Every product is made specifically for a target customer to purchase - it solves their problems or fulfils their needs. The way your customers interact with your goods and your business is integral to understanding how to grow and succeed in the future. A way in which businesses can measure their customer’s experience is through a satisfaction survey.
A customer satisfaction survey is a multi-question answer sheet or webpage that will ask a customer a variety of questions to determine how satisfied they were with your product and the interaction they had with your business.
In satisfaction surveys, customers will be invited to leave comments at the end of their response, offering suggestions or feedback that business owners can choose to implement. Listening to your customers is the single best way to get ahead and prosper in your business, and engaging in customer satisfaction surveys is the primary way of doing so.
There are numerous benefits to conducting a customer satisfaction survey, one of which is the valuable feedback you will get from people who experienced your business offering and products. You’ll also gain an understanding of your customer’s perspectives, whilst determining your priorities as a business moving forward.
Furthermore, your customer retention rate is likely to explode If you send out satisfaction surveys and action the suggestions, as customers love to know that they are being heard. If you are making changes according to their feedback, they will be less likely to go to a competitor of yours.
Types of surveys
There are many different surveys that can help you understand how satisfied your customers are. Each survey can help you learn more about your audience and these 4 options are the most tried and tested methods.
1. Customer satisfaction score
This method usually consists of a binary question with a simple yes or no answer. Customer satisfaction surveys ask questions like “did you enjoy your experience with our product?” or “are you satisfied with your service today?”.
If you are doing all the right things as a business, then you should receive a positive rate of around 98%. Sudden drops in this percentage indicate that there is something wrong and may be indicative of a shift in processes to try and improve this percentage score.
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2. Net promoter score
This method of customer satisfaction survey is extremely popular with service businesses and hospitality venues. A net promoter score (NPS) survey invites customers to rate their experience out of 10. Those who rate their experience a 6 or less are referred to as detractors, whilst those who rate their experience a 9 or 10 are referred to as promoters.
The more promoters there are, the higher your NPS score will be, and as such, the more likely a customer is satisfied with their experience at your business. If you are primarily receiving detracting responses, then it indicates immediate changes need to be made.
3. Customer effort score
The customer effort score demonstrates how much effort it takes for a customer to either successfully use your product or gain support from your customer support team. Send your customers an email after an interaction with your business and ask them to rate out of 5 how hard it was for them to resolve their issue or successfully use your product/service.
If you are receiving primarily high ratings, then it indicates you have strong processes in place for ease of use and easily accessible support. If your ratings are on the lower side, then it may be time to reconsider how you process customer queries.
4. Milestone surveys
Each business does these differently and there is no agreed structure, however, many of these surveys are sent to customers a period of time after their interaction with your business and product. Perhaps this is 30,60, or 90 days after purchase – a milestone survey will help you understand how customers see your business in the future, after their purchase.
Common survey questions for each type
Survey questions are largely designed to elicit two types of responses, demographic and psychographic. Demographic questions will provide ‘hard data’ on how certain segments of the population view your product, such as women over 60 who live in Melbourne.
Psychographic questions focus largely on how your entire customer base feels about your products - asking these types of questions will allow you to understand what motivates your customer to purchase and what they like about how you operate, as well as what drew them to your business over competitors.
Customer satisfaction score questions
These questions will help you determine if your business is successful in achieving customer satisfaction, however, if you need more in-depth feedback then these binary questions are not an appropriate choice.
- Did you enjoy your experience with our product?
- Did your product solve your needs?
- Did you consider a competitor before choosing us?
- Were there any friction points during your purchase?
- Would you consider purchasing from us again?
- Would you recommend us to your friends and family?
- Would you like to speak to someone about your experience?
Net promoter score
Your net promoter score is determined by a rating of 0 through to 10, as such, this survey method is not question-based. You will need a leading question to encourage your customers to rate their experience. Above the number selector, consider asking “How would you rate your product and experience with our business?”.
This type of question is thought-provoking and will encourage an honest response that will provide valuable feedback in the form of your NPS score.
Customer effort score
Many of the questions under this method will be similar but each will provide your business with valuable insights.
- From very easy to very hard, how did you find setting up your product?
- From very easy to very hard, how would you rate your support experience?
- From very easy to very hard, how hard is it to find support on our website?
- From very easy to very hard, how was your interaction with our business?
- From very easy to very hard, how easy was it to use our product?
- From very nice to very rude, how were our staff that you interacted with?
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You may choose to ask different questions at varying time intervals to see how your customers view your business after their initial interaction. Some questions you may choose to ask are:
- After your first week using our product, how did you find it?
- After your first month using our product, what would you change?
- Reflecting on your experience, what did you like about your service at our business?
- Has your product lasted as long as expected and stated?
Overall tips for your customer satisfaction survey
It is never too early or late to initiate a customer satisfaction survey. If you are about to expand or have just released a new collection of products, it may be used to determine how your customers felt about their experience and purchase. It is important to ask decisive questions and get prompt responses to change critical things that impact the customer journey.
Don’t hassle your customers with unnecessary questions, they will click off the survey if they see that it will take significant time. Ask a few questions at a time whilst sending different questions to each customer to ensure you are getting various insights about different experiences with your business.
You may find that your customers don’t want to take a survey, it may help to offer an incentive if they fully complete it. The information that is provided during customer satisfaction surveys is priceless, if you implement their feedback, the cost of incentives can be considered an investment into the improvement of your operations.
Ultimately, it is important you tailor the questions to meet your industry and the type of product/service you sell. If your business has a physical location as well as an online store, then you need to be able to identify which customers were traditional or online purchases. It is a waste of time to ask a customer how their experience with shipping was if they bought their product from you in-store. To aid with the customer satisfaction survey process you can purchase software that manages all responses and collates the data, displaying key improvement points and readable graphs.