5 Ways to Optimize Your Online Surveys
A good online survey functions like a GPS for your business. A simple yet thoughtfully assembled online survey gathers important feedback — e.g., market information and customer “coordinates” — that keeps your business on track and moving in the right direction.
Online surveys can and should be issued through as many customer and prospect touchpoints as possible. This way, you can ensure that your surveys collect the most comprehensive and useful feedback for your business.
Below are five methods you can use to promote your online survey to optimize results:
1. Keep it close to home. Your website is your home base online, so it’s only natural you'd include a link to your survey on its home page — and any other high-traffic areas — to encourage visitors to share their opinions. Make sure your survey stands out by creating a small graphic that draws readers’ attention to it. Also, try throwing in an incentive to participate, such as giving participants 10 percent off their next purchases.
2. Invite them. Unlike your regular email newsletters, survey invitations are brief emails that tell your customers what kind of information you’re seeking and what you plan to do with it. “Your responses will help us decide what products to offer for the holidays," for example. "We’ll share the results in a future email newsletter."
3. Ask for feedback while you’re fresh in their minds. A great time to ask for your customers’ participation in surveys is immediately following transactions of some sort — sales or receipts of donations. Include a survey link in the transaction confirmation page. Or, if you have a physical store, include the survey link on cash register receipts.
4. Piggyback on your email newsletters. Include a link to your online survey in the body of your next email newsletter inviting recipients to share their feedback. Other great places to display links to online surveys include the footer of email newsletters and in the signature that appears at the bottom of every email.
5. Leverage your social networks. Social media is here to stay and shouldn’t be ignored as an effective method to extend the reach of your online survey. As a result, send your survey to your fan base on Facebook or followers on Twitter, and invite them to participate. They're obviously interested in your brand, so let them know you're interested in them by asking what they think.
Mary Crogan is the senior business and marketing manager for online survey at Constant Contact, a Waltham, Mass.-based provider of email marketing and online survey tools. Reach Mary at firstname.lastname@example.org.