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What is Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)? And how to measure CSAT?

Measuring customer satisfaction is crucial, but with so many methods out there, it can get really confusing. Ready to simplify and find the best start for you?

What is Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)? And how to measure CSAT?
What is Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)? And how to measure CSAT?

To make your decision easier, we’re focusing on a widely favored satisfaction survey method: the Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT). We’ll explore the ins and outs of CSAT surveys, including what they assess, the optimal time for their deployment, and the best ways to utilize the insights they provide. In a hurry? Feel free to skip ahead to the specifics you’re seeking.

What is Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)?

CSAT measures customer satisfaction with a product, service, or specific interaction, providing businesses with a snapshot of how their offerings are perceived. It is typically obtained through a direct question, such as “How would you rate your satisfaction with our [product/service]?” with responses recorded on a scale, usually from 1 (very unsatisfied) to 5 (very satisfied). This metric shines in its simplicity, allowing for quick assessment and action.

Understanding CSAT’s Core

  • Immediate Feedback: CSAT captures customer sentiment right after an interaction, offering real-time insights.
  • Specificity: Unlike broader metrics, CSAT focuses on specific touchpoints, allowing businesses to pinpoint exact strengths and weaknesses.
  • Actionability: The clarity of CSAT results enables swift, targeted improvements to enhance customer satisfaction.

How to Measure CSAT 

Calculating your CSAT score is straightforward yet reveals profound insights into your customer experience quality. Here’s how:

  1. Aggregate Positive Responses: Tally up all responses that are considered positive (typically 4s and 5s on a 5-point scale).
  2. Total Responses: Count the total number of responses received for your CSAT survey.
  3. The Calculation: Divide the number of positive responses by the total number of responses, then multiply by 100 to convert to a percentage.

Things you might want to consider:

  • Segmentation: Consider calculating CSAT scores for different segments (e.g., product lines, customer demographics) for more nuanced insights.
  • Trend Analysis: Analyzing CSAT scores over time can reveal trends and the impact of specific actions or changes.
how to measure customer satisfaction
how to measure customer satisfaction

CSAT Questions

Creating effective CSAT (Customer Satisfaction Score) questions is crucial for gathering actionable insights about customer satisfaction. Here are three sample CSAT questions designed to elicit meaningful feedback:

  1. Overall Satisfaction: “On a scale from 1 to 5, with 5 being ‘Very Satisfied’ and 1 being ‘Very Unsatisfied,’ how would you rate your overall satisfaction with our service/product today?”

  2. Specific Aspect Satisfaction: “How satisfied were you with the speed and efficiency of our service today? Please rate on a scale of 1 to 5, where 5 is ‘Very Satisfied’ and 1 is ‘Very Unsatisfied.'”

  3. Follow-up Action Satisfaction: “Considering your recent interaction with our customer support team, how satisfied are you with the resolution provided? Please rate your satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being ‘Very Satisfied’ and 1 being ‘Very Unsatisfied.'”

CSAT Surveys

Here are five best practices to ensure your CSAT surveys are effective:

    1. Keep It Short and Simple: Customers are more likely to complete your survey if it’s concise. Limit your survey to a few targeted questions that focus on their most recent interaction with your service or product. This not only respects the customer’s time but also ensures higher response rates.

    2. Ask Clear and Specific Questions: Each question should be straightforward and focus on a specific aspect of the customer experience. Ambiguity in questions can lead to confusion and unreliable data. For example, instead of asking, “How do you feel about our service?” specify the service aspect you’re asking about, such as “How satisfied are you with the speed of our service?”

    3. Time Your Survey Strategically: Send out your CSAT survey as close to the customer interaction as possible. The customer’s experience is freshest right after the interaction, leading to more accurate and honest feedback. Delayed surveys can result in diminished response rates and less reliable feedback.

    4. Use an Appropriate Scale: The scale you choose for responses (e.g., 1 to 5, 1 to 10) should match the type of insight you’re seeking. A 1 to 5 scale is common for CSAT, providing a balanced range of options without overwhelming the respondent. Ensure the meaning of each point on the scale is clear, such as 1 being “Very Unsatisfied” and 5 “Very Satisfied.”

    5. Act on the Feedback: Simply collecting CSAT data isn’t enough. Demonstrate to your customers that their feedback leads to real changes. Follow up on the insights gathered from your surveys by making improvements, and communicate these changes back to your customers. This not only enhances the customer experience but also builds trust and loyalty.

Modern survey tools can automate survey distribution at optimal times, personalize questions based on customer history, and analyze responses for actionable insights.

Free Customer Service Metrics Calculator

Calculate your business’s key metrics and KPIs for customer support, service, and success with this free template

  • Net Promoter Score
  • Customer Lifetime Value
  • Customer Effort Score
  • Customer Acquisition Cost
  • Customer Retention Rate
  • Much more


Use Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) when you need immediate feedback on specific transactions or interactions. It’s ideal for measuring the impact of changes in your product or service and understanding customer satisfaction at distinct touchpoints.

Use Net Promoter Score (NPS) to get a broader view of your customer loyalty and brand perception. It’s beneficial for strategic planning, measuring the effectiveness of loyalty programs, and understanding your position in the market over time.

Integrating CSAT and NPS

For a comprehensive view of customer experience and loyalty, businesses should consider using both CSAT and NPS together. While CSAT can help you refine and improve the immediate customer experience, NPS offers insights into the long-term health of your customer relationships. Together, they provide a balanced approach to managing customer satisfaction and loyalty, enabling businesses to make informed decisions that enhance both immediate and sustained customer engagement.

Why is CSAT Important?

Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) is one of the essential customer experience KPIs for businesses for several compelling reasons. Only 1 in 26 unhappy customers will speak up, leaving many to leave without giving the business a chance to make things right. Understanding why CSAT is important can help organizations not only to measure but also to improve their customer experience, ultimately driving growth and success. Here are the key reasons why CSAT is crucial:

1. Immediate Feedback for Actionable Insights

  • Timeliness: CSAT provides immediate feedback following an interaction or transaction, giving businesses a real-time snapshot of customer satisfaction.
  • Specificity: This specificity allows companies to quickly identify issues or successes in their customer service, product quality, or overall customer experience.

2. Enhances Customer Experience

  • Problem Identification: By regularly measuring CSAT, businesses can pinpoint areas where customers are not fully satisfied and take targeted actions to address these issues.
  • Customer-Centric Improvements: Implementing changes based on CSAT feedback demonstrates a commitment to customer satisfaction, enhancing the overall customer experience.

3. Increases Customer Retention

  • Satisfaction and Loyalty: Satisfied customers are more likely to remain loyal to a brand, leading to increased customer retention.
  • Cost Efficiency: Retaining existing customers is often more cost-effective than acquiring new ones, making CSAT a financially impactful metric.

4. Drives Business Growth

  • Repeat Business: Customers who report high satisfaction levels are more likely to make repeat purchases or continue using a service.
  • Positive Word-of-Mouth: Satisfied customers are also more likely to recommend a business to others, driving organic growth through word-of-mouth marketing.

5. Benchmarking and Competitive Advantage

  • Industry Standards: CSAT allows businesses to benchmark their performance against industry standards or competitors, identifying where they excel or where improvement is needed.
  • Differentiation: High CSAT scores can differentiate a business in a crowded market, serving as a competitive advantage.

How to improve CSAT?

1. Enhance Customer Service

  • Train your team in effective communication and problem-solving skills. Quick, empathetic responses to inquiries or complaints can significantly boost satisfaction.

2. Streamline Processes

  • Simplify purchasing, support, and feedback processes to minimize customer effort. A smooth, hassle-free experience encourages positive feedback.

3. Leverage Customer Feedback

  • Actively use feedback from CSAT surveys to make targeted improvements. Addressing customer concerns directly can turn detractors into promoters.

4. Personalize the Customer Experience

  • Tailor interactions based on customer preferences and history. Omnichannel customer engagement when combined with personalization makes customers feel valued, enhancing their overall satisfaction.

5. Foster a Customer-Centric Culture

  • Embed customer satisfaction as a core value across your organization. When everyone from the top down prioritizes customer happiness, improvements in CSAT scores naturally follow.


Understanding and effectively using CSAT can transform customer feedback into a strategic asset. By meticulously measuring, analyzing, and acting on CSAT scores along with other customer experience analytics, businesses can enhance their customer experience, fostering loyalty and driving growth. Embracing both CSAT and complementary metrics like NPS enables a holistic approach to understanding and improving customer relationships, laying the foundation for sustained success in today’s competitive landscape.

Continuing the Journey

Diving deeper into customer experience analytics and digital customer experience strategy development is essential for businesses looking to leverage CSAT fully. Exploring advanced tools and methodologies can unlock new insights and opportunities for refinement, ensuring that customer satisfaction remains at the heart of business strategy.

Suggested Reading: 

Best Customer Experience Analytics Tools to Delight your Customers

7 Exceptional Customer Experience Examples


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