You’ve built a great product, perfected your customer acquisition process and even started to poll your customers to learn more about what they think of you. There’s only one problem: the Net Promoter Score® and feedback you received wasn’t as good as you expected.
One of the biggest strengths of NPS® is that it’s an objective, quantifiable measure of how your customers view your product or service. If you’re doing well and your customers are happy, it’s an excellent source of encouragement.
If you’re not doing well, however, it can serve as an even more important reality check that your existing product, pricing or customer service is in need of improvement.
Luckily, turning around a negative NPS isn’t as challenging as it might seem. Small changes to your customer service process, from improving your guarantee to making it easier for customers to contact you, can have significant, measurable effects on your Net Promoter Score.
Is your NPS not quite as good as it could be? Below, we’ve listed seven easy customer service hacks that you can implement for your business to improve your Net Promoter Score and retain more satisfied, loyal customers.
Offer a bulletproof guarantee
The riskier it is for a customer to buy your product, the more a guarantee can help you assure your customers that you care about their experience.
In the early days of the SaaS world, businesses quickly discovered that a free trial took the guesswork and risk out of buying a product. Today, startups don’t debate the value of a free trial – they debate which trial period is the most effective.
If you sell a physical product, you can reduce risk for customers by offering a guarantee that the product you sell will meet their expectations. The more customers feel they’re protected against risks, the more positively they’re likely to view your brand (and by extension, your product).
Brands like JanSport have taken this to the extreme by offering lifetime warranties on many of their products. While your guarantee doesn’t need to last a lifetime, demonstrating that you’re there for your customers goes a long way towards creating positive sentiment.
Create an automated onboarding email sequence
The biggest enemy of any SaaS company is churn – ongoing cancellations fueled by customers either losing interest in a product or discovering a better alternative. The more churn a business has, the harder it is for it to maintain a steady and strong level of growth.
NPS and churn are closely linked – companies with the highest Net Promoter Scores tend to have low churn rates, while companies with poor NPS suffer from significant customer churn.
One reason for customer churn, especially in new users, is a poor (or non-existent) onboarding sequence that leaves customers guessing how to use your product. Instead of feeling at home from the minute they first log in, customers end up confused due to a lack of clarity.
If you offer a SaaS product, particularly a complicated one, make sure you implement an automated onboarding email sequence to bring customers up to speed with your UI, features and contact process as soon as they register.
This will help you reduce the amount of customers that “drop off” and cancel within their first one or two weeks, all while improving engagement and clarity for customers that decide to stay with your business.
Reach out to customers personally
When a customer signs up for your free trial or purchases your product, do you reach out with a personalized email or send a generic onboarding sequence?
Automated onboarding sequences are fantastic for helping users become familiar with software, especially if it has a steep learning curve. But they’re far from personal, and they don’t welcome users like a personal message can.
When a customer purchases your product, signs up for your free trial or sends an enquiry, reach out personally to ask how you can help them. Even if most customers don’t take up your offer of help, they’ll appreciate the gesture and form a more positive impression of your business.
Make it easy for customers to contact you
How easy is it for your customers to contact you? One of the most common complaints of SaaS customers is that getting in touch with support – particularly a real, live person – can take days, after which they’ve already searched and found an answer to their question or either cancelled the service.
Make it as easy as possible for your customers to contact you and you’ll notice an improvement in their perception of you. Email software provider ONTRAPORT does a fantastic job of this by listing their 800 support number right at the top of their support page.
If you offer live chat support, list the hours on your website so that users always know when they can and can’t contact you. If it takes you 24+ hours to respond to emails, let users know as soon as they contact you so that there’s no confusion.
Most customers will tolerate a slower-than-average response and understand that it takes time to solve problems, but only if you let them know. Make your support process as transparent and easy as possible and you’ll have happier customers that feel like they’re truly cared for.
Use NPS feedback to improve your product documentation
The longer you use a NPS product to measure customer satisfaction, the more you’ll notice the same comments, suggestions, compliments and complaints emerging from different customers.
This data can be valuable for improving your product and optimizing user experience. If multiple users all report similar bugs, problems or frustrations, analysis of the most frequent feedback is a valuable asset for your product, development and QA teams.
You can also use this feedback to improve your product documentation, preventing it from popping up in NPS surveys again in the future. Let your customers know that you’ve used their feedback and you’ll even strengthen your relationship.
NPS feedback is valuable for more than just closing the loop and retaining customers. Use it to create better product documentation and you’ll lighten the load on your customer service team, all while creating more helpful FAQs, guides and tutorials for your customers.
Give clients personal, old-fashioned contact
In the age of automated everything, being a little old fashioned can have huge benefits for your business.
Paul Graham’s famous advice to do things that don’t scale is just as valuable for improving your Net Promoter Score as it is for acquiring customers. From phone support for your top customers to letters, holiday cards, your customers will notice when you offer service that doesn’t scale.
When customers are unhappy, close the loop positively
It’s surprisingly easy to turn a detractor into a promoter. All it takes is the right response at the right time, and a proactive effort to close the loop and turn their negative experience with your product or service into a positive one.
Whenever you receive negative feedback from a customer, close the loop. Act as quickly as you can to solve their issue and overdeliver, as a swift response is often that’s required to convert an otherwise unhappy detractor into a promoter for your business.
Most unhappy customers won’t talk about their experience with your product, but the few that do are all it takes to cause lasting damage. Close the loop with a positive interaction and you won’t just win over a new promoter – you’ll also prevent detractors from damaging your brand.
Retain more customers with Retently Sentiment
Our automated NPS product lets you measure customer sentiment and feedback from your customers. Learn more about how Retently works and start surveying and retaining your customers today!