Surveys provide relevant and crucial information for businesses that conduct them. For instance, they can be useful when you have a brand launch. Surveys must be conducted regularly to keep businesses on their toes. However, they do not come cheap, which explains why statistics indicate that the frequency is quarterly, every six months, or annually. Going too long between surveys can make companies lose touch with customer needs, trends, and consumer behaviors. If you have a survey soon, these guidelines can provide insight.
#1: Define Your Primary Audience
Every business markets its products and services to a defined audience. It is one of the most important factors to consider before the business takes off. Companies would have difficulty selling their products and services without a target market. Defining your audience before conducting a survey provides direction for the exercise. The next step will be to know where and how to find your audience to participate in the survey. For example, if you operate a travel and tour agency for universities, college students will be your primary target audience. While at it, you must know where and how to.
Knowing the kinds of questions to ask and reaching out for their responses is not difficult when you know who makes up your target. Some business establishments may want to cast their nets wide during these surveys. And instead of focusing on the primary audience, there may be other reasons for casting the net wider. If that is your case, you will need to provide a reasonable incentive to get people outside your market to participate. The only downside here is that people may only participate in the survey because of the incentive. This has the potential to affect quality responses. By defining your audience, you would have set the tone for a highly successful survey for your business.
#2: Know How to Craft Your Questions
There is a reason this sub-heading did not read, ‘write or type your questions carefully.’ Craft is used here because of the art and science involved in asking questions. It is not a simple act of stringing words together. The more thought is put into asking relevant questions, the higher the chances of getting the right responses. Another thing to be mindful of is the length of every question that makes it onto the survey. Long-winded questions can create ambiguity and confusion. It would be best to keep them short and straight to the point.
Furthermore, it helps to avoid asking leading questions—this style of questioning boxes responders into giving the desired answer. You can prevent this by trying neutral wording for your questions. As expected, the type of survey will determine the questions to use. If you’re using the MaxDiff method, your questionnaire must provide enough support for ‘most and least important’ responses. Indeed, there are several use cases for maxdiff, and knowing the right one for you is important.
#3: Use the Right Survey Tool
If you have experience with surveys, you may know several tools can be used. Indeed, some are more effective and popular than others. Examples are SurveyMonkey, SurveyPlanet, Qualtics, and Google Forms. It is recommended to research which of these tools is ideal for your survey because each one has some drawbacks. SurveyMonkey, for instance, would only allow ten questions if it’s the free version. So, if you have more questions for your survey, a purchased version or another tool is best.
As a business owner, you already know how important it is to assess risks before commencing a project. Applying the same knowledge here will be wise. A risk assessment of survey tools is a precautionary measure. Additionally, you can choose more than one survey tool for this project. This will be a great way to compare results and, more importantly, help you take vital decisions for your business.
As a first-timer, the survey tool you settle for must have all the relevant features. Things to look for are data analysis, randomization, website integration, and auto-save features. Other characteristics are template designs and survey logic. Before the survey commences, it would be helpful to read all information about these features. It makes sense to be intimately familiar with the tools you will use for the survey.