How to Build a Customer Satisfaction Survey

What’s the best way to hear the voice of the customer? Ask em, duh!

As a business owner, you know you can’t rely on someone to take time out of their day and write a review. And usually, the ones who are willing to, are the ones who are complaining.

But you can however, guide them through a series of structured questions providing you meaningful and useful feedback. This can be in the form of open ended questions, multiple choice or even just a simple rating scale; by creating a Customer Satisfaction Survey.

*Hubspot says, if you don’t allow a place for your customers to complain, you risk them doing so to all their friends; potentially resulting in the crash of business by negative word-of-mouth.

4 Purposes of a Customer Satisfaction Survey

  • Fix meaningful problems that have occurred with products or service
  • Assess the performance of its customer-facing units and staff
  • Improve its processes and standards for delivery
  • Understand customers’ needs as they use the products or services to improve CX

(Source: MaritzCX) 

When is the best time to survey?

Right after your customer has purchased your product or service. Their reactions and feedback will be the most honest and genuine as the product is still fresh in their mind.

Determine your objectives

The best way to decide how you should conduct a survey is to think about your objectives. As with any other marketing efforts, you have to set your goals before taking any further actions. These goals will determine your strategy, help you to monitor your progress and allow you to adjust where necessary.

  • Quality of product or service
  • Usability of the website
  • Learn about your market

These are just a few examples of some objectives, but your individual needs can vary.

Survey objectives are vital because they affect everything in the survey process, from how we word the questions and what questions we ask, to the look and feel of the survey.

Focus first on what you want to learn from the survey and the rest will fall into place.

Designing the Survey (Are you asking the right questions?)

First Rule: Keep it short – attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. Once the recipient has to think too hard, they will quickly close out of the survey. So keep the questions simple, as well.

There are a few types of questions you’ll find to be more common in Customer Satisfaction Surveys. You’ll see they tend to avoid complexity and length.

  • Multiple choice: They’re intuitive, easy to use in different ways, help produce easy-to-analyze data, and provide mutually exclusive choices. Because the answer options are fixed, your respondents have an easier survey-taking experience.
  • Scale questions: The question displays a scale of answer options from any range (0 to 100, 1 to 10, etc.). The respondent selects the number that most accurately represents their response.
  • Open-ended questions: Allowing your respondents to offer feedback in their own words could help you uncover opportunities that you may have otherwise overlooked. However, it’s not easy to quantify written answers, which is why text boxes are better for providing qualitative data.

Whichever you choose (and you’re not limited to just one!) just think strategically about what you will do with the results and how you will proceed with next steps based on what you’ve learned.

Picking a platform

Good news and bad news – there are a ton of surveying platforms available. But most of them offer free options (with limitations) and are extremely user friendly. Often, they’ll let you create a designed survey, choose from several different question types and allow for a basic level of analytics.

Some of the most popular ones are below

  • SurveyMonkey
  • Typeform
  • SnapSurvey
  • MaritzCX
  • SurveyGizmo

Whichever you choose, make sure it will seamlessly integrate with your CRM in order for you to collect, track and analyze your data properly.

In conclusion

You can learn a lot from your customers; just listen to what they have to say. Asking the right questions is critical to collecting actionable insights and making positive strategic moves. Don’t be afraid to test new questions to achieve new results!


For more information on this topic or others, check out our blogs at