5 takeaways from the European Customer Satisfaction Index

3rd May 2016

Organisations often ask the Institute of Customer Service how customer satisfaction in the UK compares with the rest of the world. Now it has the data to respond. 

The Institute’s European Customer Satisfaction Index (EUCSI) compares customer satisfaction across eight European nations – the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Poland, Sweden and the Netherlands – and considers the UK’s position in relation to its European neighbours.

Companies can use this research to help benchmark customer satisfaction across Europe and assess how national needs and preferences might influence customer satisfaction. You can download the full report to learn more, but here are five key findings: 

1. UK customers are the most satisfied in Europe

It’s good news for the UK, which received an overall customer satisfaction rating of 76.1 points (out of 100). The nation tops the table for customer satisfaction in all sectors surveyed, except for transport (in which it comes joint first with Poland) and utilities (which was topped by Germany). France and Spain were the lowest performers overall for customer satisfaction, while Poland and Italy also performed slightly below the European average.

2. Trust is an issue for UK organisations

Though the UK might lead the way when it comes to customer satisfaction, the EUCSI data suggests trust is an area for improvement. At first glance, with 89% of the most satisfied customers scoring organisations a nine or 10 out of 10 for trust, the signs are positive. However, the UK average is lower than the rest of Europe, which is 95%. 

3. Retail comes out on top 

The retail (food) sector was the highest-ranking industry across Europe, with an average score of 75.7 points. The insurance sector followed close behind, with an average score of 74.3, while banks scored 72.2. The telecommunications and media sector received just 68 points overall – the lowest of all industries measured by the index. 

4. Customer satisfaction is linked to employment levels 

The data also shows that countries such as Germany and the UK, which have lower unemployment levels and greater GDP per capita, tend to have the best customer satisfaction scores. In contrast, countries with higher rates of unemployment and lower GDP – such as France, Italy and Spain – all score lower for customer satisfaction.

5. Customer priorities differ across Europe 

Customers from all eight nations believed organisations’ competence, behaviour and attitudes have a huge bearing on customer satisfaction, but there were some discrepancies when it came to other priorities. More customers in the UK, for example, prioritised ‘ease of doing business’ and the ‘helpfulness of staff’ than in other European countries. In Germany, product reliability, timely delivery and the condition of delivered goods were seen as more significant, while Italian customers felt the availability of website support was of high importance.  

View our infographic for a statistical snapshot.  

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