What’s the Difference Between Customer Experience & Customer Satisfaction? - The MSR Group

When speaking to business owners, it’s noticeable that the terms “customer experience” and “customer satisfaction” are sometimes used interchangeably. While you may think that they’re the same, customer satisfaction and customer experience are quite different. But even with their differences, it’s important to focus efforts—albeit in differing directions—toward promoting positive customer satisfaction and experiences.

Before getting to why you should focus on both, you need to understand what is customer satisfaction and customer experience?

What Is Customer Satisfaction?

Simply put, customer satisfaction is a measure of how happy a customer is with your business, a product, or their overall experience. It’s most often measured through customer satisfaction surveys with an ultimate goal of finding out how customers feel about your brand. How do you find out how a customer feels? Ask them questions like: what did we do well; where did we fall short of your expectations; how can we improve.

What Is Customer Experience?

Unlike customer satisfaction, customer experience depends more on the impression left on your customer over the entire sales or purchase process. Customers will base their experience with your brand on whether or not you were friendly, how simple it was to get what they needed, and ultimately feeling like a valued piece of the entire puzzle that is your business. Customer experience begins the moment they visit your website or physical location, and only ends if they choose to no longer use your services.

Why Should You Focus On Both?

You need to be putting effort toward finding out how your customers are feeling from a customer satisfaction perspective on top of determining the overall customer experience. That’s because in order to have a high customer satisfaction rating—both internally and outwardly—you need to be paying attention to their experience. Another way to put it is that customer experience doesn’t rely on customer satisfaction, but customer satisfaction does rely on a good experience.

If you neglect one over the other, it will throw things out of balance for your customers because then they may not know what is a good experience or a bad one. If how they interact with your business changes visit to visit, customer satisfaction may rise one day, but then plummet the next.

At the end of the day, knowing what you need to change and knowing if what you’re doing is working to your benefit won’t happen just by guessing, you need proof. If your business is ready to start putting together the necessary information that will help you better serve your customers and turn low customer satisfaction scores into positive ones, The MSR Group can help. Learn more about APECS today and reach out with any questions.