Surveys – The Longer Version

On Monday, I talked about an article related to customer surveys. The article was quite helpful and gave some interesting advice, but I’d like to add a few things to it. First of all, here are some good posts I have done related to surveys:

The six point scale.
The six point scale was probably one of the best pieces of information in the article. A five point scale allows customers to pick a middle ground, but a six point makes them go to one side or the other. Many companies use a 10 point scale, which also works.

Studies have shown, though, that customers who say “Satisfied” or “Agree” (usually 4 on a 5 point scale) are as likely to switch to a competitor as those who say “Neutral” (usually a 3 on a 5 point scale). This is something to keep in mind when reading survey results. 5’s (not 4’s) are what matters.

Don’t make customers wait.
As I mentioned in the post about gathering feedback, have a feedback button on your web site. Don’t make customers wait until they are sent a survey so they can provide their thoughts – always ask for it and always use it. Send regular “How are we doing?” surveys after support tickets are closed, etc. HP sent me a survey after I used their live chat – it provides a good example of an effective survey.

Give the customers something.
Like the article suggests, be sure to give customers some sort of incentive to filling out your survey. It may be a $5 gift card or a nice little notebook sent to them in the mail – but make it something. If your survey is long, you should definitely offer something to your customers for filling it out. If the survey is shorter, you can probably get away with not offering anything.

Test the survey.
I never mentioned testing the survey in previous posts. It seemed obvious to me, but it is a good idea. Ask a few employees or people you know to take it and provide their feedback. They may see something you are missing and be able to help you fix it or at least provide their opinions.

The other items I think are pretty well covered in my posts and the article. You should try send out surveys after few months. They will help give you a good idea of where your customer service department is and where you still need to improve.

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One Response to “Surveys – The Longer Version”

  1. dygitaljoe's bl0g said:

    Nov 10, 06 at 11:48 am

    The Real Deal on Customer Service Surveys…

    As being on the receiving end of these surveys, I am able to give some insight on what some companies are trying to accomplish with these. I strongly believe these surveys are ineffective unless companies really extrapolate them and actually change.