Conducting Customer Satisfaction Surveys

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  • Learn what you are doing correctly.
  • Learn whether there are any strategic or operational problems.
  • Find a way to solve the problems and identify ways to improve.

When should you conduct the survey?

The timing will depend on your goals and organization. Here are some ideas:

  • First impression: Ask them the questions after one month of use or membership.
  • Interaction based: Ask after they use the product or service for the X number of times.
  • Annually: Ask once a year.

Developing a General Survey

Here is an example of an short linear version (step 1, 2, 3, etc):

Question 1 - "Would you recommend us to your friends, family, or colleagues?" The options would be "yes", "no" or "don't know" (you may also use the Net Promoter method)

Question 2 -"What is the reasons for your previous ranking?" You can provide the customer a selection of pre-determined options or leave a blank boxes for them to write in.

Question 3 - "How would you describe <company name> to friends and colleagues?" OR "How would you describe your experience to friends and colleagues?" You can again provide the customer a selection of pre-determined options or leave a blank boxes for them to write in.

Question 4 - "How can we improve your experience?" You can have them rank the importance of specific items or a blank space to pride their own ideas.

Survey via Email

Once you've developed your questions, you can conduct your survey in numerous ways. Here is how you can do it via email.

  1. Email invitation - send key contacts an email inviting them to the online survey. Tell the customers that the survey will give them a chance to provide feedback regarding the company and offer advice on how the company could improve its services.
    • Conduct this survey at least twice a year.
  2. Contact Non-Responders -2 weeks after the initial invitation email, send a reminder email to clients who did not answered the survey. 1 week after the reminder, call the contacts who still did not reply.
    • During the call, offered to collect their answers immediately over the phone.
  3. Say Thanks - sent out a thank-you email to clients who completed the survey. The email should come from one of the company's executive. The email should outlined specific changes the company has made, or is making, as a result of the survey.

Follow-up Call

All follow-up surveys should be completed within 10 days.

  • Negative Feedback- identify survey responses that included a negative comment. Nature of the negative feedback will determine who this feedback should be forwarded to within the company.
  • Positive Feedback - also make follow-up calls to a random sampling of customers giving positive feedback. This survey can be less formal. Simply collect more details on specific areas the company does well. Might be a great chance to collect testimonial.

Additional Questions

Here are some additional customer satisfaction questions you can ask.

  • What should we specifically improve?
  • What do you value most about our company?
  • What do you say when you recommend us to others?
  • How do you recommend us (email, phone, in person, etc)?


  • Survey Monkey - A great web application that allows you to create online surveys. It's cheap and even has a free option.
  • QuestionPro - Affordable online survey software that has a Net Promoter feature built into it.
  • Survs - Has packages ranging from free to over $100/month.
  • Polldaddy - Free and paid packages available.
  • Vovici - Web survey company.

Also See