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Regularly connecting and communicating with your customers plays a crucial role in building your brand, your reputation, and your voice in your industry.

While most companies send consumer surveys as a way for customers to express their opinion about a recent purchase or their company overall, surveys can be used for other purposes as well. For example, using a survey you can establish a customer’s viewpoint or to share company changes and innovations.
But, it takes skillful ideas and design in order to entice a consumer to open a survey, let alone complete it. Here are 6 tips for designing consumer surveys so that you get the high customer turnout that you’re hoping for.


1. Have a Plan

Creating a consumer survey is easy, but do you have a plan for encouraging people to respond? What sort of information do you want to collect? What metrics are most important to you? Before releasing a survey to customers, be sure you have a clearly-defined path ahead of you. This includes determining how you’ll share the survey, who receives it, and when the best time is to send it out.
By answering the fine-detail questions, you have a clear direction forward.

2. Use the Right Tool

Do a quick search online and you’ll find that there are all sorts of survey tools available for use. One of the easiest ways to create a customer survey is to use a WordPress survey plugin. With a plugin, you can use your existing WordPress site to create and host the survey. This means that all of the responses will be stored in an environment that you own. In turn, you can more easily track and develop metrics from the responses you receive.

As an added benefit, quality survey plugins offer visual reports, real-time poll results, and even integrate with email. This not only makes building easy for you, it improves the survey experience for consumers.

3. Keep It Short & Simple

Customers don’t want to open a survey, only to have to type paragraphs of information. In order for a survey to be a worthwhile experience for a consumer, it needs to be designed with simplicity in mind. This means:

  • Avoiding open-ended questions
  • Keeping the questions short
  • Using star rating or a 1-10 scale
  • Not making questions mandatory
  • Grouping questions logically

It’s also important to keep in mind the amount of work that goes into answering the question. A responder doesn’t want to be presented with 10 radio buttons or a free-form text box. Keep it simple to avoid survey fatigue and frustration. In turn, you can expect more consumers to respond which will keep your non-response rates low.

4. Use Consistent Design

The verbal part of a survey is critical, but it’s just as important to use design elements properly. Keeping the design consistent throughout the survey will minimize confusion and error on the responder’s part. For example, you don’t want to have one question with a scale of 1-5 going from left to right, and then on the next question flip the scale from 5-1. This is bound to cause incorrect responses as consumers will assume that all rating-based questions use the same scale direction.

It’s also important to be consistent in the font, sizing, and colors that are used in the survey. While you may think that variety is good, it’s just the opposite when designing a customer survey. You want questions to mimic each other so that respondents don’t have to relearn the meaning of different fonts or colors.

5. Design & Test on Various Screen Sizes

Before sending out your survey, remember that we live in the age of on-the-go communication and access. While you’ll likely test the survey on a computer with a traditional sized screen, it’s extremely important that the survey works on all screen sizes. From mobile phones to tablets, you want peace of mind that a consumer can respond to the survey no matter the device they’re using.
By conducting thorough testing, you can minimize the risk of a frustrated customer who doesn’t respond because the survey doesn’t load.

6. Extend an Offer

The biggest problem with surveys is that they take time out of a consumer’s busy day. The fact is that not many people are going to volunteer their time to respond to your company’s survey. This is where a little enticing comes into play. Before sharing the survey with customers, think of something you can offer to entice them to respond. Maybe respondents get a free product or a discount on their next order.
By offering some sort of reward and thanks for their time, customers are much more likely to be willing to respond.


By taking these tips into consideration, you can improve the chances of consumers responding to your survey. Remember, since surveys are a form of communication with your customers, you want to ensure that you’ve taken your time to design a survey that’s simple, worthwhile, and beneficial for the people responding to it.

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