7 things to remember about customer surveys

EmilyEVC, Avatar

Customer surveys are still one of the best ways to get customer feedback and find out what your customers are really thinking.

However, while a well-executed survey is a dependable source of meaningful and actionable customer data, there are a few traps you need to avoid. These costly mistakes can leave you with unreliable data and lead to poor business decisions.

With customer surveys you have to deal with human nature. As such, accept that some people will lie, while others will give inaccurate answers, even by accident. Despite this, customer surveys continue to be a great tool to determine how customers feel about a brand’s products and services.

So, if you are looking to improve your survey results, here are CustomerCount’s top 7 things to remember about customer surveys.

Customer surveys

1) Keep customer surveys short and simple

Find the shortest and easiest way to ask questions by making them clear and concise. You’ll have lower abandon rates and higher completion rates if the questions are simple to understand and easy to answer. And only ask one question at a time to avoid confusion.

2) Cut back unnecessary questions

Does each question have a real reason for being in the survey? Will the data provided add anything to the results you want? If not, remove it. Renowned customer service expert, thought leader and author Jeff Toister recommends using these three questions whenever possible:

  • How would you rate (product, service, experience)?
  • Why did you give that rating (open text response)?
  • May we follow-up with you if we have additional questions?

3) Include different types of questions

Multiple choice questions and Likert scales produce great results, but a few open-end questions like “Why do you feel this way?’ will provide some insightful feedback. Don’t forget to use yes/no questions as well in your survey. They make great starter questions and are easy to evaluate.

Customer surveys

4) Be consistent and avoid jargon

If you are going to ask customers to respond on a scale between 1-5, with 1 being strongly disagree and 5 being strongly agree, keep that scale across all your questions. And don’t assume they understand acronyms and jargon. Otherwise expect the answers you receive to be inaccurate.

5) Avoid leading questions

Don’t let pride or fear stop you asking a good question. Remember to be neutral, avoid assumptions and remove emotionally charged language.

6) Get your timing right

Surveys about surveys have found that the highest open and click-through rates occur on Monday, Friday and Sunday respectively. And think about how often you want to send a survey out. Do you really want to wait three months to find out you have disgruntled clients?  Customer service expert and best selling author Shep Hyken recommends surveying your customers within 24 hours while their experience with your business is still fresh in their mind.

7) Think about offering an incentive

Data shows that incentives, such as a discount, giveaway or credit, can increase survey results by 5-20 per cent. CustomerCount president, Bob Kobek, suggests another good incentive is allowing participants to see the results – especially in B2B surveys.  Studies show incentives of any kind are unlikely to detract from the quality of your responses.

Customer surveys with CustomerCount

If you’re unsure of which questions to ask, incentives to offer or assistance in understanding the responses, CustomerCount can help. CustomerCount collects, measures and reports customer feedback through branded, customized online surveys. These surveys are formulated to measure the quality of the customer experience with your organization across three primary touch-points.

With 20 years’ experience in customer feedback management, the team will be able to guide you through the survey process. CustomerCount’s surveys provide detailed and dynamic data gathering with comprehensive reporting. This helps clients make improvements to their process, increase customer and, ultimately, improve their bottom line.

Contact Bob Kobek now for further information about CustomerCount’s survey solutions on +1 317-816-6000.