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Top 5 Alternatives to Net Promoter Score for Improved CX

Kate Williams

Last Updated:  

7 June 2024

7 min read

Since Fred Reichheld, the founder of Bain and Company, created the NPS, it has been the benchmark for measuring customer satisfaction. But what if there are alternatives to net promoter score? Something that goes beyond the traditional model?

Well, businesses are evolving, as should the methods used to understand customer sentiment.

This blog will look into five NPS alternatives and why you should use them.

But first…

What is NPS?

Don’t worry. We won’t spend a lot of time here.  You have arrived to review your options. I get it. But bear with me for a minute. We can’t leave out the survey novices here now, can we? 

Net Promoter Score (NPS) is like a report card for your business.

What does that mean? And what is a good NPS score

An NPS survey asks customers a simple question: “How likely would you recommend us to your friends?” The answer is given on a scale from 0 to 10. Those who answer with a 9 or 10 are considered happy customers, 7 or 8 are okay, and anything below is not so good.

Based on that score, the customer base is divided into Promoters, Passives, and Detractors.

  • Promoters (9-10): Happy customers who love and recommend your business to others.
  • Passives (7-8): Okay with your service, but not overly excited or enthusiastic.
  • Detractors (0-6): Unhappy customers. They are unlikely to recommend and possibly will share negative experiences.

Formula: NPS= Percentage of Promoters−Percentage of Detractors

Read more:

Top 5 Alternatives to Net Promoter Score

1. Customer Effort Score (CES)

This is a customer satisfaction hack, I must say. Measuring customer effort scores is all about making things easy for your customers. The easier for them to navigate your product, website, or service, the happier they are.

So, why do we say it is essential? It all lies in its simplicity. With CES, you are not bombarding your customers with complex questions. Instead, you ask a very straightforward question: “How easy was it for you to use our product/service/ website?”

You ask them how easy it was to get what they wanted. And they respond if the experience was a breeze or a struggle.

Customer Effort Score Survey Template

How to Measure CES

Imagine a scale from “Very Difficult” to “Very Easy.” Customers pick where their experience falls. The lower the effort, the better the score. It’s like giving businesses a GPS to navigate the path of least resistance.

Let’s say you revamped your website. Your aim? To make it as user-friendly as possible. Afterward, you ask customers how easy it was to find what they needed. You know you hit the mark if the majority rates it as a cakewalk! As simple as that!

Well, again, if you want a formula, here you go:

CES= Total Sum of Responses/Total Number of Responses

When to Use CES

CES surveys should be rolled out at crucial touchpoints. For instance:

  • Post Purchase: You can use CES to assess the ease of the buying process. This ensures a seamless experience.
  • Customer Support: Talk things out! Deploy a survey after support interactions to measure the effectiveness and identify improvement areas.
  • Website/App Changes: Measure the impact of modifications on user experience with CES for continuous optimization.
  • Product Onboarding: CES feedback can evaluate the ease of getting started with products or services.

2. Customer Satisfaction Score

This here is the happiness meter for your customers. With CSAT score, you get a snapshot of the overall satisfaction.

The question is simple: “How satisfied are you with our product/service?” Customers express their satisfaction through a rating, typically on a scale of 1 to 5 or 1 to 10.

Customer Satisfaction Survey Template

How to Measure CSAT

Calculating CSAT is a straightforward process. Follow these steps:

  • Identify Satisfied Responses: Determine the number of responses that fall into the satisfied category. This typically includes ratings of 4 and 5 on a 5-point scale.
  • Total Responses: Count the total number of responses received for the survey.
  • Calculate CSAT Percentage: Divide the number of satisfied responses by the total responses, and then multiply the result by 100 to get the CSAT percentage.

CSAT Formula

CSAT= (Number of Satisfied Responses/Total responses) * 100

For instance, if you received 80 satisfied responses out of 100 total responses, it will be calculated as – (80/100) * 100 = 80%

When to Use CSAT

  • Event Conclusion: Measure satisfaction after events or service conclusions. A Webinar feedback survey can do wonders right after a session!
  • Periodic Check-ins: You need to have a clear idea of customer expectations. Implement CSAT periodically for ongoing insights into customer satisfaction.
  • Renewals/Upgrades: Deploy CSAT during transactions like renewals or upgrades to influence loyalty.

Let me tell you something interesting before you move forward with the other alternatives.

Did you know that SurveySparrow has a CX module?


With it, you can create NPS, CSAT, and CES surveys, customize and distribute them via multiple channels, collect valuable feedback, and analyze the data to make informed decisions. All in one platform! (We’ll look into this in detail a little later. But if you want to try it out right now, sign up here)

Let’s get back to where we stopped. The next NPS alternative is…

3. Customer Health Score

Customer Health Score is like a health checkup for your customer relationships. This NPS alternative is essential for the overall well-being of your brand.

CHS assesses the various factors contributing to the overall health of the customer-business relationship. But, unlike singular metrics, CHS uses multiple indicators, such as customer engagement, satisfaction, and usage patterns. Collectively, these metrics provide a holistic view of the customer’s journey.

The best part? It applies to every business model, whether e-commerce, SaaS, or any other industry!

Customer Health Score Survey Template

How to Measure CHS

This might be a lengthier process than those we saw before.

  • Identify Key Metrics: Pinpoint metrics crucial to customer health, like engagement, satisfaction, and usage patterns.
  • Assign Weightages: Give each metric a weight based on its importance. Prioritize critical indicators.
  • Standardize Metrics: Ensure metrics are on a consistent scale. If not, normalize or convert them into percentages.
  • Set Thresholds: Define healthy and at-risk values for each metric. And hey, don’t forget to establish benchmarks for evaluation.
  • Aggregate Scores: Combine metrics using assigned weights. Use a simple average or weighted sum formula.


CHS= (W1×Metric 1)+(W2×Metric 2)++(Wn×Metric n)

Then, periodically review and adjust CHS based on evolving business goals. The key is to keep it aligned with objectives.

When to Use CHS

  • Customer Onboarding: Use CHS when welcoming new customers. It’s like ensuring they feel right at home from the beginning.
  • Post-Interaction Feedback: Bring out CHS when they get help from customer support or renew a service. It’s like checking in after a good conversation to see if everything is okay.
  • Periods of High Engagement: Use it when things get busy! For instance, during promotions or events. It’s like ensuring your friends are having a good time at a party.

4. Customer Retention Rate

CRR is one of the crucial alternatives to net promoter score when it comes to your business’s longevity. It measures the effectiveness of retaining customers over time. It tells us the percentage of customers a business holds onto over time, not just the new ones they bring in.

You must regularly check the retention rate to see if the customers are sticking around. We need to keep the loyalty flame burning. Right?  

A high CRR means some happy customers stick around. Why does that matter? Because it’s often cheaper to keep existing customers than to find new ones.

How to Measure CRR

  • Get the Numbers: Collect customer data at the start and end of a period and note new customers acquired.
  • Use the formula: CRR=(End Customers−New Customers / Start Customers) * 100

For instance, if you start with 100 customers, gain 10, and end with 95, the CRR is 85%.

Regarding customer retention rate, you need to set goals, watch for changes, and tweak strategies based on what CRR tells you.

When to Use CRR

Well, you should never stop celebrating long-lasting relationships!

  • Post-Special Promotions: Use it after special promotions or events. It’s like making sure your friends had a good time at the party and are planning to stick around.
  • When Renewals are Due: Okay, this is vital. Measure CRR when customers are renewing subscriptions. You must celebrate your friends’ decision to stay connected for another round!
  • During Customer Anniversaries: Celebrate customer anniversaries with CRR. It’s like marking milestones in your relationship and ensuring they stay firm.

Now comes the last, but one of the most important alternatives to Net Promoter Score.

5. Customer Churn Rate

We don’t like churn, nor do you or anyone. But what is Customer Churn? At its core, churn refers to a process where a customer decides not to associate with a particular product, service, or brand. It hurts to say goodbye, right? So, don’t.

Stop Churn by understanding why customers leave. Sometimes, people leave naturally as their needs change. Similarly, customers might leave because their preferences change. It is as simple as that, just like fixing things when a friend wants to leave the group.

But it does not end there. You must regularly check for churn, especially after changing or during busy times.

Customer Churn Survey Template

How to Measure Customer Churn

Let me give you a simple guide:

  • Count Customers: See how many customers you have at the start.
  • Check Again Later: Look at the number of customers again after a specific time.
  • See Who Left: If the number went down, some customers left – that’s Churn.
  • Calculate Churn Rate: Divide the customers left by the initial number. Multiply by 100 to get the percentage.


Customer Churn Rate=(Customers Who Left/Initial Customers) * 100

Here’s a simple example. Let’s say you started with 100 customers and five left. The Churn Rate is 5%.

SurveySparrow: The All-In-One Alternative

Whether you want to use the CX module or create surveys for your varying needs, SurveySparrow is perhaps the tool you need. The core to improving customer satisfaction and customer experience is customer understanding. For that, you need to have conversations with them. Now, that’s precisely what SurveySparrow lets you do. Create conversational surveys!


But that’s not all.

Don’t just take my word for it. Let’s look at the other advanced features:

  • Conversational Surveys: Engage respondents with surveys that feel like a chat. This ensures participation and a 40% higher response rate.
  • Diverse Question Types: Choose from various question formats to gather diverse and insightful responses.
  • Display and Skip Logic: Personalize the survey experience based on respondents’ previous answers. Show relevant questions and skip irrelevant ones for a personalized interaction.
  • AI-Powered Surveys: Add a prompt and let artificial intelligence do the magic. You can also use the wing feature to rewrite and rephrase the sentences. Plus, with the ChatGPT Plugin, Survey making has never been easier!
  • 1000+ Templates: Choose from a vast library of pre-designed templates covering various industries and survey types. Save time and ensure professional survey creation!
  • Executive Dashboard: Get data on multiple surveys with dashboard reporting. Everything at a glance!

How’s that? Try it out today for free!

Wrap Up!

Choosing the suitable method from the alternatives to net promoter score depends on what you want to know. Each gives a unique perspective on how happy and connected your customers are.

So, explore beyond NPS, pick the method that aligns with your goals, and uncover deeper insights to propel your business forward.

Happy Exploring!

Kate Williams

Content Marketer at SurveySparrow

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