How to use a customer satisfaction survey to evaluate business performance

We all work hard to deliver quality and value to our customers, and feedback can provide some necessary insights into how well our staff is providing customer service and placing the needs of the customers first. Using a simple, quick customer survey can show us how our staff meets commitments, how flexible they are as well as their working knowledge, and surveys are easily adaptable  to a company’s own needs.

I do think that surveys have to be specific to a company and its particular venue. In a face-to-face situation, customer surveys can too easily become popularity contests, so there has to be a lot of consistency in order to define a pattern to determine whether the service representative is actually excelling and on target. Over the internet a company has to collect data consistently to identify new trends.

So how do you do a customer satisfaction survey? My example is general and easily adaptable. The survey takes only a few minutes to complete and offers a reward for customer participation.

Dear Customer:

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you. We hope you are satisfied with our services/product. Please help us help you more efficiently in the future by taking just a few minutes to tell us about your experience. To show our appreciation, at the end of this short survey, a coupon for a 20% discount is attached to be used towards your next purchase.

Thank you again for using our company, and we appreciate your honest opinions.

Very truly yours,

SAMPLE SURVEY QUESTIONS:

  1. How long have you been using our services/products?
  2. Which of our products/services have you been using?
  3. How frequently have you purchased our products or used our services?
  4. Would you recommend our company to your friends, family or co-workers?
  5. How likely are you to continue doing business with us in the future or using our services?
  6. Do you have any suggestions how we can improve our services or our products?
  7. Please rate your overall satisfaction of our customer services.

Most experts suggest to offer multiple choice answers when applicable; for instance question numbers 1 through 3.  For question number 2, a list of services or products would be appropriate but always supply a box marked, “other”. When you ask a customer to rate their overall satisfaction, you can use from “very satisfied” to “extremely disappointed”. Make sure you include an area where a customer can comment; that’s a great way to identify and then work on improvements. For number 7, a similar choice of answers might be provided, and an allowable space for a customer/client to suggest improvements.

I also suggest a few questions to assess age group, gender, and demographics, and at the end of the survey, make sure you provide an email address or contact information for a customer who feels they may want to contact someone in your organization. You never know; you could be gaining another loyal customer.

photo credit: guspim

One Response to “How to use a customer satisfaction survey to evaluate business performance”

  1. klbarbe said:

    Jun 23, 10 at 10:39 am

    Are there tricks to help keep response rates to these types of survey high? It is ideal to keep the questions similar to maintain a trend but responses rates may decrease as customers see the same survey following their interactions.