Online Surveys To Know How Your Customers Are Feeling

    April 8, 2002

We have been here before. Sales are dipping and business as a whole is slowing down without any warning or any visible reason. What could be causing this situation? We do everything right and follow proven tactics to keep business moving. What else can be done? The only way to find out what is going on is to ask those that are responsible for business slowing up, your customers.

To find out what the customer is thinking, the fast and most efficient way is a survey. An online survey can save time and resources because of the ease of availability and ease of use. A survey will answer any concern you can think of but that is part of the problem with a survey, you have to know what you are looking to get from it.

Your online survey will answer any questions you have in the most efficient way possible but you have to know what you are looking for before you can get your results. You wouldn’t ask a marketing question to one of your co-workers without already partially knowing what you expect to get in return. Same thing with a survey, you have to have future marketing decisions in mind.

Doing your own survey will save you thousands of dollars by avoiding the hiring of a market research company, here are some well known tips to get you going:

1) Keep the survey short – Wasting someone’s time is the fastest way to aggrevate them and garner a negative image for your company. If the questions have relevance to the insight that you are trying to obtain, keep them. If not, get rid of the question.

2) Give it a test run – Before sending your survey to thousands of people, test it internally first to flush out any mistakes that may have been overlooked and to see what kind of results you are getting.

3) Know what you are trying to get from the survey – Establishing proper goals is essential to having an effective survey. Gather the information that is most valuable to you and leave the other things for a later survey.

4) Keep it in layman’s terms – Remember that not all your customers have the knowledge that you have about your product. Make sure they can understand the question so you can get a good answer.

5) Speaking of the answers – Always give the survey taker the “don’t know” option so you know if the answer is accurate or just a guess. This helps on making the survey results more precise.

6) Remember the K.I.S.S. principle – Keep It Simple Silly. Make the person taking the survey not mind that they have just used their valuable time to help you. You can get valuable information by asking the simple questions that you may not have thought about.

7) Last but not least – Do the survey yourself. This will save you thousands while getting all the insight into your business that you need. Also, there is no far away market research company that knows your company better than you.

Full of wit and humor, Brandon White is an entrepreneur and former editor and writer for iEntry, Inc.