Surveys align the needs of customers with the goods and services that companies provide. They serve different purposes for the company and the customer, so each has incentive to create or participate in the survey experience.
Surveys are beneficial for customers in that they give them an outlet to praise good service or air grievances. Customers can have an impact on company procedure – or at least, they can feel like they’re making a difference. In this way, companies can form an emotional connection with their customers, build customer loyalty, and gain insights that will help them to better provide what customers want.
Companies, usually through their CX, sales, or marketing departments, use surveys to seek a deeper understanding of the needs and desires of customers. Through surveys, they discover how past efforts have been received and how they should shape future strategy and processes to achieve better outcomes. In order to achieve successful outcomes using survey programmes, company leadership must to be willing to change procedures based on survey discoveries. Without that willingness to change, surveys will be nothing more than an expensive habit that will leave customers disenchanted.
Once companies have an open mind to changing, it’s time to consider using a survey. There are four main purposes of using a surveys:
- Fix any meaningful problems that have occurred for customers with the company’s products or services.
- Assess the performance of its customer-facing units and staff
- Improve its processes and standards for delivery
- Understand customers’ needs as they use the company’s products or services so the company can help them have a better overall experience.
The first reason for using surveys is the most basic. If nothing else, the voice of the customer (VoC) will be heard and problems that occurred with the product or service will be brought forth. As useful as this may be, it is only the beginning.
By assessing the performance of customer-facing units and staff, companies can identify where further employee training needs to occur and then plan accordingly.
As part of that evaluation and training process, businesses can also determine steps to be taken in order to improve processes and standards for delivery. For example, after surveying stores regarding inventory, the delivery process can be adjusted to include more of frequently-purchased products and to deliver at more efficient times.
Finally, companies can use surveys to understand customer needs. Customers naturally want to give feedback, because they care about what companies provide to them. Better than anyone else, they can inform companies about what needs to change with their product and services. By listening to customers through surveys, and then acting on that feedback to make improvements, businesses can improve their customers’ experience, which will lead to increased loyalty and profits.
Decreasing survey response rates have been a concern for market researchers and analysts for more than 25 years. Technology such as voicemail, caller ID, and call blocking have all contributed to this drop. Busier lives, greater mobility, privacy, and confidentiality concerns have also increased reluctance to participate in surveys. Companies seek to offset low response rate by offering survey incentives. These can include monetary and nonmonetary rewards in the form of gift cards, coupons, cash, or other prizes, often distributed using a raffle system.
Incentives such as these boost response rates. However, there is a fine line between a beneficial boost in responses and a useless one. Incentives can trigger response and non-response biases that negatively affect survey data accuracy and the customer experience. By driving for more responses using incentives, companies may inadvertently corrupt the data by gathering non-representative survey samples or responses from respondents who will only fill out the survey for the incentives. But non-incentivised surveys have similar problems, if in the opposite direction – only customers who feel strongly about the topic at hand will respond. Either way can result in extreme reviews that are not necessarily representative of the population.
MaritzCX Survey Builder
We are passionate about listening to and responding to customers as unique individuals. We believe in collecting and responding quickly. Our surveys bring you closer to the customer by removing barriers of time, distance, and processes that often prevent intimate customer connections and insights from taking place. With a responsive design, customer reach out and convenience will be maximised across all devices. A flexible software with over 30 questions types is coupled with an intuitive interface with drag and drop functionality. Together, let’s build surveys that match your brand’s look and feel across all channels and devices.