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How to insert a survey question into an email
General, Product Information, Survey Tips

How to insert a survey question into an email

The Pros & Cons Of Letting Survey Takers Remain Anonymous
Survey Tips

The Pros & Cons of Letting Survey Takers Remain Anonymous

You’ve created an engaging survey and paid attention to all the best practices. It’s time to send it out, and suddenly you aren’t sure what to do.

Should you require respondents to leave their names, or should you let them remain nameless?

In this article, we look at the pros and cons of letting survey takers remain anonymous.

Pros of Anonymous Surveys

You’ll often find that anonymous surveys can provide for more honest feedback.

The nature of a nameless survey means that respondents can answer freely without fear of reprisals or embarrassment.

Anonymous surveys work well for topics that are deeply personal and allow people to respond openly and honestly.

Cons of Anonymous Surveys

On the flip side, anonymous surveys may be less specific. You may find that if negative feedback is involved, it’s broad-based because you can’t follow-up to learn more.

In addition, if the survey is anonymous, you might not have a frame of reference for the respondents’ complaints, so you can’t be completely sure of the whole picture.

Another negative is that respondents don’t have to “own” an anonymous survey. If they have to give their name, they must also be able to stand behind their feedback and defend it.

Without ownership, your data may not always be accurate.

Final Thoughts

Once you’ve weighed the pros and cons of letting survey takers remain anonymous, you can decide which route to take.

If you’re on the fence, consider letting your survey takers decide. Give them the choice of answering their questions openly or anonymously. Do this at the start of the survey for the best results.

Finally, if you’re wondering about survey results, a university study shows that non-anonymous survey respondents are more likely to provide extra detail in their responses as opposed to anonymous responders.

This also shows that feedback quality actually can improve once the anonymity is removed. (tweet this)

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

Image:  Daniel Montiero

General, Product Information, Survey Tips

Alerting customer service by email to negative reviews automatically

One of the main reasons to use surveys is to keep a pulse on customer satisfaction. You can add questions such as Ratings or Net Promoter Score to gather immediate feedback from customers. But what if you get a negative review and want to follow up on it right away? Using SurveyTown you can get alerted to negative reviews by sending an email to your support or account management department for immediate followup. Here’s an example of setting up SurveyTown to do this.

Let’s assume that you are creating a ratings question of stars 1 to 5 and wanted customer service to be alerted by email if anyone rated their experience less than 4 stars.

First create your question

Step 1 is to create your customer service question.  In this example, we are using a simple ratings question – “Please rate your experience.” and we give the customer a choice of 1 to 5 stars.

Second, create an “Action”

Under the “Logic & Actions” tab, click the button to “Add New Action”.  The action we are creating is to send an email when a someone rates the question as less than 4 stars.  So the next step is to create the condition.

Third, define the condition

Add a Condition

Press the button that says “Add a Condition” and defein the condition of  “How would you rate our service?” is less than “4”.

What this means is, if someone rates their experience as less than 4 stars your action will be triggered.

Set the Alert email recipient

Now set the “Alert Email” which means put in the email of the person or the group that you want to receive the email alert.

 

Save the logic an action and then you are done.

Using the “Preview” you can test our your new functionality.  If you have set things up correctly you will get an email when take the survey and give it less than 4 stars.

The email you get will contain the condition that was met.  It will also contain a link to be able to click on and see the full response.

 

If you have asked for the customers phone number or email or if you have passed this data along to SurveyTown when you passed the customer onto us then you can find that information and followup with the customer.

That’s it.  Happy surveying.

 

 

Example code for PHP Webhook Endpoint
Integrations, Product Information

Example code for PHP Webhook Endpoint

Every Webhook needs an endpoint — a listener script that “does something” when it receives a notification.

SurveyTown has survey webhooks that allow you to receive notifications when different events happen inside your SurveyTown account.  Why would you want to receive these notifications?  So a common use case would be if you wanted to update a separate systems when someone completed a survey, you could receive a webhook notification from SurveyTown when the survey was completed and after receiving that information you could then do something with that data such as update a CRM record, for example.

Webhooks themselves are an HTTP post notifications.  To the non-technie, the notification itself just looks like a bunch of code.  But buried in the code is all the details about the event.  In the case of the RESPONSE_CHANGED webhook for example, the POST includes all the answers the respondent gave to the questions in the survey.

When setting up a webhook, you provide a URL where the information will be sent when the event happens – this is called the “endpoint” or the “listener”.   But at that endpoint, there needs to be some code that “consumes” the information SurveyTown sends and does something with it.   We thought it would be fun to give an example code that takes our RESPONSE CHANGED webhook and makes a CSV out of it responses.  Why?  Perhaps this CSV could then be downloaded into other business intelligence software for example.  But turning the information into a CSV is just one example you could do.  You could do a myriad of different things once you have the data.

So here is the example code, written in PHP that when notified by our RESPONSE_CHANGED webhook creates a CSV.  It should be noted that you could modify this script to change the response data into any format you need –  like XML or JSON. You could even skip saving to a file altogether and pass the data directly into a database or another process. But without further ado, here’s the code:

Example Webhook Endpoint Written in PHP that uses the “RESPONSE_CHANGED” webhook to create a CSV

Happy surveying!

Most Common Survey Questions
Survey Tips

9 Of The Most Common Survey Questions

Wondering what your customers think of your business, your staff, and your product and services? The best way to find out is through a survey.

Surveys help you gather data and analyze it so you can take action if necessary. They have the ability to help you increase your business while strengthening your relationship with your customers.

To help you make the most out of your next survey, we look at nine of the most common survey questions and review their effectiveness. 

#1: The Open-Ended Survey Question

The open-ended survey question is perhaps the most effective survey question because it provides you with the most information. (tweet this)

With this question, the sky’s the limit when it comes to answers.

You use the open-ended survey question when you really want to dig deep into how your respondents feel about your company, your brand, your products and services, and your customer service and staff.

This question allows respondents to answer the question in as much detail as they want.

#2: The Dichotomous Question

Generally speaking, this is the common yes or no question.

For example, you might ask, “Have you used our products in the last year?”

Respondents are then given the option to simply answer yes or no.

As for the effectiveness of this type of question, it’s beneficial if the only answer you want is yes or no. If you want to screen respondents out and send them on or dump them out of your survey, this question works.

Many people use this type of question to make sure only “qualified” people are taking their survey.

In the above example, you’d respond to survey takers who answered no, they haven’t used your products, with a thank you message and the end of the survey.

Those who answered yes, they have used your products, would continue on.

#3: The Multiple-Choice Question

Another common survey question is the multiple-choice question that consists of three or more answer choices.

With this question, you might ask respondents which products or services they’ve used. For example, the question might be “What is your favorite product of ours that you’ve used in the last year?”

You would then give them three-ten choices and they choose one.

We recommend adding in an “other” category for certain questions to make sure you cover all your bases.

Like the dichotomous question, this is also a good question for which you can use conditional logic. Depending on their answer, you can send them off into various directions to answer different survey trains.

#4: The Rating Scale Question

A very common type of survey question, the rating scale asks survey respondents to rate their experiences.

It might be a product, a service or how the customer felt about something. The key to this question is a scale, usually from something that was very bad to very good.

This question is effective if you just want to know how your customer perceives your product or service.

The most common form of ratings question uses the Likert Scale. When responding to this question, your survey participants specify their level of agreement or disagreement.

#5: The Rank Order Question

You’ve probably answered this type of question many times.

With the rank order question, you might list five of the services you offer and ask respondents to rank them in order of their usefulness.

This question is effective in that it allows you to prioritize your marketing dollars into the services that people find the most valuable.

#6: The Demographic Question

Common and important, most surveys include the demographic questions.

Why do you want to ask these questions? They’re vital to the data you collect.

With the demographic survey questions, you learn the age, gender, income, race, geographical location, number of children, education level and much more of your respondents.

This helps you filter your results by demographic items.

For example, you might find that most of your respondents with children feel differently about your products than those without. Or, you might learn that people at a certain income level had a different experience with your service than others.

You have a more accurate view of your respondents once you have demographic data. This helps you understand your customer and in turn market to them more effectively.

#7: The Single Select Question

This type of question allows you to ask your respondents to choose from preconfigured options. In this instance, they only choose one.

For example, you ask, “What is your favorite food?” They can choose from pizza, burgers, steak and chicken fingers, but they are only allowed to select one.

Based on this answer, if you own a restaurant, you might add more of this type of food to your menu.

This is a closed or forced-choice question. It’s effective when you want very specific data.

#8: The Multi Select Question

This is just like the single select question, except your respondents can choose as many options as they’d like.

In the previous example, if you made it multi select, respondents could choose each one of your food items.

This question can be effective if a broad amount of data is acceptable.

#9: The Semantic Differential Scale Question

Another type of ratings question, this common survey question asks respondents to rate your company, service or product using a seven-point scale. At each opposing end is a completely opposite description.

For example, one choice would be very likely, while the other choice would be very unlikely. Respondents would choose on the scale of seven, from 1 being very unlikely to seven being very likely.

This question is perhaps not the most effective because the middle ground is very vague.

To Conclude

Now that you know nine of the most common survey questions and their level of effectiveness, you’re ready to start building your survey.

Before you do, though, here are a few more tips to building the perfect and most successful survey.

  1. Know your objective. Narrow down what you want to know from your customers and what you’re willing and able to take action on. Then, tailor your survey around this topic only.
  2. Keep your survey short. For the best data, keep your survey to no more than five minutes. This generally means asking fewer than 10 questions.
  3. Include a balance of closed-ended and open-ended questions and make sure the question style fits your query.
  4. Ask only one thing per question. If you ask two things in one question, you end up with skewed data, and you confuse your respondents.
  5. Be careful of question bias. Have others proof your survey before sending it out to avoid leading and biased questions.

Finally, do take action on your survey results and let your respondents know what you learned from the survey and what you intend to do about it. 

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

Image:  Ken Treloar on Unsplash

 

 

 

 

Tips For Creating An Engaging Survey
Survey Tips

9 Tips For Creating An Engaging Survey

Let’s face it, most surveys are boring, and many aren’t created with the respondent in mind.

Many companies want to learn something quickly, and they don’t often spend the time to create an engaging, thought-provoking survey.

This means higher drop-off rates for the surveyor, and this isn’t a good statistic for the endgame.

To help you make surveys that are attention grabbing, and attention holding, let’s look at five tips for creating an engaging survey.

#1: Be Relevant

What’s relevant to you might not be relevant to your survey audience, so you want to make sure you know exactly who you’re sending your survey to.

For example, if you are crafting a survey about swimming pools, and you want to know why people would or wouldn’t put a pool in their backyard, you don’t want to send the survey to apartment dwellers.

Your relevant audience is homeowners.

Another way to stay relevant in a more upbeat, hip way is to research trending hashtags that have some relation to your business. Then use that information to craft a survey title and/or questions that hook your audience and makes them want to complete your survey.

#2: Be Timely

Your customer purchased from you two months ago, and you wait to send a survey about their checkout experience.

Most busy people aren’t going to remember your checkout process (unless there was something memorable – good or bad) two months afterwards.

Stay in the moment and be timely with your surveys for the best engagement.

#3: Be Visual

The digital, social media age means that visuals matter.

You can bet your respondents are going to drop off if your survey is visually unattractive.

Things to think about include your background color scheme, font colors and font choice and any embedded images. 

#4: Be Mobile Friendly

Mobile usage is significantly higher than desktop usage, and Americans spend nearly 90 hours per month on their smartphones.

This is why the most engaging surveys are mobile-friendly. Make it simple, fast and easy for your respondents to complete your survey from the comfort of their phones.

Make sure your survey functions just as well on the mobile phone as it does the desktop computer.

Your mobile surveys can help increase engagement and response rate.

#5: Be Thoughtful

When creating your engaging surveys, make them convenient to complete. This means emailing them, posting them and/or embedding them on your Facebook pages, adding them to Twitter and including them on your website.

Making the survey convenient for your respondents shows you are thoughtful and concerned about the usability.

#6: Be Shareable

Once you’ve got your creative, unique and engaging survey, you want to make sure its shareable. (tweet this)

Include social sharing links at the end of the survey so your respondents can share the survey and their results.

Allowing people to share their results on social media means you’ll get even more responses.

#7: Be First

Another tip for creating an engaging survey is to use the first person in your questions. This immediately draws the respondents in and subconsciously keeps them going.

Using the first person creates a psychological response, and makes the survey easier for people to complete because they can immediately imagine themselves in the question. 

#9: Be Logical

Our final tip is to use conditional logic.

To really engage the respondent, tailor subsequent questions from answers to earlier ones.

You can skip questions, add questions based on answers and even route your users to different URLs based on their answers to survey questions. 

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re sending surveys to multiple audiences that might include your customers, target audience, employees or industry leaders, your goal is to get valuable data.

This means you need to create an engaging survey that keeps respondents looking towards the next question.

Try some of our tips today and see if it increases your survey engagement response rate. Test your questions and fine tune as necessary.

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

Image: rawpixel.com on Unsplash

Pre-selecting choices for respondents
Product Information, Survey Tips

Pre-selecting choices for respondents

SurveyTown has launched a new features that allows you to send respondents to a survey with options pre-selected. This can be useful for reducing the amount of thinking that a customer has to do when giving a response.

 

 

How it works is that you add the pre-selected responses into the URL. For example …

https://s.surveytown.com/survey/?c=200011&id=89&question[288][540]=1

This would pre-select choice “540” from question “288”.

In this case for this particular survey it means “Durham” would be pre-selected from the dropdown for location.

So how can you find the particular choices and question ids?

You can get them by viewing the HTML source of the survey you published.

Or you can get them by querying our API.

For a complete walk through of the options and how to set them up, please see this help article.

 

Thanks and happy surveying!