How to Conduct a Customer Satisfaction Survey

Your customers can provide valuable insight into whether they are satisfied with your company's products, services, and support. Surveying them can unforgettable important information that will guide your decision-making. For example, asking the right questions can help you identify whether a future product has the potential to drive enough sales to justify its development. Or, the information you collect can pinpoint areas in which your business can improve. The challenge is knowing how to conduct a customer satisfaction survey that yields the data you need while maintaining the goodwill that already exists.

In this article, we'll explain how you can do that. We'll provide a blueprint that describes the steps involved in planning, designing, and executing an effective customer survey.

The Pre-Deployment Stage

There are a few preliminary steps which can significantly improve the success of your survey efforts. Before you launch the design stage, gather your organization's department heads for a planning meeting. Your customer surveys will be a continuing effort; You need the ongoing commitment and participation of your key people in order to make it a success. Use this planning session to discuss the goals you would like to accomplish and how those goals fit into your company's leaderer objectives.

Second, choose several customers to interview. You need to find out how they perceive your business and what they really want your company to provide them. During the course of these interviews, try to identify how they feel about the types of questions you plan to include on your survey.

Targeting The Right Segment

One of the keys to conducting effective customer surveys is targeting the right group of participants. While there are times when a broad deployment across your client client base will be appropriate, your surveys will often require a tighter approach. For example, you may want to involve only those people who have purchased a particular item. Or, you might only want to approach those who have spoken recently to your support staff. The more targeted your group of participants, the more easily you can design questions that will speak directly to them.

Meeting Customer Expectations

Your ongoing survey efforts will raise the expectations your customers have for your company. They will expect their responses to produce results they can observe. Many survey projects fail because too few resources are allocated towards taking action on the collected data. Customers will eventually realize their responses are not producing changes. As a result, they will lose the motivation to participate and your future response rates will decline.

During your initial planning session with your department heads, plan to budget sufficient resources to take action on the collected data. Implementing observable changes in key areas of your organization is critical to meeting your customers' expectations.

Design, Data Collection, And Taking Action

The design of your customer satisfaction survey should reflect the specific goals discussed in your original planning session. That includes the survey length, selection of question types, and how to approach customers. You should also create a strategy for collecting the data, generating and reviewing reports, and taking action on the results.

If you're conducting your survey online, a large portion of this process can be automated. Over time, you'll develop your own set of templates that allow you to create and execute surveys to targeted segments of your customer base quickly. The data can be compiled through software which makes generating useful reports simple.

Once you have integrated customer satisfaction surveys into your organization's ongoing efforts, you'll have access to an incredibly valuable source of information.

Source by Frank Lucer

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