NPS® Explained

Want to understand the Net Promoter Score® and how it can help your business grow? Start here.

Get a Demo

The Basics
NPS Question

The Net Promoter question

The Net Promoter Score (NPS), is the world's leading metric for measuring customer loyalty and happiness. Research has shown it to be highly predictive of future growth.

Calculating your NPS starts with asking your customers the Net Promoter question: how likely – on scale of 0 to 10 – would they be to recommend your product or service to a friend or colleague?

When you send a NPS survey to your customers, you’re turning the concept of brand loyalty into a solid number you can measure and track over time.

The Building Blocks of NPS

Promoters, Passives, and Detractors

Once customers give you a rating from 0 (very unlikely to recommend) to 10 (very likely to recommend) they can be segmented into 3 groups: Promoters, Passives, and Detractors.

How NPS Works

free trial

0-6: Detractors

Unhappy customers who can hurt your brand through negative word-of-mouth

NPS Import

7-8: Passives

Satisfied but indifferent customers who could be swayed by the competition

customer service

9-10: Promoters

Loyal customers who keep buying and referring to others

NPS Benchmarks

Calculating your NPS

Your NPS is calculated by subtracting your percentage of Detractors from your percentage of Promoters. The best possible NPS is +100, and the worst is -100. Your Passives are excluded from the calculation since their loyalty is relatively neutral.

nps forumula


Benchmarking your NPS

Although a “good” NPS varies by company size, industry, and location, the higher your score, the healthier your company is. When you power your NPS program with SurveyMonkey CX, you get our industry-leading NPS Benchmarks built in, so you can instantly know how your score compares to similar companies.

5 reasons why NPS works


It taps into the silent majority

Not every customer is going to go out of their way to tell you what they think. Sending them a quick NPS survey gets your foot in the door, and shows you care about their experience.


It helps you track performance

Once you’ve got your NPS, you can set an initial benchmark, then repeat the survey regularly to see whether your score is moving in the right direction.


It gives you a better perspective

Because NPS is one metric, you can easily compare your score against your peers. A “low” score might be good if it’s in the 90th percentile compared with others in your industry.


It’s concise yet personal

Our research shows short surveys lead to more and more thoughtful responses. Plus, it gives you the insight to send personalized follow-up to customers based on their satisfaction level.


It creates organizational alignment

NPS creates visibility around company performance and helps everyone, from C-level execs to sales reps, stay on the same page, justify spend, and understand the true impact of their efforts.

Survey says: NPS is good for business

We surveyed more than 600 businesses and found that of those who use NPS...

How NPS Works

say it's very valuable to their company

How NPS Works

view themselves as very or extremely successful

How NPS Works

more likely to report growth rates over 10% each year

Customer Service
Close The Loop

Using NPS to improve the customer experience in your business

There’s more to your NPS than just scoring overall customer satisfaction. Once you’ve identified your Promoters, Passives, and Detractors through your NPS survey, close the loop with personalized follow-up communications to each group.

Customers can quickly flip from Detractor to Promoter with the right kind of targeted attention, so look at each rating as a way to gain important insights. Two ways CX helps you close the loop:


Message customers directly from CX

Send follow-up messages and monitor conversations directly from CX with a unified team inbox


Sync NPS data into Salesforce

Sync NPS data into Salesforce and set up automated triggers for your CSMs (requires Ultimate Edition)

Periodic surveys
scores of 9 or 10

Thank your biggest fans

Research suggests Promoters may account for up to 80% - 90% of all referrals! Make sure they know you appreciate their loyalty, and ask if they would be willing to act as a reference or give a testimonial.

Survey throttle
scores of 7 or 8

Keep Passives on your side

Your Passives may seem relatively happy, but they could leave your company for a competitor. Make them fall in love with you with special attention and special offers.

revenue target
scores of 6 or less

Win back your Detractors

Detractors are actively unhappy customers who may avoid you in the future and encourage others to do the same. Reach out to them proactively, acknowledge their frustration, and ask how you can improve their experience.

Build a world-class NPS program with SurveyMonkey CX

Watch this quick video to see why SurveyMonkey CX is the best – and easiest – solution for powering an effective NPS program.


Ready to build a world-class NPS program?

Experience how SurveyMonkey CX can help your business.

Get a Demo