Yep, the first month of 2013 is nearly finished, folks! Not too long ago, we asked you in our 2013 New Year’s Survey what your survey resolutions would be:
The winner? A whopping 40% have vowed so far to establish their survey’s goals before adding questions:
Since we all like to be helpful monkeys around here we’re gonna pass along some of our survey wisdom tips to you. Our goal is to help you reach yours, especially when it comes to making awesome surveys!
1) Do I know why I’m asking these questions?
You want to be sure you know why you’re asking what you’re asking. It’s a good idea to write down the answers to these questions beforehand:
- What is the purpose of my survey?
- Why am I making this survey?
- What do I hope to accomplish?
- How do I plan on using the data that I collect?
- How will the data influence my decisions?
Although these all may seem kinda obvious, we’ve seen lots of surveys go out that could’ve definitely benefited from just a little bit more attention and some planning ahead by the survey creator(s). This can mean the difference between receiving quality responses vs. sloppy responses that won’t help you solve anything.
2) Slow down. Plan ahead.
Let’s take a look at Restaurant X. They wanted to figure out what part of the dining experience was most important to customers. Their survey asked, “How can we improve our restaurant?” The answers they received ranged from “Make your food taste better” to “Change the style of servers’ uniforms”. Even though those are interesting pieces of information, these types of responses didn’t make it easy for the restaurant manager to make an organized list of specific customer feedback to bring to the rest of the restaurant’s management team.
Taking more time to zero in on their survey’s goal could have helped the creators determine whether they should try to understand their customers’ overall perceptions of the restaurant or if focusing on specific improvements– food choices, price, décor– would be more useful to know. For more specific enhancements, it would have been better asking respondents to rank from 1-5 the importance of lowering menu prices.
3) Keep it fuss-free. Keep it simple.
You also want to make sure you’re writing straightforward, easy to read questions using language that your audience will understand. Avoid extra words or using lots of jargon whenever possible.
Example: How useful do you find SurveyMonkey’s Help Center Topics and the email support center?
This is an example of how not to keep questions simple for your respondents. Instead of squeezing two questions into one (asking about our Help Center topics and the email support center), stick to asking just one.
Try this instead: How useful do you find SurveyMonkey’s Help Center Topics?
Be sure to include a range of answer choices too. Example:
- Extremely useful
- Very useful
- Moderately useful
- Slightly useful
- Not at all useful
There you have it, survey fans! We hope these three easy to remember tips will help you keep your 2013 survey resolutions.
Questions, need more advice? Let us know in the Comments section below!