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Customer feedback survey mistakes

Customer feedback is vital because without knowing what to improve, you can’t make effective changes. But what can you do when a feedback survey doesn’t get the volume of responses you expect?

Unfortunately, not all customer surveys are equally effective and some may not glean any valuable responses at all. But it doesn’t have to be that way. To improve your average survey response rate and the quality of the feedback, there are several core principles to implement.  

In this article, we dig into the factors causing low survey response rates so that you can make proactive adjustments. With these tips, your surveys will receive many more responses filled with valuable customer intel.

Why customer feedback is important

Customer feedback comes directly from the people you want to impress meaning it's full of information you can’t get elsewhere. By engaging with feedback from your customers, you can get familiar with pain points, preferences, priorities, and values. Using these insights you can elevate your marketing efforts, product development, and every other aspect of the Customer Experience (CX).  

Of small and medium businesses, 85% say that online feedback is beneficial to their business. From the consumer perspective, 91% of consumers believe brands should use customer insights to fuel innovation. While there will always be a need for experts, don’t underestimate the value of the customer’s expertise. They know what they need better than anyone else and will generally be willing to tell you. 

Why your survey is failing

If your survey is not bringing the insights you hoped, there will be a reason. It will usually come down to one or more of the following pitfalls: 

Bad timing

If you bombard customers with survey requests at an awkward time, they simply won’t bother responding. Even if they do open the request to see what it is, unhappy customers often get frustrated, impatient, or simply lose interest. To avoid this, you need to identify moments in the customer journey when your buyers have time and motivation to share their perspectives. 

Don’t waste their time when they’re requesting customer support, instead reach out when their request has been resolved. This way, the customer will have the right mindset to reply and will generally provide more helpful answers. Another key moment is after a purchase or subscription renewal because they are generally feeling excited or satisfied. 

Using the wrong channel

To raise response rates, you should be doing everything in your power to meet customers where they are. This way, they don’t have to use communication channels that aren’t familiar to them or aren’t supported on their devices. Find out which method of communication your users prefer and start using them. If any of your current channels are redundant, let them go.

For the best results, use customer feedback surveys that can be distributed across any communication channel. This way, as your customer preferences change, you can adapt effortlessly. For example, with Review Tui, you can share surveys via campaign links across any channel.  

Questions are too complicated

As soon as a survey is too difficult to navigate, customers will abandon it and stop trying. Remember, sharing their feedback is optional and they won’t persist if they come up against unnecessary obstacles. For that reason, your survey should be intuitive, user-friendly, and appealing. 

Use a customisable survey creator to incorporate your branding and choose clear, logical answer types. For example, you can use sliding scales, ranked lists, multiple choice, or free text. With each other these quick and easy answer types, customers can immediately understand what to do. 

Surveys are too long

Paired with the above point, the length of your survey is crucial. Don’t expect your customers to set aside time for this – they don’t want to answer more than a few questions. If your survey is longer than 5 questions long, many customers will give up before they even begin. 

As a general rule, keep surveys short and to the point. The less time your customers have to spend on it, the more likely they will give valuable answers. For that reason, it is better to ask two or three relevant and focused questions.  

5 tips for getting more survey responses

In summary, there are many reasons why customers don’t respond to feedback surveys, but most can be avoided. You can raise your response rate and ensure you have much more intel to work from by following these 4 survey tips: 


1. Make surveys user-friendly 

Customers should feel at ease when they open your survey. Use a survey-building tool for this step and confirm the functions are working as they should before sending it. The customer should know at first glance what is expected of them – so don’t fill it up with too many bells and whistles.


2. Make surveys accessible and convenient

Choose a distribution channel that is favoured by your target demographic. For older audiences, consider using email. For younger people, social media or live chat may be more viable options. 

If you have an e-commerce business, why not incorporate a QR code on your product packaging? Wherever your customers found you in the first place is usually the best place to start. 


3. Keep them short and sweet.

Don’t be tempted to squeeze too many questions into each survey – five questions should be the limit. As well as that, the phrasing of the questions should be concise, easy to understand, and open-ended. If customers have to read through a paragraph to know what the question is asking, they will often abandon it. 


4. Incentivise reviews

While internal feedback is priceless, public reviews are also a huge driver for success. Fortunately for you, they go hand in hand. When a customer has something to say on a survey, you can use incentives to encourage them to copy and paste it on an external review platform like Google or Trivago. 

Customer feedback management

If you are ready to gather more customer feedback, it’s time to implement an effective strategy. Luckily for you, it is much easier with the help of a Customer Feedback Management (CFM) platform like Review Tui. 

With survey templates, responses, trends, and tools integrated into one convenient tool, there’s no need to feel overwhelmed again. Sign up for the software launch now to be the first to know all the exciting updates. 

Download our free customer feedback strategy guide