5 Keys for Creating a Customer Survey, and 1 Big Tip for Implementing It

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We’ve all heard the saying “The customer is always right.” Whether or not you always agree with this adage, it is impossible to ignore the power customers have in the digital age to influence both the success and failure of a business.

Like it or not, customer sentiment is the life-blood of any business, so it’s crucial to be aware of their experiences and opinions as they relate to your brand. According to recent reports, more than 86 percent of people will pay more for better customer service. To ensure that your business is on the receiving end of such opportunity, you only need to listen to what your customers have to say.

One of the best ways for businesses to understand the needs of their customers is through tracking feedback, which can be collected through questionnaires, reviews, online comments, and more. A well-constructed survey, however, can provide insightful and quantitative data, discover problems or challenges, and ultimately help a business gauge its progress and/or improvement over time. One of the greatest benefits of carrying out a successful customer survey program is not only discovering ways to retain current customers but also pull customers away from your competition. By paying close attention to survey data, you can adjust or augment products or services that best suit customer wants and needs.

To get the most out of your survey, it’s important that you ask the right questions. A poorly crafted survey will be filled with biases and flaws, but a well-designed one can generate insightful data that will help in future business decisions and improve customer retention. To get the most accurate sense of your customers’ experiences, here are five best practices to follow when it comes to designing a strong survey.

  • First, make sure that you keep the amount of questions at a reasonable number. Customers are often bombarded with too many questions, which ultimately leads them to ignore or not finish the survey. 
  • Offer them a small number of rating choices. Providing a more manageable range increases the chances that the survey will be deemed more acceptable to the customer. A rating range of 1 to 5, for instance, will have a much higher success rate than a range of 1 to 10.
  • Avoid demographic questions, such as age or income, as they may infringe on privacy policies. If your survey requires these questions, make answering them optional.
  • Do not harass customers to finish a survey. No one likes to be pressured, and it might have a negative effect on outcomes. Sending a reminder once is enough. Also, along the same lines, make sure you respond promptly to negative feedback and offer solutions. This will show you care about their experience and their opinion.  Same goes for an excellent feedback, always personally thank them for taking the time to praise your business and show them that they are highly appreciated.
  • Lastly, give customers an opportunity to express thoughts or ideas that are not included in the survey through an empty text field.

Now that we have discussed a few ways of creating a successful and effective survey, let’s explore how to implement the survey to get maximum results. If you’re reading this article, then you should at least be aware that one of the best tools at your disposal for doing this is your CRM system. Your CRM has been created for seamless organization and productivity, so integrating a customer feedback program within your CRM can allow you to perform the task efficiently and effortlessly.

Most CRMs are capable of organizing feedback by customer. There are other tools and applications that can be integrated within a CRM to help gather customer feedback into one easy-to-access place. Your CRM can also ensure that a survey or feedback program has been tailored to the right department internally so that appropriate actions can be taken by the right people; any feedback that comes in, such as customer service issues, marketing comments, or website issues, can be directly routed to the department in charge, thus avoiding any potential misplacement of valuable data.

Customer feedback is important for any business. Coupled with the right CRM, a successful survey where customers opinions are not only heard but implemented can strengthen customer loyalty, improve brand reputation and engagement, and, hopefully, increase sales. Remember, all feedback—both good and bad—can impact a business. Successful companies are those that seek to know more about the customers they serve.

Arun Upadhay, CEO and founder of Lion0Bytes, is a veteran executive with a more-than-17-year track record of achievement leading teams to produce and deliver cutting-edge IT solutions that deliver global project and program leadership, with a focus on balancing cost and quality with critical delivery timelines. Lion0Bytes is a medium-sized software development company that offers various proven, secure, and high-performance IT solutions, including CRM, e-commerce, and mobile applications.

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