Customer Satisfaction Survey: A Fail Proof Business Strategy to Up Your Business Game
What is the easiest way to understand what customers need? In today’s world of numerous options, how do brands deliver precisely the right product or service that their buyers are after? The answer is simple. Brands can get deep insights into their customers by simply asking them about it, i.e., by taking a customer service survey.
Take, for instance, Uber. This multinational ride-hailing company has two sets of customers — the drivers and the passengers. Remember that screen we’re used to seeing and rating at the end of our ride? The same option is given to drivers, too, to rate their passengers. That is Uber’s way of collecting opinions and reviews from both. Besides, it gives drivers the power to decline a booking on the basis of the passenger’s rating or vice-versa.
Another instance of a business understanding the value of customer service is when Amazon, in 2009, invested $1.2 billion in Zappos — renowned for its sound customer service. Jeff Bezos had advanced technology and experienced personnel at his disposal to sell shoes on his platform. However, he believed in the power of great service.
These two instances are proof that customer satisfaction is important, and the feedback surveys when done right can help understand buyers and positively impact businesses.
What is Customer Feedback Survey?
It’s a method used to gauge the satisfaction level of buyers for the product or service offered by businesses. This is reliable in comparison to simple human observation. There are various types of customer service surveys, and each of which can be employed to segment customers based on satisfaction scores, measure relative customer satisfaction scores over time or find insights to enhance the customer experience.
Various industries, or brands, design their own Customer Survey form. They vary in length, tonality, type of questions, and so on. Companies need to develop their unique customer satisfaction questionnaire to gauge the satisfaction level accurately — for instance, an insurance company’s customers may have completely opposing expectations to a grocery store’s buyers.
Yet, in general, most surveys can be brought under two types:
- Direct Transaction Surveys
- Over Satisfaction Surveys
1. Direct Transaction Surveys: These types of surveys are conducted to understand a customer’s satisfaction immediately after a transaction. The intention, however, is not to learn about the overall liking for the brand. Listed below are a few lines to help understand ‘Direct Transaction Surveys’ better.
- How satisfied were you with [the sales experience]?
- How satisfied were you with [the product]?
- How satisfied were you with [the onboarding experience]?
- How satisfied were you with [your customer service personnel]?
2. Overall Satisfaction Surveys: These types of surveys are also known as ‘relationship surveys’. They are designed and employed to gauge the customers’ sentiment (or feeling) for a company in general. The result is arrived at through a combination of past experiences and additional factors. Unlike the above type of survey, this customer satisfaction survey form is not handed to customers immediately after a transaction. However, they may be coated as a survey being directed at the most recent experience. Below are a few samples to help understand ‘Overall Satisfaction Surveys’ better.
- How likely are you to shift to another [firm, service provider, product]?
- How likely are you to renew your [contract]?
- Based on your interaction, how likely are you to [buy another product, use additional services] from [business name]?
The above surveys can provide exciting and startling results that may turn a company’s marketing or business strategy on its head. Both of them offer different results, thereby empowering businesses with diverse insights.
Why is Customer Feedback Survey Important?
Studies reveal, for every complaint received by a brand, there are around 20+ unhappy people who don’t wish to complain or express dissent about the same. Brands must not overlook that group because there is a chance of losing them to the competition. Besides losing out on market share, businesses may have to contend with smeared impression — one negative review about a company going viral online is the last thing a seller needs.
This proves the point that tracking the ‘Customer Satisfaction Level’ is a vital cog in the wheel called business. There are ‘Customer Satisfaction Measurement Tools’ that can help brands collect valuable feedback, and thereby empower them to make improvements, offer better products/services, or ensure a seamless customer journey.
What are the Names of Customer Satisfaction Metrics?
The most commonly used ‘Customer Satisfaction Metrics’ are:
- Net Promoter Score® (NPS)
- Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
- Customer Effort Score (CES)
1. Net Promoter Score® (NPS): It’s a ‘Customer Satisfaction Metric’ that help businesses find out the following:
- How satisfied the consumers are with a product/service?
- How loyal are they to the brand?
- How likely are they to recommend the company to others?
Besides, this metric is important to predict the customers’ churn rate, and help find out which buyers need the extra push to become loyal. These types of surveys are short and can be sent at any stage of a customer lifecycle via various survey channels — email, text messages, web and so on.
For instance, an NPS question can be triggered to pop up:
- After a customer makes a purchase
- After a client contacts support
- When a user takes a certain action on the website
- Before meeting a client
- A few weeks before a long-term subscription is ending
These are just a few of the many ways in which a business can employ NPS to collect such customer feedback.
NPS surveys usually consist of just one question asking users how likely they’re to recommend a product, service or the business itself to others. The respondents are given a scale between 1–10 to give their answer, with 10 being ‘very likely’ and 1 being ‘very unlikely’. The results obtained can be used to segment the customers as illustrated below:
- 0–6: Consumers unsatisfied with the company (Detractors)
- 7–8: Buyers like the company but don’t love it yet
- 9–10: Customers love the brand and will promote it (Promoters)
A brand using this survey method can earn an NPS score between -100 to 100. This is arrived at by subtracting the percentage of Detractors from Promoters. Anything under 0 is considered bad, a score between 0 to 30 is considered good, and anything above 30 is considered a great sign for the brand.
Arriving at an NPS score, manually, can be complicated. Hence, brands can employ NPS software to do it for them.
While employing this method, companies can ask another open-ended question to customers seeking their reason for giving them that score. Or ask them for suggestions to make the product/service/brand better.
2. Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT): This method is used to directly measure ‘Customer Satisfaction Levels’ towards a business. The survey is usually conducted to learn about customer sentiment after a brand has taken certain actions. In addition, this method can be utilized to understand a specific aspect of a product/service launched.
Below is a sample example to understand how the CSAT survey works.
Q. How would you rate your overall satisfaction with the service you received?
As shown above, CSAT surveys usually consist of one question, to understand ‘Customer Satisfaction Level’ for a service, product or interaction with the brand. However, brands can ask multiple questions — a combination of open-ended and closed-ended questions — in a single survey.
To calculate CSAT score, brands must take the number of ‘satisfied’ customers (those who fall in the range between satisfied and very satisfied) and divide it by total number of responses earned for a survey, and multiply the same by 100.
3. Customer Effort Score (CES): It is a metric used to determine the ‘Customer Satisfaction Levels’ for the ‘effort’ taken to interact with the brand’s services and products. The goal of this survey is to learn about the hassles faced by customers during the purchase journey.
Listed below are the right times to employ this survey:
- Immediately after a customer’s an interaction with customer support
- Right after a buyer interacts a product/service or makes a purchase or takes a subscription
- When a company wants to measure the overall experience with their product/service
Illustrated below is a sample question to understand how the CES survey works.
Q. How easy was it to complete the order online?
- The answers range from ‘Very Low Effort’ on the right to ‘Very High Effort’ on the left.
As shown above, the CES survey consists of one question. Users taking this survey get an option to choose between ‘Very Easy’ to ‘Very Difficult’. The collective customer feedback is then analyzed to find the average. The results falling on the positive side mean that the Customer Satisfaction Level for a brand is good. However, if the results fall on the negative side, then the company must take immediate action to satisfy its customers before it’s too late.
Benefits of Customer Satisfaction Survey
It’s a cut-throat competition out there. A new company is being set up every day, which is giving the old businesses a run for their money. How does a seller differentiate itself from the crowd? The answer lies in learning what customers think about them and staying ahead of the curve. For instance, companies like Apple pay great heed to customer feedback and deliver products with those additional features asked for.
Did you know, on average, a good experience is shared with nine people, but a bad experience is shared with double the population? This makes it imperative for brands to learn what customers feel, correct themselves before they go viral with negative feedback on social media.
Listed below are the benefits of seeking feedback from customers:
- Provides a chance to improve product/customer experience:
- Feedback is one of the best ways to understand what a product/service must consist of. This gives businesses a chance to roll out better products every time
- Improves customer retention:
- Feedback is a great way to stay in touch with customers, understand their satisfaction levels, learn about their expectations, and deliver a solution to them instantly. This helps businesses retain customers and earn new ones too
- Identifies customers who can become advocates:
- Taking feedback from customers, and delivering what they seek can turn them into loyal advocates for businesses. They become a company’s marketer, refer the product/service to family and friends, and drive sales at literally no additional cost
- Helps make informed decisions:
- Feedback gives brands a chance to make decisions with the utmost confidence. This is because the results gained from surveys are actual insights coming straight from a revenue-driver. This practice, thereby, helps companies beat their competition in the market
Types of Customer Survey Questions
1. Binary Scale Questions:
As the name suggests, this type of customer service survey has just two answer options for users to choose from. For instance, Yes/No; Thumbs up/down and so on. The advantage is that the survey is quick and short. Illustrated below are a few sample questions for the above answers.
- Was your experience satisfying?
- Did our product meet expectations?
- Did this article provide the solution you were looking for?
- Did you find what you were looking for?
2. Multiple-choice Questions:
As the name goes, this type of survey consists of questions with two to three mutually inclusive options. These tend to be used to collect categorical variables — names, labels and so on.
Consider the sample question below:
Q. Choose the option that best describes your role
The above question when employed to conduct a Customer Satisfaction Survey can give businesses customer satisfaction scores with respect to job titles/industries.
3. Scale Questions:
Businesses need to realize that almost all popular surveys are based on scale questions. For instance, a CSAT survey asks the customers how satisfied they’re with the product/service. The results obtained are on a scale of 1–5, which is a Likert scale. In addition, the results may be obtained in the form of words too — strongly agree, strongly disagree, Yes, No, and so on.
The benefits of using scale questions are as listed below:
- This method of questioning is easy for consumers to understand, thereby brands can expect guaranteed responses
- This type of questioning enables companies with the power to segment their customer types with relative ease
- This kind of questioning empowers businesses to measure data longitudinally and helps improve aggregate score over time
However, the only drawback is that the results obtained have qualitative insight. Hence, it’s advisable to couple scale questions with open-ended questions as explained below.
4. Semantic Differential:
These types of questions give users the power to choose an answer (or give feedback) either close to the left pole or the right pole.
For instance, if the left pole has ‘too bad’ and the right has ‘too good’ as the options, users will have the freedom to move the pointer anywhere on the scale, and thereby denote their experience accurately.
Semantic Differential is similar to a response scale survey, but when the analysis results are broken in two, which is positive and negative, the answers derived will be similar to a binary scale discussed in point one.
5. Open-ended Questions:
Out of all the question types mentioned above, open-ended is the only way to derive qualitative insights. Getting qualitative customer satisfaction feedback is vital because it gives brands the chance to identify the customer’s value proposition and learn about their expectations from a brand. This type of result cannot be obtained from the above type of questions.
Now that the type of questions has been discussed in detail, it’s time to understand the next step.
How to Integrate Customer Satisfaction Surveys?
There are a few guidelines to be followed by companies to ensure that any customer feedback survey they implement works smoothly. Besides, brands need to understand the goal that they’re trying to achieve. Then, they need to ensure that all the employees are on the same page. Listed below are the rules explained in detail.
1. Understand your need
2. Pick the right medium
3. Select a tool to conduct a survey
4. Set a process
5. Gather feedback
6. Enact change
1. Understand Your Need: Brands need to start by pinpointing the aim of the survey and the insights they’re seeking. This helps in choosing the survey type to achieve the most relevant data.
2. Choose a Medium: Once the first step is complete i.e., the determination of the need and the survey type, brands need to pick a medium to conduct the survey. One can choose between e-mail, SMS, in-app, social media, paper, or in person. The most popular medium for conducting a survey is via email.
3. Select a Tool to Conduct a Survey: After choosing the survey type and medium, brands must decide whether it’s a one-off survey or if they plan to incorporate customer satisfaction surveys indefinitely. Then, the tool can be chosen accordingly.
4. Set a Process: On completion of the above steps, businesses need to design the questions, and determine at what stage of a shopping journey should it be handed to a customer. Besides, the employees must be aware of the customer satisfaction questionnaire samples and their role in the process.
5. Gather Feedback: After the survey is conducted, brands need to monitor the results and draw conclusions either through a tool or manually, and share the feedback with the employees.
6. Enact Change: Once the survey is concluded and the results are out, brands get access to actionable insights, which can be used to train employees, improve product/service, or the overall customer experience.
Businesses must realize that to run a survey successfully, they need to seek help from professionals with experience and technology prowess. Listed below are the pros and cons of Survey Outsourcing.
Pros of Survey Outsourcing:
- The surveys will be managed by professionals who understand the best practices, collect, and manage data better to deliver optimal results
- Outsourcing the surveys will rid companies of the need to employ dedicated personnel, the additional time consumed in setting up a customer satisfaction questionnaire, and so on
- Survey outsourcing ensures that there will be multiple people at work to create and manage surveys for businesses and deliver the right results
What businesses must realize that there are also cons due to outsourcing a survey, as listed below.
- Outsourcing a survey means that businesses may not be in complete control of the data collection process, thereby creating doubts over the final results obtained
- Though conducting a survey offers great benefits for businesses, they must remember that outsourcing comes at a price
- While transferring the survey outsourcing responsibilities to a new firm, businesses may fail to get the same kind of service and the results too
How to Identify the Right Customer Satisfaction Survey Questions?
It is imperative for brands to collect feedback to ensure customer satisfaction. This provides marketing and product teams with valuable information that can be used for customer retention.
Listed below are a few questions brands can put to use:
- How frequently do you use the product or service?
- Does the product help you achieve your goals?
- What is your favorite tool for the product or service?
- What would you improve if you could?
Customer satisfaction surveys offer deeper and data-driven insights into the customer engagement or the lack of it. Thus, it’s crucial to craft the customer satisfaction questionnaire with relevant and easy to understand questions to derive appropriate and requisite responses concerning the brand vs customer experiences.
To get things right the first time, consider outsourcing the customer survey requirements to trusted third-party call center services providers like Expert Callers, today!