    • Date of First Purchase
    • Products Purchased
    • Income Level
    • Frequency of Purchase

    By tracking segments, uncover each group’s particular patterns, grievances, likes, and dislikes. This allows for an exceptionally precise way to formulate methods to target each audience.

    Don't ignore your customers over NPS

  3. Focusing on Net Promoter Scores Alone

    When boiled down, your NPS is about way more than just a number. It’s great for a bite-sized, trackable metric. However, if that’s all you’re using to try and understand your customer’s satisfaction, you’re missing out on crucial information.

    Avoid valuing ratings over actual customer feedback. Otherwise, you’ll have no idea if that score of 2 happened because of a terrible product or terrible customer service. How can you tweak your strategy, improve problem areas, or promote successful ideas without thoroughly digging into customer comments?

  4. Asking Questions at the Wrong Times

    Getting an accurate Net Promoter Score is all about timing. Too soon—like right after they click ‘Buy’ on an online purchase—and promptness or product quality won’t equate into their rating. Wait too long and users might forget important details of their buying process.

    Asking a client about their experience a few days after receiving their product is an optimal length of time, though this can vary depending on the business. Also, periodically loopback with each customer to follow up on their ongoing satisfaction, boost user engagement, and encourage them to make another purchase. Sound like too much extra work? Integrate NPS management software and perfectly schedule and collect feedback with minimal extra effort.

  5. Not Communicating With Your Entire Team

    So your NPS tracking team has compiled valuable information. They’ve been successfully following up with clients, recording relevant feedback, understanding your brand’s successes, and understanding where it’s falling short. But then what?

    The Net Promoter Score isn’t meant solely for those on top. Unless it’s trickling down to every single person working for your company, consider the entire process a monstrous waste of time. You can’t fix something you don’t know is broken. How can employees know how to improve their current strategies and boost customer satisfaction if they’re kept in the dark?

    If customers express frustration regarding their online user experience, ensure the web development team gets the memo. Are shoppers raving about new member rewards program? Let floor staff know to promote it even more. Do clients continually complain about your customer support line? Inform the team so they can revamp current strategies.

    Team focusing on computer

  6. Obsessing Over That Number

    Remember. Your NPS is just one small piece—albeit an important one—when it comes to tracking customer satisfaction. There’s so much more that goes into boosting your rating and creating a better experience. Hyperfocusing on scores alone can put blinders on when it comes to equally—or even more critical—indicators.

    Instead, use everything from the feedback collected alongside the NPS rating to focus groups, in-depth surveys, reviews from online marketplaces like Amazon, and more to the evaluate overall customer experience. The NPS rating is just one part of the system—not the be-all end-all of determining results.

  7. Asking Too Many Questions

    In a world of endless emails, pop-ups, spam, etc. the NPS system succeeds because it takes literal seconds—at least when properly used. However, when given the power to ask current customers what they think of your product or services, it’s easy to get carried away with the desire to ask everything.

    “How was the quality of your purchase?”

    “Was the shirt size perfect?”

    “Describe your interaction with your jeweler?”

    “Were our bathrooms clean?”

    Rather than a five-second favor, users now perceive a serious time suck and skip it altogether. This ultimately minimizes participants and provides a less accurate NPS. Instead, only ask for their rating, feedback, and at most 1–2 more quick questions. If it takes more than 30 seconds to complete, consider an additional strategy for gathering in-depth information.

  8. Focusing More on Detractors—Not Promoters

    Nobody likes a bad review. That’s why it’s entirely natural to overanalyze and pay extra attention to Detractors. Who wouldn’t want to thoroughly dissect every lousy review, examine where the business went wrong, and how to bring those naysayers back?

    Of course, deciphering your weaknesses is a vital part of improving client satisfaction. We’re no way suggesting that Detractors and their feedback be ignored in any way. However, the number one NPS priority should be to convert customers into lifelong, enthusiastic Promoters. Let fostering positive, long-term relationships take precedence over spending time on Passives or Detractors.

    After all, the Promoters are the ones excited to spend their hard-earned money on your brand. They’re also the ones thrilled to shout their love for your brand from the proverbial rooftops. Listen to what they love about your company and ensure every customer receives a similar experience.

    Just consider the potential ROI. Even if you spend ample time appealing to Detractors, at best you’ll pull them into a Passive. Great—but there’s still a chance you’ll never see another penny from them. On the other hand, nurture a Passive into a Promoter and expect regular purchases from them (and their friends and family) for years to come.