At some point, every company needs to assess how well it is satisfying the needs of its customers. Indeed, companies should be continuously checking in with the people using their products or services. Measuring customer satisfaction can help companies garner the feedback necessary to improve processes and products, address customer concerns and attrition and explore trends that might be affecting consumer buying habits – all things that drive ROI. A good customer satisfaction survey is more than a list of questions, though. A good customer satisfaction survey engages the right kind of consumers at the right time with the right questions.
Take a look at our tips for building a better survey experience for your customers:
Have a Specific Plan
Do you want to know how your product is performing in the market? Do you want to address customer churn? Do you need to uncover the root of a specific issue? Each of these is a separate issue and demands a survey with different kinds of questions. It’s important to choose one direction at a time and tailor your customer satisfaction survey questions to the topic at hand.
Pick a Relevant Target
Knowing what you need to know is the first step. The second is identifying the right constituents to help you find the answer. Do you want information from current customers or past ones? Maybe you want to hear from customers that defected and have now returned. A survey that goes out to the general public will most likely attract a very polarized sample of consumers – either those who are really supportive of you or those who really aren’t. To ensure a more representative overview of the market, pick a target segment based on specific shared features and go from there.
Keep it Short and Simple
Nothing is more off-putting than the perception of your time being wasted. Don’t make your customers feel that way. Keep your customer satisfaction survey as short and simple as possible so that your customers will not resent you asking for their time and help. Ask only what’s necessary, and resist the urge to use big words and long sentences. Similarly, don’t use hypothetical situations to try to predict results. Stick to questions that address a customer’s personal interaction with your company so that feedback will be truly representative of reality.
You don’t want the people taking your survey to be confused or frustrated or distracted by “what-ifs?”
You’ve got your objective, a target and the survey. Now you need to know when to deliver. Timing is everything with customer satisfaction surveys. Asking for feedback after critical periods in your relationship with your customer will ensure that you get honest and relevant information that is also timely. Follow up with customers after their first purchase or when they come back to you after an absence. Ask for feedback when they call for support. Know that different times will dictate different kinds of results.
Express Your Appreciation
Everyone likes to be appreciated. Customers are no different. They want to know that the information they give to you will be valued and used. Make sure to tell respondents how you will use their feedback so that they know they are effectuating change with their participation. And, of course, a simple “Thank you for your time” goes a long way in encouraging their help in the future.
Conducting a customer satisfaction survey can engender valuable information for companies looking to fix a problem or expand their business. At Communications for Research (CFR), we can design and distribute a survey that produces actionable results. Contact us to see how we can help your survey succeed or you can also download our FREE eBook, "The Insider’s Guide to Successfully Using Market Research Online Surveys" for additional survey tips!