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Branding, Customer Insight, NPS, Online Survey, Research

10 NPS Survey Best Practices You Need to Know

Your Net Promoter Score, or NPS, lets you know exactly where you stand with your customers. Are they promoters, highly satisfied customers who wind up recruiting others through great word of mouth and positive reviews? Are they detractors, dissatisfied customers who may be actively discouraging others from trying your product or service through poor word of mouth and negative reviews? Or are they passives, those who don’t feel strongly one way or the other? If this is new to you, be sure to check out our blog What is an NPS? Otherwise, let’s get acquainted with some NPS survey best practices!


10 NPS Survey Best Practices

Here are ten NPS best practices to help you get the best results from your NPS survey.

1. Customize Your NPS Survey

Today, people are inundated with emails, increasing the likelihood that they’ll delete anything that seems like a standard form letter. So, customizing your NPS survey is crucial. Customizing your NPS survey could mean using the person’s name in the intro of the NPS email, highlighting the product they purchased in the subject line of an email (“What did you think about your new iPhone purchase?”), or adding your own branding to the survey (logos, colors, etc.). Not getting many responses? One of the best practices in NPS survey design is to try A/B testing, which often involves sending out emails with different subject lines, content, or in-app color schemes or elements. 

2. Understand Industry Benchmarks

Calculation of your NPS gives you a score from -100 (the worst) to 100 (the best). Too often, companies freak out if they don’t reach 100! While that is an admirable goal to strive for, very few companies ever get there; it would mean that no one surveyed has ever been dissatisfied with your product or service. 

So, it helps to understand benchmarks for your industry and strive to simply surpass those (for example, department stores tend to do best, with an average of 58, while internet providers score lowest, with an industry average of just 2). Read more about common industry NPS scores and some specific company NPS scores here.

3. Pre-Notify Customers about Your NPS Survey

This is nothing more than a heads-up to customers. It could be a salesperson saying, “we’re going to ask you to complete a quick phone survey after this call” or an auto-generated email following a purchase stating “we’ll be sending you a satisfaction survey with receipt of your product, your response is appreciated!”. It may seem silly, but studies show that pre-notifying customers can improve response rates by up to nearly 30%!

4. Send NPS Surveys at the Right Time

It bears repeating: customers receive a lot of emails. If you’re emailing an NPS survey, sending it at the right time is critical. According to Smart Insights, ~24% of all emails are opened within the first hour of delivery, ~5% in the fourth hour, and less than 1% in the 24th hour. So, it’s important to reach out to customers when they’re most likely to answer within the hour. According to CoSchedule, that means sending your NPS survey on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday at 10 am or 2 pm.

5. Send NPS Surveys Regularly…

It’s important to monitor NPS through surveys regularly; if you don’t, you’ll never know if you’re improving (or getting worse). Think about it: a customer who gave you a dismissive 2 might turn around and give you a promoter-level 9 after you’ve successfully addressed their concerns. Without regular NPS monitoring, you wouldn’t know that.

6. …But Don’t Send NPS Surveys Too Often

If you send an NPS questionnaire too often, you’ll be viewed as a nuisance. One of the worst things you can do is send a survey as soon as someone becomes a customer. NPS is designed to gauge the overall emotion someone has with your brand, good or bad, so asking them how they feel before they’re had much of an experience with your company is likely to turn them off, or skew results.

7. Send Follow-Up Questions NPS Survey Questions

It’s important to find out why a customer rated you one way or another. You’ll never know without follow-up questions. Keep that survey short and sweet, but make your questions count. 

Some questions to ask promoters following an NPS survey may include:

  1. What is the primary reason for your score?
  2. What did we do best during your experience?
  3. What could we do to wow you even more next time?

Some questions to ask passives following an NPS survey may include:

  1. What is the primary reason for your score?
  2. Did you encounter any particular issues? 
    1. If yes, were they resolved to your satisfaction?
  3. What is one thing we could do better to meet your expectations?

Some questions to ask detractors following an NPS survey may include:

  1. Why would you not recommend us?
  2. What could we have done to improve your experience?
    1. What can we do to win you back or resolve the situation?
  3. Would you consider us again if your suggestions were instituted?

8. Share NPS Results with Your Team

One of the best ways to improve NPS results is by sharing the NPS data with your team. This lets them know whether they should pat themselves on the back—or begin considering ways to improve. Sharing NPS results also gets everyone on the same page so that together, the company can work toward a common goal of customer satisfaction.

9. Respond to All NPS Surveys

If a customer takes the time to complete your NPS survey and/or follow-up questions, you can take the time to thank them.

  • Let satisfied customers know that you appreciate their response and will continue to meet or exceed their expectations;
  • Let passives know you’ll do better in the future to keep them as a customer; and
  • Let detractors know you’ll work to resolve their issues (and then make good on that promise).

10. Leverage Your Promoters

Your promoters are already out there telling others about how wonderful your product or service is. Nice! Good word of mouth marketing drives $6 trillion of annual consumer spending and is estimated to account for 13% of consumer sales. So imagine how much more good these promoters could be doing for your brand if they had an incentive to promote you? That’s where an affiliate program comes in. With an affiliate program, affiliates actively market your product or service, and they receive financial rewards when someone they referred becomes a customer. It’s a win-win for you and them! Read more about these programs here.


An NPS poll can help predict the future growth or decline of your company based on customers’ perceptions and attitudes toward your brand, and whether they will promote it—or bad-mouth it. To find out where you stand, start sending NPS surveys today! 

You can view SurveyLegend’s Net Promoter Score template here, and if you use our services, we’ll also do all the NPS data calculations for you! On your Live Analytics page, you will be able to monitor your Net Promoter Score as it develops over time—and in real-time. Get started for free today!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is an NPS?

A Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a customer loyalty score ranging from -100 to 100.

What is an NPS survey?

An NPS survey is sent to customers in order to calculate NPS. It asks them how likely they would be to recommend your product or service to a friend or colleague, on a scale of one to ten.

What do NPS responses help determine?

NPS responses put customers into three categories: promoters (those likely to recommend your brand), passives (those who could “take it or leave it”), and detractors (those who would not recommend your brand or may actively discourage others from purchasing).

What are some NPS survey best practices?

To get good NPS survey results, surveys should be customized, sent at the right time, sent regularly (but not too often), and include follow-up questions.

About the Author

Jasko Mahmutovic

Born entrepreneur, passionate leader, motivator, great love for UI & UX design, strong believer in "less is more”. Big advocate of bootstrapping. BS in Logistics Service Management. I don't create company environments, I create family and team environments.