Customer expectations are higher than ever. With fierce competition out there for SaaS businesses, it’s a struggle to retain customers every month when an alternative solution is just a click away.
As any successful business knows, striving to meet customers’ expectations and needs is essential so they continue to adopt your product and find success. Through your product and through your service, you must consistently deliver value to customers to keep them coming back to your software for more.
The way businesses can understand whether customers are happy with their service is by keeping track of customer satisfaction. 89% of customers are more likely to make another purchase after a positive service experience, so satisfaction is an important metric to stay on top of. In this article, we’ll look at how to increase customer satisfaction for your business.
What is Customer Satisfaction?
Customer satisfaction is how customers feel about your products and services. It’s a measure of how happy they are with the overall experience they have received, and is a subjective impression formed internally.
If a customer is satisfied, it means they are happy with your product, service or experience. They feel that the business has delivered on what it promised and they’re getting good value for money out of your software.
Customer satisfaction changes over time. In fact, one bad service experience has the potential to impact customer satisfaction so much that a customer will seriously consider doing business with someone else. As subscription businesses, SaaS companies must regularly touch base with their customers to ensure their ongoing satisfaction.
Why is Customer Satisfaction Important?
Customer satisfaction is integral to your SaaS business because it is a predictor of how likely customers are to stay with you, thereby improving customer retention. Satisfied customers are at a lower risk of churn as they are happy with the service that you deliver, and they feel that your business appreciates them.
Satisfied customers tell their friends about you and earn your business valuable referrals. 72% of customers will share their good experiences with others. When you make customers satisfied, you create memorable experiences for them which motivates them to keep buying your SaaS and encouraging others to do so as well.
When customers are satisfied, they are more likely to buy other products and you see your profits soar, with increased Customer Lifetime Value. Satisfied customers mean you are looking after your existing customers, who are responsible for the majority of your revenue.
How to Measure Customer Satisfaction
The way to measure customer satisfaction is through sending out a survey that asks customers to rate their Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT). It’s measured by asking customers “How satisfied are you with the service you received today?” or something similar and prompting them to rate their experience on a scale of 1 to 5. 1 is very unsatisfied and 5 is very satisfied.
When you have all of your scores, you add the total of the responses you received and divide it by the total number of respondents. For example, 250 divided by 50 is a satisfaction score of 5 – great work!
Customer satisfaction surveys often include a free text box where customers can include extra information about why they have chosen their particular score. This can be a great way to gather feedback for how your business could improve in the future. 80% of businesses use Customer Satisfaction Score to analyze customer experience and make it better.
Another way to measure customer satisfaction is through a Net Promoter Score survey (NPS), which asks customers: “On a scale from 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this product/company to a friend or colleague?”. Net Promoter Score classifies your customers as either a Detractor (1-6), Passive (7-8), or Promoter (9-10), based on scoring out of 10.
You are then scored on a scale of between -100 to 100. NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of Detractors from the percentage of Promoters. For example, 60% (Promoters) – 20% (Detractors) equals an NPS score of 40. Nice job!
A final way to gather customer satisfaction results is to send out a Customer Effort Score (CES) survey. It measures how much effort a customer has to go through to complete a transaction with your business. It’s conducted by asking a question: “[Company] made it easy to handle my issue”. The customer then gives a score rated between 1 to 7
How to Increase Customer Satisfaction
Optimize your software
In an ideal world, your SaaS product should sell itself. Customers will be satisfied when your product works as promised and delivers a superior user experience. You should be regularly reviewing how your product meets your customers’ needs and shipping new features that mean customers gain more value from your service.
Your product’s interface should be intuitive and easy to learn, with a fast time-to-value making customers more satisfied. Use interactive walkthroughs to help customers learn new features and get the most out of your software.
Deliver self-service support and automate onboarding
One way to reduce wait times is to invest in self-service for your customers. Self-service is a popular way for customers to obtain support, whether that’s through a knowledge base, FAQs, community forum, or chatbot.
Self-service means that your human agents don’t need to intervene in a support issue and customers are able to obtain a near-instant response, increasing satisfaction levels. More than 60% of customers said that the most important aspect of customer service is being able to resolve their query quickly.
The fact is, most customer queries can be resolved with self-service. For SaaS companies, this also means automating the onboarding process so customers can learn your software without reaching out for help.
Invest in your frontline team
Happy employees are happy customers. When your support agents are satisfied with their jobs, this translates into better service for customers. It’s hard to focus on being empathetic and polite with customers when you are underpaid or overwhelmed by office politics.
Part of building a successful customer support team is ensuring the right structures are in place that empower support reps to do their jobs. They shouldn’t have to reach out to a superior in order to offer a simple refund or discount.
Support reps should be trained with the right technical knowledge to be able to support customers with your software. Customers are satisfied when it’s simple to get their problem resolved and they encounter a friendly and helpful support rep.
Minimize wait times
Customers are prone to become very dissatisfied when they have to wait a long time to receive support from your company. 90% of customers rate an “immediate” response as essential when they have a customer service question, with 60% of customers defining “immediate” as 10 minutes or less.
This puts a lot of pressure on service teams to provide fast and accurate responses to customers. You must ensure that your support team is well-staffed, especially during peak times, so customers can quickly get back to using your software.
Practice proactive customer support
Proactive customer support means anticipating the problems customers are likely to have with your software and offering a solution in advance. This can be something as simple as alerting customers as to when there is likely to be an outage, offering recommended reading materials for customers in their sector, or sharing a knowledge base article to fix a common issue.
Customers that are supported in this way are highly satisfied because you are reducing the amount of effort it takes for them to interact with your business. Customers feel like your business is proactively foreseeing their needs and striving to fulfill them, making their experience with your software a positive one.
Respond to negative reviews
It’s never pleasant when an upset customer posts a negative review about your company, but this is your big opportunity to turn a bad service experience into a good one. When customers are buying a product, 9 out of 10 customers are likely to read online reviews beforehand, making it important to manage your negative reviews.
When your business responds to and apologizes for the bad service experience, customers are more likely to be satisfied with your brand and consider trying your services again. It’s your chance to explain and provide vital context, and means your customer knows that you care about their experience. You should be monitoring software sites like Capterra and G2, and responding to customer reviews.
Deepen your product knowledge
There is always more that your customer support representatives can learn about your product in order to be able to effectively troubleshoot for your customers. Support reps should thoroughly understand the different use cases for your software and the expected behavior of the system.
When support reps have deep knowledge of your product, customers are more satisfied with the service they receive as they can rest assured they’re dealing with a team of experts. Knowledgeable service reps will be able to recommend your products in an appropriate fashion, enabling customers to get the most out of your offering. They can help drive product adoption and ensure that customers are successful with your software.
Offer an omnichannel support experience
It’s important to standardize the experience of contacting your company through all communication channels. There should be no difference when customers choose to contact your business through live chat, email, or phone support. Agents should have access to all customer data, purchase history, and past interactions, in order to optimize the support experience.
Customer satisfaction will be increased as customers can decide on their preferred channel to contact your company on. For example, they may phone your company and request a callback, send you a message on live chat, or tweet you on social media. However customers want to get in touch, agents are able to provide a consistent support interaction.
Satisfied customers are the lifeblood of any thriving SaaS company. When customers remain satisfied with your service, your business is empowered to take risks because they know they have a customer base which is loyal to them. You can rely on satisfied customers to keep purchasing and supporting your SaaS company through the stages of growth.
Satisfied customers are happy customers. This means they are important for retention and ensuring that customers continue to renew their subscription to your software, and are open to cross-sells and upsells.