How to Measure Customer Satisfaction

4 ways to find out how your customers really feel about your brand.

May 2021 - 6 minutes

High customer satisfaction is the holy grail for customer service professionals, but this isn't always easy to measure. A lot goes into customer satisfaction. While many companies default to gathering customer satisfaction feedback through surveys, these have their limitations. Not everyone responds, and it’s hard to get the complete picture.

93% of high-performing service organizations track customer satisfaction.

Source: “State of Service,” Salesforce, December 2020.

Here are all the ways to measure customer satisfaction — beyond surveys — and how to improve your customer experience based on your results.

Review all customer correspondence

Ensure that your service console enables agents to connect with customers across channels — phone, email, text, chat, messenger apps, or social media. From a single platform, agents respond in the same channel and resolve the issue right there.

Next, collect information across all customer service inquiries so you can figure out where and why things may be going wrong and prevent problems before they start. For example, if many customers reach out about order-processing time, you can collaborate with operations and maintenance to make improvements.

What types of metrics measure customer satisfaction? Track these on an ongoing basis:


Quality of service


Speed of service




Complaints or problems




Relationships across your company


Services needed


Customer sentiment

You may also notice that customers who place larger orders or people who purchase a specific product tend to use the support ticket system. In contrast, single-item purchasers or new customers may use social media when they need help. Tracking these trends helps you understand how to improve customer service and increase customer satisfaction.

This insight can also inform your help center or self-service customer portal content strategy. Based on the volume of inquiries around a specific topic, you can create new knowledge articles to walk customers through simple processes and deflect more cases.

Along with recurring topics, take note of each customer’s emotions. An angry customer may express frustration through the words they choose and use all caps in a webchat.

Conversely, upbeat messages include exclamation points, positive feedback, and specific emojis that suggest the customer is satisfied (like smiley faces, clapping, and cheering). Train agents how to respond appropriately to all scenarios with the basics of emotional intelligence.

Quantify customer loyalty

Repeat purchases say a lot about customer satisfaction. If a customer purchases an item repeatedly, they are likely happy with the product. This leads to a higher customer lifetime value and the likelihood they will recommend the brand to their network and contacts.

Repeat frequency, customer lifetime value, and average cost per order are all metrics that indicate customer satisfaction. These can help you make decisions about your business. For instance, if a specific product is sold in larger numbers to repeat customers rather than to new ones, you may see a higher level of satisfaction long-term with that product over one that is popular only with new customers. Based on these insights, you might rethink your product strategy.

Assess response to promotion

Review how customers respond to promotions, such as coupons or seasonal sales. Promotion responses can tell you how your customers feel about your products and your brand without completing a survey. Some promotions that help measure customer satisfaction include:

  • Discounts on products previously purchased. If many customers take advantage of a sale, you can conclude that they were happy enough with their initial purchase to buy it again. The discount just provides an extra incentive.
  • Channel-exclusive discounts. Social media followers connect with a brand when they like a product or want to engage and learn more about a company. Offering promotions exclusively to followers can improve their overall experience and increase engagement. You can try a similar approach with your email base.
  • Referral or affiliate promotions. The more likely a customer is to recommend your product or service to their network, the higher their enthusiasm for your brand.

After a customer interaction, an agent may continue the engagement by putting a customer on a personalized journey. For example, in retail, an agent may deploy an exclusive offer based on their shopping behaviors and preferences. In media companies, if a subscriber expresses frustration over an unresolved issue, the agent may put them on a win-back journey that leverages promotions. You can measure how a customer responds based on these offers.

Monitor social media mentions

Many customers use social media platforms to praise a great experience with a company or share their frustrations. Their friends, followers, or anyone who searches by brand name or hashtag can find out about the experience.

That’s great for a brand that gets positive reviews but not so much for a company that is racking up negative ones. It’s essential to respond quickly to defuse problems or complaints.

Track sentiment across your social platforms with social listening tools. Set automated alerts to know when someone is discussing your brand and respond as needed. Include the following:

  • Exact brand and product names
  • Common misspellings of brand and product names
  • Branded nicknames
  • Mascots or employee names
  • Sale names commonly tied to the company

Re-share positive reviews or messages on your company’s social networks. This shows customers that you are listening and value what they have to say.

Be sure to connect marketing and service channels so service agents can jump in if there is an issue. For example, an agent may invite a customer to begin a private conversation to resolve a problem they posted about on Twitter, either through a direct message or another preferred channel.

Pull it all together into an action plan

Consistently review your results. A monthly overall data analysis helps you determine how to measure customer satisfaction and make improvements. From there, work across departments to ensure that customer satisfaction translates into your company’s success.

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