7 Common Survey Design Mistakes
Survey Hints & Tips: What are the biggest mistakes people make when creating a customer satisfaction survey?
Making surveys too long
At VIRTUATell we deliver surveys on your behalf through a variety of devices; over the phone, online, via SMS or by email. Each of these methods may have its preferred style of question or way for customers to answer. But what is universal between them is that none of them are ideal for surveys that are too long.
It is an easy error to make, borne out of a genuine productive desire to understand as much as possible about how customers view your company and how they feel about the service they are receiving. Often, a survey may have had multiple contributors and therefore contain all the questions for all departments. But remember, these surveys are an extension of your company. The surveys bear your name and are a reflection of your brand. So if they are verbose, long winded and assuming your respondent has nothing better to do with their time than work for you, THAT is the thoughts that will be associated with your brand. So why not try to make them as efficient and as pleasant to encounter as your staff.
Assuming the respondent’s time is free
People have busy lives. Don’t assume if you are calling a customer to answer a survey that they have time. Start your survey by explicitly asking your customer if they have the time to spare, and if they don’t email the survey through to them to complete when they do. VIRTUATell use real-time customer satisfaction surveys because they are the most accurate means to get customer feedback AND ensure the results are unbiased by the passage of time. If your customers are rushed into answering your questions when they really don’t have the time, then you run the risk of getting ill-considered and inaccurate results.
In an online survey tell them up front that the survey won’t take very long to re-assure them that it won’t take up too much of their time – then DON’T!
Choose the correct media channel
If they called you, offer a telephone survey. If the e-mailed you, offer an online survey and so on. Multi-channel surveys including the phone channel, are what VIRTUATell specialise in.
Using grammatically correct wording that does not read or sound well
Despite what you may have been told in school it is not always 100% necessary (or even helpful) to use grammatically correct sentences or verbose, superfluous, elaborate wording in your survey.
The most vital goal when writing your questions for VIRTUATell to deliver, is to be able to communicate what you require accurately. And succinctly.
Making surveys too long
New York, New York was so great they named it twice. This point is so vital that we have included it twice. We can’t stress strongly enough how important it is to keep you surveys concise.
Offer the surveys in real-time, immediately after the customer event.
On many occasions, companies wait far too long before offering surveys. During this time, the customer has forgotten half of the experience they had and either answers incorrectly or untruthfully. Either way, you are basing your decisions on false result data. That is why VIRTUATell specialise on conducting real-time surveys, immediately after the customer event.
Asking Vague questions
If you ask a series of vague questions you will create lots of information but you won’t be able to quantify and analyse the results easy. A text question or voice recording gives you lots of valuable detail but these need to be supplementary questions to a question where you ask them to rate a service on a fixed scale.
For the very best survey design and response rates, contact VIRTUATell