Do Nots: 5 Customer Survey Tactics That Aren’t Helping

May 5th, 2014 | by Annette H
Do Nots: 5 Customer Survey Tactics That Aren’t Helping

Customer surveys are a very valuable tool for businesses. They can reveal how the brand is perceived, how the company is performing and how products are received after purchase. Designing and executing a survey that gets the most accurate results and highest response rates from customers is not easy. Six customer survey tactics do not help businesses today.

1. Performing Surveys after Every Transaction

Trying to perform surveys after every transaction might seem like a good idea to track customer responses. The reality is that asking customers to complete surveys after every transaction will lower participation because they are easily ignored. Surveys should be performed during specific periods during the year for each target segment. They should not be requested from every customer throughout the year.

2. Overly Detailed Surveys

Developing a survey often involves input from many departments. The final survey could include 50 or 100 questions. This will annoy customers and reduce full participation in the future. The most effective length for surveys is under 15 minutes. The goal is to get the most information in the least amount of questions.

3. Asking Unfocused or Open-Ended Questions

Unfocused and open-ended questions do not usually provide good and actionable responses. Survey questions need to be tightly focused on a specific topic or idea. Asking many broad questions could result in responses that are equally broad and ultimately uninformative.

4. Ignoring Specific Negative Feedback

Customers who respond to survey questions with specific problems about service or previous orders should receive special attention. Representatives should make sure any order-related issues are resolved. Negative trends should be investigated. Ignoring specific negative feedback can make customers apathetic and prevent them from taking part in future surveys. Businesses should always contact or reply to customers providing this type of feedback during a survey.

5. Waiting Too Long

Waiting too long will not help customer survey results. Waiting too long means customers might not remember the details of the experience. Some customers might even just answer survey questions randomly. This can provide inaccurate results. Surveys should be done within 2-3 weeks of the transaction.

It is important to always consider the customer experience when designing and implementing a survey. Testing surveys on employees can help to locate questions or responses that do not work well. Avoiding the common mistakes many businesses make with customer surveys will help to improve the accuracy of results and raise participation rates. To avoid costly mistakes, consider using a professional customer review company such as