customer feedback survey questions

Using Customer Feedback Survey Questions to Draw Quality Data

Using Customer Feedback Survey Questions to Draw Quality Data

customer feedback survey questions

It is critical to form viable customer feedback survey questions, as it is the questions that power this kind of survey. 

The customer feedback survey provides a wealth of commentary from customers on various aspects of your business and their customer buying journey. This kind of data is critical to extract from customers, namely to satisfy them and to also maintain a reputable business.

This is because customers — including unhappy ones — don’t keep quiet; they air their feedback online and to their peers, friends and family. This can have either good or damning consequences for a business, depending on the kind of feedback customers provide. 

77% of customers would recommend a company to a friend after having a positive experience with it. However, if they are not happy with a business, 13% of customers will share their experience with 15 people or even more. Compounding the damage is the fact that only 1 in 26 unhappy customers complain to the businesses themselves about their bad experiences.

Dissatisfied customers may skip on sharing their feedback with a company, instead taking their grievances to readily available online reviews. Bad reviews don’t sit well with customers; 53% of customers expect businesses to respond to negative reviews within a week. 1 in 3 have a shorter time frame of 3 days or less.

As such, businesses should use the customer feedback survey to collect all kinds of feedback, in turn, avoiding negative reviews and unhappy customers in general.

This article lays out various types of customer feedback survey questions — along with their wider context in the sales funnel — so that you can power your questionnaire with the right questions. 

Approaching the Customer Feedback Survey

There is no hard and fast rule to surveying customers for their feedback, as there are various instances in which you can collect it. For some businesses, certain instances may be redundant to send this survey, especially if you’ve already used another kind of consumer survey about a particular brand experience

For other companies, even those that haven’t deployed any surveys about a particular customer experience, it too may not be a priority if they’re conducting other kinds of market research. Ultimately, using this kind of survey depends on the kind of feedback you seek in relation to a certain business campaign. However, it is still useful, especially to those who are in lack of conducting market research techniques.

To determine the kind of customer feedback you seek to create questions for, consider the sales funnel, or the customer journey.  While there are different occurrences and experiences in this funnel, they can be classified into 5 distinct stages: 

  • Top of the funnel
      1. Early aspects of the customer journey.
      2. This is when brands use brand awareness tactics to draw their target market’s attention to the company.
      3. This involves visual, snackable and engaging content.
  • Early Middle of the funnel
      1. This is the early consideration stage of the customer journey.
      2. Customers contemplate solutions to their problems, considering your product or service as a potential fit. 
      3. It involves new leads gained from top-of-the-funnel marketing and current customers you would urge towards making repeat purchases
      4. It involves using a strong content marketing strategy to nurture leads. 
  • Middle of the funnel nearing conversions
      1. This involves educating leads further down the funnel and strengthening their interest and connection to your brand.
      2. At this point, potential customers are weighing your brand against others.
      3. This stage is the heart of the decision-making process.
      4. Aside from content, this stage requires a final push towards conversions, such as a promotion, sale, etc.
  • End of the funnel
      1. This stage represents the beginning of purchases.
      2. Customers make a purchase or are in the process of purchasing, such as filling up an online shopping cart, but not yet buying.
      3. There can be hiccups during checkout, such as a malfunctioning page, difficulties in choosing a shipping method, etc.
  • Post-sales
    1. This can include post-purchase order modification.
      1. Some customers change aspects of their orders, whether it is the products themselves, shipping type, credit card info, etc.
    2. This may include order cancellation.
    3. For businesses, it often involves nurturing for cross and up-sells.
    4. This stage also involves regular check-ins for brand tracking and customer satisfaction.  

Common Types of Customer Feedback Survey Questions

There are various kinds of questions you can ask to extract valuable customer feedback.

The following provides question examples to use in the customer feedback survey:

customer challenges

  1. What challenges are you trying to solve?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-choice and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top of the funnel
  2. Have you used a similar
    1. Question Type: Yes or no
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top of the funnel
  3. Which of the following brands have you [heard of/used]?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-selection of multiple-choice answers, a follow-up to the previous question 
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top of the funnel
  4. What is the biggest issue you have [in a niche, with a product or service]?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-choice and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top and early middle of the funnel
  5. What kind of content would you like to see from us?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-selection of multiple-choice answers and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top of the funnel, early middle- middle of the funnel
  6. How can we make this page
    better for you?
    1. Question Type: Ranking, multiple-selection of multiple-choice answers and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Top of the funnel, early middle- middle of the funnel
  7. What feature or option could we add to make your experience better?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-selection of multiple-choice answers
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Middle of the funnel
  8. What, if anything, what is stopping you from buying/subscribing today?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-choice and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Middle and end of the funnelcustomer satisfaction questions
  9. On a scale of 1 (unhappy) to 10 (very happy), how would you rate your overall satisfaction with us?
    1. Question Type: Numeric, scaled
    2. Sales Funnel Position: End of the funnel and post-sales
  10.  What convinced you to buy the product?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-selection of multiple-choice answers and an open-ended question
    2. Sales Funnel Position: End of the funnel and post-sales
  11. What was the most difficult thing in your buying experience with us?
    1. Question Type: Multiple-choice and an open-ended question 
    2. Sales Funnel Position: End of the funnel and post-sales
  12. How satisfied are you with the product or service from a scale of 1 to 10?
    1. Question Type: Numeric, scaled
    2. Sales Funnel Position: Post-sales

Listening to Your Customers

Market research involves far more than gaining intelligence on your customers’ likes, dislikes and customer behavior. Instead, it involves monitoring their CX and feedback on other matters throughout their journey with your brand.

This way, you’ll be attuned to their needs and perceptions towards their CX and your brand at multiple stages in their relationship with you. In order to collect this data, you’ll need a strong online survey platform. Ideally, it should make it easy to set up, target the correct target market sample and deploy your surveys. 

You should use an online survey platform that offers random device engagement (RDE) sampling to reach customers in their natural digital environments, as opposed to pre-recruiting them. 

Your online survey platform should also offer artificial intelligence and machine learning to remove low-quality data, disqualify low-quality data and offer a broad range of survey and question types.

Additionally, your market research platform should allow you to survey anyone. As such, you’ll need a platform with a reach to millions of consumers, along with one that offers the Distribution Link feature. This feature will allow you to send your survey to specific customers, instead of only deploying them across a vast network. 

With an online survey platform with all of these capabilities, you’ll be able to reap invaluable consumer insights to help you power any campaign. 

The Customer Satisfaction Survey Question Guide

The Customer Satisfaction Survey Question Guide

customer survey questions

Customer survey questions are the lifeblood of any survey pertaining to customer respondents. 

They help your business carry out research on customer satisfaction, the measurement of happiness your customers harbor for your product, experiences and overall company.

To determine your business’s level of customer satisfaction, it is apt to use the customer satisfaction survey. This survey can be configured in four survey types. There are countless kinds of questions to use for measuring customer satisfaction. 

There are 7 main types of questions to incorporate into your customer survey. There are also specialized questions your brand will benefit from inquiring. This article will cover both so you can deliver better services, experiences and products for your customers.

Customer Satisfaction Survey Formats

As you’ve learned from our previous article, customer satisfaction surveys are facilitated through 5 types of survey formats. Before we get into the weeds of the suitable questions to use in your customer survey, let’s recap these 5 crucial types of customer surveys.

  • Net Promoter Score Surveys (NPS)
      1. Asks customers how likely they would recommend your company/product on a scale of 0-10. Then you compare the percentage of detractors (0-6 answers) to promoters (9-10 answers) to see where your company stands.
      2. Assesses your brand’s appeal and uniqueness.
  • Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
      1. Measures customer satisfaction with a particular situation, by asking how satisfied they were with a product or interaction? (Uses a scale of 1-5)
      2. Unearths valuable information about a customer’s overall happiness with your product or service.
  • Customer Effort Score (CES)
      1. Uses 5-point scale to gauge the ease of customers’ to complete an action. It commonly asks how easy was it to find this product on our site?” 
      2. The options range from “very difficult,” to “somewhat difficult.” Divide the number of responses in the agree range (4 and 5) by the total number of respondents.
  • Visual Rating Surveys
      1. A quick-to-conduct survey on a current experience.
      2. Uses emojis (smileys, hearts, stars, etc.) to gauge customer feedback.
  • Custom Surveys
    1. Uses targeted questions, specific to your market, product, or service to find details about customer experience (CX).
    2. Ask follow-up questions to elaborate on what respondents answered prior.

All of these survey types play a major role in gauging different aspects of customer satisfaction. As such, you should understand their unique capabilities and how they each differ from one another.

Once you have a solid understanding of them, you can find various questions within this topic and filter the questions with their corresponding survey type.  

Filtering the 7 Customer Survey Satisfaction Question Types

There are 7 main types of questions that are applicable to measuring customer satisfaction. You’ll find that some of these types of questions fit under more than one label of survey types, whereas others are only suitable for one type of survey.

Multiple-choice questions

Multiple-choice questions place limits on the number of answers responders can give per question. Unlike open-ended questions, which require respondents to type in answers, multiple-choice questions require less labor to answer and are easier to tabulate.

Additionally, unlike open-ended questions, which can give rise to long answers, multiple-choice questions typically have shorter answers.

These questions can encompass a wide range of question styles such as nominal questions, rating scale questions, binary scale questions, Likert scale questions, and semantic differential questions.

Rating scale (ordinal) questions  

As their name implies, rating scale questions are multiple-choice questions that rely on a scale for rating an aspect of customer satisfaction. 

These can exist in two of the survey types aforementioned: in a Net Promotion (NPS) Survey or a Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) survey.

An example of the former: Please rate the likelihood of you recommending our product to a friend or colleague on a scale of 0-10.

An example of the latter: Please rate how satisfied you were with your interaction with our customer support representative on a scale of 1-5. 

consumer survey questions

Binary scale questions

Binary scale questions rely on a limit of two answers per question, hence the name “binary.” These can exist simple, yes or no questions, along with questions that can be answered with graphics such as thumbs up/ thumbs down, or with happy face/ sad face emojis.

As such, these questions are used with visual rating surveys. However, they can also function within custom surveys, should there be any obscurity to previous answers in them.

That is because these questions are used to clear any ambiguity surrounding some rating scale questions. For example, the 3-star experience of one responder can be the 5-star experience of another. But were they both satisfied with the experience overall?

An example of a binary scale question: Did you find the product you were looking for on our website? Yes / No

Nominal questions

Nominal questions are naming scales, which pinpoint different categories of questions. These answers cannot be assigned a numerical value. In addition, the answers are not created to be connected in any way, unless you add an option for “all of the above.”

The answers to nominal questions have no specific order; they are meant to carry significance for variable labels only.

An example of a nominal question: Which brand of laptops from our store do you prefer?

Answers:  Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Acer, Samsung, Asos

As you can see, the order of these answers doesn’t matter, neither are they tied to any number. The significance lies in the label only; it shows researchers which brand its customers prefer.

These can be used in custom surveys or even in visual ratings surveys, if you use an emoji for each option. This can be done to test branding, with each emoji taking the form of a brand’s logo.

Likert scale questions

likert scale question

Likert scale questions are used in Likert scale surveys. The answers exist as a 5- or 7- point scale to determine how customers feel. The bottom number (always 1) represents the lowest extreme view, while the top number (either a 5 or 7) represents the highest extreme view. 

The numbers 3 (on a 5-point scale) and 4 (on a 7-point scale), represent the middle, aka the moderate view. 

An example of a Likert scale question:

On a scale of 1-5, how strongly do you agree with the following:

[Your product]’s had an easy to use and understand our instruction manual.

1 - Strongly disagree

2 - Somewhat disagree

3 - Neither agree nor disagree

4 - Somewhat agree

5 - Strongly agree

Semantic differential questions

Like Likert scale questions, Semantic differential questions also feature a 5- or 7-point scale. These questions, however, offer a differentiator, in that they ask for more descriptive answers. 

Instead of asking responders to either agree or disagree to a statement, semantic differential questions ask the customer to select an option that most accurately represents their opinion on a product, service or experience.  

An example of a semantic differential question:

How helpful was our interactive website experience?

1 - Not helpful at all

2 - Barely helpful

3 - Neither helpful nor unhelpful

4 - Somewhat helpful

5 - Very helpful

Open-ended questions

An open-ended question can be used to buttress virtually any of the mentioned survey types in this article. That is because these questions use an open field for customers to type out their answers.

Usually, these questions ask for clarity or elaboration on a previous multiple-choice or ratings question. These questions are best used to cut back on any ambiguity or to delve further into an issue without the need to ask multiple questions.

Since the answer is in a field that customers can type, they can express themselves more fully and add all the details present in a problem, concern or preference. 

This type of question is more difficult to process since it is longer and unique to each respondent, however, it is excellent for finding new ideas and opportunities for betterment. 

An example of an open-ended question:

Is there anything on our website we could improve for a better digital experience? If so, what is it?

More Examples of Specific Questions for Customer Satisfaction

The above was designed so that you can become fully acquainted with the main question types in customer satisfaction surveys. 

But with so many questions out there in relation to customer satisfaction, it may be confusing to tie specific ones to a question type, let alone a survey type. Here are a few more examples of specific questions you may potentially use for your customer feedback survey.

  1. How would you rate the interaction you had with our salesman, on a scale of 1-5?
    1. Question type: Customer Satisfaction (CSAT)
  2. Can you rate how likely you are to recommend our brand to a friend or family member on a scale of 0-10?
    1. Question type: NPS survey question
  3. How easy was it to solve your issue with us? (Select from 1-5)
    1. Question type: Customer Effort Score (CES)
  4. Why did you feel you had an overwhelmingly positive experience? (multiple-choice)
    1. Question type: Custom question
  5. How can we improve this product? Please provide all the feedback you can.
    1. Question type: Open-ended

Excelling in the Customer Satisfaction Front

Customer satisfaction can be a tough nut to crack, even when you build a seemingly perfect customer survey. To put insult to injury, customer satisfaction surveys have low response rates, as they hover between 10-30%.

You should remember that these surveys should only be sent to customers, ie, the portion of your target market that has made purchases. 

Also, keep in mind that in some cases, you may combine all survey questions and even all survey types into one survey, so long as it is relevant to your case.

Make sure each survey you create to study customer satisfaction is centered around topics relevant to your customers’ recent purchases and experiences. Apply best practices and you’ll improve the low response rate in no time. 

Frequently asked questions

What is a customer survey?

A customer survey is any type of survey that is distributed to existing customers of a business.

What can a customer survey achieve?

Customer surveys help a company understand customer satisfaction and research changes that can be made to improve customer satisfaction.

What types of questions are included in customer surveys?

The types of questions used in customer surveys are multiple-choice questions, rating scale questions, binary scale questions, nominal questions, Likert scale questions, semantic differential questions, and open-ended questions.

What is a Likert scale?

A Likert scale is a type of question used in surveys. It provides a statement and asks respondents to rate their level of agreement or disagreement on a scale of 1 - 5.

How are semantic differential questions different from Likert scale questions?

Semantic differential questions offer more descriptive answers than Likert scale questions, which only allow respondents to agree or disagree with a statement.