Smart business owners know that customers and non-customers can be a source of vital feedback on their products, branding, customer service, and more. Though your business’s Yelp page or social media replies can be a helpful source of feedback, customers rarely use those platforms to offer focused feedback on specific aspects of your company’s operations. That’s where surveys come in handy.
Talking directly to your customers or target market can be invaluable for your business. When designed effectively, even the simplest surveys can add a lot of value and be used in a number of ways.
If you haven’t started using surveys to speak to the customers, below are 7 survey ideas on how you can use them for your business. In the last section of this article, you’ll also find all the steps to add a pop-up survey to your website without touching your site’s code. Make sure to stick around for that.
1. Conduct low-cost market research
When starting your business, you may have conducted market research to see how well a product or service like yours would be received. The process of better understanding your target market never ends though, — and surveys are a great way to continue your efforts affordably.
This research may take many forms: you can build surveys that measure brand awareness (do people recognize your name?), test the popularity of a new product launch, or identify competitors to keep an eye on. You can also poll larger audiences compiled by survey platforms to help you identify target markets for future research. Figuring out what your target market needs are can be invaluable for future planning.
2. Get to know your current customers even better
Placing a survey popup on your website/landing page, or sending out a newsletter with a survey are other good ideas to try out. Not every customer you ask will fill out your survey, but even a 50-60% response rate will give you greater insight into who generally visits your site and makes purchases.
Use this information to further understand your customers: What are their demographics? What needs, wants, or challenges drove them to you? How can you help them?
Though you should always reach for new customers, taking care of those most loyal to your company is key to your business’s long-term success. Take this information into consideration when you are in product development or designing marketing strategies.
If you’re looking for tools to collect customer feedback, Getsitecontrol and Getform cover the strategies mentioned above: Getsitecontrol allows you to place survey forms on a website, and Getform lets you link to them directly via email or social media. This way, you can target those who are currently on your website with a survey form popup — just like the one above — or you can send a direct survey link to your email subscribers and social media followers.
Stick around until the last section of this article for more information on how to create a website survey popup and display it to the target audience segment.
3. Measure customer satisfaction following a sale
As mentioned above, Yelp and other review sites are good places to view unfiltered, and occasionally unfocused, feedback. But if you want customer feedback to help you make strategic decisions, you’re better off designing a survey that prompts the kind of responses you’re looking for, good or bad. You can target your customers as soon as they make a purchase, when the experience is still fresh on their minds.
You can display a quick survey on the ‘Thank you’ page while customers are still on your website – or you can send a post-purchase survey to their emails.
The survey type and format will depend on the goals of your research. For example, if you want to know how customers feel about navigating your checkout, or whether they’re able to easily contact support overnight, a short Likert scale survey may reveal otherwise buried sentiments that a customer may not speak to on a public review website.
4. Crowdsource opinions to shape branding
If you’re internally deadlocked over a branding decision — a new logo, for example — why not let the people who may ultimately be swayed by your choice have a voice?
Asking for input on branding, or any other major decision such as a future product, has two primary benefits:
- one, you get a better sense of what resonates with current and potential customers,
- and two, you give those respondents a personal stake in your branding.
People love being asked for their opinion, and even if their selection isn’t chosen (but especially if it is), they’ll appreciate you asking them.
5. Gather testimonials and reviews to use as social proof
If you visit two sites and only one of them has social proof — prominently posted testimonials, reviews, and other positive feedback — you’ll immediately sense the difference. Seeing that other people have used and liked this product or service gives you the peace of mind that it is worth your money.
Once again, a survey provides a structured way for you to ask your customers for a testimonial addressing specific areas. If you want testimonials that speak to your outstanding product, or customer service, or expeditious shipping process, you can build your survey to elicit that. Take the best responses (with the respondents’ permission) and use them accordingly. Added bonus: you can also take these responses to investors.
6. Build out your content marketing with high-quality data
One of the best ways to boost your SEO ranking is to create content that other websites reference and link to. High-quality content also grabs the attention of potential customers. This is the basis of inbound marketing.
So here is another survey idea for your business. If you aren’t sure how to build out your content, consider using survey responses to create helpful data that speaks to larger trends in your industry.
You can produce articles, infographics, and blog posts on how respondents feel about a wealth of topics.
Ask your website visitors about their confidence in the economy, willingness to spend money this holiday season, what drives them to buy online over in-store, and other questions that are more specific to your business. Sharing this information will help garner links and attention.
7. Find out how your employees really feel
Surveys aren’t just for your customers. You can use surveys internally to measure employee satisfaction, happiness, and comfort, among other factors.
There are lots of services that administer these surveys anonymously, so employees feel safe sharing their thoughts. You should then analyze the results in aggregate and identify trends, friction points, and areas that need improvement.
The answer to increased productivity and lower turnover may have been just under your nose, — and all you had to do was ask.
This concludes our list of survey ideas for your business. Now it’s time for you to create your own.
How to add a survey to your website
As promised, let’s see how to add a pop-up survey, like the examples you saw in this article, to your website.
To build your pop-up survey you can use Getsitecontrol, a code-free app that allows you to create website popups in a matter of minutes.
Getsitecontrol has a wide selection of fully customizable templates that will make the creation of your survey as easy as it can get.
Before getting started, you’ll need to create a Getsitecontrol account and install the platform on your website to be able to properly use it. You can check out the instruction materials on installation to do that, but don’t worry, it’s a simple copy&paste operation that won’t give you any trouble.
Done? Great, now let’s move on to the actual creation of the survey popup.
Step 1. Choose a template from the gallery
Once you’re in the gallery, click around to preview templates in action. For this tutorial, we’ve picked a marketing research survey designed to collect customers’ opinions:
By following the steps below, you’ll learn how to customize the template and will be able to create any kind of pop-up survey for your website. Take a look at Getsitecontrol’s dedicated page for more survey examples.
Step 2. Edit the copy of the survey
Once you’ve found a suitable template in the gallery, open it and hit the
Take this template button. You’ll land on the Design tab of the Getsitecontrol dashboard. To edit the default text of the survey, click on it in the preview and type the new text in the corresponding box:
If you need different fields for your survey, you can remove the existing ones and swap them for what you need. To remove a field, click on it in the preview and hit the
Remove field button in the top-right corner of the screen:
To add a new field, click the
+ Add field button on the menu on the right and choose the type of field you want to add:
When you have the text and fields you need for your survey, go ahead and check the second page of the popup (
Page 2 ), or add it if the template doesn’t have one.
On the second page, you can thank your respondents for participating or even offer a reward:
In this example, the second page of the template features a coupon code for those who took the time to complete the survey. Consider giving a similar reward to your respondents; if you do, mention it on the first page of the popup to incentivize visitors to take the survey.
When you are happy with the content of your pop-up survey, you can move on to customizing its appearance.
Step 3. Change the appearance of the survey
Using the same tab in the dashboard, you can edit the design of the survey.
To change the image on the popup, click on it and then hit the
Change image button. Proceed to choose a more suitable picture from the built-in gallery, or upload one of your own images.
If necessary, change the image settings to adjust how it fits within the popup.
If you want to alter the appearance of the survey even more, take advantage of the
Theme settings. There, you can switch between themes, change the colors and font.
Finally, check out the mobile version of your pop-up survey to see what the experience will look like on smaller screens:
If the survey appears too long and clunky, you may want to remove the image for mobile or shorten the copy.
For the next step, we’ll move on to the
Step 4. Set up targeting conditions to display your survey
Targeting section of the dashboard, you can set up the conditions for the popup to appear.
Setting up targeting conditions correctly is crucial, especially when you need to survey a specific segment of your audience, such as:
- those who are visiting your website for the first time,
- those who have just made a purchase,
- those who are looking at a certain type of product,
- or those who are abandoning their cart.
In the screenshot below, you can see the suggested targeting conditions for this survey:
Here is a brief explanation of the settings:
- The page targeting settings include the site’s homepage and product pages.
- The condition that triggers the survey: scrolling down 15% of the webpage.
- The conditions for the survey to stop appearing: for one day after the visitor has dismissed it and forever after they have completed the survey.
Feel free to explore a more detailed guide to targeting settings and choose different conditions depending on your survey type.
When you’ve finished setting up your survey, hit the
Save & close button and activate it from the Widgets section of the Getsitecontrol dashboard.
And that’s it. Now you’ll just have to wait for the responses to roll in.
We’ve reviewed 7 survey ideas for your business that require little time or experience. As we’ve shown in the tutorial in the second half of this article, they are easy to design, easy to administer, low-cost, and can even be rewarding for those who answer them. Don’t be afraid to reach out and engage your customers and employees alike — their feedback is the first step in helping your business change for the better.
Meredith Wood is Editor-in-Chief and VP of Marketing at Fundera, a marketplace for small business financial solutions. Specializing in financial advice for small business owners, Meredith is a current and past contributor to Yahoo!, Amex OPEN Forum, Fox Business, SCORE, AllBusiness and more.
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