How to write a customer feedback survey
Think about all those customers you’ve serviced. Wouldn’t it be nice to get detailed feedback from them? Sometimes, the most important revelations about your business are made through customer feedback surveys.
These questionnaires, if formatted with effective questions, can give you amazing insight into not only what you could stand to improve upon, but also who your true brand advocates are. It’s also, of course, a great way to see how truly satisfied your clients are.
Steps to writing a customer feedback survey
- Come up with a purpose and a title
- Determine who will receive your feedback survey
- Identify the feedback questions you want to ask
- Create a “thank you” page
- Track and measure customer feedback
Define the feedback survey purpose & title
Clearly outlining your survey’s focus and purpose that will prompt your customers to give you most useful feedback. If your customers are confused, they won’t waste their time and quickly exit the feedback survey. You need to make it simple for customers to give you feedback so they can be as engaged in their answers as possible!
At the very beginning of your questionnaire, tell the customer what the survey is about and why they are taking it. Then, make sure you create a concise, clear title that reflects that purpose. Everything should feel cohesive and simple to understand.
An example feedback survey title & description:
Title: Tell us what’s working for you, [name]
Description: Please fill out this survey to help us better understand what you love about [company name]. We want to know what we’re doing well and what we need to work on so we can continue to improve your experience with us. Thank you!
Another smart tip is to use personal ques, such as the client’s first name, in the title. This will make it seem like more of a two-way conversation instead of you just asking for a favor.
Determine who will receive your feedback survey
Remember, intention is key. Just as with our first tip, you need to be as specific as possible with your customer feedback questionnaire if you want valuable feedback from those you contact. If people feel like you’re blindly blasting the survey to everyone, it can feel cold, and they will be less inclined to help you.
Be intentional with your survey recipients. Think of the personal business contacts you directly work with. These are the people that can give you real results.
Use a reputation management tool to send your survey to direct contacts instead of everyone in your address book. This allows you to send surveys at the right time which will improve the number of review responses.
Identify the questions you want answered
Of course, if you want great answers, you need great questions. Poorly worded questions can be the death of a customer feedback survey, so to avoid that, you really should focus on the quality of the questions you’re asking. Like the title and purpose of your customer survey is to make them easy to answer.
Additionally, every question you ask needs to have a purpose. If a question doesn’t have a directly actionable solution based on feedback, then it doesn’t need to be in the survey. Think about it: Your customer is already doing you a favor; don’t bombard them with a ton of questions. Instead, quality is better than quantity.
As a general rule of thumb, try to limit your questions to five or 10 total. You will also want them to be usable in a few months so you can conduct another survey if need be, so try to leave out timestamps like “this spring” or something of that sort.
As far as the types of questions you should be asking, it will vary depending on your purpose, but for the most part, the below subjects should get you started.
Example: How happy are you with how we help solve your problems and suggest solutions relevant to your company’s goals?
Example: How satisfied are you with the speed with which we handle operations?
Example: How happy are you with the way in which we collaborate with your organization?
Example: How satisfied are you with the quality and accuracy with which we do business?
You’ll also want your questions to have multiple choices; it increases the likelihood that customers will complete your survey. You might scare off your customer with a giant text box right from the get-go. Consider beginning the questionnaire with a couple easy yes/no questions to loosen up your customer. SurveyMonkey did a lot of tests and found this strategy works well.
Create a “Thank you” page
Filling out a company’s feedback questionnaire can feel like doing community service to customers. They feel like they’ve just done a really good deed, and they want to be acknowledged for it. After all, they did voluntarily take the time to help you improve your company, with nothing “in it” for them. That is pretty selfless.
So, THANK. THEM. Create a “thank you” page for customers to see once they’ve completed the survey. It doesn’t take long and the benefits are huge. Firstly, it lets customers know their answers have been received. Second, it allows you to show your appreciation. Third, it can be one extra way to improve customer loyalty if you have a relevant blog post, case study, or other call-to-action to include.
An example “thank you” page:
Your feedback has been received! Thank you so much for taking the time to tell us how we can improve. We value your feedback and take it very seriously. If you’re curious, feel free to see how we’ve improved via feedback in the past. [add link to relevant resource]’”
That’s it! It’s simple, to the point, and just plain polite.
Track & measure customer feedback
The final piece to this puzzle is to implement a data analysis process. If you are receiving feedback but you’re not analyzing the feedback, you will not truly improve. Data is useless if you do not pay attention to it.
One way to do that is to send out the survey within, say, six months of each other. If Customer 1 gives you a 7/10 on efficiency the first time, but a 5/10 later in the year, clearly, something happened to change their opinion of you. Having this information is great because then you can delve into some of the mistakes you are making so that you can fix them moving forward.
Additionally, paying attention to the answers you get to certain questions can also inspire more specific questions that help you improve your customer service even more.
Your customers are your company’s lifeblood, and knowing how they feel about you can only help you succeed. Customer feedback surveys are a very smart way to get actionable feedback, as long as you write them well and use the data to improve! Hopefully, these tips helped you write a great customer questionnaire.
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