Information is the lifeblood of businesses today. Most businesses thrive because they research about relevant information and data, while those who stick to what they know without incorporating new information often shut down in less than a year. The surge of new information can surely help a business succeed and denying its benefits can negatively impact it.
The business strategies are only as good as the information you have. One way of gathering information is through a survey. Businesses conduct surveys in order to determine the information that they need. A good survey can reduce production risk, gather new insights about employees, customers, and markets; and align PR, advertising, and marketing activities.
A business survey can help the business prosper and thrive for years, but if done poorly it can also derail the business’s long-term goals and misguide employees as well. However beneficial a business survey is, it can also destruct the business if not done right. You may also see What Is a Survey Questionnaire?
Methods such as online surveys, paper surveys or mobile surveys have a high percentage of respondents giving honest and meaningful feedback. These methods are non-intimidating thus prompting the respondents to take the survey more seriously. As they are not conducted in a face-to-face manner, the respondents will have the privacy and freedom to answer the survey without the weight of just answering what the surveyors would want to hear.
Discuss important key topics with your respondents. Give them the opportunity to freely talk about their opinions relevant to the topic of the survey. Do not invalidate their opinions just because it is not aligned with yours. This way you can dig deeper into your survey as well as discuss broader perspectives.
The survey can be the basis when making important business decisions. It is an unbiased and statistical approach to decision-making. The collected unbiased data is analyzed and the results can help in developing sensible decisions. The analyzed results can then help you address topics of importance rather than waste time and resources on unimportant areas.
Through surveys, you can have an actual overview of the attitudes, behaviors, preferences, opinions, and comments of your target demographic. The feedback can be the basis for measuring changes over time. In this sense, you can also track the growth and development of your business in the course of time. Also, see What is a Comparative Market Analysis?
With surveys, you can actively heed the advice and satisfy the needs of your customers. You can improve what the customers think you lack on. This will enable you to form a bond and establish a strong relationship with them. Remember that the customers always come back to businesses that think about what they want and need. In doing so, you can alter or add new products and services they might want.
Aside from your current products and services, some customers wish you had more. Your business survey will target your line of product and services and help you find out if you are missing out on valuable offerings. This way, you can offer more to your customers and serve them better. You may also see 10 Start-up Business Checklist Examples.
With the help of your survey, you can immediately assess if your efforts in marketing have been effective or not. Your survey can help you identify what marketing strategies have been effective and identify those that are not. In this sense, you get an actual feedback and insight so you can improve your strategies.
Your customers are the recipient of the products and services that your business offer. They are the best audience to give you information on how your company is doing. With your survey, you can measure the effectiveness of your business strategy. Also, see Survey Questions to Ask Your Customers
Define your goals and how you will use the information gathered from the survey. Having been able to determine your motivations for the survey, write a brief statement with the details about the objective and the specific information you need to gather, in order to reach your objective.
Once you are able to define your objectives, you will now need to design a questionnaire that can perfectly answer your objectives. A good questionnaire will help you gather the specific data that you need and can give insights that you would want to hear. In designing the questionnaire, avoid these common pitfalls:
After you design your questionnaire, introduce it to a few people– individuals of the same demographic as the target population, or even your colleagues and friends. Their feedback will help you identify the weak spots in your questionnaire and can give you additional ideas to improve it. It will also give you a good idea of how long it will take for your respondents to answer your questionnaire. Also, see How to Request a Response to a Survey or Questionnaire
Ask yourself whether a telephone survey, online survey or even face-to-face survey is more likely to work for your target market. Think about how your respondents are going to react to these methods and decide what method is most effective in gathering the information that you need.
Convince your respondents why they should give you their precious time. Give proper incentives, for example, through charitable donations or gift certificates.
After gathering data, check if it’s reliable– if there are enough responses, and if it’s representative– the responses are equally distributed to your target market. Before you act based on your finding, double check and quantify if the results hold much impact on your business or not. If not, it is better to conduct another survey.
1. Send out a survey to a customer who has opted for a specific business with you. Right after you’ve engaged with your customers, send a survey to let them know you care about their needs and satisfaction. With this, you will be able to gather great information from a fresh source. It is also a good way to find out your business’ effectiveness right after a sale.
2. Choose the survey questions that fit your objectives and avoid questions that might introduce bias. Follow proper etiquette in conducting your survey and follow best practices. Avoid misleading and vague question that might confuse your respondents as this may result in some unanswered questions.
3. Offer incentives in ways that will not insinuate bias. Little incentives like a small discount, a picture in the hall of fame or a gift certificate can inspire respondents to give honest and qualitative answers.
4. Try engaging a different audience. Aside from your clients and customers, you can also ask people who are not particularly familiar with your business to answer a survey in order to entice them and meet their expectations and needs. In this way, you can also gain new clients and customers for your business.
Overall, your business survey will help you acquire significant information you need to improve your business. It can also alert your business to certain things that might be going wrong. You have to pay close attention to the data you have gathered and need to interpret it critically and logically.