New Net Promoter Score Benchmarks: Europe Vs Australia


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Satmetrix last week released it 2010 European Net Promoter Scores and I thought it would be interesting to review them versus recent Australian data*.


The highest of the European banks (First Direct) received an NPS of 42% compared with the highest of the Australian banks (Bendigo Bank) at +33%.  At the other end of the scale the lowest European score is -26% versus -39% in Australia.

Mobile Phone Networks

Moving on to look at mobile phone network the best of the best in Australia (Virgin Mobile) scored 0% compared with the best in Europe (O2) of 24%.  At the other end of the scale Australia’s lowest score was -34% and Europe’s was only -13%.

Why the Differences?

Scores in Australia would, on the basis of these numbers, seem to be lower overall. Why?

Two potential reasons are:

Australian Service delivery is worse than European Service Delivery

Lower NPS scores in Australia may indicate that the very nature of Australian service is lower than that experienced by European customers.  There is no definitive way of determining if this is the case.

I know that there is a wealth of anecdotal evidence collected by travellers to both regions of the service levels in their counter parts but there is no convenient impartial way of collecting that data.

Australian’s have higher service expectations than Europeans

This is the second potential reason for the differences in scores and identifies a cultural bias in the outcomes of the Net Promoter Score process.  If Australian customers simply have higher expectations from customer service it would drive down the NPS for that region even if the service level were the same.

Of the two suggestions, I am more inclined to believe that it is the second (higher service expectations) that is the driver for the difference in scores.  This may connected with the infamous Australian Tall Poppy Syndrome, whereby Australians are just a little less inclined to give maximum praise for a job well done.

Either way it reinforces the one of the tenants of NPS or any customer loyalty measurement. The absolute score is not as important as the score relative to competitive peers and your own score in the past.  Focusing on understanding what is important for customers and how to improve your score day in day out, month in month out is the driver of long term success.

This result also underscores the critical role that customer service expectations have in determining customer satisfaction with the service delivered.  This recent post (Customer Charters: Good or Bad for Customer Satisfaction) discusses the issue of service expectations in more detail

For more information on Net Promoter Score and how/why it works download our free Introduction to Net Promoter Score (NPS).

If you are thinking about implementing Net Promoter Score (NPS) in your organisation give us a call.  We can help you to implement an effective Net Promoter Score program for your business.

(*) The 2009 Consumer Recommendation & Loyalty Study

Republished with author's permission from original post.


  1. Interesting results. You’re generous in your assessment, I guess there is always a risk that you will bite the hand that feeds you!

    My take is that it is quite plain that service levels in Australia are appalling and there is no incentive or business need to change them since there is little competition. We have oligopolies in both banking and telecommunications, not to mention groceries, liquor, petrol retailing, discount stores, electricity and airlines. In fact we must be one of the most least competitive OECD countries by a long way but that’s another story.

    The main point. The bank who very recently was voted to have the worst customer service, Westpac, the next day announced record profits. The soaring and record levels of complaints to the Telecommunications Ombudsman speak to the discontent with carriers,(and we only have 3 since the merger of Hutchison 3 and Vodafone was allowed by the regulators).

    One of the duopolist retailers who controls 40% of the food $$ of every Australian recently announced that they would no longer allow debit cards as they would not pay the commission, unless you use their own debit card. Outrage everywhere but nothing will change, no need to, as they own the block.

    Those Australian NPSs are bad, and that’s a true reflection of the poor level of service in my opinion, and that in a near monopoly of those services there is no business reason to invest to improve.

    Walter Adamson @g2m
    Certified Social Media Consultant
    Melbourne, Australia
    My social spaces and places:


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