The Importance of Survey Question Wording

Oftentimes consultants such as myself work with clients who don’t have much experience running surveys. But from time to time I run into people who are very familiar with doing surveys. So familiar, in fact, that they can get too close to their projects to see potential issues. This case study involves just such a…

Tips for Displaying Your Survey Data

After you’ve run a successful survey project and gathered your amazing data together, it can be tempting to race through creating charts and graphs. The excitement of having data to share can drive us to visualize our data in ways that don’t do the project justice; we need to slow down and make each graph…

Remember Why You’re Running a Survey: Fun vs. Accuracy

It’s sometimes easy to forget when you’re faced with yet another customer satisfaction survey at a checkout counter, but surveys can be fun! Just think of how many BuzzFeed surveys you’ve seen on Facebook. “Which Disney Pet Are You?” “Which 90’s Cartoons Are These Villains From?” “How Strong is the Force With You?” The list…

How to Know if Customer Satisfaction Surveys Are the Right Choice for You

It’s easy to write questions and send them out to customers, but it’s challenging to design and execute a customer survey that will actually provide useful information for improving your business. All too often companies assume they should be communicating with their customers and jump into a customer satisfaction without enough planning. This kind of…

10 Common Mistakes Made When Writing Surveys: Part 2

In my last article, I discussed the first five points on my list of the most common mistakes made when writing surveys. As I said last time, although it’s nice to know the most common survey mistakes made, the real value is in understanding how to avoid them.

5 Common Mistakes Made When Writing Surveys

As a survey expert I see the same mistakes in surveys all the time. In fact, last night our neighbor was over and he had just completed a customer survey at a local restaurant. He was complaining that they had asked a bunch of multiple-choice questions that didn’t apply to him. Even worse, there was no “not applicable” option and the survey required an answer to every question! This one simple example alone incorporates the first three of the most common mistakes I see in surveys.

Exploring Survey Design: Case Study 1, Part I

As I mentioned in my previous post, over the next couple of months I’ll be putting together a couple of case studies that go through the process of survey design and implementation. The first case study in this series will go through my interaction with a company (actual name withheld for their privacy) and their…

Election Day: A Big Day for Polls and Sampling

Election season is the time for lots of polls, which makes it a good time to highlight what they can teach us about our surveys! Basically a poll is just a type of survey, so the principles that make polling powerful also apply to surveys.

The Pareto Principle (80:20 Rule) in Survey Research

The Pareto principle (which you may know as the 80-20 rule) states that, for many phenomena, 80% of consequences stem from 20% of the causes. It is a common rule of thumb in business; e.g., “80% of your sales come from 20% of your clients.” The Pareto principle also applies to survey research. When planning…