Oct 31, 2021

How to Set Up up an Effective Customer Survey

Post by 
Abdul Zainos

When it comes to running your business and continuing to keep your customers satisfied, customer surveys provide valuable insight on what your audience likes and what they want to see improved.

Customer surveys are a reliable and accurate way to learn more about your customers and how they truly feel about your business. Your customers are more likely to share their honest thoughts and opinions without the pressure of doing so publicly or having their personal social media profile linked to their comments.

However, before you begin crafting your business-specific survey, it is crucial to make sure you provide your customers with incentive (not incentives), and ask pertinent, actionable questions. Today, we’ll look at some of our recommended practices when it comes to crafting an effective survey for your customers.  

The Right Tools for the Job

When it comes to creating an online survey, using the right tools is essential to ensure that the process is easy for your customers and easy for you to gather the information and easily understand it and utilize it for future improvements. Two of our favorites are Survey Monkey and Google Forms. 

Survey Monkey allows you to create surveys and allows your customers to submit this feedback via a web link, email, social media channels, and mobile chat. It has a rich feature-set that can be implemented in several ways to provide convenience for you and your survey participants.

Survey Monkey also allows you to customize your survey with custom colors and logos and receive analytics and charts, and graphs regarding your survey data. 

Survey Monkey comes with three tiers of plans that offer varying features and options depending on your customization needs.

Google Forms allows you to create online surveys entirely for free with options to customize the questions to your liking, and even provide analytical data to participants if you so choose. To set up your own Google Survey, this official set of instructions from Google can help you get started.

Asking the Right Questions

Just as posting the proper type of survey, asking the right questions is essential to ensuring you get the information necessary to make effective business decisions. It is critical to think carefully about what you want to ask and strategize how you will take action based on the feedback you receive. A mixture of closed-ended and open-ended questions can help you tailor your survey to your needs.

Closed-Ended Questions

Closed-ended questions are straightforward questions that do not require elaboration, are designed for customers to answer quickly and without too much thought, and are easy to understand, analyze, and action. 

Some examples of common closed-ended questions include:

  • On a scale of 1-10, how satisfied are you with our service?
  • Would you recommend our service to a friend?
  • Did you participate in our X activity/contest?
  • How many X Brand products did you buy last year?

Open-Ended Questions 

These questions allow your customers to give more detailed feedback on specific areas. Open-ended questions can often complement closed-ended questions by building on them to provide more detailed feedback. 

Some common open-ended questions include:

  • Which one of our services are you most satisfied with?
  • Which features or services would you like to see added in the future?
  • What collaborations would you like to see from X brand in the future?
  • What adjectives would you use to describe X brand?

With open-ended questions, not only do you have the flexibility to gather more honest feedback, you can utilize them to allow survey participants to be more open and spontaneous with their answers. When placed before open-ended questions, these are known as free-standing questions and can be very useful if your questions require more complex and in-depth responses.

In the end, it is crucial to maintain a balance of both open-ended and close-ended questions on a survey. We recommend ten open and close-ended questions for a good balance. 

Others Tips for An Effective Survey

Now that you understand how to craft practical questions, there are a few other tips we’d like to go over that are designed to help you prepare your survey and ensure that your participants understand your questions and provide accurate information.

Keep Your Feedback Anonymous

Your participants will feel more comfortable giving honest feedback if they know their identities can remain private. They will also have a higher level of trust in your business, knowing that you respect both their opinions and their privacy.  

Explain the Benefits of a Survey

Let your participants know that this survey is very valuable to your business and that each participant's time is appreciated. In addition, take the time to explain the ways in which feedback benefits both your business and your customer. More about that in a minute.

Incentive vs. Incentives

While incentives (benefits provided to participants in the form of discounts, freebies, etc) can help gain more participants, this might not always be the ideal route to take to achieve the most unbiased and accurate feedback. 

This is because a participant might be more inclined to write what a business wants to hear rather than share their unfiltered opinion if they are offered a form of compensation. Instead, the incentive should be clearly conveyed: that participants’ honest and accurate feedback will allow you to continue to improve your products and services for their benefit.

Give Your Participant the Chance to Elaborate

Giving your participant the chance to go into detail on questions using long answer sections will provide a more detailed look at their likes and dislikes and better help you understand the nuance of their sentiments. 

It’s difficult to account for all the positive and negative feedback you will receive, so giving your participants the opportunity to give you insight into an area you may not have considered is a benefit that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Perhaps across many participants, you will receive multiple answers that pertain to a particular element of your business that you didn’t account for. These insights are invaluable to bettering your brand and better understanding your target market.

Feedback is Essential. Make it Count.

Feedback is essential for the growth and improvement of businesses and organizations regardless of size or niche. Running an effective online survey that asks the right questions and gives you accurate data is essential for the continued evolution of your products and processes.

Making your surveys easily accessible for your customers is crucial to gathering as much data as possible. Making sure your web design is up to the task of capturing and analyzing your data is, too.

At Xaicode, we specialize in web design and maintenance services designed to help your business grow. Our website design and maintenance packages help speed up your site and allow you to be up and running in no time at all. 

Get in touch with us today to see how we can help.