What is the Net Promoter Score (NPS)?

Net Promoter Score definition

The Net Promoter Score is an index that measures customer satisfaction with a product or service in a simple manner. It ranges from -100 (all customers are dissatisfied) to 100 (all customer are satisfied).

You calculate the NPS index by asking customers the following question:

How likely are you to recommend (your product or service) to your friends or colleages?

People needs to respond with the likelihood of them recommending, in a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 meaning "very unlikely to recommend" and 10 meaning "very likely to recommend"

Net Promoter Score visual explanation

Depending on the score people give when answering the aforementioned question, they are classified into 3 groups:

  • Detractors, if they respond with a score between 0 and 6 (inclusive)
  • Passives, if they respond with a score of 7 or 8
  • Promoters, if they respond with a score of 9 or 10

Then the calculation of the NPS index is very simple, it is just the difference between the percentage of promoters minus the percentage of detractors. Suppose the following example:

  • Suppose we have received 210 reponses, where 60 people gave our product a score of 9 or 10 (promoters), 100 people gave a score of 7 or 8 (passives) and 50 people gave a score between 0 and 6 (detractors). Then the percentage of promoters is 29% (i.e. 60/210*100), and the percentage of detractors is 24%. Therefore, our NPS score is 5 (which is just 29% - 24%)
  • There are 2 extreme values for the NPS score: if all responses give a score of 9 or 10, it means we have 100% of promoters and 0% detractors, so our NPS score is 100. The opposite would be the situation where all responses gave a score between 0 and 6, in that case we would have 100% of detractors and 0% of promoters. In that case our NPS score would be -100.
  • As another thought experiment, if all responses would give a score of 7 or 8, we would have 100% of passive respondants, therefore 0% of promoters and 0% of detractors. In that case our NPS score would be 0.

Average NPS scores accross different industries

You might wonder: what are typical NPS scores for different businesses and how do I compare againts them? To give you an idea of this, following you can find a list of different industries and average NPS scores accross companies in them:

  • Healthcare 62
  • Professional Services 58
  • Retail 54
  • Hospitality (Travel/Restaurants) 53
  • Manufacturing 51
  • Automotive/Transportation 49
  • Financial Services 46
  • Construction/Engineering 45
  • Consumer Services 42
  • Insurance 42
  • IT/Software 41
  • Banking 37
  • Media 34
  • IT Services 33
  • Telecommunications 24

Is it hard to implement the Net Promoter System?

The Net Promoter System is conceptually very simple, so to start using it you just need to implement a system to send surveys to your customers, and receive responses from them. There are many options in the market that provide you with the ability to send NPS surveys. But with NPS.io we have strived to provide you with a tool that is as simple as possible to allow you start getting NPS score metrics.


Net Promoter, Net Promoter System, Net Promoter Score, NPS and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Inc., Fred Reichheld and Satmetrix Systems, Inc.