Whether you’re planning to assess customer satisfaction online, in person or over the phone, it’s important to know what your objectives are before embarking on a survey. While some businesses survey their customers to gain insight into the demographics of their market, other companies are more interested in pinning down specific areas of their business that need improvement. Knowing your motives for the survey in advance can help you better prepare your questions.

Show your customers you value them

A customer satisfaction survey demonstrates the value you place on your customer’s experience with your company. Although many businesses are quick to placate customers who voice complaints, a business that pre-emptively strives to satisfy the customer makes an even better impression. This consideration of the customer’s opinions can foster loyalty in the long run and translate to repeat sales.

Gather customer demographics

Customer satisfaction surveys can be an excellent opportunity to form a clear concept of your demographic. You can find out your average customer’s age, gender, occupation and other statistics that will help you tailor your products and services as well as your marketing and communications material.

Evaluate customer service representatives

Questions related specifically to the quality of service your customers received from sales clerks or other representatives of the company can help you evaluate employee performance. A customer that wouldn’t normally complain about poor customer service or praise good customer service on their own accord might make an exception when presented with a survey that elicits their opinions.

Be convenient for customers

A survey that’s long, difficult to comprehend or onerous in any way is inconsiderate of the customer’s time. Customers that are gracious enough to take time out of their day to help you better your business should be rewarded with a survey that’s easy to understand, complete and return.

Lead to change

After customer surveys have been completed and trends have been analyzed, the company should act on what the results have revealed. If your survey data indicates that your website is difficult to navigate, take action toward getting the website layout tweaked. If customers have voiced concerns that your return policy is unfair, revisit and revise it if necessary. Surveys that don’t evoke changes in the company send a bad message about the company’s commitment to customer service.