For business people as well as businesses selling products and services, customer satisfaction is the most important factor determining the success or failure of the business. So what is customer satisfaction, and what are its levels? Find out through the article below.

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1. What is customer satisfaction

?There are many different definitions of customer satisfaction as well as quite a lot of debate about this definition. Many researchers believe that satisfaction is the difference between customer expectations and the actual perception received.

According to Philip Kotler, customer satisfaction is the level of a person’s sensory state resulting from comparing the results obtained from consuming a product/service with their own expectations. .

The level of satisfaction depends on the difference between the received results and the expectations, if the actual results are lower than the expectations, the customer is not satisfied, if the actual results match the expectations, the customer will not be satisfied. will be satisfied, if the actual results are higher than the expectations, the customer is very satisfied.

Customers’ expectations are formed from shopping experiences, from friends and colleagues, and from information from sellers and competitors. To improve customer satisfaction, businesses need to make additional investments and at least invest in marketing programs.

According to Hansemark and Albinsson (2004), “Customer satisfaction is a customer’s overall attitude towards a service provider, or an emotional response to the difference between what the customer expects before and what they receive, for the fulfillment of some need, goal or desire”.

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Customer satisfaction is the fact that customers base some of their knowledge on a product or service that forms subjective evaluations or judgments. It is a form of psychological feeling after a customer’s need is satisfied.

Customer satisfaction is formed on the basis of experiences, especially accumulated when purchasing and using products or services. After purchasing and using the product, customers will have a comparison between reality and expectations, thereby evaluating whether they are satisfied or not.

Thus, customer satisfaction can be understood as the feeling of pleasure or disappointment that arises from a comparison between the actual benefits of the product and their expectations. Whether customers are satisfied or not after purchase depends on how they compare the actual benefits of the product with their expectations before buying.

2. Customer satisfaction levels

2.1. Level 1 – not satisfied

At the very least, customers are not satisfied with your business. There are many reasons why customers are not satisfied, such as delayed shipping service, product quality is not as advertised. In this case, most of the causes are subjective from the business, but rarely due to objective external factors.

As a result, customers often will not return to you, and may even spread bad information to those around them, affecting your business negatively.

2.2. Level 2 – average satisfaction

Most businesses are serving customers or taking care of customers at this level, which is the average level of satisfaction. Customers may feel happy after making a purchase, but there is no guarantee that they will return.

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They won’t say bad things about you, but they won’t say good things about you to the people around them either. They can absolutely find suppliers that are not you, or in other words, these are not loyal customers. Typically, most businesses will have at least about 60% of their customers met with this average level of satisfaction.

2.3 Highest level – extremely satisfied

This is the highest level, at this level, your customers are extremely satisfied!

They are willing to tell everyone around the best things about you. Adidas, Nike or Reebok are 3 of the brands that always strive to achieve the maximum number of customers with the highest level of satisfaction.

A variation of the highest satisfaction level is satisfaction. This happens when customers get more than they expected! Achieving this is also the way you have conquered customers at the highest level

The reasons for customer satisfaction are many. You need to determine what in your product or service is your strong point to be able to make the most satisfied customers. Because, no matter what the product or service, achieving the highest level of customer satisfaction is always the goal of the business.

3. Methods of measuring customer satisfaction

If research from businesses aims to find out the factors that retain and create customers, is satisfaction linked to customer loyalty? Many studies have shown that although satisfaction does not mean loyalty, satisfied customers are likely to be more loyal to the product than unsatisfied customers.

Any program that measures customer satisfaction needs to be built on key determinants related to program objectives, metrics, and so on.

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There are two methods of measurement: direct and indirect.

Direct methods: this method is quite obvious to the respondents because they create the ability to measure perceptions, directly asking the respondents to evaluate. Some popular methods:

Face-to-face interviews, group interviews Telephone surveys Online surveys: Questionnaires, letters, emails, etc.

However, it still has many disadvantages such as accuracy, reliability and sometimes efficiency.

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Indirect method: This method deals well with specific perceptions. Respondents may not be aware that researchers will use these questions to relate overall satisfaction. Several methods can be used to determine/infer importance. Some methods like:

Behavioral ObservationTest Methods

The most important thing is to choose the right methods and metrics to make them work best. For example, time and scale measures are more appropriate for improvement programs that measure customer satisfaction and screen customer perceptions. The product category and ordinal measures are more appropriate for capturing general or “raw” customer perceptions.

It should be noted that in practice, at least two measures are commonly used. These metrics should be linked together in an integrated business model. Besides, it is also necessary to link satisfaction measures with business impact measures to give accurate results. Some reference measures such as: Satisfaction, Referral Intent, Repurchase Intent, etc.

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