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With social media and various other digital communication channels, customers can publicize their opinion – negative or positive – about a brand to millions of people. Such customer feedback has a huge impact on the reputation of the brand. 

So, how do you ensure that when customers mention you they share positive feedback about your brand? The answer is simple, improving customer experience and ensuring customer satisfaction. 

There are many customer satisfaction metrics that can help you understand your customers so that you can meet their expectations. Collect feedback directly from your customers to understand how they feel throughout the customer journey. 

CES or Customer Effort Score and CSAT or Customer Satisfaction Score are two of the metrics that can help you gather feedback from customers about how they feel about your brand, its products, or services. 

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Customer Effort Score

What is CES?

CES was developed by the Corporate Executive Board (CEB). In their research, they found that customer “effort” is a vital factor that drives customer loyaltyCES is used to gauge the satisfaction level of the customers by asking the customers how much effort they put in when interacting with your company’s products and services. 

A CES survey can help you understand whether or not customers have a hard time using your products or services. Or, if they had trouble when seeking help from a service rep to resolve their inquiry. 

A customer has to put effort when they get a refund, seek assistance from a service rep or even search through your website blog/ knowledge base. Easing their experience through these touchpoints can help improve the customer experience. 

Instead of just measuring how satisfied the customers are, CES looks deep into their experience when they put effort to interact with your company. CEB shows in their Research that by reducing customer efforts companies increase customer loyalty. 

Giving them a better experience by helping them solve their issue is a more efficient indicator of customer loyalty and not just by delighting the customers. As HBR found out, 94% of customers who say they had “low effort” interaction with a brand will repurchase. 88% of these customers say they are more likely to spend more on the brand.

CES Survey

For, CES Survey there are two questions; one – rating scale and the other – agreement/ disagreement.

For example: 

User Experience
  • How much effort do you feel you had to put to resolve your inquiry with the customer service?

          5-point scale with the direction of rating order as “1” very low effort (good) to “5” very high effort (bad)

  • The company’s payment process is easy for me to handle. Agree/ Disagree

If the responses you receive are positive it indicates that your brand is providing excellent service and experience to the customers. 

If you receive negative responses you have to follow up with the customers to further dig into the issues they face. You need to make the change and make improvements in the concerned areas in your business. 

To calculate your CES score you can use the formula:

CES = sum of all customer effort ratings/ total no. of responses received

You can receive the average amount of effort customers put in when they interact with your company’s service and products. 

Advantages of CES

According to Gartner, high-effort experience is the reason why 96% of customers become disloyal, in comparison to only 9% of low-effort experience customers. CES predicts more accurate customer loyalty. It provides more extensive knowledge of customer’s interaction with the company. CES helps indicate future purchase behavior. 

CES also provides you data on the likelihood of your customers to refer your service to others. When customers find it easy to do business with your company they are more likely to promote you and publicize positive feedback about you on social media. 

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Disadvantage of CES

CES survey is not designed to allow customer segmentation. This prevents you from identifying what type of customers faced challenges when interacting with your product. 

The CES survey informs you of the aspect of your business that customers find problematic. Without a follow-up with the customer, you cannot determine what made that part of the business so difficult for the customer. 

When to deploy a CES survey?

It is best to send a CES survey right after a customer interaction. You need to send it right away or the customers may have difficulty remembering their experience. If you send the survey late the feedback may be inaccurate. 

Customer Satisfaction Score

What is CSAT?

CSAT is a metric that indicates customer’s happiness with your company. It is a customer experience metric that measures the level of satisfaction. CSAT survey helps gather customer’s voices on their experience throughout their customer journey. It is used to identify happy and unhappy customers in order to retain the existing customers. 

The survey gauges how satisfied customers are with your brand, products, and services. By analyzing the CSAT score you can use the data to figure out strategies to improve your customer service. CSAT scores are quantifiable which helps a business evaluate the performance. 

With CSAT surveys you can identify the internal and external factors that impact a customer’s experience, such as customer service, website performance, communication channels, etc. This way you can fix the issues and improve customer satisfaction and communicate the changes with them before the customer decides to leave the band. 

User Experience

CSAT survey

CSAT survey uses a single with different versions depending on the objective of the survey. You can ask the customers how satisfied they are with your overall brand, particular service, or product experience, or interaction with your brand.

The most common question asked is “How satisfied are you with the Brand, on a scale of 1 to10?”

The scale range can be a 3, 5, 7, or 10 point scale. American Customer Satisfaction Index measures the customer satisfaction level of U.S. companies on a scale range of 0 to 100.

The formula commonly used to calculate the CSAT survey is

CSAT score = total no. of happy responses/ total no. of collect responses X 100

You can also use a Star Rating like Amazon, Skype, etc. 


You can ask your customers to rate you between 1 and 5 stars. The formula you can use to calculate the CSAT in star rating is

CSAT score = No. of stars received/ sum of maximum stars possible X 5

CSAT scores are expressed in percentages ranging from 0% to 100%. A CSAT score benchmark varies across industries. However, the average benchmark ranges from 75% to 85%. 

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Advantages of CSAT

CSAT is one of the flexible metrics. You can use different indicators other than the rating scale to make the survey more appealing and easy to understand for the audience. You can use numerical, star, or emojis as options for feedback. 

CSAT surveys can be used to measure customer experience and satisfaction at certain touchpoints. You can use it to measure satisfaction with resources or onboarding, post-purchase, webinars, etc. 

CSAT is a simple metric and an easy survey to conduct. The survey includes only one question and you can pop it up on a web page, embed it on email or SMS, or add it on social media posts.

Disadvantage of CSAT

CSAT informs you of the feeling and sentiment of the customer for the given day and moment. It thus provides short-term customer sentiment. According to an article by Psychological Science, CSAT scores can be impacted by cultural bias. People from different countries and cultures are likely to have different mindsets when choosing the options.
Customers from individualistic countries are highly likely to choose options such as “Very Satisfied” or “Very Dissatisfied”. On the other hand, customers from collectivist countries are likely to choose “Not Satisfied” or “Satisfied”.

CSAT score is not a good indicator of customer loyalty. According to Gartner, their research shows that 20% of customers who claim to be satisfied by a brand were also intending to leave the brand and purchase from some other company. 

User Experience

When to send the CSAT survey?

CSAT surveys for products should be timed so that you give your customers time to experience the product properly. Send the survey the day the product was delivered or the next day. For customer service interaction, onboarding, and post-webinar you should send a CSAT survey immediately. 


CES score is a customer satisfaction metric that evaluates how much effort customers put in when interacting with a company. It measures the effort exerted by a customer to resolve an issue, purchase a product, complete payment, search through blog posts, etc. 

A CSAT score is a metric that gauges how happy and satisfied customers are about their experience with a particular brand. 

To calculate CES you can use the formula:

CES = sum of all customer effort ratings/ total no. of responses received

CSAT score can be calculated by separating the positive response from the negative. Then you can use the formula:

CSAT score = total no. of happy responses/ total no. of collect responses X 100

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