How to Wave Goodbye to Survey Fatigue: A Guide to Boosting Response Rates


Carolyn Hall

Carolyn Hall

Author Bio

An established member of the Confirmit team, Carolyn plays an integral role in promoting Confirmit’s world leading solutions for Voice of the Customer, Voice of the Employee, and Market Research programmes to its global customer base. Confirmit is dedicated to ensuring that its solutions deliver business change and value and Carolyn is instrumental in sharing best practice and thought leadership with customers, partners and the analyst community.


Author Bio

How many times this week have you been invited to provide feedback by a company from which you’ve recently purchased? There have been a few, haven’t there? I’ve had one about buying shoes. Another about why I didn’t buy tickets to an event. And one that was so badly rendered on my mobile that I honestly don’t know what it was about.

Survey fatigue is a nightmare for Market Researchers and Customer Insights professionals alike. And it’s a Catch-22. We need feedback to make better business decisions – but the more we ask, the less we get.

What can you do? Well, first things first – do you really need to send a survey? You hold more customer data than you think, so see if you can glean the insights you need without resorting to another survey. If you definitely need to send another questionnaire out into the world, here are seven tricks to help boost survey response rates and reduce the eye-rolling from respondents.

  1. Use technology that supports your process: Technology and automation are key to effective surveys. These tools are the “brains” behind the proper capture of insights. When selecting a solution that helps automate insight processes, consider core efficiencies first, then address its design or interface, another key factor.
  2. Make it sexy: Successful surveys will have an equal balance of brawn and brains. Put yourself in your respondents’ shoes and consider the layout. What would you enjoy answering? It is really another grid question…? Really?
  3. Write once, deploy through more channels: One data avenue is not always sufficient. To get the breadth and depth of data needed for insight, you may need to deploy the same survey across various channels, including web, phone, app, and even in-person.
  4. Make it mobile: Chances are your survey will be opened on a mobile – so design for mobile first. For example, overly complicated matrix questions can look different on mobile devices and therefore lead to higher dropouts and lower data quality. 
  5. Size matters: With attention spans shrinking and social media and Twitter-style sentences becoming the norm, it’s important to make questions 140 characters or less if possible. This forces a move away from academic language, toward easier to understand language. Ask the types of questions you would ask if you were in front of the person, rather than complicated ones.
  6. Use multimedia: Audio and videos can help increase a person’s understanding in a quick and easy way and make questions as engaging as possible. Try using video or audio to replace open text answers. You can also consider audio to read out the questions or brand names. This is a good option if you are doing product name testing.
  7. Test. Test. Test: It is crucial to test the survey’s features and monitor its performance to avoid surprises. Poorly functioning surveys are not only inconvenient for the respondents, but could ultimately impact the way they perceive the brand and its products and services. Important questions to ask before deployment are: Does it look good? Does it display properly? Does the logic route appropriately?

These should all be obvious tips, but they all bear repeating. There are more surveys out there than ever before. And although it is possible to create fabulous, engaging and effective surveys, there are still some shockers out there. Don’t let your next survey be one of them!

 


Subscribe to Our Newsletter