Customer Retention Surveys: Definition, Benefits, Process and Sample Questions

Whether you are the biggest brand in the world, a small local firm, or somewhere in between – we all want to welcome new customers and keep them coming back for years to come.

However, there is one thing to keep in mind. It’s more important to keep a customer than it is to acquire a new one.

Why? Keeping the same base of customers will result in a greater return-on-investment (ROI) – not to mention, it’s cheaper.

Customer retention surveys are a cost-effective and strategic way for businesses of all sizes to improve customer churn rates and set themselves up for a successful future.  

Customer Retention Surveys: Definition, Benefits, Process and Sample Questions

What are Customer Retention Surveys?

Customers often have a set of expectations before working with an organization and buying their products or services. It is very important you meet or even exceed those set of expectations.

How exactly do you know what their expectations are? Ask them!

Okay, well maybe not directly asking – but with the help of a third-party research firm or a survey platform.

Customer retention surveys are sent to customers at various points along their purchasing journey.

By surveying customers at multiple touchpoints, your organization can exactly pinpoint what they are satisfied with and what areas you can improve upon.

Approach to Customer Retention Surveys

The most cost-effective approach to measuring customer retention is with online surveys – however, you also have the option of conducting a survey by email, phone, or in-person.

An organization can also choose when they would like their customer retention survey to be sent.

Here are three different approaches used by our customer satisfaction survey company + the benefits associated with each.


Depending on what type of industry you are working in or who your audience is – say B2B or B2C – a customer retention survey can be automatically sent after a purchase is made, after a consumer received and used your product, and after a project or service is complete.

Why post-purchase?

This stage captures in-the-moment feedback so that customer feedback is more closely aligned with their true experiences, rather than using a product 2-months ago and not remembering exactly what they were and were not satisfied with.

Periodic Satisfaction Surveys

Rather than sending a survey to one customer after they have completed a purchase or service with your company, periodic satisfaction surveys are sent to groups of customers at different times. For example, customers in group 1 receive a survey in Q1 while the second set of customers receive a survey in Q2.

Why periodic customer retention surveys?

Periodic customer retention surveys provide a more general overview of what your customers are satisfied with, what they are dissatisfied with, and what would cause them to leave for a different organization.

This approach helps provide tracking benchmarks for your team to improve upon each month, quarter, or year.

Regular Satisfaction Tracking Surveys

Regular satisfaction tracking surveys is the approach recommended by Drive Research. Depending on your type of business, all customers would receive a feedback survey on a continual basis (once a month, once a quarter, or once a year).

Why regular satisfaction tracking surveys?

Continuous performance and measurement tracking is key to improving customer retention rates. As soon as a customer falls within a certain satisfaction score, your team is notified immediately. This allows you to react quickly and improve any wrongdoings before a customer decides to leave.

Acting fast on customer feedback is a great way to show your customers that their opinion and business matters to you.

Customer Retention Sample Questions

Collecting feedback with regular customer retention surveys provides your organization with the insight you need to improve loyalty and retain valuable customers.

Here are a few examples of the customer retention survey questions our market research company uses for our clients:

  • Which of the following products or services have you purchased from [COMPANY NAME]?
  • How is the quality of the product/service?
  • Overall, how satisfied are you with [COMPANY NAME]?
  • What are you most satisfied with?
  • What are you least satisfied with?
  • What first prompted you to contact or purchase from [COMPANY NAME]?
  • Would you consider yourself a local customer of [CUSTOMER NAME]? Why or why not?
  • Do you plan on purchasing from or working with [COMPANY NAME] in the future?
  • How likely are you to recommend [COMPANY NAME] to a friend or colleague?

Please note, these are general questions that could be included in customer retention study.

Before executing a survey, Drive Research will meet with your team to understand your objectives and goals which will form our recommended survey questions.

More on our process below!

Process of Working with a Customer Retention Survey Company

Interested in working with a customer research company, like Drive Research? Here is a breakdown of our step-by-step process.


After contacting our firm, Drive Research will send a detailed, yet comprehensive proposal outlining our approach to your customer retention study and the project cost.

Kickoff meeting.

Upon a signed proposal, Drive Research will form a dedicated project team including a project manager and research analyst. We will then schedule a quick kick-off meeting (by phone, webchat, or in-person) with your team of stakeholders to discuss your project objectives, specifications, and goals.


No later than 24 hours will our customer retention survey firm send your team a final workplan. A workplan will outline each project phase and the timeline for completion.

Survey draft.

Our experts will draft a customer retention survey based on your objectives, audience, and product or service.

Survey review.

After the survey is drafted, our team will be able to review each question for your approval before programming takes place.

Survey testing.

Once the survey is programmed in our online platform, you will receive a link to take the survey as if you were a customer. This allows your team to make any final changes before the customer survey is live.


The customer retention survey will be sent to a small group of customers to assure it is working as intended.


After reviewing the data and feedback from the soft-launch Drive Research will fully launch the survey to your customers.

Live data portal.

Drive Research will provide a client viewing link so you can review and act on the data as soon as someone completes a question. We will flag any cases that need your immediate attention.

What's next?

The next phases in a customer retention survey project depend on whether your team would like to conduct one survey or leverage continuous performance tracking.

If you are conducting an ad-hoc customer retention survey, Drive Research will close fieldwork, analyze and clean the data, and begin building your custom report.

If you are conducting regular customer surveys, for example, Drive Research will create and send weekly, monthly, or quarterly reports dependent on how often you choose to survey your audience.

Our reports can include an executive summary, breakdown of question-by-question results, recommendations for how to act on the data, an infographic, and more.

Contact Drive Research

Drive Research is a national market research company located in New York. Our team of experts can help execute a custom and impactful customer retention study to help improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. 

Interested in working with our customer research company? Contact us through any of the four ways below.

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

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