When the Internet was in its early stages, a statistic that measures customer loyalty was created. Now that Net Promoter Score is in its teen years, the pitfalls have become clear. This number was first described as the only number that any business needed to grow. But, in reality, businesses need more information.
Net Promoter Score is a useful number because it does what a helpful statistic should do:
Unfortunately, there are several things wrong with relying solely on the Net Promoter Score. The number isn’t an accurate measure of customer loyalty. Instead of relying on this number, there are better metrics to use for evaluation. These are seven other pitfalls to avoid when looking at NPS:
1. Dramatic swings are only drama.
Because NPS uses such a large scale for responses, there are bound to be dramatic swings. As the middle numbers that have no qualifications, customers do not really know the difference between a 4, 6, or 8. So, when they choose a variety of numbers, there will be swings. And, those swings are just drama, not useable data.
2. Data in NPS doesn’t make sense.
Since NPS uses a big scale with 11 selections, no one really knows what the numbers mean. NPS then organizes the numbers into three categories, but customers who are choosing the numbers don’t know that they are being categorized as promoters, passives, or detractors.
The 9s and 10s are promoters, 7s and 8s are passives, and the rest detractors. For some customers, 7s might translate into a passing score for a business they like and might frequent. But, since NPS believes that a 7 is a passive customer, no questions asked.
3. The big scales do not work.
When it comes to finding out what customers really believe, it is best to ask them with specific questions. Instead, NPS has an 11-point scale that does not have any specifics other than at the 0 and 10 points.
Instead, the best option for businesses is to pick a scale with three points, like yes, no, and maybe. It is also wise to ask actual questions and provide a space for the customer to answer the question.
4. NPS questions don’t ask about the future.
The NPS questions only ask about what is happening currently, so businesses cannot rely on the answers for future customer behavior.
5. Experience and scores do not match.
If the question is about likelihood to recommend a company to a friend. This does not ask about customer satisfaction. It does not ask about experience. It only asks if the customer would recommend the company. The scores do not reflect whether the company provides good service or does anything special.
6. It’s easy to manipulate the data.
Raises are often tied to NPS numbers, especially when the numbers increase. But, it is easy to artificially show that numbers increased, so raises should not be tied to NPS.
7. Experience isn’t a number.
Experience is a story. It isn’t numerical. At best, experience is a yes or no question. For example, if your business needs to know if a customer would recommend your business, set the scale as yes, no, maybe. Then, you get a story, albeit a short one.