Picture this: You're standing at a crossroads in your business journey, unsure of which path to take. You need a compass, a guiding light that reveals the preferences, opinions, and behaviours of your target audience. That's where surveys come in, your trusty ally in the pursuit of success.
Next, you create a survey and send it to your customers. They complete it and share their experience. Your business listens, takes notes, and uses that feedback to make meaningful changes. It's a collaborative dance between the business and the customer, where both sides have a voice and their needs are met.
But this is a situation where everything is perfect and goes the way you want, and that rarely happens. In real-life scenarios, the customer response rate to such surveys is a real concern among business owners and top executives. As per research, survey response rates in the 5% to 30% range are far more typical. A response rate of ~20% or higher should be considered excellent in most circumstances. So, what factors affect these response rates & how do businesses go about it?
Prominent Reasons behind low response rates
1. Survey Fatigue: With the increasing prevalence of digital surveys, individuals may receive survey requests frequently, leading to survey fatigue. 40% of respondents stated that they only take surveys if they receive too many requests. Over time, this can result in decreased motivation to participate, resulting in lower response rates.
2. Survey Timing: Considering the customer's lifecycle or touchpoints with the business is beneficial. For example, sending a survey shortly after a customer interaction or purchase increases the relevance and recency of the experience and increases the likelihood of a timely response. Most of the time, this factor goes ignored.
3. Channel of Survey: The choice of survey channel can significantly impact survey response rates. Choosing between online surveys, mobile surveys, in-person surveys, and phone surveys is a must. Even the consumer’s channel of a transaction can be chosen as a mode of survey. By carefully considering the preferences and convenience of respondents, businesses can optimize their survey channel selection, leading to higher engagement and more valuable feedback.
4. Lack of Incentives: If there is no clear benefit or incentive offered to respondents, they may be less inclined to take the time and effort to complete the survey. Offering incentives such as discounts, rewards, or entry into a prize draw can significantly increase response rates by 50%.
5. Survey Length and Complexity: Lengthy or overly complex surveys can be off-putting to respondents. Average survey completion rate drops by 30% for every additional question beyond 10. People may not have the patience or time to complete lengthy surveys, leading to abandonment or incomplete responses. Keeping surveys concise, focused, and easy to understand can help mitigate this issue.
6. Lack of Personalization: Generic and impersonal survey invitations may not capture the attention or interest of recipients. Personalizing survey invitations, addressing recipients by name, and clearly explaining the purpose and relevance of the survey can increase the likelihood of participation. Personalized email subject lines can increase open rates by 26%.
7. Lack of Trust: Concerns about privacy and data security can impact response rates. 64% of respondents worry about how their personal information is being used when taking online surveys. If respondents are not confident that their personal information will be handled securely, they may be hesitant to participate in digital surveys.
There is no doubt that taking surveys from customers provides them with a platform to voice their opinions, concerns, and feedback, making them feel heard and valued. When businesses actively seek customer input through surveys, it sends a powerful message that their opinions matter. Customers appreciate being given the opportunity to share their experiences, preferences, and suggestions, knowing that their feedback can directly influence future decisions and improvements. So, how can businesses enhance the response rate of these surveys?
Using digital survey tools has become one popular way for businesses to collect customer feedback. Not only are these tools convenient and cost-effective, but they also help businesses get better response rates. Digital survey tools like SurveyCXM allow customers to provide feedback at their own pace and convenience, which makes it more likely that they will complete the survey. These surveys are interactive, user & respondent-friendly, mobile-optimised, customisable, personalised, and whatnot! Additionally, digital surveys can be distributed through multiple channels, such as email, social media, and SMS, which increases the chances of reaching a wider audience. By using digital surveys, businesses can collect valuable customer feedback that can help them improve their products and services.