Guide to Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Guide to Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Customer satisfaction – or CSAT – surveys are a valuable tool for businesses to assess how happy customers are with their products and services. By conducting regular surveys, you can identify areas where there’s room for improvement, track your progress over time, and get a benchmark against other businesses in your industry.

In this post, we’ll look at customer satisfaction survey best practices, when and how to send them, what the benefits are for your brand, and share our top tips for getting it right.

What is a customer satisfaction survey, and what are its benefits?

As it says on the tin, a CSAT survey is a tool used by businesses to measure how satisfied their customers are at some point in their buying journey.

You can use them to gain insight into customer frustrations or delights at key moments in their experience with your brand – for example, after they’ve abandoned their cart, after they’ve made their first purchase, or as a follow-up after they’ve had some time to use the product or service they bought.

Remember, happy customers are more likely to come back and do business with a company again. They’re also more likely to recommend a business to their friends and family.

The benefits of conducting customer satisfaction surveys include:

  • Improved customer retention: Satisfied customers are more likely to stay with a business and continue using its products or services. By surveying customers, businesses can identify areas where they need to improve in order to keep their customers happy.
  • Increased sales: Satisfied customers are also more likely to recommend a business to others, which can lead to increased sales.
  • Improved overall customer experience: By surveying customers, businesses can identify areas where their customer service needs improvement. Sometimes, you get answers that you might not expect, and highlight issues or glitches you would never otherwise have been aware of.

Examples of customer satisfaction surveys:

Timing is probably the single most important factor in whether your CSAT survey reaps rewards or not. It’s all about asking the right question at the right time. For instance…

  • Pop-up micro surveys: These are a good option for e-commerce websites or online-based services. For example, “How easy was it to find the product you were looking for today?”
  • Cart abandonment surveys: If the customer has taken the time to register an account, added something to their cart, and then not gone through with purchasing it, a brief survey sent to their email can help you find out why.
  • Post-purchase surveys: These are useful for assessing customer satisfaction after the buyer has had some time to use your product or service.
  • Customer service follow-up surveys: After a customer has interacted with your customer service team, following up with a survey can help you assess how satisfied they are with the experience. Are you happy with the solution our team provided? Is there anything we could have done better?
  • You can also use specific surveys designed to help you measure and track your Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Effort Score (CES) metrics, as well as what they thought of the delivery experience.

Tips to design surveys that work

As we mentioned already, timing is crucial. There’s little point asking a customer what they think about your product before it’s been delivered to their address, or asking what they thought about your CS reps months after they interacted with them. Here are some more best practices to aim for:

Keep it brief!

If you’ve ever been faced with a 25-question survey, complete with dozens and dozens of little ‘very satisfied, somewhat satisfied, neutral, somewhat disappointed, very disappointed’ boxes to be ticked, you’ll know that the longer a survey, the less likely people are to complete it. Most customers will only take the time to answer a question or two, so make them count.

Know exactly what you want to find out

Given that your customer’s patience is limited, it’s crucial to ask the right questions. Don’t ask something just because you feel like you should. Rather, tie each question to a specific business goal or pain point you’re trying to address.

For example, if you want to increase customer loyalty, you might want to ask a question like, “How likely are you to recommend our product/service to a friend or colleague?”

If you’re trying to reduce customer effort, on the other hand, you might want to focus on a question like, “How easy was it for you to find the answer to your question?”

Decide whether each question should be yes/no, or be open-ended

A lot of surveys will ask customers to rate their satisfaction on a scale of 1-5, or from ‘very satisfied’ to ‘very disappointed.’ That’s all well and good, but sometimes you want more detail. In those cases, an open-ended question might be more useful. Just be warned that they often take longer to answer, so use them sparingly.

Give the customer room to have their say and give their honest opinion

Avoid leading questions, which encourage the customer to give the answer you want, rather than the truth. It’s a good idea to have one optional question at the end which gives them room to talk about anything they’d like to add.

And of course, implementing the feedback you receive is just as important as getting it.

The bottom line

Customer satisfaction surveys can be an invaluable tool for understanding how your customers feel about your business, and what areas need improvement. Just remember to keep them short, sweet, and relevant, and you’ll be on the right track.