How to Create and Conduct a B2B Customer Survey

As they say, information is the lifeblood of any organization. The world is constantly changing and evolving and as it does, businesses need to keep up. Stemming the flow of information in an organization can have radical consequences. As the world evolves, businesses need to grow, too, so that they can continue to thrive and survive. You may also see survey questionnaire examples.

Businesses often conduct surveys in order to get feedback and new information, be it from consumers, other businesses or investors. Businesses then use this information and data to update, improve and develop key strategies in making the business successful. Since there are various types of survey, in this guide we will focus on the B2B Survey – what it is and how to successfully conduct it. You may also see Pros and Cons of Website Surveys

What is B2B Customer Survey?

B2B or Business-to-business survey is another type of customer survey wherein companies survey business partners and costumers. In general, B2B refers to transactions between businesses. In this sense, it is typically upstream from customer transactions. A B2B includes transactions from raw material to distributor or retailer. You may also see customer service questionnaire examples.

b2b costumer survey

This means a B2B survey typically is from one company (raw materials) to its consumers (other businesses.) It is the primary level of the consumer since it is between companies who manufacture certain products.In this survey and just like in B2C survey, the goal is to get feedback from the customer, but in this case, it’s other businesses and companies. The data is then used to help improve customer relations and establish customer loyalty. You may also see questionnaire for customer satisfaction.

B2B Survey vs B2C Survey

Definition

B2B Survey – Business-to-Business survey, targets businesses or already established working relationship with other businesses. This usually between companies that provide raw materials and companies who manufacture products for end or general customers.

B2C Survey  Business-to-Costumer survey, targets general consumers. Meaning this is between companies who have successfully manufactured an end product and its general or end costumers.

Differences

Response Rates

1. B2B surveys are proven to have difficult or slow response rates, while B2C surveys have a high chance of getting stronger response rates.

2. B2B surveys are more niche, targeted and precise than general B2C surveys.

3.  B2B surveys target business professionals while B2C surveys the general consumers.

Sample Sizes

1. Less respondents in B2B surveys since it is more targeted, while B2C surveys have a bigger sample size it’s target is the general population. You may also see service questionnaire examples.

2. The more specific the target in B2B survey, the more difficult to obtain responses.

Multi-Mode Approach

1. Since a B2B survey i more targeted, several methods are still needed to obtain a responses. You have to send initial email invitation and a reminder, but still need a reminder phone call to get a response.

2. In a B2C survey, it is easier since general consumers have more time to answer surveys, no need for initial emails and reminders since the results can be instant.

How to Create B2B Costumer Survey

1. Objectives

Conducting a survey without a well-defined definition of your goals is like treasure hunting without a map, not only are you running in circles worse is you’re going in a completely wrong direction. This is the most important step in crafting a B2B survey as it will point the direction of where and what results you want out of your survey. Identify the measures you are trying to improve and be sure to clearly ask questions relevant to those measures. Also see How to Write the Perfect Survey

2. Questions

After you have defined your objectives, you no have to define the questions you need to ask. Ask specific questions that directly relate to your objectives, asking general questions might yield you answers that will not help you. Poorly worded or irrelevant questions can seriously affect the main goal of your survey.

Also, avoid making your questionnaire into a lengthy one and ask short questions on the first part of your survey to encourage respondents to keep answering. It is also a good idea to use trusted clients as test pilot for your survey to ensure that your questions are easily understood by your clients/respondents. You may also refer to How to Write a Survey Questionnaire

3. Audience

Make sue you are asking the right person in order to have a successful survey. With this survey, you need to specific with your target respondents, you have to identify the departments or teams you need for your survey. As part of your planning period, prepare this information on who or what specific department or team will give you the quality information that you need.

Keep in mind the unique languages each client uses with you and make sure to include relevant terminologies or references to your products. in order to avoid confusion, reflect the specific products and/or services that you provide to each client. It is not impossible that you will have to create more than one survey in order to gather more data however make sure that the questions you’re asking are still relevant to each department or team.

4. Sample Size

It is best to consider that a small sample size may not give you reliable results and affect your perception of the product and/or service you provide. Consider how many clients you need to survey in order to get reliable information.

5. Method

Since you have determined your target department or team in your prospect company, you will now need to determine the method you will apply in each target. Consider the method that will be most convenient for your target respondents. For example, you can use an online survey for the younger respondents and phone call might be suitable for the seniors. Thoroughly think about how you will send and collect your survey.

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Sample B2B Costumer Survey

Here is a sample list of the possible questions you can include in your survey:

  1. On an overall basis, how satisfied can you say you are with [COMPANY]?




  2. How satisfied are you with the ease of doing business with our company as a whole?




1. Accounts and Finance

  1. How satisfied are you that billing issues are fairly addressed and resolved in a timely manner?




  2. How satisfied are you with our billing and invoicing team?




  3. How satisfied are you with the credit and payment process?




  4. How satisfied are you with our policies and procedures for issuing credits?




2. Service and Support

  1. How satisfied are you with the way in which your cases and technical troubles are handled?




  2. How satisfied are you with the speed at which your calls are answered?



  3. How satisfied are you with the knowledge of the customer service agent you spoke to?




  4. Are you satisfied that the customer service agent understood the issue you were speaking to him/her about?




  5. Are you satisfied that the customer service agent dealt with your issue in a timely and effective manner?




3. Production

  1. How satisfied are you with the delivery of our product or service?




  2. How satisfied are you with the quality of our product or service?




  3. Are you satisfied that any issues in delivery or quality are handled in a timely and effective manner?




  4. Overall how satisfied are you with our product or service?




4. Sales

  1. How satisfied are you with the overall performance of our sales representative?




  2. How satisfied are you that the sales representative understood your business needs?




  3. How satisfied are you with the knowledge of our sales representative?




5. Management Performance

  1. How satisfied are you with your interactions with our management?




  2. How satisfied are you that our management is customer-focused?




  3. Overall how satisfied are you with the policies and procedures of [COMPANY]?



Source: comm100.com

Step-by-Step Guide in Conducting B2B Survey

1. Determine Objectives

This is your overall goal. Before you even start planning you must have already establish your objective whether it is for a change in your price list or just overall satisfaction of your costumers. Determine the information you intend to acquire from your survey, your expectations and what you would like to do with the results.

2. Decide on Methodology

Since there are several methodologies in conducting a survey, you have to decide how to perform your survey. It can be through an website survey, phone survey or even an email survey. However, before you decide you have to weigh in its pro and cons and consider which methodology will yield you more reliable responses. If you still don’t have a specific methodology in mind, there are market research companies that will explain to you the various options and its equivalent cost and timeframe.

3. Collect a Quote or Proposal

While it is perceived as a cut in expenses when conducting in-house surveys, a large scale in-house survey can also affect your productivity as it takes you away from your priorities. Deciding whether or not to use a third-party market research company in conducting this survey is one of the biggest decision you have to make.

It is better to hear proposals from market research companies too help you decide. Here are some pros of using a third-party market research company in conducting a B2B survey:

  1. Eliminating bias and potential skews in data from conducting yourself
  2. Truthful and honest responses if respondents know results are going to a separate firm
  3. Leveraging expertise and  capabilities of a market research company that you may not have
  4. Obtaining a objective opinion on the results, data, and insights

4. Begin your B2B Survey

Since you have decided on the first part of your survey process, you can no begin to conduct your B2B survey. After such major decisions and considering you already have formulated your questions, you can begin with a test drive of your full survey. A B2B survey usually take 1 or 2 weeks or maybe even a couple of months depending on your target completed survey.

Conclusion

Just like any survey, it can be of great use for your company. A B2B costumer survey will help you have the information regarding your costumers’ satisfaction and insights with the products and/or services you provide. The information you have gathered can help you improve and develop new strategies to give better quality service to your costumers.

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