Creating online surveys has never been easier thanks to tools like SurveyMonkey, Zoomerang, and SurveyGizmo; however, getting potential new clients or existing customers to respond and provide helpful feedback takes strategic planning. Here are three simple things you can do when developing an online survey to ensure a better response rate:
- Select the right audience.
Don't dump your entire database into a pool of potential survey respondents. Instead, figure out who you want information from and use that group as your base. If you're looking for feedback from potential new customers consider sending your web survey to those in your database who have made inquiries but no purchases. Don't forget to filter out e-mail addresses of those who have said they do not wish to be contacted. Supplement that base by asking your website visitors to answer the survey, too. A good place to post the survey might be the contact form page if that's where a lot of your new business queries originate.
- Personalize your messaging.
Do you have the first names of your potential survey respondents? Perfect. Write your e-mail to begin "Dear Tatum" instead of "Dear Indianapolis Small Business Owner." This small extra step in the set-up of your online survey during the mail-merge process can result in a higher response rate.
- Keep it clear, keep it short.
Respecting your potential survey respondents' time at the start by writing a direct, brief message. This consistency will act as an initial indicator that you will also respect their time when it comes to the actual survey. Be honest about how long the survey will take. Even if you have a longer survey, letting them know upfront will increase your response rate because you disclosed this at the start. Explain who you are and why you're doing the survey. Finish by sharing how the resulting data will benefit not only your company but also the respondents. This may mean providing an incentive, like a gift card or percentage off their next purchase. It may also be as making a donation to a charity on behalf of all who respond. Even the small token of appreciation can increase response rates.