4 Common Issues with Customer Surveys and How to Fix Them

A customer survey is a type of market research that spans far and wide. Our customer surveys are conducted in Syracuse, NY, all across Upstate New York, and across the country. Customer surveys are conducted in all industries including retail, manufacturing, financial services, advertising, and any type of small business.

They are cost effective, offer a quick turnaround time, and provide actionable feedback. Customer surveys can be conducted through a variety of methodologies. These include online surveys, phone surveys, mail surveys, and intercept surveys on-site.

We talk about customer surveys on our blog often because they are used by our clients so frequently. However, with any approach, there are potential issues your organization should be aware of. We cover 4 of those common issues with customer surveys here and how to fix them.

Issues with your customer survey? Yeah, we're not a fan either. But we are here to help.

Issue 1: Poor Customer Lists

A customer survey can only be as good as the list provided. This is one of the most common issues and barriers we run into with customer surveys. Some clients provide A+ lists and some clients provide, ahem, not A+ lists.

What defines an A+ customer list?

This would include full contact names, company names, correct email addresses, correct phone numbers, and lots of additional appended data. The appended data may include sales data, demographics, etc. Actually, that sounds like an excellent blog post to dive deeper on.

This appended data allows our customer survey company to tie these data points to the survey feedback without having to ask a question for which our client already has the data.

Customer surveys can still be conducted using poor lists but response rates will suffer. A clean database provides a company several advantages and efficiencies beyond just the benefits from customer surveys. Keep 'em clean for more reasons than one.


Issue 2: Inferior Objectives and Questions

Garbage in, garbage out. Before we start a customer survey with a client we take several steps to truly hash out the objectives of the market research study. This includes a full and detailed proposal which highlights expectations and objectives. It also includes a kickoff meeting to discuss potential questions and potential outcomes of the research.

Before we even type a letter on the survey draft, several discussions have hammered out a path and direction to ensure the data reflects the goals of the project. Far too many companies jump right into a customer survey without fully understanding the big picture.

We understand the value of working on the little things question by question but also keeping the long-term goals of a market research project in mind. This ensures all of the little things are moving in the right direction towards the end goals and objectives.

Make sure you fully debrief with your internal team and customer survey company to lay out an outline and fully discuss your goals before drafting a survey.


Issue 3: Weak Response Rates

Fortunately, there are a lot of things a customer survey company can do to help here if your response rate falls below expectations. This response rate ranges from client-to-client and industry-to-industry. We've seen customer surveys with response rates as low as 1% or 2% and as high as 50%.

With email surveys, your market research firm will not only send an initial invite, but also several reminders.

This one circles back to your customer lists a bit. In those lists it is important to tie contact information together. If phone numbers are tied to your customer emails, the market research firm will be able to follow-up with non-responders. The customer survey company can place phone calls to conduct the survey, remind non-responders, or leave voicemails with the survey link.


Issue 4: No Action Taken From Results

When the customer survey is complete, action must be taken. The last thing you want to do is survey all of your customers and ask them to spend their time to offer feedback and then sit on the results. Change must take place and customers need to be aware of this change.

If no action is taken from the results, this will not only harm response rates on the next survey but also harm the customer experience (CX). Because if the same problems the customers pointed to still occur, they will feel their voice fell on deaf ears at your company.

That's the biggest and most impactful issue of all.

We get you answers from those who matter most. Voice of Customer (VoC) market research helps you better profile customers, understand their motivations to buy, and uncovers drivers to loyalty.


In Summary

Drive Research is a customer survey company in Upstate, NY. Enjoyed reading about our customer survey issues and how to fix them? Visit our blog for the latest and greatest industry news and information.

Interested in a customer survey?

Contact us at 315-303-2040 or email us at info@driveresearch.com.

Voice of Customer