Can I ask you a question?
Creating a good survey is a work of art, or rather, a blending of art and science. Social research gives us the scientific backing behind designing a questionnaire. But science alone is not enough. If you want people to take the time to complete your survey you have to appeal to their emotions as well as their minds.
A well-designed and creative survey not only generates invaluable feedback it engages customers in a lasting and meaningful way.
The Benefits Of Surveys
In the world of omnichannel marketing, surveys are another instrument to connect with customers one-on-one and allow them to have a voice in the products and services they use.
Customers who feel they’re being listened to are repeat customers.
In addition, surveys are an ideal way to perform employee evaluations and event planning.
Human resource departments have been reaping the benefits of semi-automated employee evaluations, which greatly improves speed and efficiency in the workplace.
Planning an event?
Craft a survey for your attendees so you can deliver the exact experience they’re looking for.
A good survey gives you the data you need to shape product roll-outs and marketing funnels.
That’s where a good survey comes in.
Using Surveys the Right Way
Surveys are a tremendously helpful tool for gathering information and connecting with clients…but only if they’re used properly.
Surveys can take your branding to the next level. Even a simple survey helps build and maintain customer trust.
People like having a voice in their consumer journey. They become repeat customers when a business listens and responds to their needs.
However, in order to get meaningful results, you need to design your survey correctly.
Remember: Ask the right questions and you’ll get the right answers.
Consider the following when creating your survey:
Use Quotas To Get The Information You’re Looking For
Say you want to sample the responses of 100 people between the ages of 21-35 and 100 people between the ages of 35-50. A quota will screen out non-qualifying participants once you reach the numbers you want. This allows you to accurately measure a 100-to-100 comparison by age or whatever metric you choose.
A Ranking List Yields More Information To Than A Standard “Yes”/”No” Response
Give respondents choice and ask them to rank them from best to worst, or favorite to least favorite. This will yield information about ALL your choices, not just one.
Ranking lists force respondents to make a choice — and that information is invaluable.
Question Skip Logic Allows You To Better Understand Your Audience
Question skip logic allows you to customize surveys based on a response.
For example, if a customer gives a certain question a low ranking or negative response, skip logic will pop out additional questions to learn more about the negative experience.
Be a part of the small fraction of businesses that survive. Gather the data you need to make informed business decisions. Use your surveys right.
Use Paper Surveys Too
Yes, we are living in the Digital Age. But not all of us prefer digital always and everywhere.
Sometimes, we want to touch the paper. So, consider running surveys on paper too. Those who turn up their noses at digital surveys may be happy to complete a paper questionnaire.
It’s true that printing can be costly, but how much is valuable feedback you can get? Plus, there are ways to optimize printing costs like using cost-effective fonts and buying your printing supplies from alternative vendors.
So do not immediately write off this option. Give paper surveys a try.
How To Build a Survey
The most important part of any survey is the questions you ask. Building them is quite easy.
If your website is on WordPress, you may want to consider a WordPress plugin or simply build your surveys from scratch. WordPress is predominantly drag and drop nowadays, so you don’t necessarily need to touch a code to create professional-looking surveys.
Plus, there are several low-cost/no-cost applications available for this (like SurveyMonkey) if you want to do this outside WordPress or any other platform you are using.
So, technically building a survey shouldn’t be an issue. Whatever medium you use for your website or app there is always an easy solution for creating surveys.
The challenging part is coming up with the right questions…and asking them in the right way.
Developing good survey questions requires creativity, knowledge about your subject, and diligence to reduce response bias. Refine your questions with pilot testing. Getting your questions worded clearly and concisely is vital.
Here are seven quick tips on how you can ask the right questions in the right manner:
1 Define a clear goal for your survey
Knowing what information you’re looking for will help you design your survey. Be specific. Instead of a broad question like, “What do customers think of our products?” ask them how they feel about a specific product in your line. Once you have a clear goal in mind, use it to prioritize your survey questions.
2 Put personal questions at the end of your survey
Think of a survey like a date. Don’t scare the respondent off with heavy personal questions up front! Small, breezy talk first. Make your respondents feel comfortable and there is a better chance they’ll follow your survey questions all the way to the end.
3 Focus on closed-ended questions
Close-ended questions are easy to answer and give you quantitative data. Offer between four and five specific answers to each question.
4 Keep the survey brief
Short surveys get completed. This entry was short and you read it all the way to the end. See?
5 Add an incentive to complete the survey
Want to increase your number of respondents? Give them a freebie or some other incentive! We really like the way American Airlines incentivizes its surveys…get free miles for taking simple surveys! It’s a win-win.
6 Keep your answer choices fair and balanced
Don’t ask leading questions. Allow respondents to make authentic choices. Avoid “absolute language” like “always,” “every,” and “all.” They scare respondents off. Stick with language like “usually,” often,” and “most of the time.”
7 No double-barreled questions in the survey
Ask one question at a time. For example, don’t ask, “Did you enjoy our products and services?” Break it into two questions instead: “Did you enjoy our products?” and “Did you enjoy our services?”
Social media is the primary way digital surveys are delivered.
There is an honesty and immediacy to answering a quick survey on your phone or tablet. Small-screen marketing teams understand this, which is why surveys are so actively used on social media by brands around the world.
20 Inspiring Survey Examples – How Top Companies Do It
Princeton Review Undergraduate Survey
This Princeton Review Undergraduate Student Survey not only collects useful information from the undergraduate population but also enters participants into the Princeton Review‘s Campus Critic giveaway for a chance to win fun stuff. Very effective!
It is essential getting your survey to the right audience, and the Princeton Review does a great job of reaching its on-campus undergraduate population.
This introduction to Airbnb’s customer survey asks for feedback in a very low-pressure manner.
Respondents like to know upfront how long a survey will take and how the information will be used.
Customers are more likely to share information if they know it will be used to help other customers.
Airbnb’s customer survey itself is very cleanly designed and easy to use.
YouTube’s thumbs up/down
It doesn’t get any more basic — or brilliant — that YouTube’s use of the Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down rating system. This is a fantastic (and equally obvious) survey example!
Almost universally understood, the thumbs up/thumbs down symbol allows viewers to quickly cast a vote on the videos they’re watching. Add in subscription numbers and viewer comments and you’ve got an amazing amount of useful feedback!
If we talk about survey examples, Hotjar must be on the list.
Being a feedback tool itself, Hotjar uses this simple drop-down survey to ask one question, but this one question yields a ton of actionable information.
The answers yield actionable advice for Hotjar UX designers. This is a good example of one simple, open-ended question yielding a variety of responses that can be used to make informed marketing and product decisions.
You can even use these open-ended responses to shape future surveys!
This agreement scale survey from Google uses a basic 5-point Likert scale — and emojis — to gauge customer satisfaction.
A Likert scale offers a spectrum of choices ranging from “very satisfied” to “very dissatisfied.”
Like all the best surveys, this one is quick and easy.
While rocked by the success of upstart rival Zoom, video conferencing platform Skype For Business does a great job of gathering customer feedback…and offering quick responses to potential call problems.
Following a five-star rating system, potential Skype issues are broken into two categories — audio and video — with five checkbox choices below that. An open-ended comments box leaves room for additional user comments.
Speaking of Zoom, the video conferencing platform offers useful tools for adding a poll to your next Zoom meeting.
Hey, you’re all together in the same meeting room anyway — use a quick poll to both gather info and bring the room together! Even if it’s something simple — like what the background image should be for the next Zoom meeting — a Zoom poll can be fun and informative. Keep the number of questions limited and, of course, write great survey questions!
Speaking of clever crafting, meditation app Headspace uses bright colors and a touch of humor to engage customers. Here they use a fun introductory letter that encourages customers to respond to their survey. This is another clean, neat, and a little fun survey example that cleverly utilizes the power of visuals.
Headspace also has a great survey intro. It tells potential participants how long the survey will take and lets them know their participation will result in a better Headspace user experience.
The drop-down menus on this Disney+ survey are clean and easy to use. They also pack a lot of survey questions into the tight real estate of a mobile phone screen.
This kind of thoughtful design is essential for social media platforms, where most users will complete the survey on a phone or tablet.
The survey also helps evaluate subscriber interest in more adult-friendly content. Heck yeah, we’ll binge Buffy The Vampire Slayer!
American Airlines’s Miles For Your Opinions Program offers great incentives to those who take their sponsored surveys, garnering both great customer feedback and brand loyalty. American Airlines’s invitation to become part of “an exclusive online community” give participants a sense of privilege, and a voice in the airline industry. Make your voice heard and pick up some AAdvantage miles in the process.
Chase Bank’s Autosave Program walks customers through savings goals with an easy to use survey.
There are never more than three or four choices and only one question per screen.
The friendly icons make taking this survey a walk in the park. The good, clean design makes this an attractive survey example.
USAA Financial Readiness Survey
USAA Insurance has an outstanding Financial Readiness Score Survey that gauges your financial health based on a series of thoughtful fill-in-the-blank questions.
The questions get to the point quickly and the design is clean. The USAA survey's neutral wording helps avoid leading questions.
This SoundCloud survey on SurveyMonkey gauges the popularity of the music platform, specifically among hip-hop and rap artist fans. Clear questions and easy to use radio buttons make this survey informative and easy to complete.
Know your survey goal and keep your questions on target. Clearly identify your purpose, both for yourself and your participants. Ensure only relevant questions are included in an order that makes sense.
My Car is a resource that allows you to track the maintenance and understand the market value of your vehicles. It also checks for safety recalls and more.
Sign up couldn’t be simpler with this two-step survey and the company’s entrance page answers a lot of questions upfront.
These tax specialists take customer satisfaction seriously, designing a survey that evaluated the time management of their customers.
Looks like people want more time…and are willing to pay for it!
One of the greatest aspects of this survey is how H&R Block shares the survey data with its customers. Customers like to know how their information will be used. The small icons make this stat sheet easy to understand.
We like the way Incfile engages with customers using social media polls. Incfile keeps client conversations alive with cleverly crafted surveys.
Social media platforms are essential when it comes to reaching 35- to 55-year-old customers. Incfile’s polls are well designed; short, simple, and easy to complete. More importantly, Incfile’s surveys are very targeted, asking specific questions of a specific audience.
The music and podcast streaming service Spotify gathers a lot of customer feedback with a simple, one-page, seven-question survey. The use of simple radio buttons makes selecting answers a breeze, and the clean design makes it easier for respondents to finish the survey.
The brevity and design of this survey keep participants engaged, while the questions suggest a customized and more enjoyable Spotify experience upon completion.
Not so much a survey as an entrance portal for people seeking health insurance, this three-step method at HealthPlans is laid out cleanly and simply and the personal interview in step two really helps target audiences and funnel them in the right direction.
This is an excellent survey example which shows how to quickly segment your survey participants so you can target the right questions to the right audience.
In addition to clever television ads, GEICO also creates good customer surveys, measuring both sentiment and satisfaction. The design of GEICO surveys is noteworthy because they incorporate the company’s trademark humor, branding colors, and, of course, the GEICO gecko. These surveys successfully translate the broader corporate message and brand through consistent design.
Facebook polls make it easy to engage with customers in a meaningful way, gathering their opinions on everything from product styles to logo colors.
It’s no secret that Facebook is a massive platform with a broad reach. It makes creating and dispersing surveys a breeze! We like the colorful bar graphs displaying the survey results.
Facebook polls are simple, well-known yet another great survey example. Facebook makes it easy to reach a very targeted audience. Getting your survey in front of the right audience is essential, and the Facebook algorithm is mighty— even uncanny—when it comes to predicting user behavior. Facebook probably knows you better than you know yourself…and they know which Facebook users will be interested in taking your survey.
Plus, Facebook is not the only platform you can leverage to get the targeted user feedback, Instagram (which also belongs to Facebook) can be a powerful survey platform too with its poll feature.
A well-constructed survey is easy to use and has a clearly defined purpose (survey examples provided above straightforwardly display these important characteristics). The goal of good survey design is to make sure your data matches as closely as possible with the authentic feelings and interests of the respondents. Surveys allow you to collect both quantitative and qualitative data from participants.
Design is important. If your survey is poorly designed, all your hard work goes down the drain. Keep both your survey instruction and your survey questions short and simple. If you ask too much of your survey subjects, they’ll leave.
Close-ended questions are easier to administer and easier for some respondents to complete. Open-ended questions are good for broaching new topics. Ask open-ended questions first so that you’re close-ended questions don’t influence the responses.
Let survey participants know how their information will be used and they’ll be more likely to share. They’ll make time to complete your survey if they believe their user experience will improve as a result. Sharing the results of past surveys can be an effective way to get people to take your current survey. People like to know how their experience compares to others.
A good survey is a great marketing tool. They are also a great way to engage with current customers and generate leads for new business. When trying to make informed decisions, you need to ask the right questions. Surveys are the right tool for gathering reliable, actionable information.