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Create better customer surveys

  • SIMA
- Posted: April 13, 2016

The winter season is winding down, and now is a perfect opportunity to gauge how you fared with your customers. Whenever possible, a face-to-face or at least a phone conversation with each customer is preferred, but online customer satisfaction surveys should also have a place in your postseason review process. Following are a few tips for creating the best surveys and then making the most of the data you gather:

Create a better survey
  • Tell them what you hope to achieve through the survey and how it will benefit them to respond (e.g. to improve customer service, etc.)
  • Make the survey easily accessible via mobile or email
  • Get to the point. Only ask questions that get to the heart of what you’re trying to measure. 
  • Write good questions without bias or “leaning” language
  • Use rating scales when possible to allow you to benchmark the survey responses but also include open-ended questions that allow your customer to praise, vent, or comment as necessary.
  • Consider the pros and cons of giving an incentive for responding. 
  • Make sure the survey works before you send it. Nothing is more frustrating than being asked to participate and the link or survey doesn’t work.
  • Several survey sites and resources are available for free online. Some, like Survey Monkey, will walk you through step by step with templates, question banks, etc. If you use an email marketing company like Constant Contact, make use of their resources.
Make the most of results
  • No “one and done”. Customers’ opinions change, and measuring and benchmarking must be a continuous process. 
  • Use the results to correct weaknesses and build on strengths. Survey results may open your company to quick fixes while others may require a deeper look at the company’s processes.
  • Share the results with your respondents. This is a good chance to let them know what you learned, how you’ll use the results, and what changes you’ll be making. It is a key way to show them that their opinions truly matter.
  • Once you implement changes, measure and review progress that stems from them. If you make changes and customer response doesn’t change, dig deeper.
  • Share the results with your team, what changes (if any) will be implemented based on the feedback received, and the role they’ll play in the new process.
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