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Satisfaction Rating Scale Options for Consumer Surveys

Every company and every business needs to know, how satisfied their consumers are with their services and performance. How good or how bad was the customer experience with your brand or company? This is the key information to know and one can use different consumer satisfaction rating scales to get the right answer to the big question. Let’s take a brief look at the different options to choose from.

First of all, let’s understand what type of satisfaction scale ratings are available. There are several options to choose from and each of them has certain pros and cons to offer. Mostly, the rating scales differ by the number of answer options they include. The shortest one is three-item scale and the longest is 11-point scale. So, basically, you can break all the types of rating scales into three main categories: short, medium, and long. Let’s take a look at the basic overview of each of the options you have.

The Shortest Satisfaction Rating Scale

Pros:

  • It has only three answers to choose from. So, consumers generally do not feel overwhelmed by the size and look of the scale. Because it is short, they can grab the meaning quickly and answer accurately.
  • It provides a more accurate data on the consumer satisfaction rate. When choosing from just three answers, people are less inclined to pick the “average” or “good” answer. They can report a bad service more easily, and then it is with the other types of rating scales.

Cons:

  • Some people think it to be too short to provide relevant results.

The Medium Satisfaction Rating Scale

Pros:

  • This rating scale may include 5 to 7 items or answer variations in it. So, it provides you with just a bit more detail that helps you to analyze what your customer is trying to tell you. With more answer choices, you give people a chance to share how their experience is relevant to your company or brand.
  • This satisfaction rating scale is considered one of the most reliable ones among all the rest of the scale sizes. Research studies on various rating scales often conclude that this mid-size scale performs best.

Cons:

  • The 5 to 7 rating scale may “scare off” some consumers because it has too many answers to review and it may take too long to get through it.
  • Not sure yet why this is so, but some of the research posts we read showed that the 5-item satisfaction scale tends to show high satisfaction rate of the consumers. However, in some cases, this information is not reliable, as some customers avoid picking the top or the bottom points of the scales. So, even if they have had a bad experience with a company, they would still pick options 3 or 4 (which is neutral to satisfied on a five sat scale) instead of 2.

The Long Satisfaction Rating Scale

This satisfaction scale is obviously the longest and may consist of 10 or sometimes 11 points.

Pros:

  • People can rate your company and their experience with it more precisely. They have a wider range of points to express their satisfaction or dissatisfaction rate.
  • You can evaluate your consumers’ answers more easily. For instance, anything below 6 is negative. 9 to 10 or 11 is positive. The rest is just neutral, which stands for passive consumers.

Cons:

  • Consumers need to pay more attention and time to this type of rating scale, which may result in more accurate results because one would believe that they are spending more time thinking about their answer.

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