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Questioning Traditional Customer Satisfaction Surveys

For any business, gaining feedback from your clients is a must. Customer satisfaction surveys, done correctly, are a great way for businesses to monitor their relationships with their customers. Not only can they help to  identify how their customers feel about the brand, the data gleaned from these surveys can help to improve the very nature of the customer experience. On the other hand, some of the characteristics of a traditional survey can actually work against their success. Here are a few myths regarding customer satisfaction surveys and a few tips on how to do them right.

Myth #1: More questions equal more information.

Lengthy questionnaires often have weak response rates, which leads to poor sample sizes and incomplete results. Put simply, customers don’t want to take the time to fill out a wordy survey. In addition, lengthy surveys are more expensive to write, conduct and analyze.

Myth #2: If respondents are unbiased, the results will be too.

Even if you’ve taken the time to put together an objective sampling of people to give your survey to, how you conduct the survey can lead to biased results. For instance, phone surveys using land line numbers will exclude a younger demographic that only uses cell phones. A survey sent to houses will speak to a different audience than one sent to apartments. In addition, how you word a question can have a significant impact on the response it generates. For example, “Scientists believe that eating chocolate is healthy. Do you agree?” is a lot different than “Do you feel that eating chocolate is healthy?”

Myth #3: If you survey them, the answers will come.

Businesses often conduct a survey to find out how their customers truly feel, but traditional surveys seldom give customers a true means of expressing themselves. If a traditional survey is not written and evaluated properly, the resulting data may be worthless – or even worse, misleading. Initiating open communication with customers is more likely to lead to meaningful information.

Traditional surveys have been around forever, but as technology changes, our means of collecting data may also need to evolve. Keep surveys short. Keep questions clear. Make the survey meaningful. That’s what we’re doing here at Anchor for our clients, and it’s working out well for everyone. Give us a call, and let us tell you all about it.