The best surveys begin by identifying a problem or question.
Potential customers abandon a full cart. Site visitors surf your site and exit without adding to their cart. Current customers cancel their subscriptions. You spend good time and money to get people to your site and down your sales funnel; it can be frustrating to see revenue slip through your fingers like this.
As an eCommerce marketer, you could say with a sigh, “That’s just the way it goes,” and cast your fishing pole once more to hook the next customer.
But what if you could get answers to mitigate these problems? There’s likely a reason people leave your site or cancel a subscription too early. How can you find and repair the missing link?
On the other hand, business may be good but you have questions. How did these customers find us? What are they really looking for? Who are they shopping for? With more customer data, you can do more of what you’re doing right and fix what’s wrong.
These are the thoughts that often instigate a marketing survey: go to the people! Ask them how they found us or poll them to see how we could improve.
But what is it that separates ineffective and effective surveys for marketing? How can you gather valuable, actionable data using a marketing survey? And how can your surveys serve your customers?
Read on or jump to a section below:
- Types of Surveys
- Common Survey Misconceptions
- The Power of a Marketer-Driven Survey
- Quick Survey Tips
- Build an Effective Survey
Types of Surveys
A survey is often thought of as a form asking a customer “How did you hear about us?” (the HDYHAU survey) or “How satisfied are you with your experience?” (customer feedback surveys).
But they can be so much more. We define a survey as any form that helps you:
- Determine who your customer is
- Gather actionable data to drive revenue in the future
- Provide assistance to your site visitor, e.g. help them when they’re stuck
In a way, a quiz can be a form of a survey. The main goal of your quiz could be to catch customers who get stuck on your site and guide them to purchase. In this case, you learn about the customer and gather actionable data to drive revenue in the future, all with a few simple questions.
This is why, compared to the traditional way of thinking about mass surveys, we believe marketer-driven surveys are the most powerful and effective way to overcome common survey struggles.
But first, what are these common survey struggles?
Common Survey Misconceptions
The word “survey” often brings up one of two pictures: creating a form to answer all the gaps in your business and sending it out in cold mass communication, hoping someone will feel motivated enough to fill it out. Or, inserting an often-missed section after a customer checks out asking them a few questions about their experience or where they found you. Here are a few struggles we see with these two common methods.
Mass-sent surveys: Often, getting enough results requires an incentive. Something like “Answer a few quick questions for 25% off your next purchase!” The struggle here is: are you truly getting valuable customer feedback? Or are you only getting random answers from people who want 25% off?
Post-purchase surveys as an afterthought: When done well, post-checkout surveys can be effective. Unfortunately, many businesses don’t put a lot of strategy or confidence in their post-checkout surveys. Many times, it’s a few questions added at the end of a confirmation page. The problem is that customers often miss them or overlook them as unimportant. Especially if this is the first time you’ve asked them a question in their shopping experience. eCommerce merchants should converse with their customers throughout the entire shopping experience – more on that in a minute!
Surveys are valuable marketing tools. Sometimes, it’s not that you have the wrong tool for the job. You just need to refine your form and technique a little bit 😉
The Power of a Marketer-Driven Survey
The true power of the survey lies in being marketer-driven as opposed to researcher-driven. Businesses that collect data from a researcher’s perspective will not be as effective as those collecting data from the marketer’s perspective. They must live in harmony.
What is the defining characteristic of the marketer-driven survey?
Marketer-driven surveys are embedded organically in the shopping experience: no sudden jerks to the side or adding a question as a hidden afterthought.
These surveys come up organically in the marketing experience. They walk beside the shopper through their experience, offering assistance when needed while making a note of every choice the customer makes and obstacles they may encounter.
There's a place for “How did you hear about us?” and “How was your shopping experience?” But these questions should be the natural flow of conversations you’re already having with your shoppers. It should not be the first time you’ve spoken with the customer.
This continual conversation with the customer is the vibrant ecosystem we build for Digioh customers.
From start to finish, online shoppers deserve to have a concierge-like experience. And surveys are one piece of the entire machine, not to be siloed as an afterthought.
Quick Survey Tips
Ready for something short and sweet? Here are some quick tips for surveys, put together by our very team here at Digioh!
- Make sure your UI is consistent and easy to use (i.e. large tappable buttons on mobile).
- Ensure your questions and answer options are clear.
- Allow users to “Skip” or choose “N/A.”
- Have a specific goal in mind and a plan for what to do with data once it’s collected.
- Keep surveys as short as possible to avoid drop-off/disinterest.
- Separate questions into sections, asking questions one at a time, instead of one long page.
- Start your first survey question in an email that leads them to the full survey to ask more questions.
- Trigger your survey to come to the customer at the right time, such as exit intent surveys that ask “Why are you leaving?” if a user tries to leave with no items in their cart.
Build Effective Marketing Surveys into Your Concierge Experience
How are you building a concierge experience for your shoppers? Do you walk beside them in their journey, offering help when they get stuck and only suggesting products relevant to them? Are you learning about them along the way and retargeting them after they leave your site? Do you have their email and phone number to continue the conversation?
Marketing surveys are one piece of this concierge experience that makes eCommerce stores successful. We are a full marketing platform building a vibrant marketing ecosystem through forms, surveys, product recommendation quizzes (PRQs), and more for customers. Do you have a problem to solve? A marketing question to get answered? We help you collect the right data, connect it to your existing marketing technology (i.e. your CRM or ESP) and converge your data to make actionable marketing decisions going forward.
Let us know how we can help you with your marketing goals! Here’s more about our surveys.