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Crafting a Customer Survey That Yields the Most Valuable Insights

  • Surveys offer useful feedback on how a company is meeting customer needs and how it can change its strategy
  • Company owners can choose from several different types of questions when putting together a survey
  • Successful approaches make it more likely that a customer will complete the survey

Surveys are one of the most useful tools in market research, and often provide a win-win scenario. Customers get an opportunity to offer feedback on your products and services, and may receive a reward or other incentive for doing so. The company owner gets helpful information on how their customers view the company and what changes they might make.

A survey can focus on any areas where you’d like to receive feedback. Some common approaches include asking about customer satisfaction with a product or service, what a customers’ needs are, how the company can improve, and why the customer chose the company over a competitor.

Types of survey questions

There are several different types of questions a company owner can include when putting together a survey. These include:

  • Open-ended questions, where a respondent can write whatever they want in response to a question
  • Multiple choice questions, where respondents can choose some or all of the options provided
  • Ranking questions, involving either a numerical scale or a scale between “Strongly agree” and “Strongly disagree”
  • Demographic questions, which let you consider the respondent’s age, gender, and other factors

Best survey practices

The best way to create a survey is to come up with a diverse set of questions, both in terms of the type of question and the topic covered. While you don’t want to include too many open-ended questions, having at least one or two allows the respondent to share useful feedback without feeling overwhelmed.

Use clear, concise language. Avoid neutral, leading, or yes-or-no questions.

Keep the survey short. Customers are less likely to engage with a survey if they cannot complete it quickly.

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