Customer Experience News & Trends

8 painless questions you should be asking customers now

Customers are often more eager to complain to friends than give you feedback. But that can all change when you ask the right kinds of questions.

Survey responses are typically low, regardless of the kind you perform — email, online, phone or in-person. But that doesn’t mean you have to settle on short, rating surveys just to get some responses.

Questions that require customers to write an answer might seem impractical, but they’ll give you better feedback. So fewer responses is OK.

Use in conversations, online

While an actual conversation will help you gather the most in-depth responses, it’s often the hardest to achieve. Customers are more likely to respond when they can do it at their pace — and with some anonymity. Online surveys aren’t perfect, but they can generate a nice pool of responses in a short amount of time at little expense.

Fortunately, the following questions are ideal for online, phone and in person surveys, according to research from David Darmanin, Founder and CEO of Hotjar, an online analytics company. They prompt short, meaningful answers. And if you’re having a conversation, they can be a catalyst for deeper insight.

They are:

  1. Where did you first hear about us? This gives you insight into what is driving customers to you. You might be surprised where customers are hearing about you. For instance, Hotjar found out a lot of customers were hearing about it from a channel it didn’t expect — professional speakers — so it shifted some of its customer acquisition efforts.
  2. How would you describe us to a friend? You’ll hear or see interesting words and terms that can help you position yourself to attract other potential customers. Plus, it helps you understand and speak your customers’ language.
  3. How likely are you to recommend us to a friend? You can offer a 1-to-10 scale for this question and leave room for them answer why they gave that answer. It should reveal why they love, like or dislike you.
  4. What would you miss most if you couldn’t use us anymore? This is a unique way to help you identify your strengths in customers’ eyes. It’ll show you what you need to amp up in the customer experience and emphasize in your promotional efforts.
  5. What’s the big thing we’re missing? On the other end of the spectrum, this will help you identify gaps in a great customer experience and actual pain points. You’ll likely learn about product or service deficiencies and experience shortfalls that can be addressed.
  6. What are three things that nearly stopped you from buying from us? You’ll see the most common barriers customers come across when they deal with you. These are often issues you can clear up quickly.
  7. What are three things that persuaded you to buy from us? These answers will help you improve on what you do well, emphasize what they want in your marketing and sales efforts, and set standards and create quality measures to ensure those strong points remain strong.
  8. What could we have done to make your decision to buy from us even easier? This will help you identify areas to make the experience even more seamless. Other questions gave them the opportunity to point out gaps and highlights. This can point to hiccups.

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