One of the challenges in this instant feedback CX world is survey length and its influence on achieving solid response rates.
When designing a CX survey, you need to strike the balance between:
• Gaining meaningful data
• Maximising the responses
• Not being too intrusive on customers’ time
• Making the customer feel their feedback is making a difference
• The survey being flexible enough for the customer to complete on their device of choice
It is important to design the survey with:
• The end goal in mind
• A clear vision of what information you would like to gather (and what you already know about the customer)
• How the information will benefit the organisation
• How the information will benefit the customer
• How the information will be reported
There are many and varied types of customer experience surveys, most falling into one of the following categories:
• QUICK: Single rating question with a verbatim
• SHORT: 1-2 minutes, rating questions and one or two verbatims
• MID: 3-5 minutes, rating questions, fact finding, modules, verbatims
• LONG: 6-10 minutes: rating questions, fact finding, modules, verbatims
• MARATHON: 11 minutes or more: rating questions, fact finding, modules, verbatims
The industry of the organisation and the type of feedback required will influence survey length.
For example, short surveys are best when the respondent is in a hurry, they are still at the venue, or just had the experience and do not have much time. They may not even be a customer but had an experience with the organisation.
Mid-length surveys are best when the customer is invited to complete the survey (e.g. via email), some customer details are already known from the sample, and the customer can spend time reviewing the experience at their leisure.
Marathon surveys are best when the organisation is covering many dimensions of the experience and they do not know their customers. These surveys are predominantly conducted when the organisation is starting the customer experience feedback journey, before refining the survey. A marathon survey may come at the price of compromising the volume of feedback. The customer will likely need an emotional connection to the brand to fill out marathon surveys, unless their motivation is a prize for completion.
Here are our best practice recommendations to maximise response rates:
- Personalise the invitation with their name, their experience, their product or service
- Inform the customer when they are invited to complete the survey of the likely time it will take them to complete the survey (manage expectations) and equally include a progress bar in the survey itself so they know how long it's going to take them to complete
- Start the survey with a question appearing in the invitation itself
- Include imagery or icons in your survey to increase engagement
- If known, communicate with the customer via their preferred method of communication (Email, SMS, Phone)
- Read all completed surveys and their verbatims and respond to the customer when they request attention via the survey. Equally, do not contact the customer if they request no follow up as a result of their survey.
- Allow the customer to have their feedback remain anonymous, or tell them in the invitation with whom their feedback will be shared
- Give customers the opportunity to opt in to additional sections of the survey depending on the type of customer they are, based on information in the sample
- The survey is another brand touchpoint hence the survey experience needs to be as pleasant as possible, include brand imagery and use your brand tone of voice
- Don’t ask irrelevant questions or questions you know the answer to e.g. if you already know the State they live in via existing data, don’t ask them again within the survey
If the customer is willing to give up their time to provide feedback, the organisation is responsible to provide a reporting platform that enables survey visibility, immediate actions based off the feedback and visibility of action times.
Respect your customers, inform them of the improvements made following their feedback and they are more likely respect your brand in return.