How to Create a Survey Customers Will Answer

Two weeks ago I blogged on why a free survey was invaluable. I mean – the potential of capturing meaningful data that can literally breakdown barriers that might keep people from making a purchasing decision is there.

So let’s get right to it.

I’ve chosen to build my survey through Survey Monkey because they’ve already thought of everything for me.


Survey Monkey and other survey generators have mapped out the process so well that I really don’t need to explain the technicalities. If you can read, you can use of these websites.

So here is my little bag of tricks on how to make a meaningful survey that your customers will want to answer.


  1. Start with a time commitment.

If you are pleading to the masses for your responses – go ahead and tell them how much time you are asking them for.

A one-minute survey is much less of a commitment than a 10-minute survey.

And that’s the first thing that will pop into your customer’s mind when they are considering taking your survey? “How long will this take?”

If you can get your survey from 5 minutes to 3 minutes or from 3 minutes to 2 minutes, do it because most people are willing to kill 2 or 3 minutes.

Use phrases like, “Only takes 1 minute!” in the description of your survey.

  1. Try to keep your survey to as few pages as possible.

The simpler the survey the more respondents will choose to partake.

One of my most successful surveys was a 10 question, 1 pager.

Why? People like simplicity.

  1. Know what you are measuring.

Only measure what matters to keep surveys short.

Before you Google “customer service survey questions,” (which really isn’t a bad idea) figure out your end game.

Do you want to see what brands are missing in your merchandising? Want to know why people are return customers or the age demographic that is most willing to spend more in your store?

Whatever you’re after, make an original list before you ever reach out for sourced questions. For the most part, you need to stick to the themes on your list in order to have a strong focus point.

Supplement sourced questions to assist and deepen your understanding of the original questions you came up with.

  1. Add a free response question.

This is something I addressed in my last post. Take my word for it, your customers have opinions and they won’t be shy about them!

You won’t believe how thoughtful and market-minded some of your customers are. They’ll address customer service, new markets or products you should look into and so on. You’re the business owner so, remember to take everything with a grain of salt; however, there will be some opinions that you’ll want to adopt as your own.

Ask them what they think, and they’ll have more emotional stock built up in your business.


  1. Push your survey on multiple platforms.

Like I said previously, Survey Monkey has already thought of everything so you can email your survey, share it on social platforms, share a direct link and much more.

Go for it! You’ll reach different audiences and get a wider spectrum of your market if you do.

  1. Make measurable goals.

That’s right. Thanks to this post and your own ingenuity, you’ve got wonderful data that points to some serious changes.

As you go through the data with your team, decide right there and then how you will address the responses with action steps.

Put them on the calendar and put someone on your team (besides you) in charge of keeping track of these changes.

I hope these served as steps you can take to get your customers to answer your survey and to make sure you get useful data! And don’t forget to thank your respondents! Email me at [email protected] for more marketing and strategy help.